Andrew Merrell

Andrew Merrell is a queer, thirty something, SF bay-area transplant, having originally spent time in the burb life of SoCal. He holds a BA in Dance from California State University Long Beach and a MFA in Dance C...

Advanced Modern w/SUB


at BANDALOOP Studios (1601 18th Street Oakland, California 94607)

Amplify the tenor of the body through a fierce, focused flow that generates a central heat that radiates energy out our most distal ends. Joints are tended to individually as cells swell with three dimensionality. Hands and feet become interchangeably strong and supple, able to articulate as easily as they anchor. The spine and whole trunk inflate, finding full range of motion while the limbs create grace, extension, scaffolding and balance. Floor-work and inversions are emphasized and connected to sound vertical alignment. Focus on creating an astute, organized and supple body relating to spatial, architectural and human connections in a resilient and playful way. Practice honing patience and pleasure seeking response systems while learning tactics for staying pliant and resourceful. Experiment with instability and risk; explore ways of staying powerfully open and available. Design tone, create rebound, pave the way towards fun, wholeness and triumph. Go out on a limb for the delicious dance. Classes volley between sequential structures and highly devised scores, so as to exercise logic and creativity in equal parts. Class is strongly influenced by yoga, breakdancing, Lewitzky, Graham, contact improvisation, and release.

Driven by the bias Bacchus before Buddha, Bianca Cabrera’s work is built by a vibrant amalgamation of baton twirling, burlesque, ballet, go-go, club, cabaret, camp, contemporary and modern dance. Cabrera directs the Oakland, CA based performance company, Blind Tiger Society, which is her main conduit for choreography and performance creation. Between 2012-22, Bianca created 11 full length works and many more short works, with performances and commissions for The Garage, ODC Theater, ODC Youth Company, CounterPULSE, vîv dance collective, SAFEhouse Arts, the Seattle Inter|National Dance Festival, Links Hall/Midwest Nexus, RAW Concept Series, Ann Schnake/Mobile InTent, Yerba Buena Gardens ChoreoFest, Sheridan College, SweetPea Festival and Kate Mitchell Creative. Cabrera has been awarded artistic residencies from organizations in Seattle, San Francisco, Oakland and Wyoming. Her work was nominated for a 2014 Soul of Oakland award and has been supported through the Fleishhacker and Rainin Foundations. 

Cabrera received early training at the Chicago Academy for the Arts and later studied at the Alvin Ailey School, the Martha Graham Center and Point Park College, before receiving her BFA in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts. Her two decade performing career includes work with many celebrated dance artists and companies including: Lingo Dance/KT Niehoff, Amii LeGendre, Paige Barnes, Kristen Tsiastios, Ricki Mason/Lou Henry Hoover, Kim Epifano, LevyDance, The Fossettes, Sonya Smith, Erika Tsimbrovsky/AvyK, Christine Bonansea, Flyaway Productions and Cielo Vertical Arts. Bianca is a founding member of Latinx Hispanix Danza Unidxs and served on the Isadora Duncan Dance Awards committee in 2019-20. 

Cabrera is dedicated to dance education, having developed her weekly technique classes, master classes and workshops for over 15 years at arts centers, studios and universities across the United States. She has taught at Velocity Dance Center, Western Washington University, Oberlin College, Kenyon College, Ohio State University, Reed College, ODC, Shawl Anderson, Bandaloop, University of Montana, San Diego State University, St. Olaf College, Cornish College, CounterPulse, Berkeley High, CDC (CO) and Contra Costa School for the Performing Arts.