BalletMet is committed to being a leader in collaborative arts education efforts designed to enlighten and inspire today’s young people. It believes that dance is most valuable to the community when it is supported by quality educational initiatives. BalletMet’s Education and Community Engagement programs positively affect the lives of children and adults throughout Central Ohio. The organization makes available to a large and diverse population the opportunity to learn about dance as a viable subject for intellectual growth, health and well-being, social development, and lifelong learning. As the need and demand for arts education programs and services has increased, schools and community organizations have been forced to reduce or eliminate programs due to funding challenges.…
Visual Arts, Drawing, Painting, Sculpture, Chalk, & Fiber
Ginny Baughman was born and raised in Dayton, Ohio. In 1981 she received a BFA from the University of Dayton and in 2004 received an MA in art education from the Ohio State University, where her master’s thesis topic was on drawing. She has also attended a variety of professional workshops, seminars, and conferences including the Kennedy Center’s National Seminar for Teaching Artists in Washington, D.C.
Ginny has been a teaching artist for more than 20 years. She has taught art in a variety of different venues in Central Ohio and now in her current hometown near Dayton.…
Utpola Borah, Ph.D., is an ethnomusicologist, music educator, cultural archivist, and North Indian classical vocalist. She has been performing diverse North Indian classical vocal genres as well as regional folk songs for several years in the United States and India. Utpola’s vocal artistry is founded on her extensive study with the renowned North Indian classical legends, Padmashri (Dr.) Prabha Atre, Vidushi Malashri Prasad, Pandit Indralal Dhanda, Ustad Iqbal Ahmed Khan, and Ustad Ballu Khan Warsi of Kirana, Banaras, Udaipur, and Delhi gharanas (traditions). Her deep knowledge of music is evident in her many concerts and regular broadcasts on the All India Radio (National Radio) and Television network.…
Suzan Bradford Kounta
West African Dance/Movement & Music
As creative director of the Thiossane Institute, Suzan Bradford Kounta is loyal to the mission of presenting and preserving traditional dance, music, and culture and perpetuating its significance to future generations while promoting physical and mental wellness. Through authentic presentations and detailed instruction, Thiossane is an asset to the Columbus community and has many collaborations in the arts. The institute will celebrate 20 years next year with the debuts of restaging theatrical African folktales such as “Allandar: The Epic of Sundiata,” the ancient Malian story that inspired the “Lion King” (2015); “Mufaro’s Most Beautiful Daughter” (2016); “Kirikou and the Sorcerer” (2017); “Spider Weaver, The Legend of the Kente Cloth” (2018); and “Mbenktel Khaleyi (Happiness of the Children)” (2019).…
Mimi Brodsky Chenfeld
Multidisciplinary Creative Writing
Born and raised in New York City, Mimi Brodsky Chenfeld has been teaching people of all ages and backgrounds for her whole teaching life—through programs such as Headstart and Upward Bound—from early childhood programs to senior communities, from prisons to hospitals, elementary schools, high schools, and higher education institutions. She has presented programs in creative education in 45 states, Puerto Rico, Canada, and Great Britain. She has written numerous poems, stories, articles, and books. Her children’s novel, The House At 12 Rose Street, was adapted for a TV special and nominated for an Emmy.…
Richard Duarte Brown
Visual Arts, Design, & Creative Writing
Richard Duarte Brown, known as Duarte, is a master artist with the TRANSIT ARTS Youth Arts Program and the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education’s Art in the House program. For more than 30 years, Duarte has dedicated his talents to helping young people in Columbus, Ohio, through countless programs including CAPACITY (CAPA’s youth arts program), the Short Stop Youth Center, the King Arts Complex, Ohio Alliance for Arts Education’s (and formerly GCAC’s) Artists-in-Schools program, GCAC’s Children of the Future, Ebony Boys, Art Safe, and VSA Ohio. Duarte has also worked as a high school art instructor at the Arts and College Preparatory Academy in Columbus.…
Wordsmith & Storyteller
An Appalachian of mixed ancestry, Omope Carter Daboiku hails from the Ohio River town of Ironton. She migrated to Cincinnati in 1972 and to Dayton in 2012. A cultural geographer and award-winning teller of tales, Omope became affiliated with the Ohio Arts Council in 1990 and the Cincinnati Arts Association at its inception in 1997 and has performed and led story circles across the U.S. and abroad. In 1993, she spoke at the Art of Survival (Nuremberg, Germany), addressing quilting as a cottage industry used by African American women to support families.…
West African Drumming & Dance/Movement
Sogbety Diomande, (Sow-beh-tea Gee-oh-mahn-day) was born in the village of Toufinga, a small farming community located in the northwest region of the Ivory Coast near the border of Guinea in Africa. He is a professional drummer and dancer and has been performing since he was a child. He has been a member of Ballet National de Cote d’Ivoire and Kotchegna Dance Company, and he has been featured with many troupes in New York City and around the U.S. Sogbety spends most of his time performing solo and conducting workshops in schools, libraries, festivals, and community events all over Ohio and surrounding areas.…
Tom Evert has been a creative force in creating and performing original choreographic works with a company of dancers, working intensively in arts-education programming and creating festival-like community events in Ohio for 33 years.
Tom currently serves as artistic director of DANCE EVERT, which he founded in 1986. He holds BFAs in both painting and dance from Ohio University and has enjoyed a world-class touring career with the Paul Taylor Dance Company in New York City. He has created a major body of work for which he has received eight Individual Excellence Awards in choreography.…
Storytelling & Spoken Word
Fourth-generation storyteller Lynette (Lyn) Ford is a teaching artist with the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education, a Thurber House mentor to young writers, a storytelling and story-writing coach, a Certified Laughter yoga teacher, and a great-grandma.
For more than 25 years, Lyn has provided stories for libraries and schools, keynote and closing presentations, workshops at universities, education and literacy conferences, and featured programs at some of the most prestigious storytelling conferences and festivals in the United States, Australia, and Ireland.
Lyn is the author of two story collections from her family’s heritage of tales.…
Baba Jubal Harris
African Music, Drum Making, & Storytelling
Baba Jubal is a pioneer in the emerging field of Arts Integrated Education. For 30 years, he has conducted artist residencies, performances, workshops, teacher in-service, and professional development that have made a substantial contribution to the cultural and educational life of communities throughout the state of Ohio and the United States. He has developed an innovative methodology that integrates art, science, math, music, social studies, dance, language, and history into the core curriculum. His multiple-intelligence approach is holistic in application, resulting in measurable improvement of student academic achievement. Above all, his love of life and the joy of sharing his many creative talents inspire students to learn.…
Visual Arts, Textiles, Mask Making, & Collage
Heavily influenced during the early part of her artist career by the work of Romare Bearden, Wendy Kendrick has applied her years of work with collage and mixed media to her current work with quilted portrait masks. In 2010, Wendy was selected by the Arts Council Lake Erie West to travel to the East African country of Tanzania as a U.S. delegate for a women’s artist exchange. In addition, she was invited to speak to college students regarding her artistic journey at the U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam.
Wendy received her BA in visual studies from Dartmouth College and has furthered her studies through additional coursework taken at the Dayton Art Institute, Columbus College of Art and Design, and Quilt Surface Design Symposium.…