©2017 Movingforwarddallas

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Our Founding

As a lifelong Dallas resident, Madison Hicks has been working toward Moving Forward for nearly two decades.


With her  passion for the community, experience at all stages of dance and knack for choreography, she knew she had what it takes to help students all over the metroplex realize their dreams. Madison trained at local studios throughout the early parts of her career, and found a common factor missing from some programs: the lack of creative and collaborative process. She had a strong choreographic voice starting at a young age, but felt that there was no environment to foster collaboration until high school and college. Moving Forward was created to provide young artists with a creative outlet and safe space to develop their creative voices.

After moving to New York and starting at The Juilliard School in 2014, Madison found elements of the concert world that she wanted to bring to Dallas. In particular, she tries to establish a community through Moving Forward. Her ultimate goal is to create a safe environment for dancers of all ages to flourish in fellowship while developing a distinct voice.

Past events



December 20-th-22nd, 2019

Winter 7 was our 7th workshop and took place on December 20-22, 2019 at KJ Dance in Plano, TX. It was an incredible and rigorous three days that consisted of contemporary, improvisation, modern, and ballet training with Madison Hicks and Kevin Pajarillaga along with hours of movement exploration with our guest artist, Troy Ogilvie. We were also thrilled to partner with NorthWest Dance Project and offer a free of charge audition to their summer intensive for dancers enrolled in this workshop along with offering scholarships to The Institute of Contemporary Dance in Houston.


October 18th - October 20, 2019

Moving Forward’s Fall workshop took place in Tulsa, Oklahoma on October 18-20, 2019 at Theatre Arts. It was the first workshop taking place outside of Dallas, TX and with a brand new community of dancers. The three days consisted of two levels ranging from 10 to 20 years old. We had some of our youngest dancers and oldest dancers we have ever had. The faculty consisted of Zack Tang, Alysia Johnson, and Madison Hicks. The dancers took a range of classes throughout the weekend including composition, improvisation, floorwork, and modern. The weekend finalized in a showcase with pieces created by all three faculty members. Dancers got the opportunity to build their community, collaborate with one another, and learn new concepts from professionals in the field.


August 5-11, 2019

Moving Forwards summer 2019 event was our largest and longest workshop yet. At KJ dance in Plano and Bruce Wood Dance in Dallas, dancers both intermediate (12-14) and advanced (15 and up) dove into exploration for 7 days. Guest artists Christie Partelow from Netherlands Dans Theater and Maleek Washington from Camille A Brown and Dancers came in to train and create work with the advanced students.

Director Madison Hicks and Associate Director Kevin Pajarillaga created work with the intermediates along with guiding the college students in a creation of their own. 


In addition to our guest artists, 9 other wonderful faculty members were brought in including some of Dallas’s own, Lily Weiss, Jess Hendricks, and Bombshell Dance. The dancers were pushed both technically and creatively while having ballet and modern classes along with their improvisation and composition workshops. 


The week culminated in a reception and showcase at Bruce Wood Dance where the dancers showcased their hard work and growth. We are thankful to have explored in two very special studio spaces throughout this week. We also gave our first ever college scholarships at this workshop. We are excited to witness the immense growth in our students and strive to support them in their futures beyond high school. 


January 4th - January 6th, 2019

Moving Forward Dallas’ 2018 winter intensive took place at KJ Dance in Plano, TX. Artists got the incredible opportunity to work with our guest artist and world renowned choreographer, Sidra Bell. Along with Madison Hicks and Kevin Pajarillaga, participants dove into a three day workshop focused on improvisation and collaborative skills. 


Sidra Bell took them on a journey through a three hour workshop each day. The dancers finished the weekend with an installation of the work made with Sidra. The artists grew tremendously and broadened their horizons in just three days. This particular intensive gave artists an unforgettably safe environment to explore their creative voices in.


June 19th - June 23rd, 2018

Moving Forward Dallas’ 2018 summer event, our first ever week-long intensive was held in beautiful studios at KJ Dance in Plano, TX. Artists trained in a wide range of classes including ballet, contemporary, modern, floorwork, partnering, composition, and repertoire.


    Artists trained with our Moving Forward faculty members Madison Hicks, Kevin Pajarillaga, Alysia Johnson, Jillyn Bryant, and Alex Clair along with incredible guest artists. Two professional artists from Rubberband Dance Group, Dana Pajarillaga and Zachary Tang, and Dallas native Brian Stevens joined us as our guest artists for this event. 


    Along with these classes, the artists got the wonderful opportunity of learning Yin Yue and Sidra Bell repertoire and partake in a residency program with Zachary Tang. This was our first ever residency program and the students learned an immense amount, being a part of this creative process. The week accumulated in a showing of the residency programs creation, along with pieces created by both levels of artists in their comp classes. Moving Forward Dallas’ 2018 summer intensive was full of amazing opportunities we plan to continue to bring to the young artists in Texas.


January 6th - 7th, 2018

Moving Forward II took place on January 6-7, 2018 at Pure Movement Dance and Fitness in Allen, TX. Designed to give students a taste of professional demands, the curriculum includes technique classes and a intense repertoire and composition element.

Dancers today are asked to re-invent, embody multitudes of repertoire, and create. This intensive exposes the pre-professionals of Dallas to the rigor of repertoire, provides them with compositional tools, and encourages the practice of finding their own unique artistic voices.


The repertoire program included works by world renowned choreographer Yin Yue.Yin Yue is a choreographer who creates grounded, dynamic and challenging works and has developed a movement technique called FOCO.


May 19th-21st, 2017

Moving Forward’s first workshop took place at Pure Movement Dance and Fitness in Allen, TX on May 19-21, 2017. It was a three-day workshop with the focus in creating a safe space for artists to experience the creative process. This intensive is designed to sharpen the students sense of technique and physical & kinetic intuition so they feel strong and present in a creation process.


The purpose of the three days was to nourish and encourage the artists to feel comfortable to present their ideas, explore new ways of moving, and develop their choreographic voices. They were casted in one of four different pieces, worked with every artist in the room, and participated in composition and improvisation classes along with their core technique classes throughout the weekend.