Teaching Tips

How Pamela Pietro Teaches a Spiral Turn

Pietro, left, with Zuri Ford. Photo by Kyle Froman

In Pamela Pietro's contemporary class, "everything has to have lineage," she says. Each early exercise or phrase is a foundation for something that happens later. The floor spirals she begins class with (based on her mentor Irene Dowd's spirals) return in the form of the spiral turns her students do while standing.

Pamela Pietro is an associate arts professor at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts department of dance. She received her BFA from Florida State University and her MFA from the University of Washington. Pietro has danced professionally for Michael Foley Dance, Race Dance Company, bopi's black sheep/dances and Houlihan and Dancers (1991–99). For the last 20 years, she has been on faculty at the American Dance Festival. She is also a certified Pilates instructor and assistant to neuromuscular trainer Irene Dowd. Last summer, she launched a study-abroad program for NYU dancers in Berlin.

Zuri Ford is a third-year dance major at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.

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