MASHA DASHKINA MADDUX (Founder/Artistic Director) 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 Dior Magazine issue #26 and The Art of Movement, a highly anticipated book conceived and created by the founders of NYC Dance Project, 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. In the summer of 2018, she received Alto Jonio Best Dancer Award in Calabria, Italy.
PAMELA STEVENS (Co-Founder/ARTS Wake Forest Board Member) has spent over 35 years working at and with nonprofits in California and North Carolina with a focus on the arts and human services. Growing up in Chicago, her passion for the arts began as a child inspired by her mother’s love of dance and theater. After arriving in Northern California in 1984 and settling in the Bay Area, she sought out opportunities to work with a hospice organization in order to share her experience when it was needed for her mother. The journey allowed her to spend four years with a hospice program, leading to developing a foundation to raise funds to support families going through the process of losing a loved one. Working with two other organizations following hospice, she was asked to sit on a board of a modern dance company, which lead to taking the Executive Director’s position with the San Jose Dance Theatre (SJDT). Before moving to North Carolina, she spent over 12 years as President of the board with the SJDT, taking it through difficult financial times. SJDT just celebrated its 53rd season of The Nutcracker based on the tremendous efforts of the board of directors and the families who have worked very hard to save it. In 2009, she moved to North Carolina to be close to family and was introduced to Wake Forest Arts and became a member of the board in 2010. In 2017, she became the Co-Founder with professional dance artist Mariya Dashkina Maddux, and established the Wake Forest Dance Festival.
DIANA HOFFMASTER (Grant Writer/Programming Assistant) was born in West Palm Beach Florida and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of South Florida in Dance Performance and her Master’s of Fine Arts from Florida Atlantic University in Arts Administration. She was the co-founder of the The Dancers’ Space in West Palm Beach Florida, the Grants Manger for the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, and the Director of Grants and Development Operations for the American Dance Festival. She is currently a free-lance grant writer and project manager for several non-profits from New York to Florida. Working towards her passion to provide performing arts opportunities for her community, she serves as the Board Chair for the Cultural and Resource Advisory Committee for the Town of Wake Forest and since its inaugural season has assisted with the Wake Forest Dance Festival in programming and fundraising. Diana has choreographed many works that have been performed across Florida, continues to teach modern dance, and looks forward to creating works here in Wake Forest. She is thrilled to be part of the Wake Forest Dance Festival and is dedicated to being part of this program flourishing!
EMILY CROFFORD (Administrative Coordinator/Assistant to the Director) was born a mover, became an athlete by design, and a dancer through intuition. Emily is an investigative artist and educator interested in exploring the intimate connection dance offers both performers and viewers. She has taught contemporary dance technique, dance appreciation, conditioning, yoga, and creative movement to a vast spectrum of students across several states. Serving as an adjunct professor in dance at High Point University and Elon University, Emily teaches a variety of dance technique and theory courses, including contemporary dance technique and yoga. She was selected as one of Dance Project's Artist in Residence for Fall 2018, and her choreography has been featured at several Cleveland Dance Showcases, American College Dance Association conferences, and Tobacco Roads Dance Productions' In Concert '19. Emily has worked with numerous choreographers, including performing with Christine Bowen Dance, Greensboro Dance Fringe Festival, North Carolina Dance Festival, and as part of the Corciano Festival, 53' Agosto Corcianese, in Corciano, Italy. Along with working for the Wake Forest Dance Festival, Emily is also involved with the Greensboro Dance Film Festival. Additionally, her research involves integrating somatic and conditioning practices seamlessly into dancers' training. Emily earned her MFA in Dance with a concentration in choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and her BFA in Dance Education, education minor from Kent State University. She is also a certified yoga teacher and a certified Strength and Conditioning Coach through the International Sports Sciences Association.