Photo Credit: Emily Johnson


Artistic Director


A choreographer and teaching artist, Rachel Kantra Beal has been working with Penn Dance since 2004 and continues to guide Penn Dancers in her seventh season as Artistic Director. Rachel has taught throughout the Philadelphia area and is currently on faculty at the University of the Arts, Temple University, Koresh School of Dance and The Gwendolyn Bye Dance Center. From 2006-2013, Rachel was a member of Philadelphia-based modern dance company Dancefusion, where she performed the works of Mary Anthony, Pauline Koner, Anna Solokow and José Limón, among others. Rachel is faculty choreographer for fusion2, a training company for young dancers, where she served as director from 2008-2014. Rachel has also worked with Enchantment Theater Company, creating live theater for children and their families. She has studied at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Koresh School of Dance, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London, and holds a BFA from the University of the Arts. Rachel's studies have taken her as far as Tel Aviv, where she developed English language curricula and taught Israeli school children.


Artistic Director Emeritus

Professor Nancy Kantra is Coordinator of Dance/Movement in the Ira Brind School of Theater Arts at the University of the Arts where she teaches artists of all majors and has choreographed over 30 musicals. Outside of UArts, Ms Kantra is faculty choreographer for the Gwendolyn Bye Dance Center and fusion2 Dance Company and serves as a peer reviewer and educational consultant/teacher/choreographer for many local universities, studios and arts institutions. Nancy is a Certified Movement Analyst and is associated with the Laban Institute of Movement Studies and the Actors Movement Studio of New York.