Qarrianne Blayr is from Fayetteville, North Carolina. She earned her BFA at Howard University, studying under Sherrill Berryman-Johnson, Pat Thomas, Sandra Fortune-Green, Katherine Smith, Akua Kouyate, and Assane Konte. She also studied social Jamaican dance at the University of West Indies at Mona. Qarrianne joined the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company’s (DCDC) professional group in 2012 after having performed for two seasons in DCDC2, the company’s pre-professional ensemble. She remains one of the company’s community outreach and education ambassadors, with maintaining her space as an independent teaching artist/choreographer focused on enhancing the physical and metaphysical experience of each student/ participant. The movement taught from the contemporary African and contemporary American modern dance perspectives allows each student to embrace their own creativity while learning (or relearning) awareness and control of their bodies. This is Qarrianne’s mission.
Qarrianne believes artists are invaluable to the holistic education of students. It has been her experience that most students actually want to express themselves artistically, but they unfortunately do not always have the support or guidance needed to dream dreams outside of textbooks, wooden desks, or team sports. Qarrianne believes every “body” is a dancing body, regardless of mobility, technique, experience, background, socioeconomic status, or family history. To her, any movement with the intention of dance is dance. She loves encouraging students to find/explore their voice through the movement that we create together. Witnessing the process of discovering pride in their abilities is extremely rewarding for Qarrianne. She still remembers how wonderful it felt to have her dance teachers’ support, and she accepts the very serious responsibility of passing that feeling on to other students.
Qarrianne’s classes vary in difficulty, depending on the level of the students, but all of them are taught with Afrocentric themes. Physically, Qarrianne focuses on poly-rhythmic/grounded movements that showcase the students’ awareness and body control. Students also explore the essence of movement, learning how intention and history connect to the movements she shares with them. In Qarrianne’s classes, she encourages students to use movement as a means to grow in confidence and urges them to see how what’s learned in dance can be transferred to the core curriculum standards that they study in school.
Grade Levels/Age Groups
- Grades 1-3
- Grades 4-5
- Grades 6-8
- Grades 9-12
- Young Adult
Facilities and Resources Required
- Audio System
- Electrical Outlets
- Performance Space (only needed if a showcase is requested)
- Backstage Area/Dressing Room (only needed if a showcase is requested)
Upon request and agreed scheduling/after school programs