Anne Ryan moved to Ann Arbor as a child and though she has traveled far from it, she’s never wanted to leave. This is entirely due to the talented, artistic, and enthusiastic people she’s had the pleasure of collaborating with over the years. She’s been involved with many creative endeavors, but her heart will always belong to the stage. She was mistress of ceremonies and a founding cast member of The Tickled Fancy Burlesque Collective and looks forward to hosting performances of all types at The A2 Aviary.
Her aerial training in 2009 at The Detroit Flyhouse and it is no exaggeration to say that it changed her life. Aerial arts taught her a new respect for her body’s abilities and a completely different understanding of her own boundaries. Now she wants to share her enthusiasm for the discipline by creating a safe space for others to learn, practice, and grow.
Erin Garber-Pearson is a visual artist and circus performer from Tucson, AZ. She currently performs under the name “Fortuna,” and is one half of the acrobatic storytelling project, “Violet and Fortuna.” Her work incorporates solo and duo aerial fabric, aerial loops, rope, partner acrobatics, fire performing, stilt dancing and a number of sideshow acts with large sculptural props and video to create contemporary circus performance and installations.
Erin received her Masters in Sculpture and Multimedia from the University of Arizona in 2011. She has worked with various physical theater groups such as Infiammati Fire Circus (Minneapolis), The Dead Man’s Carnival (Milwaukee), and Flam Chen (Tucson). She currently resides in Toledo, OH with her partner, performer Erik Bang!!! where she is owner of Bird’s Eye View Circus.
Erin is currently on hiatus from teaching while she attends the full time training program at Aloft Loft in Chicago.
Katie has been an acrobat since age 5. She has trained and performed nationally as a gymnast, diver, and aerialist. Skills: Claims to be more comfortable on her hands than on her feet. Her classes on handstands and flexibility offer courage, support, and strategies for your practice.
Aspiring strong woman. Storyteller. Teacher.
Lis Chere Thomas is a performance artist/soil scientist from NYC.
Lis received the bulk of her aerial training in NYC and Vancouver, BC, and continues to pursue instruction from high-level coaches in her travels. She has performed in venues across the U.S. and Canada, and has also coached at Equilibrium Circus in Telluride, CO. Lis utilizes her dance background by incorporating elements of ballet technique, modern dance, and contact improvisation into her work on single-point and duo trapeze, aerial fabric, and lyra. She is smitten with momentum, weight sharing, and the possibilities of centrifugal force.
Lis is especially excited by multimedia collaborations, invented aerial apparatus, and performing in unusual locations. When she is not in the air, you can find her farming in Chelsea, MI.
Lis’ artistic affiliations include: Madagascar Institute, League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots, Firebelly Performance Society, eatArt, Neil E. Dee’s Danger Thrill Show, Sublight, Great Northern Way Aerial Collective, and the Triangle Sportsmen’s Pleasure Club.
Coral dances both cabaret and tribal fusion bellydance, but her style is all her own. With a classical foundation in ballet, lyrical, jazz dance, and gymnastics, Coral’s love of performing has also led her to excel in competitive marching band auxiliary and swing and blues dance. She uses her diverse experience and natural finesse to create performances grounded in fundamentals and bursting with flair. Coral has been a soloist and choreographer in the award-winning local bellydance troupes Unveiled Dance – Ann Arbor and The Lunatic Vagabonds, and plys her love of fire and sideshow entertainment with the Dynamite Dolls Circus. Outside the dance studio, Coral constantly strives to expand her performance studies, including aerial classes here at A2A and stage combat training with the Theatrical Combat Network.
Luna Legare has been a member of Tickled Fancy Burlesque since 2010 as a soloist, choreographer, and stage director. She also has an extensive background in jazz, ballet, and musical theatre. Luna is also available for private instruction and consulting on your performance pieces of any kind.
Anna McGarry received her early dance training at Meg Nutting’s Studio, Dance Arts Academy and Ballet Etc, all in Traverse City, Michigan. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Michigan. There she trained with Peter Sparling, Jessica Fogel, Gay Delanghe, and Bill DeYoung. She has also trained abroad with the Kyrgyz National Ballet and taught ballet at the Ak-Jol Children’s Shelter in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Anna has been teaching dance for over fifteen years including modern, ballet, pointe, jazz, dance composition, and improvisation. She founded the dance collective, AuxWerks Dance and explores her own technique and style through weekly classes. She believes that every student should be given strong technique, an understanding of their art form, and the opportunity to discover their artistic expression.
She lives in Clinton, Michigan with her husband and two sons.
Mallory was a competitive gymnast, then a gymnastics coach, and finally started her journey from yoga student to yoga teacher in January 2012 through the Ann Arbor Yoga Room’s Yoga Immersion Program. Mallory has taught classes in Hatha, Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga at The Yoga Room from 2012 to 2014. In April 2013, she began training in aerial silks at the Ann Arbor Aviary, fell in love, and in February 2014, she began apprenticing with Erin Garber-Pearson & Lis Thomas as an aerial teacher. With this background, Mallory encourages students to challenge themselves and face their fears on the comfort and safety of their yoga mats and on their aerial apparatus of choice.
Mallory is a librarian by training, and when she’s not doing some form of yoga on the ground or in the air, she is a content analyst in Ann Arbor.
Irina started her circus career studying straight fabric, hammock, lyra, and partner acrobatics under a retired Cirque performer in 2007. Her training expanded to corde lisse, static trapeze, doubles trapeze, doubles straight fabric, and doubles lyra as she sought instruction from masters across the country. Irina has studied under Susan Murphy of Authentic Aerial, Elsie Smith of NECCA, Laura Stokes of the Ricochet Project, Paper Doll Militia, among others. She began her professional career as an aerial performer in spring of 2011 when booked to perform doubles trapeze at the internationally acclaimed ‘Dirty Show’ in Detroit.
Taking her joy for performance further, Irina co-founded and performs with the Weird Sisters Circus, voted best novelty performance troupe in 2012 and 2014 in Real Detroit Magazine. The Weird Sisters Circus have been featured performers at Theatre Bizarre, the Detroit Auto Show, the Ferndale DIY Fair, the Ann Arbor Art Fair, the Detroit Pistons halftime shows, among many other events across the US and Canada.
Irina found her love for teaching when she helped establish The Detroit Academy of Kinesthetic Arts (D.A.K.A.). She later helped create the aerial program at Agora Arts in Ferndale where she teaches foundational, intermediate, and advanced mixed apparatus classes. Irina is thrilled to bring her knowledge and passion to A2 Aviary in hopes of inspiring all of her students to find their personal voice within movement through aerial dance.
Irina also loves cooking, acro, rock climbing, yoga, traveling, trying new beers, and adventures in the forest.