Seattle Dance Project’s Artistic Director Timothy Lynch has lived, worked and most of all danced, all over the country. Originally from Mineola, New York, Lynch began dancing for Pacific Northwest Ballet in 1993. In 2001, he became co-director of the company’s Outreach Youth Performing Group and in 2003 was promoted to full-time faculty member at PNB. Lynch graduated with a BFA in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts in 2005 and two years later founded his current endeavor, the non-profit Seattle Dance Project.
“Ever since receiving my BFA in 2005, I knew I wanted to pursue a graduate degree at some point,” says Lynch. “Life happens and trumps what you really want to do. I thought that there must be a way to get my MFA and juggle life, and that is where I found out about UWM’s MFA Dance program.”
Lynch is a member of the Peck School of the Arts’ low residency program, where students are able to earn half of their credits through online and self-directed courses and the rest on campus during the summers. “This program allows me to keep my jobs and support my family as I earn my degree,” he says.
One experience Lynch especially appreciates from the Peck School is the Composition course he took last summer, taught by Simone Ferro. Although he is currently back working in Seattle, Lynch still thinks of his lessons from this class regularly. “I learned many new ways to approach my choreography and also to explore things that I was always afraid of, such as using text and voice,” he says. “Simone was a great mentor who really guided me without telling me what to do.”
After spending seven weeks studying at the Peck School last summer, Lynch is still finding new ways to use what he learned in Milwaukee within his professional life. He has implemented a yoga practice for the teenage boys in his ballet technique class. He has also taught many of his students about the Alexander Technique he learned at the Peck School and has used ideas from his Composition and Improvisation courses in his own choreography.
“Although grad school can be extremely taxing and stressful, it has been the best school experience that I have had,” says Lynch. “What I am loving is that I am pursuing something that I am extremely passionate about and surrounded by colleagues who have the same passion and together we support one another to thrive.”