B I O
Photo by Cathryn Farnsworth
Jackie Kopcsak is a founding faculty member, Associate Professor of Practice and as of Fall 2020, the Assistant Dean of Faculty at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance. An artist and a scholar, Jackie currently teaches ballet technique, pointe, variations and repertory as well as dance appreciation, history and colloquium courses in the academic classroom. She also co-developed USC Kaufman’s first study-abroad program and taught the course in Paris for three years. She holds an M.F.A. in Dance from the University of California, Irvine and a B.A in History from the University of Washington, Seattle.
Jackie is an active choreographer and co-director of the interdisciplinary dance company ArtistsPlus Productions. Seeking to fuse dance, live music and the visual arts, the company frequently collaborates with orchestras and art museums. Past commissions have included works for the American Youth Symphony, Angeles Chorale, Bel Canto Chorale, LA Art Show, LACMA, MUSE/IQUE Symphony Orchestra and the Norton Simon Museum. ArtistsPlus embarked on its first international tour to Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina as part of Music & More SummerFest in 2019. Jackie has also choreographed for the Colburn School of Performing Arts, Evergreen City Ballet, Inland Pacific Ballet, Pasadena Civic Ballet, Pacific Symphony, San Marino Unified School District, the Washington Academy of Performing Arts and the University of California, Irvine.
Jackie received her dance training in Seattle at Pacific Northwest Ballet, where she performed in many great works by choreographers George Balanchine and Kent Stowell. She has also been a guest principal dancer for Ballet Bellevue and Wade Walthall’s Evergreen City Ballet. Her theatrical experience includes performing in several musicals as well as working behind-the-scenes as the Special Event Coordinator, Company Manager and Assistant to the Producing Director at Pasadena Playhouse, State Theatre of California
"Unafraid of being labeled a “populist,” I believe ballet can break free of its elitist and oft-times authoritarian shackles to be an inclusive, accessible and joyous experience both in the classroom and on the stage. As an educator and dance historian I feel compelled to build a friendly bridge between the classical traditions and contemporary generations, endeavoring to honor my artistic ancestors while remaining true to the pulse of the present. This paradigm has significantly influenced my creative process, resulting in choreography that embraces the elegance and sophistication of ballet’s illustrious past to produce fun and highly theatrical work intent on educating and entertaining today’s audiences. - JK"