Rebecca Sayadian

Rebecca Sayadian

Northwest Region
Bentonville, Arkansas
[email protected]

I have a prepared syllabus for the following types of Dance- Classical Ballet, Tap, Musical Theatre/Broadway, Swing, Salsa, Irish, ballroom waltz, and Character.
In addition, I will craft a dance or theatre residency to fit the needs of the individual classroom/teacher. My residencies integrate the art of dance movement into the core curriculum, with emphasis on literacy.

Dance has been called the universal language. Dance transcends languages and cultures. It is a form of expression. It is versatile. However, we are not all dancers. Some of us claim to have two left feet, while others claim to have no rhythm. Then there are those who are unaware that they have no rhythm!
Owning a private studio, I had the luxury of being able to separate the classes by the varying levels and abilities, each class having its own curriculum and lesson plan. However, teaching in a classroom setting inside a public school, I have to get creative in my instructing. The trick inside a classroom is to help the beginner students want to participate, and help the more advanced students not feel bored.

Teaching residencies in schools, I have a different type of lesson plan. At the start of each class, all students participate in the warm-up exercises. We spend several minutes stretching and preparing our bodies for the movements. In a class of many different levels of technique and experience, I try to see the class from the students' perspectives and strive to meet their needs- different abilities require different approaches to teaching.
When preparing lesson plans, I have basic material, with a modified back up plan for more experienced students. I teach the basic framework to everyone, then shape it and embellish it for the final version. This should help the students 'muscle memory' and provide a concept for their minds to grasp. In the beginning, I demonstrate the step so they can see what they are learning. I encourage the beginners to remain at the level where they are comfortable, while adding more details for more advanced dancers. I like to watch the students to see what they're getting and not getting. Keeping them inside their comfort zone, they will reach their optimum learning pace, stay motivated, and not feel stressed or frustrated.

When teaching the Salsa workshop, I got the kids engaged with fun, upbeat Salsa music. We started with very basic footwork and counting. Once everyone was comfortable with the basic steps, I modified the steps and counts a bit; then I taught them a basic pattern. Once the pattern was understood and applied, I sped up the counts. Once we were up to speed, and everyone was familiar with the pattern, we paired and practiced with a partner. Everyone had a great time. The students were practicing the steps with their friends the next day.


Rebecca teases that she has been dancing and acting since before she was born- her mother was a professional dancer and actor, and danced the roles of Cinderella and Fairy Godmother while pregnant with Rebecca.
Rebecca is a graduate of the Judith McCarty School of Dancing/Hansen Conservatory for the Arts in Texas. During that time she was an active company member of the Texarkana Community Ballet, and completed her Teacher's Certificate. Rebecca has performed principal and soloist roles in full-length and selections from The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Les Sylphides, The Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, Stars and Stripes, and in The Blue Danube, a collaboration of Texarkana Community Ballet and the Texarkana Symphony Orchestra.

She continued her studies in dance under Christina Munro of San Marcos Ballet, Kirt Hathaway of Ballet Arkansas, Gelsey Kirkland of New York City Ballet, Stan Rogers of Friends University in Wichita, Kansas, Jacob Sparso of Oklahoma City Ballet, Chet Walker of Steps On Broadway and Jim Cooney of Broadway Dance Center, and other Summer Intensives in New York City.

In 2008, Rebecca founded Hot Springs School of Classical Dance, to bring classical dance training to the students of Hot Springs. In 2016, Rebecca and her family relocated to Northwest Arkansas, where she got involved with the local professional children's theatre.

Rebecca is an active member of Texas Association of Teachers of Dancing (TATD), an Artist in Residence with the Arkansas Arts Council- "Arts in Education" division, and a Teaching Artist with Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council (TRAHC) in Texas, and a Teaching Artist, actor, and choreographer for Tricycle Children's Theatre in Bentonville, AR.

Rebecca has choreographed and taught highlights from Broadway musicals, i.e. Bob Fosse's Sweet Charity, and A Chorus Line, among others, and original ballet productions such as "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, the ballet"; "Hello from Hot Springs! A Tribute to our Hometown"; "Dance Me a Story!" (advocating literacy); "Stars and Stripes- An American Celebration" (a fundraiser for the USO); and "A Day at the Art Museum"(promoting art education).

Rebecca and her husband Anthony (Tony) have been married for 17 years, and have 4 children: Ethan, Anna, Lauren, and Ryan.

Participated in 18 hours of professional development presented by the Walton Arts Center's AWE Institute's Literacy and Collaboration; July 31 - August 2, 2017.

AIE Program

Preferred Age Level: all ages
Geographic Availability: statewide with advanced notice
Time Availability: Open with advanced notice.
Special Needs: Open floor, cd or bluetooth capabilities