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Masha Dashkina Maddux (Founder/Director of the Wake Forest Dance Festival)  is a professional concert dance performer and a dance educator. A native of Kiev, Ukraine she was first introduced to dance through the classical Vaganova ballet technique. After moving to United States she studied under the direction of Ruth Weisen at the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet of Miami, FL and ultimately graduated summa cum laude with her BFA from New World School of the Arts under the directorship of Daniel Lewis. Ms. Dashkina Maddux joined the Martha Graham Dance Company in 2007 and rose to the rank of the principal dancer, performing major roles in classical Graham repertoire along with works created by some of the most influential contemporary choreographers. Ms. Dashkina Maddux was featured in Dance Magazine's "Dancer's Choice", and also appeared in projects including newly released Martha Graham Dance Technique DVD, directed by Miki Orihara and Susan Kikuchi, and in a feature film Fall to Rise, written and directed by Jayce Bartok. In addition to performing, Ms. Dashkina Maddux has collaborated with photographers to capture the art of dance. Most recently her image was selected for the cover of The Art of Movement, a highly anticipated book conceived and created by Ken Browar and Deborah Ory. Ms. Dashkina Maddux is an ambassador for the Dancing Angels Foundation, a nonprofit foundation that provides scholarships and other assistance to help passionate and committed young dancers fulfill their dreams. This summer, she received Alto Jonio Best Dancer Award in Calabria, Italy.