Aaron M. Wood

Educator/Choreographer/Mixed-Media Designer

Photo Credit: Sydney Edwards

About me

I am a choreographer, educator, dancer, and mixed-media designer. For seven seasons, I danced with Utah’s Repertory Dance Theatre and performed an array of works by modern dance legends including Cunningham, Gotheiner, Ito, Limón, Sokolow, and others. As a freelance dancer, I performed the works of Alwin Nikolais with Ririe Woodbury Dance Company.

My choreographic voice is wide-ranging, and my works, including over 30 original pieces and 5 evening length concerts, have been performed nationally and internationally, from Salt Lake City to Beijing, China. In 2022 I had the honor of being recognized by the Wyoming Arts Council, and received a Wyoming Arts Council Performing Arts Fellowship award.

My research interests include the intersectionality of gender with social and political landscapes, as explored through the integration of multi-media elements and diverse movement modalities.

Currently, I serve as an Assistant Professor of Dance at the University of Wyoming in the Department of Theatre and Dance.

Artist Statement

- Passionately Fearless -

In my artistic journey, I exist in a perpetual state of growth—a continuous evolution of self-discovery, development, and exploration. Rather than seeking to prove myself, I am committed to improving and expressing my inner truth.

My creative works delve into themes that resonate deeply with me: gender diversity, the objectification of the body, sexual orientation, and self-identity. As a researcher, I explore the intersectionality of gender within social and political landscapes by integrating multimedia elements with diverse movement modalities.

Through various mediums, I strive to provide space and place where communities can connect to their shared humanity. Dance, in particular, provides a sensorial interpretation—a pathway to understanding one another on profound levels. Beyond self-reflection, dance fosters compassion for others, opening minds to diverse perspectives. It connects us not only to our present communities but also to the past and future, much like the timeless human spirit.

Throughout history, dance has served as a vessel for expressing community traditions, significant events, and individual identity. It provides a sense of place, a way to navigate turmoil, and seek clarity. Dance, as primal as storytelling itself, allows me to weave narratives.

When I combine mixed-media with movement, the stories I tell become concentrated in plasmic substance—a fusion of expression and form. I consider myself fortunate to work with dance and mixed-media as my chosen mediums of expression.

As an advocate for human rights and equity, I echo Gandhi’s timeless words:

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Whether in the studio or on stage, I live my life with unwavering passion and fearlessness.

Teaching Philosophy

As a dance educator, I believe in the harmonious fusion of two essential passions: education and dance. These intertwined forces shape my teaching philosophy, guiding me as I navigate the ever-evolving arena of dance education. Three foundational truths that underpin my approach include:

Actively Be: I encourage students to fully engage with their learning journey. By being present, curious, and open-minded, they are available to absorb the richness of dance and education.

Fuel Curiosity: Curiosity is the spark that ignites true learning. I strive to create an environment where students can bravely explore, question, and seek understanding. Diverse texts, choice-based assignments, and student agency all contribute to this process.

Serve as a Positive Mentor: As an educator, I wholeheartedly embrace my role as a mentor. Guiding students toward growth, self-expression, and confidence is at the core of my teaching philosophy.

Photo Credit: Sydney Edwards

Photo from the production: Life/AFTER\Dark

Actively Be:

As I stand before a group of students I strive to be actively present in our communications. Listening full heartedly to discussions, observing explorations with an open mind, and celebrating new discoveries are at the forefront to how I approach both my lecture and studio classes. I expect students to work hard and strive for excellence every time they walk into class; this is our laboratory and should be met with respect and honesty. I strive to have a class environment that is warm and inviting to help students invest in their learning, and be proud of the breakthroughs and discoveries they make. The classroom and studio are safe spaces where we openly discuss, share, explore, and unearth our most authentic selves. Respecting and valuing authenticity are at the forefront of my pedagogical value system. I want my students to learn and feel empowered with the truths they discover.

Fueling Curiosity:

Movement, at its core, is change and dance, by its very nature, is progressive. We as educators must be ever so open to progress and development, for the techniques of yesteryears have guided the techniques of today, just as our current movement vocabularies will guide future techniques; my courses echo these thoughts. With my diverse movement background, I strive to combine classical movement concepts with contemporary sensibilities. One of my great joys is taking these assorted technique systems then blending and abstracting them to create a personal movement vocabulary that is dynamically vigorous, spatially distinct, and ever open for nuance.

Fueling curiosity for students without dictating their breakthroughs is a primary goal of my classes. Through the years, I have found that the value of discovery resides within the venture. I want my students to appreciate the processes they go through because it is from these processes where we gain our knowledge, advancements, and truths. I believe in embodying flexibility, for being flexible, in its philosophical form, boils down to opening oneself to spontaneity. Some of my most memorable teaching moments have been when I put my lesson plan aside and witnessed experiences that would have otherwise passed by. I embrace change, progress, and innovation and look forward to my life being enriched by my student’s enthusiasm for this ever-evolving art form.

Positive Mentorship:

It is important to not just be a teacher of a specific subject, but serve as a proactive example of healthy living. Students are perceptive and recognize when teachers do not practice what they advocate. I believe that a strong teacher should accept all of their weaknesses and strengths; this is not to inflate the ego, but rather to be used as a channel of growth. By seeing the paradoxes within myself, I am more apt to seeing the paradoxes within my students. I am a student as much as I am a teacher. I always bear in mind that I can have a profound influence on my students, just as they will have on me.

I believe it is an honor to teach.


- Full evening -

- click on titles above to see work samples -

Photo Credit: Sydney Edwards

Photos from the production: Life/AFTER\Dark


- Select works -

The making of me

(2023 acda national festival performance)

The Genius of the Crowd

(2017 ACDA Northwest Regional Conference)

The Other Echoes

Echoing Terrain of Solitude

Our molten lives

Photo Credit: Cory Gavin

Photos from the production: The Yellow Wallpaper

Page in update mode

Photo Credit: Sydney Edwards

Photo from the production: Life/AFTER\Dark

Photo Credit: Cory Gavin

Photos from the production: The Yellow Wallpaper

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Assistant Professor of Dance

2022-present, Department of Theatre and Dance

University of Wyoming

Instructor of Dance - tenured

2017-2022, Department of Theatre and Dance

Casper College

Assistant Professor of Dance/Program Director

2016-2017, Department of Theatre and Dance

Idaho State University

Assistant Lecturer of Dance

2014-2016, Department of Theatre and Dance

University of Wyoming


MFA Modern Dance

University of Utah

BFA Theatre and Dance - Dance Performance

University of Wyoming

AA Dance Performance

Casper College

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Photo Credit: j.martin media