The Artistic Director
Alia Simon Montijo earned her BFA from The Ohio State University and studied with Susan Hadley, Bebe Miller, and Ming-Lung Yang of Trisha Brown Dance Company. While in college, Alia received scholarship to the American Dance Festival summer and winter intensives and performed with award-winning choreographers, David Dorfman, John Jasperse and Neta Pulvermacher. Prior to her collegiate career, Alia attended the Broadway Dance Center Summer intensive and trained with Dorrit Koppell, Sheila Barker, and many other experts. She will continue her professional studies curtesy of an esteemed Career Development Grant from the American Association of University Women beginning June, 2018 as a MFA candidate in choreography at Jacksonville University.
Alia began her professional career with Eisenhower Dance and since has continued her career in Chicago with Inaside Chicago Dance, the Joel Hall Dancers and as a project-based guest-artist with Thodos Dance Chicago. She has worked with acclaimed choreographers, Kenneth Epting, William Gill, Joel Hall, Eddy O’Campo, Elijah Gibson, Laurie Eisenhower, Larry Keigwin, and Kiesha Lalama-White among many others. Alia has participated in projects Stormy Weather Rhapsody, a film by Jesse Charbonier, and installation productions: Wake Up! Waltz, and Hear/Here a collaborative project with Nick Cave, Visual Artist.
From 2015 - 2018, Alia was the Artistic Director of Chicago based company, Noumenon Dance Ensemble (NDE) Under her leadership, NDE became an exclusively female organization, committed to employing women and other minorities as faculty, choreographers, dancers and production staff. Since 2015, Alia has set 5 original works on NDE that have earned recognition from the American College Dance Festival, New York City Dance Week and most recently Spring to Dance in St. Louis and have been showcased at self-produced evening-length dance concerts, Dance Chicago, and other regional dance festivals.
In 2017, Alia established Dance Avondale, a dance school partnered with the Chicago Park District with the mission to provide the highest quality of dance education (available to all students) that is financially accessible and culturally sensitive. Through Dance Avondale, Alia hopes to empower the community through dance by promoting ownership of progress from youth participants, hosting activities and classes that promote family engagement and teach with the purpose of elevating self-perception and appreciation for all its students.
To learn more about Alia, visit her website: www.aliamontijo.com