Honorary Members

Debbie Allen, a BFA graduate of Howard University in Theater and Classical Greek Studies, holds four honorary Doctorate degrees, has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and is an award-winning director/choreographer who has choreographed the Academy Awards a record ten times. She has directed and choreographed for legendary artists such as Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, James Earl Jones, Phylicia Rashad, Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, Gwen Verdon, Lena Horne, Sammy Davis, Jr., Dolly Parton and Savion Glover.

Ms. Allen received the Golden Globe for her role as Lydia Grant in the 1980s hit series Fame, the Drama Desk Award for her portrayal of Anita in West Side Story, and is a three-time Emmy Award winner in Choreography for Fame and The Motown 25th. Awarded ten Image Awards as director, actress, choreographer and producer for Fame, A Different World, Motown 25th, The Academy Awards, The Debbie Allen Special and Amistad, she has also directed the best that network TV offers, including Scandal, How To Get Away With Murder, Jane The Virgin, Empire, and Insecure. She currently serves as Executive Producing Director of Grey’s Anatomy, where she recurs as Dr. Catherine Fox. She is the daughter of poet Vivian Ayers and Dr. Andrew Allen, wife to NBA All-Star Norman Nixon, sister to Phylicia Rashad, Tex Allen and Hugh Allen, mother of Vivian and Thump, and grandmother of Shiloh and Aviah.
Being a healthy and successful dancer in our time is so much more than making magic on stage or in the studio. Understanding the challenges to the body and the mind are essential. Addressing injuries, prevention, technique and spirit are crucial. The collective knowledge and resources offered by IADMS to our field are beyond measure. In IADMS, our profession finds the perfect partner.

Peter Boal, Artistic Director, Pacific Northwest Ballet

Peter Boal was raised in Bedford, New York. At the age of nine, after having seen a New York City Ballet performance of George Balanchine’s Coppélia, he began studying ballet at the School of American Ballet, the official school of New York City Ballet. Mr. Boal became a member of New York City Ballet’s corps de ballet in 1983, a soloist in 1987, and a principal dancer in 1989. In 2005, he retired from New York City Ballet after a 22-year career with the company. Mr. Boal was also a full-time faculty member at the School of American Ballet from 1997 to 2005. In 2003, he founded Peter Boal and Company, a critically acclaimed chamber ensemble.

Among the many ballets in which Mr. Boal was featured at New York City Ballet are George Balanchine’s Agon, Apollo, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Oberon), and Prodigal Son; Jerome Robbins’ Dances at a Gathering and Opus 19/The Dreamer; Ulysses Dove’s Red Angels; and works by William Forsythe, Peter Martins, Twyla Tharp, and Christopher Wheeldon.

In addition to touring with New York City Ballet, Mr. Boal performed as a principal dancer with Ballet Arizona; Ballet du Nord in France; the Kirov Ballet; Norwegian National Ballet; the Royal Birmingham Ballet; Suzanne Farrell Ballet; Wendy Perron Dance Company; and with Molissa Fenley at the Joyce Theater. In 1996, Mr. Boal received the Dance Magazine Award, and in 2000, he received a New York Dance and Performance Award (Bessie) for his performance in Ms. Fenley’s State of Darkness.

In 2005, upon his retirement from New York City Ballet, Mr. Boal became Artistic Director of Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB) and Director of Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Under the direction of Mr. Boal, PNB has continued to expand and diversify its repertory to include new works by Trisha Brown, Ulysses Dove, Jiri Kylian, Jean-Christophe Maillot, Susan Marshall, Mark Morris, Victor Quijada, Twyla Tharp, and Christopher Wheeldon, as well as additional works by George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins. Mr. Boal has staged the works of George Balanchine (Duo Concertant, Square Dance, and La Sonnambula), Ulysses Dove (Red Angels), and Peter Martins (Valse Triste) for the Company and elsewhere.

In 1992, he married New York City Ballet soloist Kelly Cass. The couple has two sons, Sebastian and Oliver, and one daughter, Sarah.
Dance has become increasingly athletic and the constant changing of styles exerts ever greater demands on the modern, highly tuned body. Through IADMS, therapists can access the best information about what dancers require and how to help maintain the dancer's physique. Following the latest research is essential to achieving the highest possible standards in this art form.

Darcey Bussell

Darcey Bussell studied from the age of 13 at the Royal Ballet School. At the age of 20 she danced the leading role in Sir Kenneth MacMillan's The Prince of the Pagodas and was promoted to Principal Dancer after the opening night – the youngest ballerina to be given this honor. Darcey went on to a glittering career with the Royal Ballet, also guesting with New York City Ballet, The Kirov, Paris Opera, Hamburg, and Australian Ballet. She retired from the Royal Ballet in 2007. She was awarded an OBE (Order of the British Empire) in 1995, a CBE (Commander of the British Empire) in 2006, and an Honorary Doctorate from Oxford University in 2009. Darcey is married to Angus Forbes and has two daughters, Phoebe and Zoe.
Empowering dancers with respect for their health and wellbeing is one of my major priorities as an artistic director. To flourish as an artist one needs to flourish as a healthy individual and thanks to all the support of IADMS and its members we have a great source of knowledge to achieve these goals. We all remain greatly indebted to the countless hours of dedicated work all of you in IADMS have devoted to dance. You have allowed us to show that a healthy dancer is a better dancer. Thank you IADMS !

Paola Cantalupo
Artistic Director,
Ecole Supérieure de Danse Cannes Rosella Hightower
and the Ecole Supérieure de Danse de Marseille

The Italian ballerina Paola Cantalupo trained and danced in the Ballet Company of Teatro alla Scala in Milan. After being awarded a gold medal at the Prix de Lausanne, and a bronze medal at the Jackson International Dance Competition, she left Italy to dance with Maurice Béjart’s Ballet of the 20th Century and John Neumeier’s Hamburg Ballet, before becoming a principal dancer with the National Ballet of Portugal. In 1989, she was named ‘Etoile’ by H.R.H. the Princess of Hanover with the Ballets de Monte-Carlo where she performed until 2009 and was decorated as a Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Culturel of the Principality of Monaco. Following her teacher training in Paris, she become the Artistic Director of the Ecole Supérieure de Danse Cannes Rosella Hightower and the Ecole Supérieure de Danse de Marseille, and was asked by the French Ministry of Culture to develop a regional center of dance in the Mediterranean region. She serves on the Artistic Committee of the Prix de Lausanne and is the Vice-President of the Association Danse Médecine Recherche (ADMR).
For a dancer, nothing is more precious than a healthy, injury-free body—this is crucial for an artist to flourish. Throughout my long dancing career I was supported by the ever-expanding knowledge and skills of dance health professionals, teachers, and directors. Now, as an artistic director myself, I am aware of the scientific research that lies behind these improvements in dancers’ well-being, and the importance of IADMS in disseminating knowledge that will improve dancers’ lives and performance now and into the future.

Li Cunxin

Li Cunxin was born in rural China. At the age of 11 he was selected for the seven-year training at Beijing Dance Academy, and was subsequently selected to go to Houston Ballet as a cultural exchange student. He then defected, and danced with Houston Ballet as a principal dancer for sixteen years, performing around the world and winning medals at three international ballet competitions. In 1995, Li became a principal dancer with The Australian Ballet. At age 35, he studied stockbroking part-time, eventually retiring from dancing to become a senior manager at one of Australia’s biggest stockbroking firms. Li recently returned to dance as Artistic Director of Queensland Ballet. His 2003 autobiography, Mao's Last Dancer and the 2009 film of the book have both won many prestigious international awards. Li and his wife, Mary McKendry, have two daughters and a son.
My long life as a healthy dancer is no coincidence. I was guided by generous and engaged dance kinesiologists at crucial points in my career over five decades – including John M.Wilson, Sally Fitt, Karen Clippinger, Kitty Daniels, and Ginny Wilmerding. IADMS has created an international community in which dance scientists interact with dance teachers to share investigations and findings that improve the health, well-being, training, and performance longevity of dancers throughout the world.

William (Bill) Evans

William (Bill) Evans, MFA, CMA, has woven his work as a professional choreographer and performer with a career in dance education. Since 2004 he has served as visiting professor and guest artist in the Department of Dance at the State University of New York at Brockport. Between 1967 and 2004 he was based at four state universities where he worked as both a professor of dance and a professional choreographer and performer: University of Utah, University of Washington, Indiana University and University of New Mexico. He has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, the National Dance Education Organization’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the New Mexico Governor’s Award for Achievement and Excellence in the Arts, the Outstanding Service Award from the National High School Dance Festival, the Dance Teacher Magazine Lifetime Achievement Award and the Scholar/Artist of the Year Award from the National Dance Association. Since 1999, he has conducted the Bill Evans Summer Dance Teachers’ Intensives and Certification Program in the Evans Laban-Based Modern Dance Technique.
Artistic Director, RYUTOPIA Dance Division
Artistic Director, Noism Company Niigata
Choreographer & Dancer

Jo Kanamori is a Theatre Director, Choreographer and Dancer. He is the artistic director of the RYUTOPIA Niigata City Performing Arts Center Dance Division and its residential dance company “Noism Company Niigata”. Moved to Europe by himself when he was 17 years old, and he studied under Maurice Béjart and others. He performed as a member of the Netherlands Dance Theatre II, the Lyon National Opera Ballet in France and the Gothenburg Ballet in Sweden. He made his debut as director and choreographer aged 20, while enrolled at the Nederlands Dans Theater.After ten years of working for several dance companies in Europe, he returned to Japan in 2002, and established “Noism Company Niigata”, Japan’s first residential dance company of a public art center in 2004. His first self-produced project “no-mad-ic project - 7 fragments in memory” was honored with the Third Asahi Performing Arts Awards in 2003. Based on his extensive experiences abroad, he launched various innovative productions for the company and his caliber has been highly acclaimed.He has won many awards including the prestigious Japanese Minister of Education, Culture, Sport, Science and Technology Award, the Niigata Nippo Culture Award and the Mainichi Art Award.

Photographer: Kishin Shinoyama
In the Finnish National Ballet the dancers retire at the age of 45. In order to keep body and mind in good health for such a long career it is of course, in the interest of both employer and dancer to find ways to take the best care possible, of each individual dancer I have followed IADMS with great interest already since the time I was a dancer and today as a director I am happy that the organization is so well established and supportive to all the ballet healthcare teams around the world. It is a fantastic network and both the FNB team and I are happy to be part of it!

Madeleine Onne

Madeleine Onne is the Artistic Director of the Finnish National Ballet in Helsinki where we recently held our annual IADMS conference. We have been following her! Our conference was held in Houston in 2016 after she was Director of The Houston Ballet Academy, in Hong Kong in 2015 where she was Director of Hong Kong Ballet.

Madeleine was a principal dancer with the Royal Swedish Ballet and had an international dance career. She became Artistic Director in Stockholm, supporting our IADMS conference there in 2005.

Now in Helsinki she continues her artistic career guiding the company and is supported by the excellent Dance Health Finland. Ms Onne is an inspiring example of an Artistic Director who demonstrates her belief in our organization.
CLEO PARKER ROBINSON is Founder and Artistic Director of the 51-year-old Denver based CLEO PARKER ROBINSON DANCE. As a master teacher/choreographer and cultural ambassador to both the national and international community, she oversees the world-renowned Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble, as well as Cleo II (her 2nd Company), a Youth Ensemble, an Academy of Dance, an International Summer Dance Institute, a 240-seat theatre and a diversity of educational and community outreach programs. Cleo is the recipient of a myriad of honors and awards from civic, community, and artistic organizations world-wide, as she and her Ensemble continuously provide performances, workshops, commissioned works, master classes, and community programming and engagement. Her philosophy of “One Spirit, Many Voices” is reflected in all that she does and is the vision she and her organization share everywhere they go.

To become an Honorary Member of the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science is so significant to me, particularly at a time in our history when the need for the healing and strength that the arts bring to communities world-wide is more evident than ever. I've often said that "Dance is just life.... out loud!" It is my fervent hope that we ALL continue moving ever forward in a spirit of Peace, Love, and Respect! Many steps, one dance!
"Having faced many challenges in my career as a dancer, it is a pleasure and honour to acknowledge those that have been at my side so often. Multiple injuries, including some very serious ones, have enabled me to learn throughout each recovery process, enhancing my self-awareness and of the challenges facing all dancers. I have learnt being a professional dancer not only requires one to be an outstanding artist, but a perfectly trained athlete. Combining strength and conditioning training to my usual ballet training has allowed me to become injury-free and to push my body to levels that I never thought achievable when I was just taking class and rehearsing every day. Beyond a sense of power, this newly gained knowledge has allowed me to explore my artistic self to a far greater level. Discovering how free an artist can be once you’ve mastered your tool—the dancer’s body—is profoundly empowering.

"A big thanks to the members of IADMS. All their research, skills, and dedication helps dance evolve into a greater art form with greater dancers. Thank you!"


Maude Sabourin
Soloist, Les Grands Ballets

A native of Montreal, Maude trained at the Ecole supérieure de ballet du Québec before joining the Jeune Ballet du Québec, followed by the Ballets de Monte-Carlo. Rising through the ranks to principal dancer, she performed leading roles in works by choreographers such as Jiri Kylian, William Forsythe, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Maria Chouinard, Marco Goecke, Johan Inger, Pontus Lideberg amongst others. Though, perhaps most influential during this period were the encouragement and works of director Jean-Christophe Maillot, particularly being entrusted with changing the gender of the role, Carabosse in La Belle and ultimately his creation of the piece “Presque Rien” on her with Christian Tworzyanski in 2015.

Her unwavering commitment to her Art, however, was not without inevitable challenges. She suffered several serious injuries, including one to her spine, which almost ended her career. Instead of being defeated, these challenges provided Maude opportunities to question her practice, trying not only to resolve the problem but champion the causes. Due to her spirit, courage and tenacity she has always looked for better ways to do things, allowing her weaknesses to become her strengths, and as such has become a role model for many dancers.

In 2017, she again conquered the odds and married Turkish dancer Melih Mertel, during a period of unrest in Turkey. Despite visas and passports difficulties, they were able to fulfil their dreams, finding a way to live and dance together, back in her native Canada with the Grand Ballets Canadian in Montreal, under the direction of Ivan Cavallari. Recently featured on Canadian Television as the new athletic dancer, Maude exemplifies the need for dancers to be artistic athletes of the highest level. An advocate of many principles exuded by IADMS, we are honored to invite Maude to join us.
Spending one’s life being able to do what one is passionate about is a remarkable gift. Being able to do it as a fully integrated individual who is well-tooled and therefore can make educated choices, is indispensable.

As dancers, the demands placed on our bodies and minds are rigorous and extensive. It is the responsibility of both the dance educator and the dancer to be as informed as possible on what dancer wellness entails. As our understanding of what is healthy is always developing and expanding, it is an organization such as IADMS that keeps the field timely. IADMS is dedicated to continually question, research and share new information. This charge helps a dancer evolve with clarity, confidence and, ultimately, is the support that all dancers deserve.


Risa Steinberg

Risa Steinberg is an active member of the dance community as a performer, teacher, re-constructor of the works of José Limón, and mentor to young, emerging and established choreographers.

A native New Yorker, she studied and graduated from the High School of Performing Arts and The Juilliard School where she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts.

A former principal dancer with the José Limón Dance Company, Bill Cratty Dance Theater, Annabel Gamson, Anna Sokolow’s Player’s Project, Colin Connor, and American Repertory Dance Company of Los Angeles, Ms. Steinberg has also been a guest artist with choreographers including Wally Cardona, Sean Curran, and DanzaHoy of Caracas, Venezuela. Her solo concert, A Celebration of Dance, featured repertory from Isadora Duncan to contemporary choreographers. As a re-constructor of the works of Mr. Limón, Ms. Steinberg has worked with companies and dancers including Nureyev and Friends, Frank Augustyn, and Karen Kain. She has been full time faculty at the Juilliard School since 2004 and held the position of Associate Director of Juilliard Dance from 2009-2016. She was a dance panelist for the New York State Council on the Arts; now sits on the Artists Advisory board for the José Limón Dance Foundation and is on the selection committee of The Bessies. Ms. Steinberg is the Choreographic Advisor and Rehearsal Coach for Brian Brooks Moving Company and Kate Weare Dance Company. She is presently a cast member of the Punchdrunk production, Sleep No More.
The challenges asked of today’s dancers by directors and choreographers alike are truly great. In demanding excellence of performance we must achieve it in the studio first, and that requires healthy bodies and minds every single day. Dancers need support on all levels to be one hundred percent fit and happy. A fit body allows for technically brilliant performance and a happy and grounded mind allows for a generous and thoughtful interpretation.

Christopher Wheeldon is a former dancer with the Royal Ballet and New York City Ballet. He finished his dance career in 2000 to concentrate on choreography. His work is in great demand, and he has created a large and varied body of contemporary ballet for New York City Ballet and for an impressive roster of companies around the world.

Featured Members

Yosvani Ramos was born in Camagüey, Cuba and trained at the National Ballet School. In 1998, he went on to dance with Jeune Ballet de France and Ballet de l'Opéra National de Paris. He joined English National Ballet as a Soloist in 1999 and was promoted to Senior Soloist in 2000, then Principal dancer in 2003 after his performance as Franz in Coppélia. He danced with ENB until 2008, when he joined The Australian Ballet as a Principal Artist, where he remained until April 2013. He spent several months guesting then joined the Cincinnati Ballet as Principal Dancer in 2014. Yosvani joined Colorado Ballet in 2015 as a Principal Dancer. He has danced the lead roles in most ballets from the classical repertoire.

Since the age of ten when I started dancing in my native Cuba I’ve been in love with the art form that is ballet. I’ve always strive to be the best I could possibly be, pushing myself every day. Injuries of course are a big part of what we do and with each injury you learn something new about yourself and your body. In the last five years I’ve had three different surgeries but this has in my opinion made more resilient and driven. I’ve approached each surgery as a fresh start and another learning curve physically and mentally. I feel I’ve come out stronger every time and more grateful for what I do. I also hope that my experiences can help other dancers going through injuries.
Featured Dancer
Bgirl Narumi is a pioneer of the worldwide Bgirl scene and has won more than 50 international competitions for over 10 years. She has been active internationally under the theme of ”keep challenging towards goals and dreams”. She was born and raised in Kyoto and is one of the best known in the breaking culture, leading the renowned crew in Japan - Body Carnival. She is an inspiration to women with her physical ability and technique that have brought her to the forefront of the scene. Although her focus has been on battle, she is also an instructor and performer as well as an international judge.

Her passion is not only in the street scene but is in various fields collaborating with artists of different genres. She is also known for her volunteer work in care facilities, hospitals and schools. She was featured on NHK's documentary "Break Through" in Japan and Narumi will continue to challenge and inspire the dance community with her particular style, philosophy and dynamic moves.
In 2006, while a college student, I suffered a spinal stroke which paralyzed me from the neck down. 2 months later, I walked out of the hospital, but was still “paralyzed” on the inside. The stroke triggered years of trauma from racism, body shaming, rejection as a ballet dancer, and sexual assault from a dance teacher who did not believe in me. In 2010, I returned to dancing through discovering ballroom dancing, and in 2012, I moved to Los Angeles to have a fresh start to my dance career. But I found myself again not fitting the box of the “Hollywood dancer”. These life experiences of continuously feeling like the “other”, eventually led me to create Infinite Flow, a professional dance company composed of dancers with and without disabilities with a mission to promote inclusion, in 2015. Dance is a universal language. Dance doesn’t discriminate™, and as a dancer specializing in partner dancing, one thing I have experienced over, is that when you are dancing with someone, you see beyond race, color, size, age, gender, sexual orientation, and disability. I envision a world without boxes, where every individual enjoys a sense of belonging and is celebrated for their unique qualities.

Named 1 of 13 People Magazine “Women Changing the World 2021” and 1 of 9 women leaders “reimagining sport" for the adidas International Women's Day Campaign 2020, Marisa Hamamoto is a stroke survivor, speaker, ballroom & salsa dancer, proud 4th generation Japanese American, and founder of Infinite Flow, a nonprofit based in Los Angeles and award-winning professional dance company composed of dancers with and without disabilities using dance to dismantle biases, promote inclusion, and celebrate intersectionality. Marisa served 2006-2010 as IADMS Student Co-Chair while an undergraduate student and graduate student at Keio University (Tokyo, Japan) with a research focus on biomenics in ballet.