Kent Dance Ensemble Welcomes Guest Artists Christopher Huggins and Daniel Harder | School of Theatre and Dance | Kent State University

Kent Dance Ensemble Welcomes Guest Artists Christopher Huggins and Daniel Harder

The Kent Dance Ensemble, under the artistic direction of Gregory King, will welcome guest artists Christopher Huggins and Daniel Harder Sep. 30 - Oct. 7. Huggins is a former member of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and works nationally and internationally as a dancer, teacher, and choreographer. Harder is a member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and has performed nationally and internationally. During their residency, Huggins and Harder will set a piece which the Kent Dance Ensemble will perform during the KDE concert in April 2019.

Christopher L. Huggins is a former member of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and works in Europe, Japan, the Caribbean, and throughout the U.S. as a dancer, teacher, and choreographer.  Born in Boston, Huggins trained under Andrea Herbert-Major, Danny Sloan, and Martha Gray.  He attended SUNY Purchase and The Juilliard School and was a scholarship student at The Ailey School.  Mr. Huggins is a 2002 and 2008 recipient of the Alvin Ailey Award for Best Choreography from the Black Theater Alliance in Chicago for Enemy Behind the Gates and Pyrokinesis, respectively, and has also worked on several projects for Disney in Orlando, Florida.  He was a silver medalist for the 4th International Contemporary Dance Competition in Seoul, Korea.  In addition to commissions for Ailey II and The Ailey School, he has also set works on universities and high schools throughout the U.S.  Anointed is Mr. Huggins’ first ballet for the Company.

Daniel S. Harder began dancing at Suitland High School’s Center for the Visual and Performing Arts in Maryland, under the direction of Barbara Marks and Linda Hallman-Darr. While in high school, he also received training at the Dance Institute of Washington, Debbie Allen Dance Academy, The Ailey School, and Dance Theater of Harlem and performed in several professional productions with Debbie Allen at the Kennedy Center including: Brother's of the Knight, Pepito's Story, and Dancing in the Wings.

Upon graduation, Mr. Harder attended the Ailey/Fordham BFA Program in Dance where he was awarded the Jerome Robbins/Layton Foundation Scholarship. While at Fordham, he had the opportunity to work with and perform works by Christopher L. Huggins, Darrell Grand Moultrie, Dwight Rhoden, Donald McKayle, Nacho Duato, William Forsythe, and Camille A. Brown. Mr. Harder also participated in the Holland Dance Festival with The Ailey School and as a company member with the Francesca Harper Project. Before graduating in 2009, he danced in several commercial projects including SobeLife/Pepsi Co.’s “Thrillicious” industrial, an international tour of West Side Story, and as a guest performer with Camille A. Brown & Dancers. 

Mr. Harder became a member of Ailey II in 2009, and joined the world renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 2010, under the direction of Judith Jamison. Since dancing with the Ailey company, Mr. Harder has danced works by Alvin Ailey, Wayne McGregor, Ohad Naharin, Rennie Harris, Ronald K. Brown, Hans van Manen, Hofesh Shechter, Aszure Barton, Kyle Abraham,and Ulysses Dove, to name a few. Mr. Harder has performed extensively across the U.S. and abroad.

Aside from his work with AAADT, he was a guest artist with New York City Ballet Principal Ashley Bouder’s New York Artists for the Philippines to help raise money for victims and families of typhoon Haiyan, and has done several guest performances with Dancers Responding to Aids annual fundraiser on Fire Island, New York.

As a choreographer’s assistant, Mr. Harder has had the privilege to work with some of the leading frontrunners of the dance community including Debbie Allen, and Christopher L. Huggins at Lula Washington Dance Theater, Philadanco and Dallas Black Dance Theater. When Mr. Harder is not performing, he teaches master classes at high schools and universities in the U.S. and abroad.

For more information on the Kent Dance Ensemble's annual concert, visit https://www.kent.edu/theatredance/kent-dance-ensemble-womentum