LA ROCHE COLLEGE NAMES NEW DIRECTOR OF DANCE
Bodiography Contemporary Ballet’s Maria Caruso to Lead Program
Pittsburgh: June 29, 2010 - With more a decade of directorship leading Bodiography Contemporary Ballet to prominence in the Pittsburgh arts community, Maria Caruso will take on a new role: director of dance at La Roche College in Pittsburgh. She will begin her role this summer and will welcome students for the 2010-2011 academic year.
The Forest Hills, Pa., native says she has a “tremendous vision for the direction of the dance program” at the North Hills college. She is no stranger to the campus; she took college courses at La Roche beginning at age 15 and graduated from high school at 16 with more than 30 college credits. She transferred those credits to Florida State University and graduated with her B.F.A. in dance at age 19. Caruso says she is determined to grow a program that is deeply rooted in the preservation and expression of the college’s mission.
“I will work to unite all artists from both the past and present who represent La Roche College,” she said. “I’m honored to come back to La Roche and am blessed to begin this new chapter in my career.”
It is a career filled with accomplishments. She founded Bodiography Contemporary Ballet in 2000 in New York City and transitioned the company back home to Pittsburgh in 2002. Once here, she opened her conservatory – Bodiography Center for Movement – and together they occupy a 5,000-square-foot dance facility in Squirrel Hill.
While growing the business, Caruso earned her master’s degree in professional leadership at Carlow University. She will continue her role within her businesses as she works with the students at La Roche, and she says she hopes to unite the many facets of her companies with that of the college’s dance department. One example: Caruso wants to offer a college preparatory dance program that will provide students with the very same opportunity that she experienced, taking classes while in high school and transferring them to college.
“I would like to propel young artists into an accelerated B.A. program offering the riches of a tremendous conservatory style setting,” she said. By 2015 Caruso hopes to see her collegiate preparation students graduate from high school and continue their education at La Roche College, armed with the tools necessary to have a long and successful career in the performing arts.