Articulate Austin


about the choreographers


Rebecca Mclindon blanchard

Rebecca McLindon Blanchard, a native of Baton Rouge, LA, is a dancer, teacher and choreographer whose career has been shaped by a commitment to excellence and an endless fascination with dance and the body. She studied at Marymount Manhattan College in NYC where she danced with MMC’s Dance Company and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and a Minor in Business. 

After graduation, Rebecca moved to Chicago to dance with Giordano II.  She quickly fell in love with the beautiful, dance-filled city and became recognized for her grounded, dynamic and physical approach to contemporary movement which led to her dancing for Chicago Repertory Ballet, LEVELdance, Dance In the Parks, Pursuit Productions, Jaxon Movement Arts, Cocodaco Dance Project, New Dances, Dance Chance and apprenticing for River North Dance Chicago.  Rebecca spent two years in Michigan where she danced with the esteemed Eisenhower Dance Detroit and performed the principle role in Michigan Opera Theater’s production of The Pearl Fishers. 

Rebecca has proudly trained technically sound dancers who are passionate movers, curious thinkers, creative problem solvers and effective members of society, many who have gone on to study at The Julliard School, Marymount Manhattan College, Point Park University, University of the Arts, Western Michigan University, Indiana University, Grand Valley State University, Oakland University, Ohio State University, and University of Illinois. She has also taught master classes for and set choreography on many youth companies, high schools and universities across the country, including Hope College, Oakland Dance Theater and Western Illinois University.  She has presented work with Chicago’s Still Inspired for the past three years and was invited to show work in Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival.  

Recently, Rebecca relocated to Austin, TX with her wonderful husband and most amazing little girl and is excited to share and grow with the Austin dance community.

kari schackmann

KARI SCHACKMANN, a native of North Texas, embraced dance with a passion from a young age and has taken inspiration from several people and places on her journey thus far. Since attending Virginia Commonwealth University in 2014, she has had the opportunity to perform in works by guest artist André M. Zachery, VCU faculty Melanie Richards, as well as several student choreographed works. In June of 2016, Ms. Schackmann had the opportunity to perform at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts at the ACDA National College Dance Festival, in a work titled Amid by her colleague, now fellow alumna, Kara Robertson. In the spring of 2017, Kari had the opportunity to study abroad in Paris, France, taking classes with Wanjiru Kamuyu and Michael Foley, with excursions to other European countries to learn from world-renowned choreographers Maurice Causey, Nathalie Pubellier, Heidi Weiss, and Nadine Beaulieu. She attended the American Dance Festival in the summer of 2017, taking classes from Nia Love and Elizabeth Corbett, while performing in a work titled Hunting the Chicken by International Choreographer in Residence, Kornkarn Rungsawang. In her undergraduate career, Kari has been fortunate enough to formally present her own choreography at VCU, including Marionette Realityassist., and Penumbra, as well as several informal presentations of work in progress, such as Tuesday.

about the dancers

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Jackie Courchene

Jackie was born and raised in Kingwood, TX where she began her dance training at Rowland/Ballards school of ballet. From 2008 to her high school graduation in 2012, Jackie trained with the Kingwood Dance Theatre — a pre-professional ballet company — and attended annual Regional Dance America Festivals. Through her performance, choreographic, and teaching opportunities with Kingwood Dance Theatre, Jackie’s love for dance truly blossomed. She continued her education at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York where she graduated with Honors in Dance and Business Management in May 2016. During the school year at Skidmore, Jackie was able to fine tune and enrich her choreography skills with many creative opportunities from collaborating with professors/peers and creating choreographic projects of her own. She has danced for and trained with choreographers such as Xan Burley and Alex Springer, Earl Mosely, Matt Pardo, Ruben Graciani, Christy Williams, and Erika Pujic. During her summers in Saratoga Springs, Jackie performed for Saratoga Summer Arts Festival and had opportunities to train with dance companies doing residencies in Saratoga Springs such as Martha Graham Dance Company, Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, and Doug Varone and Dancers. As a recent college graduate, she has danced in festivals from New York City to Los Angeles, and continues to produce choreographic works for a variety of performances and site specific venues. In 2017 Jackie was awarded the San Antonio Dance Umbrella’s “Emerging Artist” Scholarship. She teaches at a variety different dance studios in the San Antonio and Austin areas, and produces original choreographic works for performances at pre-professional level dance companies in the San Antonio, Austin, and Houston areas.

Natasha Small

Originally from Salisbury, North Carolina, Natasha Small graduated with a B.A. in Dance Studies from Appalachian State University. She currently serves as the Undergraduate Admissions Coordinator for the Department of Theatre and Dance at The University of Texas at Austin. In the Fall of 2017, Natasha worked alongside her colleague, Liliana Zapatero, to establish their dance company, ZATERO Dance. ZATERO Dance had their premiere debut as an opening act for the production of The Madres, produced by Shrewd Productions in Austin, Texas. She has performed locally with Circuitous Dance/Kate Warren, Austin Shakespeare, and Dance Waterloo. Natasha is also a Wish Granter for Make-A-Wish Central and South Texas.

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Liliana Zapatero

Liliana Zapatero is a Huntsville, Texas native with her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance and Minor in General Business from Sam Houston State University. While at SHSU she performed locally and professionally, presented original choreography, and gained extensive production experience. Since moving to Austin Liliana performed for two seasons with Circuitous Dance under the direction of Kate Warren, and is the co-founder of ZATERO Dance, a dance company established in fall of 2017 with her colleague Natasha Small. ZATERO Dance has had the honor to have their debut be the opening act of The Madres on its rolling world premiere produced by Shrewd Productions. Liliana’s background also includes attending Dance Italia, a three-week program in Lucca, Italy featuring Gaga technique and Ohad Naharin Repertory, along with Flying low, Countertechnique, Contemporary, and Ballet classes in the summer of 2016. For seven years she trained in Folkórico dance and eight years of competitive drill team. She is currently the new Visitor Liaison for The University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Theatre and Dance.