Stephen Clapp
Executive Director
stephen @

Stephen Clapp is a cultural strategist and change agent who maintains a professional creative practice as Co-Artistic Director for Dance Box Theater with Laura Schandelmeier, and has been serving as Executive Director for Dance Metro DC since 2012. His work is mission driven with a passion for exploration at the intersections of the performing arts, social justice and service to the field of dance. Clapp has engaged with communities of children, adults, seniors, artists, organizers and veterans with arts-integration strategies that foster self-determination, innovative thinking, equitable communication structures and community empowerment. He is a voting member of Alternate ROOTS and has facilitated arts-based cultural equity trainings nationally. Clapp earned a Master of Fine Arts degree at the George Washington University in dance performance and choreography after receiving a full university fellowship. His current work includes an exploration of movement-based anti-oppression experiences, music composition for dance, and strategic consulting for individuals and organizations in the arts. He has toured nationally and internationally with Dance Box Theater, ClancyWorks Dance Company, CatScratch Theater, and was a founding member of the Boston-based ensemble, The Other Theater. Clapp believes that the creative sector is uniquely positioned to foster and model innovation that can transform communities towards lasting and positive social change.

Clapp understands the necessity for arts professionals to take on many roles in order to achieve personal and community goals. His experiences with entrepreneurship and stewardship in the arts have brought him to hold multiple responsibilities that span choreography, fundraising, marketing and communications, personnel management, relational development, strategic planning, program development and implementation, board relations, management consulting, contract negotiations, presenting and performance.


Michelle Hayes
Program Manager
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Michelle Hayes is the program manager for Dance Metro DC and a company member of UpRooted Dance Company. She is a dancer, choreographer, teacher and arts administrator in the DMV area. Michelle started dancing at a young age and continued to study at Keene State College graduating with a BA in Theatre and Dance with a concentration in Performance and Choreography. She choreographed and presented “It has to Happen” in the An Evening of Dance and the Academic Excellence Conference while at Keene State College.

After graduating she moved to Washington, DC to start a year long internship at Dance Place for  the Kids on the Move Youth Programs intern from May 2014-May 2015. During that time at Dance Place she managed all the kids classes, including payments, registration, and assisting in many of the classes. She has also interned with the American Dance Festival. She has taught various genres of dance at different studios. Currently she teaches ballet at Imagination Stage and jazz and ballet at La Zooz. Since graduation she has performed as a guest artist for Jody Oberfelder, darlingdance, ClancyWorks, Next Reflex Dance Collective and choreographed for Fieldwork.


Program Specialists:

Lisa Traiger
Director, 2018 Dance Journalism Project