clarissa k. ko works in generous collaboration with other artists.

2017-2018 Collaborators:

Jazlynn G. Eugenio Pastor

Jazlynn G. Eugenio Pastor is a student at the University of San Francisco (USF) majoring in Communication Studies and double minoring in the Yuchengco Philippine Studies Program (YPSP) and Asian Pacific American Studies Minor. Born in Alhambra, California, the most she knew of her Philippine culture was what her family taught her. Lacking resources that celebrated her Pinayism, she felt disconnected from her roots. She expressed these feelings through poetry and competitive Hip Hop. She moved to San Francisco in 2014 and was introduced to the Filipino community through USF Kasamahan. Because of its Dance Troupe, its annual cultural production, Barrio Fiesta, and YPSP’s courses, Jazlynn gave into her passion for the performing arts. She is currently Kasamahan’s Cultural Director, an Asian Art Museum Intern, and a member of Parangal Dance Company. She continues to be a Pinay in the arts in hopes to one day bring her experiences to higher education curriculum.

Joyce Lien Kushner is second generation Taiwanese, born and raised in Southern California. Having dreamed of being a dancer since she was little, her mother eventually enrolled her in tap at a local community center. Ballet and jazz eventually followed. In high school, Joyce studied with visiting dance professor Elizabeth Bergmann, introducing her to Graham and Limon. Ms. Bergmann hand-picked Joyce to join her student dance company. Joyce was a leader of her school dance team and served as dance teaching assistant. Joyce Lien Kushner
Kathleen Moore

Kathleen Moore has performed as a dancer since 1978 in genres and forms that include modern/contemporary, Butoh, historical African American, ballroom and swing.  Kathleen performed for fourteen years as a founding member of Oblong Rhonda and TRANSIT Dance Companies.  She has also appeared in work choreographed by Lenwood Sloan, Pearl Ubungen, Emily Keeler, Sonsheree Giles, Jennifer Minore and Donna Bias.  Kathleen has worked under the direction of D.C. Spensley in San Francisco and Mama Lu Parks in New York.  For the past seven years, Kathleen has been a member of USF’s intergenerational company, the Dance Generators where she has been directed by Natalie Greene, Kristen Greco and Krista De Nio.  Through the relationships she has formed in the DG’s she has been honored to appear in work choreographed by Clarissa Ko, Sienna Williams, and Lara D’Emilio. Kathleen has been the Administrative Coordinator of the San Francisco Arts Education Project since 1994.   Kathleen would like to thank and acknowledge her teachers Tony Wing, Carole Geneve, John Pasqualetti, Larry Burgoon, Kahz Zamuda and Alan Scofield.

 Malia Byrne holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Peace and Conflict Studies with a Dance minor from Chapman University. She is interested in the ways in which those studies intersect, and creating work that examines those connections and parallels. Since moving to San Francisco in 2016, she has had the pleasure of working and performing with many artists and friends in the area. She currently works as an artist facilitator for Skywatchers under the direction of Anne Bluethenthal, and as an apprentice for Kristin Damrow & Company.  Malia Byrne

Melissa Lewis

Photo by Robbie Sweeny, detour dance in BECKON

Melissa Lewis moved from Massachusetts in 2010 to study in the Performing Arts & Social Justice – Dance Program at the University of San Francisco. Since then she has visited her 105y/o Chinese grandmother weekly, made coffee to support dancing professionally, and found a personal film photography practice. She is a company member of detour dance — is also excited to work with Arletta Anderson / Adam Smith — and has a short dance film (titled ‘pretty clean’) to premiere next year. the sardine is her most recent project. visiting


Nina Wu is a learning game designer by day with a serious side hustle in dance. In addition to Five Feet Dance, you can find her dancing with Mix’d Ingrdnts, Sarah Bush Dance Project, and Duniya Dance and Drum Company, as well as creative collaborations with ragbag. Nina studied Math, Visual Art, and Education at Duke University. Her pursuit for adventure took her from teaching 4th grade, to working in an NYC art gallery, to now designing math games, dancing all the while. ( Nina Wu

2016-2017 Collaborators:

  • Charlotte Baldiviez
  • Emily Hansel
  • Kathleen Moore
  • Kuan Hsuan Lee
  • Lara D’Emilio
  • Maddy Lawder
  • Melissa Mancini
  • Nyla Leonardi
  • Sienna Williams