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Roy Wood

  • Adjunct Instructor, Dance Program


While at Ohio University, Roy Wood took his first dance as part of his interest in experimenting with activities he knew nothing about. Due to the combination of physical exhilaration, social connections, and joy of learning, he proceeded to take more dance classes – modern, ballet, jazz, swing, finally joining the professional modern dance training program at Ohio University, all while pursuing his BS in chemical engineering. Roy has studied modern dance with Gladys Bailin of Nikolai Dance Theater, Afro Caribbean and modern with Garth Fagan Dance, jazz with Bob Koval, and mime with Greg Goldstein. He has performed and choreographed with a number of companies, including Park Avenue Dance, Present Tense, Hallmarkworks, Elizabeth Clark Dance Ensemble, Rochester Dance Collective, Unitarian Dance, and Rochester Mime Theater. His focus on both improvisation and choreography grew as he strove to integrate dance with his interest in justice, social and political issues. He worked collectively with dancers and non-dancers, exploring personal, social, and political issues through improvisation, then turning the explorations into performance works using movement, sound and text. He has choreographed/written over 60 performance pieces, including the evening long dance drama, Central Park in Dreamspace. Roy went to his first “contact improvisation jam” in Ithaca 19 years ago and was thrilled by the combination of self-expression and community. Shortly after, he co-founded the Rochester contact jam and began attending workshops and jams around the country. He has studied with Andrew Harwood, Nancy Stark Smith, Martin Keough, Alicia Grayson, Karl Frost, and others and continues to learn by attending workshops and dancing with experienced and inexperienced dancers alike. He has taught contact improvisation at contact jams, workshops, schools and universities in Rochester, Boston, Hawaii, Austin, Chapel Hill, Buffalo, and Plainfield, MA. Roy is also a licensed professional engineer and continues to work both as a dancer and as an environmental engineer.