(Left) Photo by Zoe Litaker, (Right) photo by Stephanie Leathers
Artistic Director of RAD
Renay is an Assistant Professor of Dance at Elon University. She is an artist and scholar specializing in contemporary modern dance technique and the creative process. Her practice-based research explores the intersection of dance pedagogy, movement technique, performance, and the Franklin Method somatic education. She crafts her choreography to focus on the human experience, specifically learned human behavior and its effects on spatial meaning-making and somatic memory. She recently presented her choreography in various festivals including the Atlanta Dance Festival, Boston Contemporary Dance Festival, Austin Dance Festival, American Dance Festival, Richmond Dance Festival, EXCHANGE Choreography Festival, Indiana Dance Festival, Sans Limites Movement Fest in New York, North Carolina Dance Festival, and the National College Dance Association Conference at the Kennedy center. Concurrently, Renay co-creates dance films with her colleague, Jen Guy Metcalf, which have been selected for presentation at the American Dance Festival and ScreenDance Film Festival in Stockholm, Sweden. Renay enjoyed guest residencies at the Northeast Normal University in Chanchun, China, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, North Carolina State University, Southeast Regional Ballet Association (SERBA), Atlanta Dance Collective, and many local professional and pre-professional studios.
Renay continues researching the creative process through her dance company, RAD | Renay Aumiller Dances. RAD has gained momentum locally and regionally since its inception in 2010. With the company, she has created six self-produced evening length concerts that premiered in traditional theaters, a music hall, and old warehouses. Her most recent self-produced work, RAW, received high accolades for its unique experience for the audience to journey through an old fruit warehouse to watch various solo work for renowned local dancers.
She has received several grants and fellowships to support her artistic and scholarly research. Renay is a 2018-20 CATL Scholar Fellow, has received an Elon Faculty Research and Development Grant to pursue her scholastic research in choreographic development, a New Faculty Summer Fellowship to earn her Franklin Method Level 1 teaching certification, and a Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning travel grant in 2013, 2014, 2017, and 2019 to support her attendance to professional development workshops and travel for festival attendance. She has received the prestigious Ella Pratt Emerging Artist Grant through the Durham Arts Council, a mini-grant from the North Carolina Dance Alliance and a North Carolina Choreography Fellowship.
Past professional performance experiences include working with (inter)nationally renowned artists, Renée Wadleigh, Tere O’Connor, Christian Von Howard, Linda Lehovec, as well as contemporary companies Thread Meddle Outfit, VECTOR, The Kearns Dance Project, and The Bipeds. She is a founding member/performer of the Department of Improvised Dance, a quartet collective that performs improvised scores that vary in dimension and tone. Aumiller toured Taiwan, Cambodia, and Italy with internationally acclaimed improvisation master, Kirstie Simson. Renay is a currently performer for Gerri Houlihan.
Her education includes earning an MFA in Choreography from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a BA in Dance Studies from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. She is a certified Franklin Method educator and an Assistant Professor of Dance at Elon University.