Helen Joy

Adjunct Professor, Dance

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Born and raised in southern England, Helen Joy has been dancing since the age of 3. Their earliest dance training at the Royal Ballet School and local studio helped establish a strong foundation with a focus on ballet, modern, and jazz.They continued their collegiate training at the age of 16 at Central School of Ballet in London where they earned their Bachelor's degree in Professional Dance and Performance in 2009. Helen Joy recently received her MFA in Dance, Creative Practice at Saint Mary’s College of California where they focused on phenomenology, somatics, pedagogy, and dance and social justice. They also received a certification in Lighting Design.Helen Joy’s professional career led them to dance for music videos, fringe musicals, and collaborative projects across the UK. They also worked exclusively as a dancer/singer, aerialist, choreographer/rehearsal director, and production manager for productions on luxury cruise lines.

They moved to Greenville, SC in 2016 and worked as adjunct dance professor at the South Carolina School of the Arts. Here, they led courses for all levels of Ballet, Jazz, and Modern Dance for students working towards their Musical Theatre or Dance Bachelor’s degrees, and created original pieces alongside coaching aspiring choreographers. They regularly collaborate with local theatres either performing, choreographing or creating lighting design.

Helen Joy began at Furman August 2023, and is thrilled to be working with such a well established Theatre Arts department within an institute that centers diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Helen Joy’s varied training experiences guide their varied works along with an expansive interest in modern dance and its somatic components. Their artistic focus is to present the worth of the dancer as a whole human life, all its imperfections, and challenges, as a reflection of their own life and those they collaborate with. Joy is always at the center.