Elena Comendador joined the ballet faculty of Marymount Manhattan College’s Dance Department as an adjunct professor in 1998 and was awarded the Teacher Recognition Award in 2008.
Prior to joining the Dance Department, Ms. Comendador was on the ballet faculty of The Ailey School. Appointed as Co-Director of the Junior Division Program from 1996-2001, she continued to serve as a faculty advisor for the Certificate Program and assisted in recruitment activities for the School. She consistently received recognition from The National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts for her excellence in teaching dance in the high school level from 1996-2004.
Besides teaching ballet, Ms. Comendador is an interdisciplinary artist. An established costume designer for dance, she has designed for Ailey II, Colorado Ballet, Complexions, Connecticut Ballet, Montgomery Ballet, ABT II, Philadanco, The Limon Dance Company, Morphoses and various solo artists. She was also a teaching artist in costume design for American Ballet Theater’s Make a Ballet Program. Politically active, Ms. Comendador co-founded DanceLife Productions, a non-profit organization devoted to breast cancer awareness and advocacy through the arts.
Ms. Comendador trained in both classical ballet and Horton technique. She began her professional dance career at the age of 16, performing with Dayton Ballet, Hartford Ballet, The Feld Ballet, Joyce Trisler Danscompany, Alabama/Ballet South and Connecticut Ballet. Her musical theater credits include The King and I for Papermill Playhouse and Maine State Music Theater, Funny Feet, An Off-Broadway Musical at the Lamb’s Theater and Brigadoon for New England Lyric Operetta.
Ms. Comendador completed her BA degree in Women’s Studies at Columbia University’s School of General Studies, and her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College.
- Jaqi Medlock ‘07
Assistant Professor of Dance
BA, Women’s Studies, Columbia University, School of General Studies
MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts, Goddard College, VT