Katarzyna Kozielska (Neoclassical Dance)
Katarzyna Kozielska, a professional dancer, who, after an incredible time spent on stage as a performer, moved on to pursue a carrier as an awarded choreographer with an opportunity to create many pieces for major companies worldwide. In 2001 she achieved a Diploma within the Advanced Training Course in Dance Pedagogy, by John Cranko Schule, Stuttgart, Germany.
She has been working with Ballet Master, Folkwang Universitat der Kunste (Germany) since 2019. Her credits as a choreographer include The Stuttgart Ballet, Tulsa Ballet, Hermès, the Czech National Ballet, YAGP, Chemnitz Ballet, Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden, John Cranko Schule, Ballet Augsburg, Youth Project Japan and Poland, Deutscher Tanzpreis, Noverre – Society for Young Choreographers, YAGP Star Gala in New York City, Roberto Bolle & Friends, Gala de Danza, Mexico, Tokyo Star Gala, Ibstage Gala, Barcelona, Birgit Keil Gala, BalletNext, New York and others.
She was a Demi-soloist in The Stuttgart Ballet from 2000 – 2018. Her dance career includes leading and solo roles in works by Georges Balanchine, Maurice Béjart, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, John Cranko, Jorma Elo, William Forsythe, Michail Fokine, Itzik Galili, Marco Goecke, Maximiliano Guerra, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, John Neumeier, Márcia Haydée, Uwe Scholz, Christian Spuck, Peter Schaufuss, Glen Tetley. Specially created Roles: Alben (Marco Goecke), Firebird (Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui), On Velvet (Marco Goecke), Sweet Sweet Sweet (Marco Goecke), Two at a time (Cayetano Soto), Viciouswishes (Marco Goecke), and La peau blanche… (Christian Spuck).
Minka Heiß (Contemporary Dance)
Minka-Marie Heiss, a Frankfurt am Main, Germany born artist, who studied mathematics, sports science, and contemporary dance. She was a member of the ensemble at the National Theatre Darmstadt and danced in a work created by the Slovenian choreographer Iztok Kovac in both Munich and Berlin.
As a freelance dancer, Minka-Marie worked with Eugenia Estevez, Ana-Maria Edelmann, and Sara Buhr in Sweden, as well as with Ljuba Avvakumova in Austria. She also participated in various choreographic workshops led by the Portuguese choreographer Rui Horta in France and Portugal. On several occasions, she was nominated as a dancer and choreographer for the International Solo Dance Festival in Stuttgart. In 2004 Minka-Marie established her own dance company Hausgemacht with which she toured across Germany and abroad up until 2015. In 2008 she received for her artistic work the Isadora Award from the Iwanson-Sixt Foundation.
Since 2000 Heiss has been a professor of contemporary dance at the Iwanson International School of Contemporary Dance in Munich. In July 2010, she was selected as a choreographer for the Swiss International Master Course in Choreography (SIWIC) under the artistic direction of Reinhild Hoffmann in Zurich, Switzerland. She also created and presented various choreographic works at the Tanzhaus Zurich. In 2012, as part of Risk to Fall production staged at the Theater Die Tonne in Reutlingen, Minka-Marie created work for the Ballett Pforzheim under the choreographic leadership of James Sutherland. In 2015 she was a choreographer in residence at the Choreographisches Zentrum Heidelberg.
Heiss regularly produces choreographies for the company Strado Danza in Ulm, a company directed by Domenico Strazzeri. She is a guest lecturer for the ballet company at the Nationaltheater München, the Nationaltheater Darmstadt, the Nationaltheater Linz in Austria, the Theater Heidelberg – Nanine Linning, Norrdans, the Theater Boras in Sweden, a teacher at The International Summer Dance Festival in Poland, and RECOIL – movement through the mind in Stockholm. She is also a lecturer at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Mannheim.
In 2022, her choreography Le (mas)sacre du printemps, 29 mai 1913 was presented at the Olympiazentrum in Munich as part of the Superbloom Festival.
Gábor Halász (Contemporary Dance)
Gábor Halász, being a professional dancer, represents his artistic versatility in numerous forms. Apart from being a choreographer-dancer he also creates electronic music and sometimes even builds his own sets. His work melts together classical dance vocabulary with contemporary approaches, combining in space small, rhythmic, and huge, dynamic movements. Thanks to the knowledge of music production and sound design, Gábor has developed a unique sensitivity to the audio environment in his pieces in order to underline his personal artistic statements. Halász’s curiosity drives him to continue experimenting and attempting to translate social issues, professional positions, personal relations, and emotions to the universal physical language of dance. He focuses on the body of the dancers as a limitless tool to research the artistic expressions of the future.
Thanks to his professional experience in the dance field, Gábor Halász has encountered a variety of different choreographic approaches, which allows him to build classes that offer a wide range of technical elements of dance. His approach to dance is influenced by Forsythe’s improvisation technique, Laban technique, and embodiment practices that he integrates into his own teaching material. Whether we talk about classical ballet, floorwork, jazz or hip-hop; each dance technique and style requires strength, stability, flexibility, great focus, energy, and rhythm.
His progressive material prepares the body and the mind for more complex exercises and challenges. Halász emphasises the importance of coordination and of the ability to fit into any kind of motion system. His courses help students awaken interest in looking at their movement and body with an analytic approach and to build a stronger connection with their dance. As part of his Artistic Masterclass Research, he is currently developing a method to make dancers sensitive to music and audio environment. His knowledge of choreographic practice also prepares students for individual works offering them many different directives and tools for movement creation and composition.
With his experience in production processes, from the conceptualisation to the actual performance, he can guide students through developing their own choreographic ideas. As part of Gábor’s professional experience, he was a guest teacher at the National Ballet de Marseille as well as a guest lecturer at Hungarian National Dance Academy, Budapest Contemporary Dance Academy and Dance College of Pécs. He has also given workshops and training as per invitation by Tanznetz Dresden, Central-Europe Dance Theater, Xin Jing Dance Company in Beijing, the Gangaray Artistic Program, Summer Artistic School in Koszęcin. In 2010, he was one of the c-founders of D.A.N.C.E. Summer Workshops Series in Kraków, which are organised until now.
Michaił Zubkow (Classical Dance)
After graduating from the ballet school in Perma (Russia) in 1980, Michail began his carrier at the Nizhniy Novgorod State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre. Five years later, in 1985, he joined the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre. Then, in 1992 he was invited to take over the position of a ballet soloist at the Kraków Opera in Poland.
Throughout the 22 years of stage practice, he danced in ballets with classical repertoire (Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Giselle, Raymonda, Don Quixote, to name a few) as well as in performances by contemporary choreographers.
During the Vilnius period, while working with the “Fajerleh” folklore group (Lithuania), he decided to try his luck as a choreographer. Using the knowledge gained in this Ensemble, he created the choreography for J. Bock’s musical Fiddler on the Roof directed by Marek Weiss-Grzesiński. The spectacle was staged by the Kraków Opera in 1993 at the J. Słowacki Theatre and it became Zubkov’s first significant choreographic creation.
The next step in his professional career was the founding of the “Oranim Dance Group” ballet company in 1995.
In 1999-2001 the company took part in the ‘Music World Festival’ in Fivizzano, Italy. In 2001, Michaił Zubkov received a special jury award for “The Best Choreography of the Music World Festival”. A year earlier, he won the second place award at the “Le Printemps de la Dance” competition in Bordeaux (France).
At the ‘Music World Festival’, the artist met another laureate of this event – the Stanisław Hadyna’s “Śląsk” Song and Dance Ensemble, (Poland). At the invitation of the Ensemble’s management, he took the position of their ballet teacher and choreographer.
In 2009 Michaił obtained a MA degree in Dance at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warszawa and in 2013 he completed postgraduate studies in Dance Theory.
Then, on September 30, 2019, on the basis of the presented doctoral dissertation, he obtained a PhD in Art.
In January 2023, Michaił Zubkov was awarded the degree of habilitated doctor.
Currently, he is the ballet director and choreographer in the Stanisław Hadyna’s “Śląsk” Song and Dance Ensemble. He carries out projects for the Ensemble, presented on prestigious stages in Poland and abroad (among others in London, New York, and Tokyo). Zubkov collaborates with many other ensembles and art schools. He runs classical and contemporary dance workshops as well as stages theatre performances as a choreographer and director. He is a juror of national and international dance festivals and competitions.