Shelley Cushman has been a Professor of Dance at the University of North Texas for 39 years and has taught in higher education for 45 years. She received her BA in English/Dance from California State University- Fresno, MA at UCLA (1975, MFA equivalent) with studies in choreography, movement therapy, and kinesiology. She is a Certified Massage Therapist by the American Massage Therapy Association (1985), holds Certification in Basic Hydrotherapy from the Kniepp Institute in Germany (1986), and is certified through the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (1993). She performed with the Sara Rudner Dance Ensemble and the Theatre Vanguard Improvisational Company in Hollywood, California. A prolific choreographer with well over 160 works she has received numerous awards and glowing reviews for choreography and performance, nationally and internationally. Her work on a collaboration, Cinematic Caricatures: Book 1, 2, and 3, involving 30 dances, has been presented in workshops, competitions, conferences, and performances throughout the world. The project has been supported by NEA funding, Ohio University, School of Fine Arts Visiting Artists Series, UNT grants, the UNT College of Music, Department of Media Arts, and the Department of Dance and Theatre and is published with performance rights by Carl Fisher in NY and found in the New York Dance Library holdings at Lincoln Center. In 2005 her work, Getting to the Other Side, was performed on the South Central ACDFA Gala and En I Me was included by selection to perform with Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth's Barefoot Brigade in 2007 as well as the 2008 ACDFA South Central Region Gala and the National College Dance Festival in NYC. Her work, Choking the Earth? Just Take Off Those Clothes and Join the Water in D-Flat (revision III), was presented by invitation in 2009 with the Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth Dance Exchange, Modern Dance Festival at the Modern and again by invitation, in January of 2010 (Revision IV), at the Art, Science and Sustainable Community Symposium, a gathering of artists and scientists addressing the role of water within the new model of sustainability. She has presented numerous workshops at TAHPERD, Southern District, AAHPERD (now SHAPE), ACDFA (now ACDA), daCi, and NDEO throughout the years as well as serving on numerous committees and holding offices. She was awarded the TAHPERD 2008 University Dance Educator of the Year Award, the Southern District 2009 University Dance Educator of the Year Award, and the 2010 National Dance Association University Dance Educator of the Year Award. In 2014 she received the UNT College of Arts and Sciences Award for Excellence in Service, the University Presidential Award for Special Recognition for Service, and the UNT Institute for the Advancement for the Arts Award.
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