Karen Stokes Dance is currently comprised of nine members.
Brittany Bass is a former member of the University of Houston’s Dance Ensemble as well as a member of the UH Young Audience Touring Company. She served as the president of University Dance Theatre, the student dance organization at University of Houston for the 2013-2014 year. While at University of Houston, she has trained under Karen Stokes, Teresa Chapman, Rebecca Valls, Courtney Jones, jhon r. stronks, and Sara Draper. Brittany transferred from Texas Womans University, where she participated in the schools International Dance Company and Kids Dance, an interactive show that teaches dance elements to children. At TWU, she trained under Mary Williforde Shade, Gladys Keeton, Jordan Fuchs, Sarah Gambling, and Mark Dendy. She also worked closely with the Aldine Dance Company that offered her the opportunity to teach and choreograph for kids, ages 4 to 18. Brittany plans on returning to her school district once she receives her degree in dance and teacher certification. Brittany has a degree in dance from the University of Houston, and has been working with Karen Stokes Dance since Spring 2014.
Yahudi Castaneda has performed in works by choreographers Teresa Chapman, Jackie Nalett, Toni Valle, jhon r. stronks, & Lori Amare. He has performed with the UH Dance Ensemble, Earthen Vessels Dance Company, and was a member of the Becky Valls’ Young Audience Touring Company. Yahudi is also a musician and plays the trumpet. Yahudi received his BA in Dance from University of Houston in 2011. Yahudi has been a member of KSD since 2009 and is thrilled to be a part of the company.
Vi Dieu first developed his love and passion for dance in hip hop as a Popper and B-boy while attending high school, where he danced for his high school hip hop team. In college, he formed Unason Dance Crew and became its director/choreographer. Through his leadership, Unason won first place at the K-Pop talent competition and has performed many of Vi’s original choreographic works at talent shows, like University of Houston Best Dance Crew and Kollaboration. Vi was a member of the UH Dance Ensemble for two years where he performed works by Teresa Chapman, Karen Stokes, Becky Valls, Sara Draper, jhon r. stronks, Catalina Molnari, Jackie Nalett, Jennifer Sommers and Sophia Torres. He has also performed in works by Marc Bamuthi. Vi received a Bachelor of Arts in Dance from University of Houston in 2015. Vi is in his fourth season with Psophonia Dance Company and is in his second season with KSD.
Gaby Luna is in PreMed, receiving her BA in Kinesiology with a minor in dance at University of Houston. She has performed with NobleMotion Dance Company, No Boundaries Dance Company, Chris Huston, SoReal Dance Crew, and UH Dance Ensemble. She had the opportunity to be a summer intern at Broadway Dance Center in New York City and posed as a model for Dance Spirit Magazine in 2011. Gaby loves working with children and had the pleasure to work at Children’s Memorial Hermann in the Medical Center. She hopes to become a Pediatrician and also study dance medicine to help aid dancers with injury prevention.
Liannet Madrazo (Apprentice) is a senior at University of Houston, studying dance and majoring in kinesiology. She studied in La Habana, Cuba, where she also danced with Tony Menandez Dance Company and performed in multiple venues and theaters. She was also accepted at the National School of Arts before moving to Houston, TX. She continued her training at Robert E Lee High School under Keisha Breaker. She has danced for Chapman Dance, Aileene Mapes, Jacqueline Nallet, and Suchu Dance. Liannet was part of The UH Dance Ensemble for two years, where she had the pleasure to perform in works by Teresa Chapman, John Beasant III, Jacqueline Nallet, Leslie Scates, Karen Stokes, Sophia Torres, and Jane Weiner. She has also performed in a music video for Alicia Miles called “Smile in the Moon.”
Jerrica Mark has danced for Dance of Asian America, Houston Dance Theatre, and the UH Dance Ensemble. Jerrica has trained at Mitsi Dancing School, (ballet and Chinese dance,) and Houston Ballet Academy, under Priscilla Nathan Murphy, Cheryene Busche, and Shelly Powers. Jerrica has attended summer intensives with Ballet Adriatico under Anna Marie Holmes in Ascoli Piceno, Italy, Dominic Walsh Dance Theater, and Hope Boikin from Alvin Ailey. Jerrica has performed with Dance of Asian America at Miller Outdoor Theatre. As part of Dance Houston concerts, she has performed Robert Mills' World Groove with Houston Dance Theatre and Fix You, choreographed by Bryan Peck and herself, at the Houston Transplant Games of America Opening Ceremonies 2014. Jerrica has performed works by Teresa Chapman, Rebecca Valls, Toni Valle, Jacqueline Nalett, jhon r. stronks, Jennifer Wood, and Sophia Torres. She also attended the American College Dance Festival in 2013 and 2014, where she choreographed and performed Among Heavenly Waters; and performed in several works by others. She is in her third season as a member for KSD, and graduated with a bachelor's degree from the University of Houston.
Alonzo Lee Moore IV began his dance training in 2002 in Loyola University's Ballet Repertory Program. He has danced for the New Orleans Metropolitan Opera and New Orleans only professional ethnic dance ensemble, Komenka, touring Poland, Bulgaria, and France. Alonzo moved to Oregon in 2005 performing with Traduza Brazilian Dance Company as well as guesting with Lane Community College Dance under Bonnie Simoa, Rita Honka Dance and University of Oregon student MFA Concert with Laura Hiszczynskyj. In 2007 he became a company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, serving as resident Actor/Choreographer for four seasons. In 2009 Alonzo performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Throne of Blood, directed by experimental theater master Ping Chong. Alonzo began work with Dancing People Company in 2007 as well, bringing modern dance to southern Oregon; touring throughout the northwest. Alonzo has joined DPC in residence at several southern Oregon high schools, Pacific Northwest College (Portland, OR), Saint Olaf College (Northfield, MN), as well as the 2012 Open Look International Contemporary Dance Festival Saint Petersburg, Russia where he joined the summer teaching staff teaching Modern. After 10 years of being away from home, Alonzo returned to the Houston community where he has danced with Hope Stone Inc., Koumankele African Dance and Drum Ensemble, TUTS (guest artist at TUTS annual GALA) and Houston Grand Opera. Alonzo currently dances with Open Dance Project under the choreographic direction of Annie Arnoult. Alonzo joins Karen Stokes Dance for the first time and is excited to express her creative vision for he too truly believes that we are all stardust encapsulated in form a swirling series of spirals spinning together.
Bryan Peck has been with Karen Stokes Dance since the Fall of 2013. He has also worked with Suchu Dance, Poetry In Motion Dance Company, and J&D Entertainment. He has trained in modern, jazz, tap, ballet, contemporary, lyrical, hip hop and gymnastics and worked with many choreographers and dancers such as Terrance Harrison from Step Up, Twitch from Step Up 3D, and Tabitha and Napoleon from So You Think You Can Dance. He has attended the American Dance Festival Summer Intensive and the American College Dance Festival with San Jacinto College Dance and UH Dance Ensemble. Bryan has also done modeling for the Halloween Party and Expo; has performed in music videos with Patti LaBelle, Prodigy, Von Won, and Macy Medford; and he has performed in Step Up Revolution with Cindy K's Dance Studio. He is currently doing many different performances with Karen Stokes Dance and also had the opportunity to perform at Merce Cunningham Theatre in New York. Bryan recently choreographed "...ing" and "Contraffinity" in the Emerging Choreographer's Showcase at University of Houston. He has also choreographed for Cindy K's Elite Competition Team, Dance Houston's No Limits Dance Camp, and many high schools in the area. Bryan has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Dance from the University of Houston, and graduated from San Jacinto College South with an Associate of Arts in Dance.
Kara Rainey has performed with Rebecca Valls, 6 Degrees, Julie Fox, Sophia Torres, Suchu Dance, and Houston Grand Opera. She is in her 11th season with KSD. Kara was the recipient of the 2006 Outstanding Dancer Award in the School of Theatre & Dance at the University of Houston in 2006. She has trained at the High School for the Performing & Visual Arts, Alvin Ailey Summer Intensive, Bates Dance Festival, and University of Houston. She received her MBA in the fall of 2012 from the University of St. Thomas. She just got married in November 2015. She is working on her yoga certification which she will complete December 2016. She is also currently working as a Staff Accountant consultant for a quality assurance company.
Toni Leago Valle received a BA in Theatre, specializing from dance, from University of Houston in 2000. She has received two Individual Artists Grants from Houston Arts Alliance to produce "It's All Relative" in 2002 and again in 2007 for her third evening length work "Tetris" (2009). Two evening length works, "Cracked," and "Baptism" were recipients of Diverse Works Artist Residencies. As a performer, Valle is a current member and Company Manager of Karen Stokes Dance, Becky Valls' "Memoirs of the Sistahood" Series, and Becky Valls & Company for Young Audiences. Since 2000, Valle has performed with Karen Stokes Dance, Dancepatheatre, Psophonia Dance Company, and Suchu Dance . Valle has been featured in numerous concerts, including internationally known choreographer Stephan Koplowitz’s works, "Natural Acts in Artificial Water" and "Open Book, Open House," "A Weekend of Texas Contemporary Dance," and Marta Lichlyter’s "A Thin Line" as part of the University of Houston’s "Choreography in Action" series on PBS. Valle launched her own dance company, 6 Degrees, in 2010. Valle is an adjunct faculty at University of Houston School of Theatre & Dance, where she teaches Dance Production, PR & Marketing, and Aesthetics of Dance. Valle has been performing in works by Karen Stokes since 1998.
KSD is a 501c3 non-profit company, and all donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law.
Karen Stokes named
Best Choreographer in Houston by Houston Press in 2014 & 2015.