Rachel Dodson

Dance Artist, Educator, Choreographer, and Performer

Moscow Movement Arts Center

Welcome to the home of conservatory training on the Palouse

Mission

To support any student seeking to explore their place in the world of dance, movement and somatic wellness.  MMAC prioritizes personal growth while creating dancers of a recognized caliber through commitment and dedication to the sustained pursuit of excellence in the art of movement as we develop model individuals through student-centered pedagogy, community-building and positive reinforcement.

Philosophy

Fusing classical technique and contemporary practice, dancers at Moscow Movement Arts Center benefit from age-appropriate lessons in a skill-based curriculum.  We believe in nurturing the "whole" student in our classrooms including not just the physical safety in practice, but also the caretaking of our students' intellectual, social and emotional wellness.  

Values

To support dancers of any age on their journey exploring dance and movement while fostering community and celebrating individuality.  Whether you are new to dance, returning to dance, have recreational interests or are a dancer seeking to study dance professionally--our conservatory and recreational programs are designed to meet your needs and interests.

 

Available for Private Lessons: Monday - Friday 3pm-6pm
* Please contact if you need special accommodations Saturday/Sunday

Meet Your Teacher

Rachel Dodson
Progressing Ballet Technique Certificate 2019 - Present
Master of Fine Arts in Dance, University of Colorado Boulder

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance, University of California Irvine


Dodson is a performance artist, dance educator, choreographer, and arts facilitator  situated in the Pacific Northwest. As faculty at the University of Idaho and the University of Colorado Boulder she has offered studio courses in classical ballet, contemporary modern, Progressing Ballet Technique and somatic modalities to dance majors, minors, and non-majors.  Outside of the academe, she offers community-based classes for participants of all levels of experience to explore diverse movement practices and deepen dialogue and communal action towards collaborative art making and performance. 


Dodson attended the Crockett Academy of Ballet in Sacramento after her love of dance blossomed at the age of five.  At the age of 13 she was one of a few select dancers from across the United States invited to attend the Boston Ballet Summer Intensive where her commitment to ballet, contemporary dance, and dance composition grew.  After performing pre-professionally throughout her teens and commissioned soloist projects in her twenties, she became committed to sharing her love of dance and choreography with generations to come.  Upon acceptance into the competitive conservatory-model dance program at the University of California Irvine, she began her study of dance at a collegiate level learning from artists and scholars such as Donald McKayle, Loretta Livingston, Israel "El" Gabriel, Molly Lynch, Jennifer Fisher, and Lisa Naugle.  


Dodson holds a Master of Fine Arts in Dance with an emphasis The Alexander Technique from the University of Colorado Boulder and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance with an emphasis in Choreography from the University of California Irvine.  She holds additional certificates in Women and Gender Studies and College Teaching from the University of Colorado Boulder and received The Healthy Dance Practice certificate from SAFE in Dance International in 2016.  In 2019 she added a teacher certification in the junior, senior and advanced programs of Progressing Ballet Technique with Marie Walton-Mahon.


Dodson has performed with various companies and artists as a soloist, duet, and corps dancer as both a permanent and guest artist for over 20 years--including but not limited to performances with Merce Cunningham, Loretta Livingston, Gesel Mason, Nada Diachenko, Mel Wong, Donald McKayle, Architexture Dance Company, Boston Ballet, and the Gilbert Reed Ballet. Her original scholarly and creative research has been invited for presentation at the Hawaii International Conference in Arts and Humanities and FEM + FEST Feminist Art Festival while movement research has been presented at the Colorado Dance Education Organization and American College Dance Association conferences. Her choreography has been commissioned and featured nationally and internationally in Kyriat Ono and Herzliya Pituach, Israel; Boulder, Longmont, Louisville, Paonia, and Lafayette, Colorado; Templeton, Arroyo Grande, Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo, Irvine, and Santa Cruz, California; Spokane, Washington; and Moscow, Idaho.  In 2020, she was commissioned by artsIDAHO and the National Endowment for the Arts to produce the dance film "To the Girl I Was" which will be featured in Dance Cinema's 2021 Future in Focus program.

After working with Rachel, my daughter has felt more confident in her skills and movements.
Rachel is such a treasure and so easy to work with, wish we met her sooner!

Daniel C. - Moscow, ID

I love PBT! Training your muscles in a way that applies so specifically to dance has been such an eye opening experience for me.  The way Rachel cares for her students and creates and environment of trust and cooperation is everything and instructor should be.  When she uses her talents to teach and PBT--the muscle memory comes and progress is natural.  I have seen this happen in my own dance and also in my young daughter

Melissa G. - Bachelor of Fine Arts Theatre, Moscow ID

Rachel's PBT classes are an excellent addition to my ballet classes.  With the PBT exercises, I have experienced greater awareness in my body alignment and pathways of movement.  PBT exercises also allow me to strengthen certain muscles, including turnout. Rachel is patient and nurturing yet she challenges me. WIth Rachel's guidance, I feel safe to explore the edges of my body's ability

Anna C. - Grover Beach, CA

Rachel's PBT classes really helped me better understand how to properly engage my muscles during ballet class.  This new information changed the way I prepare for and take class in a way that better suits MY body, and because of this, I have both seen and felt great improvement in my personal practice!  Not only has the strength I've gained from PBT helped in my ballet classes, but also with contemporary, modern, and jazz!  Rachel's clear instruction, individual and group feedback was game changing

Taylor E. - Bachelor of Science Dance, UT

I have trained in dance for 18 years now and participating in PBT with Rachel was revolutionary when I was at a point I felt myself at a plateau in my technique while also fighting off chronic injuries.  With an intense workload of 10-13 hours of training a day, 4-5 days a week, PBT was part of what helped me navigate my injuries and actually progress in my training. I felt a huge connection between my Pilates and PBT training.  The engagement, length, and space I am able to create in my body has been so expansive with this work.  There were times when I would have to sit out due to a severe pelvic injury, but PBT was there as another option to stay safe while strengthening.  This allowed me to rehabilitate and bounce back faster than you would imagine.  I would encourage any dancer to stop simply "spot treating" your technique and experience the full body engagement of PBT work

Allysen O. - Bachelor of Science Dance, Moscow ID