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Linda C. Smith Educational Spotlight

On July 1, 1966, 8 dancers that were handpicked by the Rockefeller Foundation sat down to begin to figure out how to complete the ambitious task of creating the first successful modern dance company in the country. Linda C. Smith shares the experience of being part of that process.

About Linda C Smith:

A native of Utah, Linda began her career in dance at the age of four with Virginia Tanner’s Children’s Dance Theatre. In 1966 she become a founding member of Repertory Dance Theatre where she fulfilled her dream of becoming a performer, teacher, choreographer, writer, producer and eventually, in 1983, the Artistic Director for the company.

Her pursuits have led to the development of the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, to the establishment of the RDT Community School, to providing commissions for established and emerging choreographers, and to the creation of multi-disciplinary activities that focus on the dance history, the environment, social issues, multi-ethnic history, sustainability and community.  Linda’s performing experience spans over 90 works. She has taught in over 1000 schools bringing the magic of dance to students and teachers with her unique demonstrations, lectures, classes and professional development workshops. She is most at home encouraging audiences of all ages to imagine, create and communicate with the language of movement.

Smith actuates RDT’s vision and aesthetic values to insure that artistic vibrancy drives RDT initiatives, educational programs, and performances. She cultivates dancers as artists, innovators, and company stewards to serve as role models when teaching youth of all ages/abilities in school/community settings.

Linda is a graduate and an Adjunct Associate Professor of dance at the University of Utah and is a certified Movement Specialist in the Utah Artists-in-Education Program.

Media & Awards:

2013 - Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce "Honors in the Arts"

2014 - Outstanding Achievement Award in Art from the YMCA

2018 - 15 Bytes - One of Utah's 15 most influential artists

2019 - A Woman to Watch, one of 30 Utah Visionaries

2019 - Utah Nonprofits Association Outstanding Nonprofit Leader of the Year

2020 - Cathedral of the Madeleine - Madeleine Award for Arts and Humanities

What People are Saying

The diversity of the dancers really spoke to my students! It was great to see boys and girls dancing, and different races. The high level of engagement was so refreshing and got students excited about thecontent.
This activity was valuable because it helped students make connections between dance, rhythm, healthy lifestyles, and expression. The students were impressed by the talent of the dancers and it was motivating to them.
Opportunities for art and expression are so limited at school but so essential and valuable for all students, especially those who struggle to learn through traditional methods. My Kindergarteners have been dancing since you left!
This was so engaging. I looked around the auditorium and every student was watching. Not one person was talking or distracted
This activity is valuable to teachers and students because it gives them a creative outlet. We need movement in the classroom to engage, energize and deepen student learning.
I got great ideas on how to incorporate movement into math and science lessons.
I loved how you made movement and exercise relatable to the students. The dancers were full of energy and there was very little down time so students stayed engaged.
Our children were captivated by the performance. They listened to you and they were learning without knowing. They usually giggle when bodies are shown and talked about. But the way you presented it was so tastefully done, they now do poses and movement around the room and outside. You brokesome barriers and they took that permission and literally ran with it!