Leadership

“Listen to the music with your whole self. Give that self to it, utterly. Become one with it.
Lose yourself, and then you will dance.”
José Limón

head shot swizColin Connor (Artistic Director), born in London, England, is the fifth Artistic Director in the Foundation’s 70 year history. Mr. Connor began dancing in Canada and was a soloist with the Limón Dance Company for eight years, guest performed with several other companies, and toured extensively with his own work. He has always been committed to the idea that dancers are creative artists and that dancing is the act of drawing from a large range of influences, musical, literary, sensory, social and scientific, to bring attention back to the visceral communicative power of the human body. Mr. Connor’s over fifty choreographic commissions span the worlds of contemporary, ballet and flamenco companies, and his works have been presented at numerous venues across the Americas and Europe. As an educator, Mr. Connor has been on the faculties of The Juilliard School, New York University, and the City College of New York.  For fourteen years he was full-time faculty at the California Institute of the Arts where he served as Director of Student Professional Development.

Carla Maxwell

Carla Maxwell (Legacy Director) joined the Limón Dance Company in 1965. She soon became a principal dancer under Limón’s direction and, in 1975, Assistant Artistic Director under Ruth Currier. Ms. Maxwell was appointed Artistic Director in 1978, and during her tenure, the Company emerged as one of the finest repertory dance ensembles in the world. She received the 1995 Dance Magazine Award and a 1998 New York Dance and Performance (Bessie) Award for finding a creative present in the context of a revered past, and thereby offering choreographic opportunity to multiple generations of artists; for inspired leadership and artistic accomplishment. Acclaimed as a brilliant dramatic dancer, she danced many major roles with the Company, including the title role in Carlota, Limón’s final ballet which he choreographed for her. Ms. Maxwell is responsible for many of the Company’s reconstructions of Limón dances, and as a choreographer, she has created works for the Company and regional companies throughout the U.S. She teaches internationally as both a representative of the Company and a guest artist-in-residence.

Juan Jose Escalante head shotJuan José Escalante (Executive Director), joined the José Limón Dance Foundation in 2013 as Development Director and came to the organization with an impressive nonprofit management background from New York City Ballet, where he worked as an associate director of finance and Miami City Ballet as the development manager and human resources director, and Ballet Florida, where he served as Executive Director from 2001 to 2004. He also led the Orlando Ballet from 2009 to 2011 as their Executive Director. Mr. Escalante holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and a Masters Degree in Global Management. He has chaired the national committee for small and medium companies for DanceUSA, and the Cultural Executive’s Committee for the Palm Beach County Cultural Council. Mr. Escalante was appointed Executive Director of the José Limón Dance Foundation on January 1st, 2014 and currently serves on the Advisory Board of Dance NYC.