Rebecca A. Ferrell
Assistant to the Head and Director of Public Relations and Engagement
Rebecca A. Ferrell, a native of Richmond, Virginia, is a dance advocate, educator, choreographer, curator, manager, and performer. She holds a BFA in dance and choreography from Virginia Commonwealth University as well as an MFA in dance from Arizona State University. Her teaching appointments have included ASU Dance, VCU Dance, and numerous appearances as a guest artist along the East Coast. As an advocate for the arts, Rebecca has served as director of the VA Dance Symposium, co-producer of the Richmond Dance Festival, and a dance critic for GayRVA and RVA Magazine. She is currently the Assistant to the Head, Director of Public Relations and Engagement, Lecturer, and the Director/Curator of the Flatlands Dance Film Festival within the Department of Dance at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In her spare time she enjoys baking cupcakes, sipping bubbly, and traveling the world with her partner in crime, Charlie Maybee.
Laura Chiaramonte (choreographer, dancer, teacher, and videographer) has been performing and producing work professionally in dance throughout the United States and abroad for the past 20 years and has worked with celebrated companies and artists such as Jennifer Allen, Lynn Dally, DanszLoop Chicago, Jyl Fehrenkamp, Pat Graney, Julie Gunn, Nathan Gunn, Andrew Harwood, Carleen Healy, I Ketut Gede Asnawa, Gina Jacobs, Molly Shanahan/Mad Shak, Kate Monson, Rebecca Nettl-Fiol, Casey Pennel, Cynthia Pratt, Kirstie Simson, Thread Meddle Outfit, Total Theater, Warner Brothers, Deke Weaver, and Zephyr Dance.
Laura co-founded and directed the nonprofit performing arts company Creative Arts Melting Pot. The company was featured in the PBS Special The Chicago Dance Project and performed for Hans Breder, Collaboraction, Cirque du Soleil, Dance Chicago, and the Full Circle Festival. Laura has also shown her work at the Open Space Project, the Harvest Contemporary Dance Festival, and the Going Dutch Festival. She developed a movement studies class, emphasizing movement improvisation and composition through the inspiration of inter-media at the Chicago Art Department and taught workshops in dance and somatics at the Illinois Institute of Technology, the Dance Center at Columbia College, and the Department of Dance at the University of Wisconsin–Madison; she was an artist-in-residence at Illinois Wesleyan and Frente de Danza Independiente at Sala de Artes Escénicas Marina de Jesus Quito in Ecuador. She has also conducted creative movement workshops with the Project Danztheatre Company Kids Program at St. Peter's School, Urban Gateways, and the LEAP Program.
Laura is currently teaching dance technique, yoga, and the Alexander Technique for the Theater and Dance Department at Millikin University and at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She also is teaching arts and integration for the public schools in the Department of Education and is the media coordinator and a lecturer for Dance at Illinois.
Natalie Fiol is a visual communicator specializing in graphic design and photography. She is the graphic designer for the College of Fine and Applied Arts and has been the resident photographer for Dance at Illinois since 2010. Prior to working for the University of Illinois, she was art director for Adams Outdoor Advertising. She holds a BA in communication from the U of I and an associate's degree in design from Parkland College. An involved community member, Natalie served on the board of the Champaign-Urbana Design Organization from 2012 to 2014 and has been mentoring through the C-U One-to-One Mentoring program since 2014.
Physical Therapist/Athletic Trainer
Kimberly Hardin has been the physical therapist/athletic trainer for the Department of Dance since 1999. She did her undergraduate work in education at Ohio State University and completed her physical therapy degree at the University of Louisville in 1994.
In addition to her work as a dance medicine specialist, her primary position is with Carle Hospital, where she has been since 2000. She currently works in the Sports Medicine Department, and in 2010 she helped to open Carle Sports Medicine at the ARC, which is a collaborative venture between Carle and the Activities and Recreation Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She also acts as a rehabilitation consultant for the University of Illinois Department of Athletics. Her additional related work experience includes five years with Christie Clinic's Physical Therapy Department in Champaign and two years with Physiotherapy Associates in Louisville, Kentucky. Prior to becoming a physical therapist and an athletic trainer, she did graduate work in exercise physiology, directed fitness centers, and worked as a national presenter for an adaptive fitness program for people with physical disabilities. Kimberly is married to former University of Illinois volleyball coach and now university instructor Don Hardin. They reside in Champaign.
Production Coordinator/DRK Manager
Ryan Luzzo is an actor, dancer, and director from the southwest side of Chicago. He is a recent graduate from Illinois Theatre's BFA Acting Program. While in pursuit of his degree, Ryan performed in department main-stage plays, independent movies, experimental student work, and dance. Some of his recent Krannert Center credits include Twelfth Night; February Dance 2018; In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play; Iago's Plot; and Dontrell, Who Kissed the Sea. This coming year, Ryan is getting ERYT 200 teacher certification at Amara Yoga and Arts while serving as the production coordinator and Dance Rehearsal Room manager for Dance at Illinois. This spring, Ryan is particularly excited about his position as movement director for Illinois Theatre's production of Hit the Wall, directed by Robert G. Anderson. As an actor, Ryan can be seen in the latest season of Champaign-Urbana's film series Pens to Lens—catch him in the piece I'm Not Evil, directed by Andrew Nygard. He was recently cast in Protagonist Pizza Productions' new web series Delivered, which begins filming this year. You can also find Ryan dancing on his Instagram feed (@Luzzography) or in Protagonist Pizza Productions' latest short film, Still. Ryan is very excited to be working with the Dance Department and can't wait to see all the work from faculty, students, and guests.
Office Support Specialist
Cindy Masko, Office Support Specialist, is a native of Champaign and worked for US Postal Service for 25 years. After retiring she returned to college and received a B.A. from Eastern Illinois University with a minor in Psychology in 2006. She began working for the Department of Dance in 2008 as an OSS, with responsibilities that include overseeing communications, facilities, general administration, and scheduling. Ms. Masko received the FAA Distinguished Staff Award for the excellence of her ongoing support of the dance community.