Jennifer McQuiston Lott
Jennifer McQuiston Lott enjoys a varied career as a dancer, choreographer, teacher, director and advocate for the arts. In 2016, she joined the faculty of the USC Kaufman School of Dance, where she is currently an Associate Professor. She is a certified teacher of Countertechnique, an innovative contemporary dance technique developed by Dutch choreographer Anouk van Dijk.
Her company credits include Gibney Dance Company, Groundworks Dancetheater, Armitage Gone! Dance, Inlet Dance Theatre, Collective Body Dance Lab, Eglevsky Ballet, and others. Her choreographic works and short dance films have been presented by USC Visions & Voices, the Newport Beach Film Festival, The LA Short Film Fest, Baryshnikov Arts Center, National Sawdust, Celebrate Brooklyn!, Chen Dance Center’s Newsteps, the Thang Dao Dance Festival, at The Dead/Live Festival (Boston), The Cleveland Public Theatre, New Haven’s Educational Center for the Arts, The Southern Theater in Minneapolis, and Festival Miden (Germany). She has been commissioned by the USC Kaufman School of Dance, Cleveland’s Ingenuity Festival, Gibney Dance Center, the Laguna Dance Festival, Baldwin Wallace University’s Bach Festival, Rockford Dance Company, and has choreographed music videos for groups Son Lux and My Brightest Diamond.
Lott’s creative pursuits often place her at intersections of dance, music and community. She is the co-Founder and resident choreographer of the Traverse City Dance Project, a seasonal company of professional dance artists and musicians, based in Traverse City, MI. She curates its New Voices Fellowship, which supports new creations by choreographers and composers. At the onset of the global pandemic, Lott developed and directed the TCDP’s 2020 No-Distance Festival, a virtual showcase of collaborative works commissioned from over 35 music, dance, and video artists worldwide.
Lott earned her BFA in Ballet Performance from Indiana University, and her MFA in Dance from the University of California, Irvine, where she was awarded a Graduate Fellowship, the Medici Scholarship, and the Sheila K. & James J. Peterson Community Spirit Scholarship. She has served on the faculty of Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet’s Summer Intensive, Interlochen Summer Arts Camp, and taught classes and workshops nationally and internationally, including DOCH (Stockholm, Sweden), Ikapa Dance Theatre (Cape Town, South Africa), the Académie Américaine de Danse (Paris, France) and Muhlenberg College (PA).
Lott is a featured performer in the official Son Lux videos Undone (dir. David Terry Fine, chor. Tyler Gilstrap) and You Don’t Know Me (dir. Nathan Johnson/The Made Shop). Her acclaimed film Caught in the Chamber, a collaboration with composer Andrew Norman and director Nathan Johnson, has been presented both by USC Visions & Voices and Cal Performances in concerts with celebrated chamber ensemble yMusic.
Lead Artistic Choreographer
2023 Bessie Award Nominee for “Outstanding Performer,” Rachel Harris started dancing under the instruction of Denise Britzclarke-Clarke in Charlotte, North Carolina. In 2020, she graduated Cum Laude from the University of Southern California Glorya Kaufman School of Dance where she received her BFA with an architecture concentration. Upon graduation Harris joined Zeitgeist Dance Theatre as an inaugural company member, signed with Go2Talent Agency, and joined Parsons Dance under the direction of David Parsons. In addition to company member, she served as Diversity Liaison and Director of Education and Apprenticeship for two of her three seasons.
A budding choreographer in her own right, Rachel has been named Howard University’s 2021 Spring Emerging Choreographer to Watch, Inaugural Gibney Dance Converge2Emerge Film Grant Recipient in 2021, International Choreography Online Scholarship Award Recipient, 2022 Finalist for New Century Dance Project Professional / Emerging Choreographer Finalist, and 2023 Dual Rivet MADE BY WOMEN Film Festival Finalist. In 2022, Rachel was assistant choreographer to David Parsons for About Sprouts – an immersive experience performed by the students of Ballet Tech NYC Public School and has choreographed for stage and film including: music videos, numerous films of her own including Adapt. Accept.Recover., Hand of God, Solo One, and many others. Harris is a teaching artist and choreographer for the Kennedy Center, MoveNYC, Windward School, JBP Entertainment, and other training programs across the country.
Harris has worked with and performed works by: Kyle Abraham, George Balanchine, Robert Battle, Hope Boykin, Rena Butler, Patrick Corbin, Chanel DaSilva, William Forsythe, Jodie Gates, Frank Gatson, Amy Hall Garner, Francisco Gella, d Sabela Grimes, Jae Man Joo, Saleemah E Knight, Jiri Kylian, Jennifer Lott, Darrell Grand Moultrie, Matthew Neenan, Kerry Nicholls, David Parsons, Crystal Pite, Jerome Robbins, Dwight Rhoden, Desmond Richardson, Rubberlegz, Yusha Marie-Sorzano, Paul Taylor, Jakevis Thomason, Didy Veldman, and more.