Photography: Emil (EJ) Aban
Emil (EJ) Aban
Emil (EJ) ABAN, has been dancing for 7 years. Prior to beginning dance EJ did TaeKwonDo and picked up musical instruments. He began his dance endeavors at Sheldon High School with Universal Rhythm Dance Co. under the direction of Rebecca Hobgood and Debi Roberts. He has also trained at the Northern California Dance Conservatory, Sac Dance Lab, and Movement Invention Project in NYC. EJ also teaches and choreographs for high school dance companies in the Elk Grove/Sacramento area.
Diandra Bachelor began dancing when she was 5 years old in her hometown of San Luis Obispo, CA at Pacific Dance and Academy of Dance of SLO. Throughout high school, she performed competition jazz with American Dance of SLO and was also a member of the Ballet Theatre of SLO. Diandra moved to San Francisco where she received her B.S. in Kinesiology with a Minor in Dance at San Francisco State University. She was a member of SFSUâ€™s University Dance Theater during her first year. While in the bay area, she took classes at local studios such as ODC School and Lines Dance Center. After recently moving to Sacramento, she discovered Nhan Ho’s contemporary dance classes and is excited to train and grow as a new member of both the Nhan Ho Project’s Movement Choir and the Nhan Ho Project’s Dance Company.
Dana Urban-Cole began dancing at a young age and never stopped. The studio, where she trained as a youth, accepted her onto their competition and performance companies. She was also chosen to be a part of professional performance productions in the bay area (including 49er halftime shows and local tv segments). While living in that area, Dana performed in musical theatre as well (including dancing in the west coast premiere of “Footloose”. After high school, Dana attended Chico State, where she studied media arts and dance. While there, she danced for the college’s dance company as well as for the Chico Community Ballet. After graduating, Dana continued dancing for a couple of professional dance companies in the Chico area. Life took Dana to Sacramento, where she discovered her passion for teaching dancing and choreographing. Unfortunately, Dana suffered from some difficult health complications for a couple of years. Though she continued teaching and choreographing at this time, she needed to take a break from her own physical training. Dana has worked diligently to rehabilitate her body and enjoyed the process of learning more about how to train dancers’ bodies in the most effective and safest way. She got the opportunity, last summer, to start dancing for Pamela Lourentzo’s dance company. Dana is excited to now also be dancing with the Nhan Ho Project.
Lizzy Dyer is a 23 year old dancer and performer living in the Sacramento region. She started off dancing at the age of 10 at KM dance studios. While at KM dance studios she was also attending ballroom classes at Arthur Murray. She then left both studios to train at Northern California Dance Conservatory (NCDC). While attending NCDC I joined the ambassador team and the PHresh Crew hip hop team. Elizabeth has trained in various styles including ballet, contemporary, modern, jazz, and hip hop while also taking workshops and intensive from many professional dancers through out her time at NCDC. She also took private training from Leah Bueno, Alexey Kulpin, Lindsey Renee Derry, and Michael Levine through out her dancing career. Elizabeth has also performed solo work by Nhan Ho. While her training in ballroom dancing Elizabeth has competed in multiple ballroom competitions including International grand ball (IGB),San Francisco Open ballroom competition (SFOpen), and City lights Open. Currently she is apart of the Nhan Ho project dance company and also trains at Sacramento dance center for ballroom dancing with her coach Genya Malko. Elizabeth believes dance is the only thing that can bring everyone together, no matter what race you are, no matter who you love, no matter from where you are, dance is unity!
Sarah Fingerhood has had the good fortune to train with many amazing choreographers and teachers over the past 15 years. She has a certificate in dance from Princeton University where she completed her undergraduate degree in Anthropology. There she trained with and performed in works by Ze’eva Cohen, Rebecca Lazier, Susan Marshall, Tina Fehlandt (Mark Morris), Bill T. Jones, and Zvi Gotheiner (to name a few); during this time she also traveled to Austria and Brazil and participate in the dance communities there. Most recently she traveled to Israel and experienced Gaga technique in the place where it was first developed, which was a life changing experience to say the least. She finds immense joy in the discovery of intuitive movement and hopes to inspire anyone and everyone to share that joy (we are all dancers). By day, she is a veterinarian. This is her first season with the Nhan Ho Project.
Jasen Fong is an actor, dancer, and choreographer currently working within the Sacramento area. He is a graduate of California State University, Sacramento, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre with a minor in Dance and Deaf Studies. Jasen is currently dancing for Nhan Ho Project, Elevate Dance Project, and choreographing for his own company Mochi Powder. He currently teaches modern for Elevate Dance Company while also continuing to grow and explore movement through breaking, modern and ballet. He is extremely humbled and honored to be sharing the stage with such amazing artists.
Kyle Her is a dance performer, choreographer, and artist originally from Sacramento, CA. He spent many years training in various styles under the hip-hop umbrella, with crews and individuals within the Sacramento area. He graduated from Sonoma State University where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts: Dance Concentration and Human Development. After his education and training in modern and contemporary dance at Sonoma State he went on to dance for artists in the San Francisco Bay Area such as Christine Cali (Cali&CO Dance), Scott Wells (Scott Wells & Dancers), Liz Boubion, and Kristen Daley. Kyle is currently in Sacramento teaching dance and performing with Nhan Ho Project.
Linda “Starrie” Le
Linda “Starrie” Le is an artist based in the greater Sacramento Area. Starrie is a dance performer, choreographer, photographer, cosmetologist, and barber. She graduated from Sacramento State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Dance and a Bachelor of Science in Business with a concentration of Entrepreneurship. She also has an Associate’s Degree from Sacramento City College in Cosmetology. Starrie currently dances with Nhan Ho Project and TwoPoint4 Dance Theater. She hopes to expand her movement knowledge with vertical dancing as well as become a more well rounded dancer on the ground.
Becca Newton, originally from Sacramento, CA, is a graduate from CSU Long Beach where she obtained her BFA in dance. Growing up, she trained with a pre-professional dance company under the direction of Jen Bradford where she had the opportunity to perform at venues such as Royan Festival of France, and The Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. She has also received training from educators such as Lillian Barbeito, Sidra Bell, Troy Ogilvie, Drew Jacoby, Theodore Constant, Nhan Ho, Jennifer Backhaus, and more. Becca recently spent a season as a full time Company member with Backhausdance Company, and in 2015, she performed as a guest artist with the LA Contemporary Dance Company. Her choreographic works have been presented in a collaborative show with Backhausdance Company, at the CSULBâ€™s Contemporary Dance Concert, and took first at the Dance Under the Stars Choreography Festival, Palm Desert. She has performed the works of choreographers such as Sidra Bell, LeeWei Chow, Jenny Backhaus, Ben Levy, Jen Bradford, Alex Ketley, Rebecca Lemme, Keith Johnson, Nhan Ho, and more. This is her third season as a company member with the Nhan Ho Project.
Kayden Nyborg began dancing when she was 5-years-old with most of her training through Sacramento Ballet and Northern California Dance Conservatory. She is currently working on her AA at Folsom Lake College. She has danced in roles with Sacramento Ballet’s Nutcracker, Placer Theater Ballet’s Snow White, and Nhan Ho’s Movement Choir. Kayden has also had the opportunity to perform a dance by James Gregg as well as participate in various intensives and workshops. She is thrilled to be joining Nhan Ho’s Project in the upcoming year.
Kristen Sambuca has been dancing for about 11 years. She began dancing at J. Rene Dance Academy and was involved in gymnastics for a few years. She then resumed her hobby of dance in middle school, Sheldon High School’s dance company Universal Rhythm under Rebecca Hobgood & Debi Roberts and continued dancing after high school with The Project Dance Company, CRC dance, Harvest Church’s praise dance team, 6 Players Theatre, Nhan Ho Movement Choir & Nhan Ho Project. Kristen also loves & continues to share her art with high school dance companies and Sacramento dance community. Working with younger students has been a fulfilling journey for her as she discovered the magic and empathy she can bring out of the youth. Alongside dancing, she strives to go into the medical field & become a registered nurse.
Nick Cruz began dancing when he was 14 years old. Nick never really showed an interest in dance until he reached high school where he took his first Jazz Dance class. After taking that class his freshman year of high school, that’s when a new passion ignited inside of him. During his sophomore year of high school, he decided to join Sheldon High School’s dance company, Universal Rhythm, under the instruction of Rebecca Hobgood and Deborah Roberts, where he became a 3rd year member and a student director during his senior year of high school. After graduating high school in 2016, Nick did not do much dancing until he discovered Nhan Ho Project’s Movement Choir in 2018, under the instruction of Nhan Ho, where he participated in its first year. Now, he is currently an apprentice in Nhan Ho Project’s Dance Company to receive further training and learn more about contemporary/modern movement. Nick is currently working two jobs and planning to enroll into college to obtain his degree in Kinesiology to become a chiropractor and open up his own practice.