Board of Directors

Christopher Wheeldon

NY Times deemed Mr. Wheeldon "high on the list of ballet's most important living choreographers." 2015 Tony Award Winner for Best Choreography for An American in Paris, where he was also nominated for Best Direction.  Choreography:  New York City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, the Bolshoi Ballet, Royal Ballet, Covent Garden, Joffrey Ballet. Notable works:  Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, After the Rain, The Winter's Tale. Emmy Award:  "Strictly Bolshoi." Other honors:  Gold Medal Prix de Lausanne, SAB Mae L. Wien Award, Martin E Segal Award, London Critics Circle Award, American Choreography Award, Olivier Award, Dance Magazine Award. Mr. Wheeldon is choreographing the upcoming Brigadoon at NY City Center in the fall of 2017.

Christopher Gattelli

A talent among stars, Mr. Gattelli is a performer, choreographer and director.  He won the 2012 Tony, Outer Critics Circle, and Drama Desk Awards for Newsies and received Tony nominations for South Pacific and The King & I.  He won 3 Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Choreographer for Altar Boyz, Bat Boy: The Musical, and Dogfight.  Mr. Gattelli also choreographed Channing Tatum in HAIL, CAESAR, and upcoming Broadway show SpongeBob Squarepants, My Fair Lady, and The Cher Show.

Lorin Latarro

Ms. Latarro most recently choreographed Broadway's Waitress, 

Les Dangerous Liaisons, Waiting for Godot, and is the Associate Choreographer of Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.  As a performer, she has over 14 Broadway shows to her credit including Fosse, A Chorus Line and Movin Out. A passionate activist, Ms. LaTarro is the founder of ArtAmmo.org, Artists Against Gun Violence.  She is a BFA graduate and adjunct professor at The Juilliard School.

Andy Blankenbeuhler

KAI Collective is proud to have three time Tony Award winner for Best Choreography Andy Blankenbuehler (Bandstand, Hamilton, and In the Heights). Other Tony Award nominations include Bring It On (where he was director and choreographer) and 9 to 5. Mr. Blankenbuehler choreographed the 2016 revival of CATS, as well the revival of Annie.  His worked has been appeared on television on ABC’s remake of Dirty Dancing, So You Think You Can Dance, and America’s Got Talent.  He directed, choreograhed, and co-conceived the production "Nights on Broadway" at Caesars Palace, and has staged concert work for Elton John and  Bette Midler. Other honors: Astaire Award, Barrymore Award, Drama Desk Award, and Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award.

Sergio Trujillo

Sergio Trujillo is an internationally recognized choreographer and the recipient of the 2015 Olivier Award for Best Theater Choreography for Memphis – The Musical and a 2016 Tony Award nominee for choreography for the musical On Your Feet!. In 2011, Mr. Trujillo had the honor of having four shows simultaneously running on Broadway: Tony Award winning Best Musical Memphis (Outer Critics Circle Award, Drama Desk and Astaire Award nominations), Tony and Olivier Award winning Best Musical Jersey Boys (Greenroom Award, Drama Desk, Dora, Outer Critics Circle Award nominations), The Addams Family, and Next to Normal, the recipient of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize.  Mr. Trujillo also choreographed A Bronx Tale, Hands on Hardbody, Leap of Faith, Guys and Dolls, All Shook Up, and the National Tour of Flashdance the Musical.  Mr. Trujillo is a 4 time Drama Desk Award nominee. 

Marguerite Derricks

KAI Collective is thrilled to have celebrated teacher and choreographer Marguerite Derricks on the board.  Ms. Derricks is the only choreographer to win three consecutive Emmy Awards (3rd Rock from the Sun , Fame LA, and the 1998 Goodwill Games). Film choreography:  Austin Powers I-III, Donnie Darko, Little Miss Sunshine, Charlie's Angels, Spider Man 3, Tropic Thunder, Fame (2009).  She has choreographed for theater and television as well, and became famous and increased her reputation for an advertisement for The Gap.  A former ballerina, Ms. Derricks was the choreographer of the famed Teen Company Generation Next in Los Angeles.

Administration

  • Founder/Creative Director: Laurie Kanyok

  • Administrative Director: Stephanie Hilles

  • Educational and Creative Advisor: Jacki Ford

  • Assistant Business and Creative: Jared B. Harbour

Advisory Board

Victoria Morris

Victoria Morris is President and Chief Executive Officer of Lexikat Artists, a producing and Talent management company .  Victoria represents a small curated list of elite   directors, writers, choreographers and actors who are versatile and cross pollinate into all entertainment platforms . Prior to starting her own company, Ms. Morris was formerly Senior Vice President of Theatrical Talent at Kazarian Spencer and Associates where she  assisted in the development and creation of a multimillion dollar department representing innovative dance talent around the world.  She went on to creative the first live theat rical department within a commercial talent agency. As a master class facilitator, Ms. Morris has taught at Pepperdine, UCLA, Chapman University, and  USC.  Victoria is on the Board of Directors of The Broadway Dreams Organization.Victoria Morris is President and Chief Executive Officer of Lexikat Artists, a producing and Talent management company. Victoria represents a small curated list of elite directors, writers, choreographers and actors who are versatile and cross pollinate into all entertainment platforms. Prior to starting her own company, Ms. Morris was formerly Senior Vice President of Theatrical Talent at Kazarian Spencer and Associates where she  assisted in the development and creation of a multimillion dollar department representing innovative dance talent around the world.  She went on to creative the first live theatrical department within a commercial talent agency.  As a master class facilitator, Ms. Morris has taught at Pepperdine, UCLA, Chapman University, and  USC. Victoria is on the Board of Directors of The Broadway Dreams Organization.

Craig Burns

Mr. Burns is a partner and casting director with the famed Telsey + Company, one of the largest and most successful casting firms in the country, casting for theatre, film, television, and commercials. Mr. Burns’ Broadway casting credits include Hello, Dolly!, Anastasia, War Paint, Spring Awakening, Wicked, and Hairspray. He is a member of the Casting Society of America and a two-time Artios Award winner for excellence in casting. Mr. Burns' invaluable knowledge and insights into casting are unparalleled. Kanyok Arts Initiative is honored to be working with Mr. Burns.

Melinda Atwood

Before creating DanceBreak, Melinda was a professional dancer, a choreographer, a theater producer, and a director. She graduated of Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts with a degree in philosophy. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Self Family Arts Center, Juggernaut Theater Company, The Elizabeth Foundation, The Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation,  and the New York Music Theater Festival.

Melinda started her career in musical theatre as a dancer and then moved onto choreography. She was awarded The Best of Boston Award for Choreography for her High Hot Moons shown on Boston’s PBS station, WGBH. She later directed and produced an original musical adaptation of Loves Labors Lost at the Hasty Pudding Club in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She moved to Africa in 1986 where, for six years she ran an indigenous carpet-making business that employed over 40 people. She also funded several wildlife projects, including the preservation of endangered rhinos and the protection of migrating elephants, an initiative that was recognized for merit by the region’s British High Commission. She also funded the construction of several primary schools in extremely rural communities while also creating scholarship funds to ensure that top students would have the chance to attend secondary school. Since 1992, nearly 1000 students have earned this opportunity, many going on to receive their university degrees. After returning from Africa, Melinda worked at The Manhattan Theater Club’s (MTC) Musical Theater Program. While there, she realized there were no programs for the development of musical theater choreographers. She set out to correct this problem and, in 2002, DanceBreak was born. Melinda has also produced four all dance musicals for NYMF: Common Grounds, Platforms, Wild About Harry and Andy Warhol Was Right, all choreographed by DanceBreak Alumni.

Drew Hilles

Drew Hilles has more than 20 years of experience in the media industry, with expertise in advertising sales (online/offline), technology operations, and partnership development.

Mr. Hilles has served as senior vice president for Infinity (CBS) Broadcasting, handling both the Philadelphia and Denver markets. Prior to Infinity, he was regional vice president of sales for Clear Channel Radio, responsible for the southwest central region, including 38 markets in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma. Mr. Hilles also has held senior leadership positions with AMFM, Nationwide Communications and the Journal Broadcast Group.

In 2004, Drew Hilles was one of the key founding Senior Executives of dMarc Broadcasting (later acquired by GOOGLE).  For GOOGLE, Mr. Hilles served as a Director of Sales, overseeing Audio Content Partnerships, and Advertising Sales & Operations.  Drew was  a key Senior Executive of GOOGLE'S  North American Organization for 4 years . Drew worked on many key projects at GOOGLE  including the integration of YouTube’s  Sales Organization. Drew currently operates as Senior VP of Veritone. 

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