Dr. Schaffer and Mr. Stern Company Members
Dr. Karl Schaffer
Karl Schaffer has co-directed the Dr. Schaffer and Mr. Stern Dance Ensemble for the past 20 years. He and co-director Erik Stern have toured throughout North America performing at such venues as the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Annenberg Center in Philadelphia, and the Mondavi Center in Davis, and most recently in New York and Hawaii. In 2005 they were named to the artist roster of the Kennedy Center’s Partners in Education, which sponsors arts workshops at many of the largest performing arts centers in the United States. Schaffer and Stern have received five National Endowment for the Arts Access to the Arts awards for their cross-disciplinary performance work linking dance and mathematics. The latest grant will fund an extended choreographic residency by Schaffer and Stern in Puerto Rico in 2009.
Schaffer also directs several Santa Cruz based touring shows about dance and mathematics; the group has performed in Santa Barbara, Monterey, and Marin recently, and is part of the Spectra Arts in the Schools program. Schaffer was an artist-in-residence at the Mello Center for the Performing Arts in Watsonville for 2004-2005. He has been keynote presenter on integrating dance and mathematics at numerous conferences on the arts, mathematics, and math education throughout North America. He teaches mathematics at De Anza College, and teaches dance as an independent artist.
Mr. Erik Stern
Erik Stern holds a B.A. in Biology from UC Santa Cruz and an M.F.A. in Dance from Cal Arts. His professional work as a musician, composer and actor is interwoven in his dances, and has led to collaborations with educational organizations, mathematicians, choirs, civic organizations, school systems, and dozens of artists. Erik toured with Tandy Beal and Company over a period of ten years and has performed with Patri Nader’s Ballet de España. Professor of Dance at Weber State University, Stern was ‘Endowed Artist’ for the College of Arts and Humanities from 1999-2002. In 2002, his duet, Table of Content, was selected and performed at the Kennedy Center as part of the National American College Dance Festival. In 1985 Stern created with Karl Schaffer the Dr. Schaffer and Mr. Stern Dance Ensemble. The ensemble has created eleven evening-length concerts, received over thirty grants, including five from the National Endowment for the Arts and toured throughout North America. On the roster of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Partners In Education program, they tour nationally to share their expertise on how to bring dance into the classrooms and connect it with mathematics curriculum. In 2003, he produced Muscle Memories as part of RDT’s LINK Series, and in 2006 Stern staged, directed and performed in Navigating Lake Bonneville, an original work by Utah Poet Laureate Ken Brewer and composer/guitarist Brad Richter. During summer 2006, Stern was at Appelboom, a resident artists’ program in rural France, during which he finalized aspects of Demolition Derby and worked on other projects with Brad Richter. (www.sternworks.org)
Monsieur Gregg Lizenbery
Gregg Lizenbery is widely recognized as one of the nation's leading performing artists in contemporary dance and as a master educator in Laban Movement Analysis. After attending the University of Utah, he became a principal dancer with the original Utah Repertory Dance Theatre (1967-75), appearing in choreography by José Limón, Anna Sokolow, Donald McKayle, Paul Sanasardo, John Butler, Glen Tetley, Matt Mattox, Viola Farber, Ethel Winter, Doris Humphrey, and Jennifer Muller. In 1975 he co-founded the Bill Evans Dance Company and was co-Director and principal dancer until 1981.
As a master teacher, Lizenbery was part of the National Endowment for the Arts-in-Education Program from 1976 through 1982. He received Certification in Laban Movement Analysis (CMA) in 1982 and has been in demand nationwide for his unique and lively application of LMA to performing techniques. As a Guest Artist/Educator, he has taught at the José Limón Studio in New York and at numerous universities, including Harvard, Duke, University of California campuses, Arizona State, University of Illinois, Ohio State, Western Michigan University, Texas Women's University, Columbia College Dance Center, and Stanford University, and was in residence at the National Theater of Taiwan.
Choreographic works by Lizenbery have been performed by companies across the country. His nineteen-year collaboration with Dr. Schaffer and Mr. Stern Dance Ensemble led to two evening-length concerts. Thunderous reviews for this company applaud the dance-theatre works for their witty and wry comments on society.
During his extensive performing career Lizenbery has also been Guest Artist with the Winnipeg Contemporary Dancers, Cliff Keuter’s NewDance, and Tandy Beal Dance Company, and he has appeared in the national broadcast of the PBS program VOICE/DANCE, with Bobby McFerrin. His solo concert, MEN DANCING, is a retrospective of men in American dance, and it has toured nationally and internationally. Dancing Men of the 20th Century, a video documentary based on the solo concert, was broadcast on PBS in July 2000, and is available for educational distribution.
Extensive research on the eight choreographers represented in his concert led to several grants from the National Endowment for the Arts to create an hour-long documentary on the life and works of Donald McKayle. His craft and artistry have touched every venue for dance from television and film to Broadway and the concert stage. Donald McKayle: Heartbeats of a DanceMaker was broadcast nationally on PBS in February 2004, and is available for distribution through Dance Horizons.
Gregg Lizenbery was elected as a board member (2004-06) of the American College Dance Festival Association and presented the keynote address at the 2004 Utah Dance Educators Organization; he was elected Vice President of the Council of Dance Administrators (2006-2007) and President (2007-2010); he was designated the 1987 Visiting Scholar to Western Michigan University, and is a permanent member of the Distinguished Artists Forum for the California State University system. The Hawai‘i State Dance Council recognized him with the 1999 Excellence in Performance Award. He is currently a Professor, Director and Graduate Chair of the dance program, and Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. (www.hawaii.edu/theatre/)
What I do
Since 1990 I have been a full-time independent designer of visual puzzles and games for the web, computer games, magazines and toys. My puzzles are in the spirit of Tetris and M.C. Escher — visually stimulating, thought provoking, broadly appealing, and highly original. I have created hundreds of puzzles for magazines, and thousands for computer games. I am especially interested in daily, weekly and monthly puzzles for the web and portable devices.
How I work
I start by understanding your business goals and practical concerns. Who is your audience? What result should your game accomplish? What are your budget and technical constraints?
I then produce mockups of several possible games. Once we have chosen a direction, I write a detailed game design document specifying how the game is to be built. I can work either with your in-house production staff, or provide complete production services through my network of associates. Sometimes I build games from scratch; often it is easier and less expensive to customize one of my existing games.
Throughout the production process I work closely with programmers and artists to monitor progress and resolve questions. I participate in testing sessions. For web games, I participate in ongoing fine-tuning and maintenance.
My background includes work in graphic design, user interface design, programming and mathematics education. My colleagues include leading puzzle designers around the world, computer puzzle game designers, and mathematics educators. I talk frequently at game design and mathematics education conferences. I have written two books: Inversions, and The NewMedia Puzzle Workout. I have a BA in music and a PhD in Computers and Graphic Design from Stanford University. (www.scottkim.com)