Steffanie R. White is originally from Oakland, CA, and currently resides in Boston, MA by the way of NYC and Los Angeles. Steffanie began teaching dance in the private studio at the age of twelve and continued throughout high school. As a member of the apprentice dance company, Dance/5, she traveled to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Hong Kong to help bring American Jazz dance to different cultures. In 1993, she received her BA in African-American Studies from UCLA and after college continued her teaching career in the classroom in Compton then Los Angeles Unified School Districts where she always included dance in her curriculum. Drawn by her passion to teach dance, Steffanie left the classroom to become one of only eight elementary Traveling Dance Teachers for LAUSD during which she developed an arts curriculum with theatre and music teachers.
In 2000, Steffanie realized a life long dream of living, performing, and teaching dance in New York City. She taught dance at PS 175 as a cluster teacher and was the dance specialist in the after school program for four years. There, she collaborated with the Instrumental and Vocal Music teachers to produce assemblies that integrated arts and core subjects and also maintained a Dance Ensemble that featured the brightest talent of dancers from the school community. During this time, Steffanie began her studies in African derived dance, particularly the Dunham Technique, through the NYCBOE Dance Institute, annual Dunham seminars in East St. Louis and Dunham Certification seminars in San Francisco. These experiences included master classes with Ms. Katherine Dunham and Master Teachers Walter Nicks, Ruby Streate, Jean Leon Destine, and Rachelle Tavernier.
Once again, propelled by her passion for education and dance, she received an MA in Dance Education from NYU in 2004 while teaching dance for the Department Of Education. Upon graduation, Steffanie traveled to Cuba to participate in a dance intensive centered on the Dunham Technique and also traveled to Brazil to experience Afro-Brazilian culture firsthand. In 2005, she became a teaching artist in Alvin Ailey’s Arts-In-Education Department and also brought dance to NYC students with Global Arts to Go and CREATE! In 2006, Steffanie joined Baba Richard Gonzalez and Marily Gallardo at Jacob’s Pillow for an intensive study in the Afro-Caribbean tradition of Orisha dance then studied and taught the following summer at the New Orleans Dance Festival with Baba Gonzalez.
After 15 years in the public school system, Steffanie has embarked on a career that now includes conducting teacher-training workshops and teaching dance and fitness classes at Marymount Manhattan College and Stephens College. Currently, she is a Certified Personal and Fitness Trainer at Boston Sports Clubs where bringing quality fitness information and instruction to clients has become Steffanie’s greatest passion. In addition, this Certified Pilates Instructor teaches dance and fitness classes at Dana Hall and Bridgewater State College and will begin her doctoral program in Sports Medicine in 2010.