Jayne Bernasconi



1986                M.A. Dance in Education, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY

1983                B.A. Dance, University of Maryland, College Park, MD

1978-81           Johnson State College, Johnson, Vermont


                        PROFESSIONAL WORK EXPERIENCE   (Teaching and Directorship)

2000 - present Towson University, Towson, MD

Adjunct Professor, Department of Dance, teaching all levels of Modern Dance, Composition I, II, III & IV, Introduction to Dance: The American Experience, Introduction to Dance: Overview; Fundamentals of Movement, Yoga, Aerial Technique, Modern (Aerial) Dance Repertory, Drumming and Dance for People on the Autism Spectrum (6 week project, 2010)


2010 – present  Yoga On York (owner) Baltimore, MD  www.yogaonyork.net

Classes include:  aerial yoga, traditional yoga, meditation, gentle yoga, yoga nidra, yin yoga, vinyasa, mom & tots yoga, chair yoga, yoga for trauma. Leader of 200, 500 hour and aerial yoga teacher trainings.


2000 – 2011    Gerstung Baltimore, MD 

Aerial Dance Instructor, teaching all levels of low-flying single point trapeze, aerial fabric, hoops, spanish web 


2000 – present    Air Dance Bernasconi, Inc., Baltimore, MD

Founder and Artistic Director of non-profit aerial dance company.

Responsibilities include all aspects of running a professional dance company:  booking performances, writing grants, organizing rehearsals, choreographing concerts, fundraising, organizing Board meetings, auditioning and training dancers, publicity/public relations.

1999 – 2018  Aerial Dance Festival, Boulder, CO                         

                         Two-week international workshop held annually for 2 weeks in August.

Teaching intermediate/advanced aerial dance, aesthetics and choreography, aerial yoga, mixed ability aerial dance, and contact improvisation. (www.frequentflyers.org)


2008 – 2013    East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN

Master Teacher of a one week intensive Aerial Dance Workshop. Responsibilities include: designing curriculum, brochure, national marketing, and hiring instructors.  Teaching single point trapeze, aerial fabric, hoops and composition, 


1992-1999       Forces Of Ability, Burlington. VT and Boulder, CO

Founder and Artistic Director, FOA was designed to bridge movement with abled and differently-abled populations.  Initial workshop was developed with Steve Paxton, inventor of Contact Improvisation.  Responsibilities included teaching weekly classes, running a professional dance company, choreographing and organizing performances, workshops, lecture demonstrations, recruiting dancers, writing grants, advertising, publicity/public relations, educating the public on disability awareness.


1995-1999       Forces of Ability (FOA) In The Schools, Boulder, CO

Bringing FOA Dance Company into public and private schools to educate students about dance and disabilities.  Responsibilities include:  writing and overseeing curriculum, scheduling schools; teaching residencies (K-8) organizing teacher training workshops to integrate school curriculum, producing school assemblies and informal presentations.


1995-1999       Artsability, Burlington, Vermont and Boulder, CO

Founder and Artistic Director, a weekly project that brings dance and poetry/storytelling to children with and without disabilities and chronic illness. (Originally partnered with Parent to Parent of Vermont, an organization that connects parents with children with disabilities).  Responsibilities included: teaching weekly classes, leading teacher training seminars, writing grants, hiring leaders, publicity, writing assessments and evaluations.


1992                Fleming Museum, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont

A nine-week solo dance residency program designed to combine movement with visual arts for university students, K-12 classes, senior centers, and people with developmental disabilities.


1992-1999       Very Special Arts Vermont and Colorado

Teaching on-going dance workshops to people with physical and developmental disabilities in both Burlington, VT and Boulder, CO; facilitating teacher training workshops on “How to Include Art in the lives of people with Disabilities; guest teacher, at the University of Denver’s adaptive PE program for a 4 week special topics class on teaching dance to developmentally disabled adults.   Also worked as a guest artist for Special Olympics at Arapahoe Basin Ski Resort (1996, 1997) teaching creative movement and theatre games to the athletes.


1993                Essex Town District School, Essex, Vermont

A nine week dance residency (K-8) integrating movement with their curriculum studies of:  endangered species, oceans, folk and fairy tales and an after school dance project “Unsheltered Lives” based on homeless people.


1990 -1991      Dance Arts Studio, Waterbury, Vermont

Director of a private dance studio that included children and adult dance classes.  Responsibilities included:  recruitment of students, publicity and press releases, designing curriculum, producing Spring concert, teaching classes in modern dance for adults and children, ballet, jazz, creative movement for children


1988-1989       Wellness Center for Dance, Madison, New Jersey

Director of a preschool dance program.  Responsibilities included:  designing curriculum, teaching creative movement dance classes for children ages 3-5, organizing informal performance


1984-1986       Morningside Dance Program, Columbia University, New York, NY

Coordinator of a community dance program within CU.  Responsibilities included:  recruitment of students, submitting budget plans and payroll, designing brochures and programs, publicity, press releases, fundraising, organizing student performances




2000 - present   Air Dance Bernasconi, Inc.

Choreographing and performing in solo, duet and group works using low-flying trapeze, aerial fabric, hoops and Spanish web, bungee, rope and harness.


2007                “Sorcerer” choreographed by Alwin Nikolais, presented at the Art of the Solo - Baltimore                                Museum Of Art, Baltimore, Maryland


1995-1999      Frequent Flyers Productions, Inc. an aerial dance company based in Boulder, CO.  Full scale performances that toured around the state of Colorado; outreach community lecture demonstrations and workshops.


1992-1999       Forces of Ability, Burlington, VT and Boulder, CO

Performing contact improvisation at gala showcases with Steve Paxton, Felice Wolfzan and Sarah Brutzman.   Also, performed various solos, duet and group works with company members and guest artists throughout the years. 


1991-1995       Jayne Bernaconi and Friends, Burlington, VT

A pick-up modern dance company that performed annually at various festivals throughout Vermont such as Midsummer, Montpelier and First Night in Burlington, VT.


1991                Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Flynn Theatre, Burlington, VT

Performer and dance liason for Mr. Jones and local dancers in The Last Supper At Uncle Tom’s Cabin. (7 performances)


1989-1991       Those Dancers From Burlington, Burlington, VT

A collective of dancers and choreographers collaborating with jazz composers to present live works at the annual Burlington Jazz Festival.                     


1987-88           Ann Vachon/Dance Conduit, Philadelphia, PA

A modern dance company performing at various venues throughout Philadelphia


1984                Stephen Petronio Dance Company, New York, NY

                        A post-modern dance company for one season at St. Marks Church


1984 - 1986     Abiogenesis, New York, NY

An improvisational dance company performing in showcases, museums and schools throughout New York City


1983 – 1984    Impulse Theatre and Dance Company, New York, NY

                        An improvisational and modern dance company



1979 - Kei Tekei’s Moving Earth  – 6-week summer dance festival, Johnson State College, VT

1980 – Libby Nye (Limon) Lance Westergaurd (Ballet) Adrienne Ramm (Duncan) – 6-week summer dance festival, Johnson State College, Vermont

1981 – Merideth Monk – Sound and Movement 1 week workshop, Johnson State College, VT

1981 – summer modern dance classes with artist-in-residence, The Yard, Martha’s Vineyard, MA

1982 – Intensive one week workshop with Eiko and Koma at Peabody School, Baltimore Maryland

1981-1983 - Training at University of Maryland, College Park: Ethel Butler (Graham), Mark Rider (Graham). Ann Warren (Limon, Labanotation) Alvin Mayes (Cunninghan and Ethnic) Sandra Perez and Sylvia Druker (Ballet) Meriam Rosen (Improvisation and Hawkins) Glenna Batson (kinesiology)


NYC Training:

1984-1986 MA Dance Education training: Irene Dowd (Kinesiology), Anita Feldman (Movement Education Concepts), Thias Barry, (Teaching Dance Concepts) Karen Bamonte (Choreography)

1983-1985:  Nikolais Louis Dance Lab with Alwin Nikolais, Murray Louis and Hanya Holm

1984-1988, Angela Wolff, Christopher Pilafian (Trisler Dance Company, Peridance Center, Zena Rommett Floor Barre, Dan Wagner, Bill T. Jones, Arnie Zane, Joan Skinner, Finis Jhung and Robert Ellis Dunn (composition)


1984-1989: Spent 6 summers as a student at the White Mountains Summer Dance Festival with Laura Glenn (Limon/Laban/Bartenieff), Martha Eddy (Body Mind Centering, Laban Movement Analysis), Jim Lapore (Modern and Improvisation), Ketul (Kripalu Yoga)

1989 – The Endocrine System – 2-week workshop Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen (Body Mind Centering)

1992 – Lisa Nelson & Nancy Stark Smith (Contact Improvisation)

1989 -2001 – participant of weekly Contact Jams held in Burlington Vermont, Boulder, Co & DC

2001 - Martin Keogh – Contact Improvisation

1995 - present – classes with various aerial pioneers such as Terry Sendgraff, Nancy Smith, Robert Davidson, David Clarkson (aerial stilts), Fred Deb (silks), Elsie and Serenity Smith (static trapeze)



1988 – present:  Yoga practice with various teachers including Ketul (Kripalu), Richard Friedman (Ashtanga), Sean Korn (Astanga) Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen (Yoga and BMC) and 10 forty hour trainings with Rod Stryker (Parayoga).




Aerial Dance (co-written with Nancy Smith) Human Kinetics, copyright 2008


Contact Improvisation: An Introduction to a Vitalizing Dance Form by Cheryl Pallant –McFarland Co. (2 page essay on teaching aerial dance through contact improvisation for Pallant’s book)


Aerial Yoga (Backyard Publishing)  c. 2012

Yoga At TU with Jayne Bernasconi (Backyard Publishing) c. 2013



Low Flying Aircraft:  A Report From the Aerial Dance Festival 2000 and an Interview with Terry Sendgraff, Contact Quarterly, Vol. 1 Fall/Winter 2002


Fluid Pregnancy:  Contact Quarterly, Vol 2, Spring 1991


GRANTS AND AWARDS (Artistic and Academic)

2008                $12,500 – Seed funding to develop summer Aerial Dance Workshop at East Tennessee                                 State University

2006               $1,200 - Towson University Faculty Development Grant for research on my book/DVD “Aerial Dance”

2004                $1,300 - Sophia Morton Foundation for support for Air Dance Bernasconi, Inc.

2003                $3,800 - Private donations for Air Dance Bernasconi, Inc.

2003                $28,000 - Private donation from West Bronlow for Air Dance Bernasconi, Inc.

1999                $1,200 - Human Resource Commission, Boulder, CO to support Forces of Ability

1999                $2,000. -  Colorado Council on the Arts to support Forces of Ability

1999               $1,500 - Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) of Boulder County to support Forces of Ability in the Schools

1999                $1,500 - Boulder Arts Commission to support Forces of Ability and Forces of Ability in the Schools

1998                $5,600 - The Theresa Foundation to support Artsability

1998            $2,300 - Boulder Arts Commission to support Forces of Ability and Forces of Ability in the Schools

1997                $1,000 - The Theresa Foundation to support Artsability

1997                $1,200 - Boulder Arts Commission to support Forces of Ability

1996                $2,000 - The Theresa Foundation to support Artsability

1996                $ 400 - The Arts and Humanities Assembly of Boulder to support Artsability

1995                $ 300 - The Vermont Council on the Arts, an artistic development grant to produce a video of recent choreographic works

1995              $5,000. - National Endowment on the Arts “Voices of Youth” program to support Artsability workshop designed for children with disabilities

1994                $6,500 National Endowment on the Arts “Voices of Youth” grant for founding Artsability

1992                $1,000 Burlington City Arts to premiere Forces of Ability workshop

1992                $ 300 Very Special Arts Vermont to support Forces of Ability workshop

1992             $ 300 Vermont Council on the Arts, Artistic Development grant to bring Emery Blackwell, a dancer with cerebral palsy to lead the Forces of Ability workshop

1991                $500 Vermont Council on the Arts, Fellowship grant for choreographic achievements

1990-1995      Arts in Education Grant, Vermont Council on the Arts for matched funding for artists-in-school residencies

1990-1995     Touring Artist Grant, Vermont Council on the Arts to help promote Jayne Bernasconi and Friends

1986                Certified Performing Artist-In-The-Schools, New York, NY


A video collage of television stories and interviews with Jayne and her pioneering work with movement and different abilities (1991 - 1999).