Avocado Dancers 2017-18 Season

Meet The Company…

i-dmg3RLL-SShauna Tyser (Guest Choreographer; Rehearsal Assistant) graduated Magna Cum Laude, with her BFA in dance performance and choreography from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA, and was the 2007 recipient of the Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities for excellence in dance. In the past she has performed with Philadanco II (Philadelphia), Contempra Dance Theater (Philadelphia), Opera Company of Philadelphia, Colette Harding Contemporary Dance Company (San Diego), Mojalet Dance Collective (San Diego), “Trolley Dances” with Jean Isaacs San Diego Dance Theater, isadoraNOW (San Diego) and as a guest for commercial work with the PGK Dance Project (San Diego). She holds a certificate from the Teaching Artist Institute of San Diego, and has taught dance programs at private studios and public schools on the East and West Coast, as well as, internationally in Mumbai, India. Her choreography has been presented at the 2016 San Diego International Fringe Festival, danceXchange, she was a 2017 finalist for the San Diego Young Choreographers Showcase and Prize, and for the 2017/2018 season of Avocado Dance Theatre, whom has been a member of since 2016. Currently she is also co-coordinator of danceXchange, and the Front and Main Dance Festival, is dance faculty at Encore Performing Arts High School in Riverside, and she is working towards her MS. in Nonprofit Management/ Social Media and Online Communications from Northeastern University.


i-JBQvhgQ-SAmanda Rose Shind began studying dance in Massachusetts at the age of three and has never stopped! Growing up, she studied primarily with Tammy Aspell, took class from many fabulous teachers all over the northeast in the styles of ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, and modern and continued her dance education at Emerson College in Boston. While at Emerson, Amanda developed a love for modern dance and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance Theatre. She also completed the dance education training course with the Dance Teachers Club of Boston receiving the overall excellence award in Tap. After teaching and choreographing at numerous dance studios and public schools in the Greater Boston area, Amanda made the move out west where she began working with mobile dance companies Webby Dance & Petite Feet dance and fitness, and currently teaches with Rowe Dance Academy. She continues to share her love of dance with preschool and elementary aged children throughout Southern California. Amanda was blessed to choreograph for Avocado in 2016 and is beyond excited and honored to be celebrating her 5th season sharing moves and stories onstage as part of the Avocado family!

i-Hz52Wbc-SBryan Burns (Picture coming soon) started dancing at age 15 and began training with the Dancer’s Studio. He has done musical theater with his high school. He now attends MSJC as a dance major. Bryan studies dance at Dunamix Dance Project. Bryan is very excited to be a part of Avocado Dance Theatre.

i-dMsKjbX-SEmeline Lotherington grew up in Temecula, California and trained in classical ballet and jazz at Inland Valley Classical Ballet Theater.  She attended UC Irvine and received a BFA in Dance Performance where she trained in Classical Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Hip Hop, and Contemporary. She studied Lar Lubovitch technique and repertory with Lar Lubovitch and company members; Jose Limon technique and repertory with the former company member, Dante Puleio; William Forsythe technique and repertory with Jodie Gates, the current Director of the Glorya Kaufman School of Dance at USC and former Forsythe company soloist dancer; and performed as one of the Four Little Swans in George Balanchine’s adaptation of Swan Lake under instruction of former Los Angeles Ballet soloist, Diane Diefenderfer. She was a team member of the Common Ground Dance Team for the ’16-’17 season.  For her final semester, she studied abroad in Jerusalem, Israel at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. Emeline studied Ballet, Contemporary, Improvisation, Israeli Dance History, and Gaga under former Batsheva company members and former Israel Ballet Soloist Dancers. They had a summer intensive of Gaga and Ohad Naharin Repertory with Aya Israeli and other former Batsheva Dance Company Members. They also has a summer intensive of Contemporary and Vertigo Dance Company Repertory with Alon Karniel, a former Vertigo company member.  She is currently dancing with Avocado Dance Theater and is eager to learn more contemporary and modern.


Joseph Lister graduated from University of California Riverside with a BA in Dance in 2015. He began dancing in 2010 at California State University, Channel Islands where he trained in jazz, modern, and choreography under Heather Castillo. At CSUCI he had the opportunity to dance in their first musical Cabaret, was captain and co-founder of CSUCI’s first dance team (Breaking Pointe), and choreograph in the annual dance concerts. While attending CSUCI he was also under scholarship at the Inland Valley Classical Ballet Academy and was performing with Act One Community Theatre where he performed in various musicals and ballets including: A Chorus Line, Passion of The Christ, The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Swan Lake. Joseph then moved his dance education to UCR where he studied ballet, modern, yoga, jazz, African dance, and choreography. While there he had the opportunity to perform and choreograph in UCR is Dancing and Spring Forward. In his last year at UCR he worked on an independent study “Cities in The Smog” under Taisha Paggett. Joseph was also honored to perform in three MFA concerts by Rosa Rodriguez-Frazier, Brianna Skellie, and Casey Avaunt. Joseph also received the GLUCK fellowship of the arts award, The Chancellor’s Performance award, and was invited to ACDFA. Aside from his academic dance training he received a scholarship from Joffery and Bolshoi ballet and was accepted into the Kirov Ballet school. During one of his summers at UCR Joseph was an apprentice at Lula Washington Dance Theatre, a contemporary African dance company. Joseph also helped assist in the choreography as well as performed in MSJC’s musical Pippin. Joseph is currently a four-year member of Avocado Dance Theatre and has choreographed two works for the company, “A(r)mour” (2014) and “Name Branding” (2017).


Kristin Brown began her study of dance at the age of three. She had the opportunity to study at dance schools in California and Utah where she learned a variety of dance styles including; ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, and contemporary. She furthered her training in college and received her BA in Dance from Brigham Young University (BYU). While at BYU she was able to perform on the touring company, Contemporary Dance Theatre, and travel with them to India and Colorado. Kristin had the opportunity to work with renowned choreographers Donald McKayle, Diavolo dancers Jenn and Omar Olivas, Jennifer Backhaus, and others.  Kristin received further training at summer intensives including San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, Paul Taylor, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet. She most recently danced on the Utah-based company, SALT Contemporary Dance under the direction of Michelle Nielsen. It was there she was able to work with dancers from North West Dance Project and broaden her artistic abilities. Kristin also loves to teach and choreograph. She is excited to be back in California and to be a member of Avocado Dance Theatre.


Sarah Ready began her dance training at the age of three in her neighboring town, Attleboro, Massachusetts. Ready has studied dance in a studio setting for sixteen years, training in jazz, ballet, pointe, acrobatics, contemporary and tap. She has also been a dance instructor for five years at New England Dance Theater in Massachusetts, where she focused on ballet, acrobatics and jazz. Alongside her studio training, she has trained with Boston Ballet for five years and was a member of the Newport Rhode Island Moving Company’s rendition of the Nutcracker, performing the solo of the soldier doll. Ready graduated, June 2017, from The University of California, Riverside in three years where she majored in Dance and minored in Business. While in her dance studies at UCR, she concentrated in jazz and ballet, but also studied modern, hip hop and choreography. Ready has received the Chancellor’s Performance Award and was invited to ACDFA. Ready was also a member of the 2016-2017 UCR Gluck Touring Dance Ensemble.

i-xGFfBgm-SWilliam Feldon is a professional dancer from the Inland Empire. Training at the age of 6, William began dancing at Heart and Soul Dance Studio in Moreno Valley, CA as well as Bre Dance Studio in Riverside, CA as a recreational and competitive dancer. Experienced in Hip- Hop, Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, Modern, Tap, and Musical Theatre, William holds various Regional and National titles as an ensemblist and soloist. William Feldon has participated as one of the head dancers and assistant choreographers for Valley View High School’s performance ensemble. He has also competed and placed in the NAACP’s National Afro- Academic, Cultural, Technological, and Scientific Olympics Competition- A year-long achievement program designed to recruit, stimulate, and encourage high academic and cultural achievements. In addition, William has participated as a resident choreographer and performer for Friday Night Live- An organization that builds partnerships for healthy and positive youth development. William has studied under the direction of Clifford Breland, Anthony Jackson, Quincy Jacinto, as well as Rachel Swinson- Jacinto and has danced for Bre Dance Theatre- A pre-professional dance company. Currently, William Feldon is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance with a focus on experimental and unconventional choreography from the University of California-Riverside.


Devante Lewis started dancing with Temecula Dance Company’s all boys hip hop team under the guidance of Erik Saradpon. Upon graduating high school Devante choreographed for and performed as a back up dancer for many local singers. He has had the pleasure of performing on the Grammy Stage in Los Angeles and having his choreography performed live on the Chinese television show “American Stars”. Devante is also trained in multiple forms of freestyle including Krump, popping, and waacking. Devante is currently training up in Los Angeles with top industry professionals.

Jessica Martin has been in the competitive dance world as a competitor and teacher for about ten years and studied under the guidance of George Ortiz and Wynesha Garner. As a competitor she was the recipient of multiple national titles and scholarship opportunities. As an adult, she has danced as a back up dancer for numerous local performers. She has been featured on KTLA morning news and the Chinese television show “American Stars.” Jessica has trained under top choreographers in the industry, most notably Galen Hooks.

Maria Tomillo was born in Valladolid (Spain). She graduated from the University of Valladolid with a B.S. in Art History and with a Master in Dance of the XV and XVI Centuries. Throughout the years she has trained with many famous dancers and professors including Cecilia Nocilli, Maria José Ruiz Mayordomo and Barbara Sparti. She has also performed with a variety of companies, trained others and taught workshops like in January 2018 in San Francisco. Maria´s dancing career began as a young child at the Dance School of Valladolid where she was a direct disciple of Mariemma –a prestigious Spanish Dance dancer and Master. For more than 17 years, Maria was on the dance faculty of the Dance School of Valladolid. She taught Ballet, Historical Dance, castanets and Spanish Dance in addition to directing her Company. The Company, Dance and Diversity (DyD) was founded in 2000, focused on the development and artistic growth of students with diverse abilities ranging from pre-school to young adults. DyD currently has a cast of 27 dancers that currently performs in Spain and surrounding European countries. Now living in Temecula, California, she is involved with a variety of dance projects, including Inclusive Dance Movement in Murrieta. Maria also teaches workshops in Spanish Dance, Historical Dance and Inclusive and Creative Dance.



2 comments on “Avocado Dancers 2017-18 Season

  1. Beautiful! All of these fabulous dancers. I love Avocados even more now!

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