Instructor Laura Ann Smyth earned her B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Dance from The University of Calgary and received a Journalism Certificate from Mount Royal University. After relocating to the United States from Canada to earn her MFA in Dance from the University of California, Irvine, Smyth performed with Regina Klenjoski Dance Company and went on to become a member of Donna Sternberg and Dancers as well as JazzAntiqua Dance and Music Ensemble and Brockus:RED. Smyth is currently a Doctoral Student in Dance Studies at Texas Woman's University where her research is centered on the intersection of embodied rhetoric, Black radical thought and dance forms of the African Diaspora, specifically jazz-informed movement practices.
Passionate about the preservation of jazz dance and its role in the academy, Smyth has presented at the International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference, The World Dance Alliance Conference (WDA) and the National Dance Education Organization Conference (NDEO) addressing these topics. After spending three years as an Assistant Professor of Dance at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, WA, Smyth is overjoyed to be returning to Southern California. Smyth, still actively engaged in her own performance career, loves seeking out and creating projects that blur the antiquated boundaries between concert and commercial dance. Smyth holds a Simonson Method Teaching Training Certification (SMTT) and has been a Pure Barre Boutique fitness instructor for eight years.