The Company


Philip Ellis Foster was introduced to dance through Authentic Movement and then discovered Contact Improvisation and The Underscore. Philip developed an interest in performing and has taken many workshops in dance and choreography, participated in several performances, and created choreography for himself and others. Philip also paints, plays and composes music, and writes haiku poems. He is the founder and Executive Director of Open Dance Ensemble.

Philip Ellis Foster, Executive Director and Choreographer

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Sara Pizzi, from Italy. She started her career as a commercial/hip hop dancer. Now, it has been 4 years since Sara moved to New York with a scholarship from the Academy Peridance Center where she graduates from the Certificate Program this summer 2020. She worked with international choreographers finding her new voice as a contemporary artist, now working as a freelancer in her projects S|R|P|Z  and dancing with several NY artists and dance companies. She is Dance Captain of and Choreographer for the Open Dance Ensemble.

 Sara Pizzi, Dance Captain


Dimara has performed the works of Martha Graham and Paul Taylor during her time at UNC Charlotte, where she gained a Bachelor of Arts in Dance., and then completed an independent semester with and internship at The Martha Graham School. She has since performed in at Lincoln Center, The Joyce, Gibney, Melrose Ballroom, and the Knight Theater. Dimara has worked with various companies advocating for mental health and human rights. Most recently she has been curating and creating her own work.

Dimara Coulouras, Dancer


Darina Eid began her training at the age of five in Cochabamba, Bolivia with jazz, commercial dance and a variety of Latin and urban styles. In 2015, Eid moved to New York City to study dance at Marymount Manhattan College from which she graduated in 2015. She has participated in international festivals, such as Florence Dance Festival and Agropoli Summer Dance, and appeared in MTV’s TRL. Recently she was a production cast member on board the Regent Seven Seas' cruise ship Splendor. Eid also studies acting at HB Studios. 

Darina Eid, Dancer

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Paulina is from Cochabamba, Bolivia. She started dancing at age 7 years old and, after graduating from high school in Bolivia, moved to the United States to pursue dance as a career. In 2021, Paulina graduated from Marymount Manhattan College in New York City with a double major in Business (concentration in Advertising and Promotion) and Dance (concentration in Teaching). Paulina began teaching in Bolivia,  assisted children’s dance classes at Steps On Broadway, recently became a teaching artist at Notes In Motion and a teacher at public schools in New York City and danced . at Six Flags Over Texas. Paulina has also interned as a marketing assistant for companies in Bolivia.

Paulina Eid, Dancer

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Jasmine is a dancer, choreographer, actor, and singer specializing in Chinese dance, contemporary, musical theatre, street jazz, and heels. Jasmine is from  Toronto, Canada and has worked with Canadian choreographers Amy Wright, George Jones Jr., Hollywood Jade, Lianne Tammi, Emily Cheung, Christos Tsiantoulas, and Allison Bradley, among others. Jasmine made her New York City debut in 2021 as a soloist in J CHEN PROJECT's "Crazy Creative Asians". Jasmine is currently enrolled in Broadway Dance Center's Professional Program. Jasmine's artistic mission is to tell untold AAPI stories and to amplify the voices of artists within this community.

Jasmine Huang,

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Estelle McGuinness, Dancer

Estelle is from Sydney, Australia where she began dancing at the age of 3. In 2013 she moved to San Francisco and continued her studies at San Francisco Ballet School until 2018. She then trained as a member of the ODC Dance Lab. While at ODC at ODC in San Francisco where she worked with Brenda Way, and Kimi Okada. Estelle graduated from the dance department of the Ruth Asawa School of the Arts in 2020, and then attended the University of California Santa Barbara, majoring in dance.,. Estelle is currently also a company member at New York Dance Project, under Nicole Duffy and Davis Robertson.

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Catherine Messina, a graduate of Emory University, trained with the Bates Dance Festival, BDF Winter Intensive, and staibdance on scholarship.

She has performed with the Atlanta-based company Kit Modus, Greg Catellier, Sarah Hillmer, George Staib, Niv Sheinfeld, Oren Laor, John McFall, and the Trisha Brown Dance Company, and created her own choreography in Atlanta, Richmond, New York City, and Philadelphia. Catherine created a semi-annual outdoor dance festival - Fall for Fall, a summer dance class series, and volunteered for DanceATL and Dance/NYC. She has received grants from the Puffin Foundation and the City of Atlanta. Catherine currently dances with Yuki Ishiguro, Thistle Dance, and Animus Movement

Catherine Messina, Dancer


Mayu Nakaya is a dancer born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. She started ballet when she was 3, learned contemporary dance and choreograph at the Tokyo Metropolitan High School of Arts and the Dance Laboratory at University of Tsukuba of Physical Education. She received awards in several competitions in Japan from 2016-2019. After graduation she moved to New York City where she studied at The Ailey School for 2years. Since 2021, she started working with Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company. During the pandemic, she presented work online through the White Wave company.

Mayu Nakaya, Dancer


Anna Paterson is a Brooklyn based Performer, Choreographer, and Educator. Paterson graduated from Hofstra University in 2020 with a Bachelor of Science in Dance Education. During their time at Hofstra, Paterson choreographed 12 pieces that were performed in a variety of venues in and around the University. In 2019, Paterson began an internship with Robin Becker Dance that became an Administrative Assistant position with the company. Paterson is the Head of Dance at Rutgers Preparatory School in New Jersey and continues their choreographic and performance pursuits as Artistic Director of Anna Paterson Dance which premiered “French Me” at the Fertile Ground Arts Festival in Long Island City in 2021. Other recent credits include a dance film, and  live performance at the Coney Island Art Dance Festival.

Anna Paterson, Dancer

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Rachel DeForrest Repinz,

Rachel is a dancer, choreographer, scholar, teaching artist, and multiple award recipient based in New York. She received a BA in Dance from SUNY Buffalo State College and an MFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Temple University. Rachel has presented her work nationally and internationally, at the biennial Decolonizing Bodies: Engaging Performance conference at UWI Barbados, the 2018 NDEO conference in San Diego, the 2019 NDEO conference in Miami, DaCi’s 2020 special performance series, the Institute of Dance Artistry, Mark Degarmo’s NYC Salon Series, Philadelphia Youth Dance Festival, and other places. She has performed the premiere of works by Dr. S. Ama Wray, Meriàn Soto, Awilda Sterling-Duprey, Megan Bridge of “Fidget”, Carlos R.A. Jones, and was a principal dancer for Enya Kalia Creations. Rachel has been commissioned to create works for the UN’s World Water Day, Utah All-State Dance Ensemble, Manhattan High School of the Liberal Arts, the Buffalo State Dance Theater Company, Lawrence Public Schools. She is currently  Assistant to the Director of the Arnhold Graduate Dance Education Program at CUNY Hunter College, and a dance artist for Dancewave NYC. In addition, Rachel founded and directs her own multi-medium, multimodal, dance performance company RACHEL:dancers.

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Claire is a Brooklyn-based dancer, choreographer, and teaching artist. She completed her dance education at Barnard College under the tutelage of Ashley Tuttle, Robert LaFosse, and Allegra Kent. Claire is currently on faculty at the School at the Mark Morris Dance Group, and choreographs for schools and theaters throughout the tristate area. Recent choreographic credits include Urinetown (Wingspan Arts), The Addams Family (Locust Valley High School), Mamma Mia! (AfterWork Theater), and Speechless (National Queer Theater).

Claire Wampler, Dancer