Maria Antonieta (Toni) Bravo
Dance Educator and Choreographer
Originally from Mexico City, a naturalized American, Ms. Bravo holds a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and a master’s degree in Theatre History and Criticism, with a minor in Dance Pedagogy (UT, 1987). Ms. Bravo left Latin America in 1979 since then she has studied and performed throughout the planet before she settled in Austin, Texas. Most notably she studied and performed in London at The Royal Academy of Dance and the Imperial Society of Dance. AND in 1989 Bravo spent 9 months in Essen/Werden Germany, teaching and training with the Folkwang Schlule, Gymnasium Essen Werden and Pina Bausch’s Company in Wuppertal. In Austin she has danced in works by Merce Cuningham, Sharon Vasquez, Leon Danielian and Woody McGriffe, among other. She has choreographed many Musicals including “The Fantasticks” “Company” “A Little Night Music” and “In The Heights.” She has also worked with many theatre companies in Austin, including THE VORTEX, Violet Crown Players, Austin Playhouse and Austin Shakespeare.
Bravo’s work as independent choreographer consists of different dance styles such as Contemporary Modern Dance, Musical Theatre, Contemporary Ballet, Jazz, Nouveau-Latin and Dances and Rhythms from different sectors in the World as well as Movement for Actors and Dance in Education subjects.
She was awarded best choreographer title by Austin Chronicle’s “Best Of Austin” for three years in a row in late 1990’s and 2000. In 2014, she received the B Iden Payne award for outstanding choreography for her work in “EARTH” in collaboration with Bonnie Cullum at THE VORTEX Repertory Theatre.
Bravo Is the artistic director of Diverse Space Dance Theatre [DSDT] and Diverse Space Youth Dance Theatre [DSYDT]. The youth company travels every year to participate the Irish Youth Dance Festival (IYDF) and to perform at LISTROS, APT; URBANRAUM, and Dock11/EDEN, in Berlin.
Ms Bravo is an expert in Dance as an educational vehicle of long term learning. She has designed and taught lessons as well as trained teachers to teach dance and “academics through dance” since 1995; in Austin, Dublin, Berlin, Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Prague.
All of Ms Bravo’s classes include information and tactics based on the Multiple Modality of Cognitive Processes and the Bloom’s Taxonomy (HIGHER ORDER THINKING). This is part of her strategy to educate through movement. Her program “Learning to Move, Moving to Learn” is in the process of being codified and published. Ms. Bravo was, for 26 yars, a faculty member for the Ballet Austin Academy where she has directed and designed the curriculum for Pre-ballet classes for children 5 to 8 years old, as well as higher levels of Ballet and Contemporary Modern Dance techniques. She currently directs several Dance in Education Continuous Projects taught in AISD schools and in European schools. Ms. Bravo designs the curriculum, trains the instructors and teaches dance and movement classes that integrate academic subjects into two kinetic programs of learning titled “Leaps and No Bounds” and “Learning to Dance, Dancing to Learn”; The specific curricular goals of these programs aim to facilitate learning in the areas of math, science, social/cultural studies and language arts by providing an alternative, joyful, kinesthetic method for instruction of curricular information [https://youtu.be/TP3R3EWaIsI ]. In Austin she also direct the “Dance to Learn in the Classroom” program, which brings the beauty and structure of ballet to classrooms in elementary schools; linking ballet vocabulary to physical and cognitive developmental subjects [https://youtu.be/erOMGUSl4ws].In collaboration with several Austin dance organizations she teaches Contemporary Ballet, Ballet Fitness, Contemporary Modern, DanceTheatre techniques, and Muscle Sculpting. She also has a complete system ONLINE.
In the past, Bravo has conducted movement programs at UT Austin School of Opera and Department of Theatre and Dance, Austin Community College, St. Edward’s University, St. Andrew’s Episcopalian High School and Johnston High School. She designed and taught the dance program at St. Michael’s Academy for 12 years
Toni Bravo, has been an exemplary force of action as a choreographer and as an arts educator in Austin for over 25 years (http://bloomatx.wordpress.com/2013/02/22/toni-bravo-a-force-of-dance).