Maria Blanco is a dancer, choreographer and educator from Bloomfield Hills, MI. She enjoys combining social dance with her modern/contemporary training to push the boundaries of dance, what it means to be a dancer, and who can dance. She is on a constant journey to explore how improvisation can be used as a tool for both dancers and non-movers, changing the narrative of where dance is accessible, and whom it is accessible to. Maria received her B.A. in Dance and Sociology from Loyola University Chicago in May of 2018. In collaboration with Yariana Baralt Torres, she co-founded LOUD BODIES Dance, a non-profit dance organization that combines dance and activism in collaboration with local non-profit and mutual aid organizations. Maria has presented her works at the American College Dance Association, Loyola University Chicago, The Greenhouse Theatre, Links Hall, The Athenaeum Theatre, Hamlin Park Fieldhouse in collaboration with Synapse Arts, Collaboraction’s Peacebook Festival, and Momenta Dance Company. She has performed with Erin Kilmurray’s cast of “Search Party” at the 2019 Pivot Arts Festival, as Graffiti Pete in Visión Latino Theatre Company and Jedlicka Performing Arts’ production of “In the Heights”, The Fly Honey Show, and “Hatorade Retrograde”, a musical by Lise Haller Baggeson. Maria has worked as a teaching artist with Chicago Danztheatre Ensemble and Chicago Public Schools, and currently teaches with The Old Town School of Folk Music, Columbia College Chicago, Northwestern University as a part of the Norris mini-courses program, and Free Mvmt Shop. In 2021, Broadway World nominated her as “Dancer of the Decade” for her role as Graffiti Pete in, “In the Heights”.
Started at the Old Town School in August of 2019