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Tawnya & Jason at the Industry Dance Awards
Nominated for Choreographer of the Year &
Best Musical Theater Performance.
We see being great at your art as a starting point, not an endpoint. We set ourselves goals we know we can’t reach yet, because we know that by stretching to meet them we can get further than we expected. It’s really the dancers and families that make Nor Cal Dance Arts the kind of company and studio it is. Our staff is some of the smartest, experienced, and dedicated teachers and chorographers in the Bay Area. Although our staff share common goals and visions for our dancers, their individual styles and backgrounds are embraced; which equals a unique training experience for our dancers. We strive to maintain the open culture often associated with the performing arts. We encourage dancers to take responsibility of their schedules, training and performances. Dancers have direct access to Tawnya, owner, and artistic staff for questions ranging from school to career help. Parents can also easily email the studio director about any artist questions and our operations staff can help with any studio questions. Our studio is designed to encourage interactions between dancers within and across teams, ages, cultures, and to spark conversation about dance and life.
Our Mission is to create a strong technical foundation for our dancers while encouraging them to reach their full artistic potential. Each class is designed to motivate our dancers through creativity and discipline. At NCDA we know that dancing is and should be fun! That is why we focus on teaching all of our classes in a fun, yet structured learning atmosphere so that all of our dancers will continue to love dance, gain confidence, and excel! In order to execute our vision we have created four unique programs; Young Movers, Youth, Teen Adult, and Group Exercise, which are then broken down further by dance styles and ability levels.
Tawnya has been dancing for 25 years and has won numerous awards and scholarships. She has been
teaching and choreographing all styles of dance for 13 years and has trained many scholarship winners,
professional dancers, and national champions. She has also trained many dancers who have been accepted
into prestigious dance programs and College dance programs such as ABT, Alvin Ailey, UC Irvine, Chapman
University, Loyola Marymount, Marymount Manhattan, UCLA, among others. Tawnya received her B.A. in
Dance from SJSU, where she was a member of their modern dance troupe, University Dance Theatre,
under the direction of Julliard Alumni Gary Masters. After College she continued her training in a work
study program at Edge Performing Arts Center in Hollywood California, one of the premiere dance studios
in the nation where she trained under and assisted some of the worlds top choreographers including owner
and master teacher, Bill Prudich. Throughout her training Tawnya has been fortunate to train with some of
the best choreographers in the country. She discovered her love for fusing Ballet technique with Hip Hop
and Contemporary styles while dancing with Funkanometry SF in their all female Hip Hop Company De La
Femme. Currently, Tawnya is busy teaching, producing shows, and choreographing for companies, teams,
award shows, and events such as "The NAACP Awards where she choreographed for Vanessa Williams and
the "original dream girl" Sheryl Lee Ralph and dancers. In 2006 Tawnya and her husband (Motion Picture and Event Production Designer) Jason Kuzia were so excited to open the bay area’s newest dance center, Nor Cal Dance Arts, where Tawnya is also the Artistic director of it’s pre-professional dance companies and teams. Since it's opening the studio has seen great success and has grown into a new location and state of the art 10,500 sq ft. facility. The studio has been awarded "Best of San Jose" for 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012. In June of 2009, Tawnya was selected as a National Finalist for the Capezio Award for Choreographic Excellence in NYC. The opportunities lead to the start of her professional company, Rugged Dance Company. While directing and choreographing for Rugged, Tawnya has had her work showcased at the notorious Roxy Theater in Hollywood Ca, Music Box Theater Hollywood Ca, Fort Mason Theater SF, Montgomery Theater San Jose, and many other venues. Through her work with the company she has been awarded the People's Choice award and Critics Choice at SJDanceCo's ChoreoProject Awards Concerts. Honored to grace the cover of the 25th anniversary issue, The Metro magazine named Tawnya as one of Silicon Valley's top 25 to watch as a next generation of leaders in their fields. The article signified her as a rising leader in Bay Area arts, alongside other great entrepreneurs such as Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg. Regarded as one of the Bay Area's best instructors and contemporary choreographers Tawnya is so excited to be working with new and talented dancers and hopes to encourage performers and audience members to experience the art of dance in new and creative ways.