Graham Vanderwood

Hip Hop, Tap


Graham Vanderwood was born in Laguna Beach in 1990 into a large, dance filled family. He soon moved to South Whidbey where he spent most of his time growing up. He began taking class at the age of six and has studied a plethora of styles in that time. He trained with artists such as Cameron Lee, Daniel Cruz, and Ivan Koumaev to name a few. Graham has been a

member of Potion, Cruz Control, is a current member of DASS Dance, and has performed in shows from LA to New York. He also directed his own group, Solid, and currently directs The Smash Brothaz with his younger brother.

Graham began teaching dance in 2006 at The Hub. Since then, he has taught at Island Dance, O'meara's The Dance Studio, and Westlake Dance Center. He has choreographed a number of shows like the Rocky Horror Show and The Nutcracker, and has produced and directed some as well.

Graham's passion for dance is only exceeded by his passion to teach. Nothing is more rewarding than spreading the universal joy of expression through movement and seeing people, first hand, develop skills that will improve their lives through creativity. 



5 Questions with Graham

1. How long have you been teaching?
8 years.

2. What made you want to be a teacher?
I'm a problem solver. I really like to figuring things out. So I began choreographing before I ever landed a teaching job. Creating movement that fit precisely to music on as many different layers as possible was like a game to me. After I began teaching, I realized I loved figuring out the most efficient ways to help people develop skills as fast as possible. This is especially fascinating to me because it is a skill, like dancing, that can always be improve on but never perfected.

3. What are your teaching philosophies?
"Perfection is doing your best right now."
"If a student isn't having so much fun that they go home and practice all week, then I'm not doing my job."

4. What kind of music do you listen to when not teaching?
Hip hop, jazz, reggae, rock, Michael Jackson, EDM, anything ending in step, and music that doesn't fit a normal genre. Basically, variety is key for me.

5. What non-dancing hobbies do you have?
Eating, Fixing things, Going to the beach, Gardening, Motorcycles