As an independent scholar, Dr. Walter’s interests have always focused on dance—its history, social and psychological influences, and its hidden power to transform. She has published numerous articles and books which amplify dance’s powers as healing, meditative, and influential. Her most recent publication, Sacred Dance Meditations: 365 Globally Inspired Movement Practices Enhancing Awakening, Clarity and Connection (2020, Penguin Random House) is a culmination of research into archeological and anthropological aspects of sacred dance before the Common Era, and a call for acknowledging and revisioning of dance as a spiritual, healing, and meditative path.
Early on in her career when affiliated with Missouri Southern State University as an Associate Professor, Dr. Walter was selected to be an Invited Visiting Professor in Hypermedia Communications at the University of Savoy, in Annecy, France, where she collaborated and conducted research with colleagues on dance and consumer behavior. After this, being supported by Hewlett Grant funds to expand her research as faculty at California Lutheran University, she found that dance had the power to influence feelings of connectedness and belonging and buying behaviors. That line of research resulted in her book Dance, Consumerism, and Spirituality (Palgrave 2015).
A native Californian from Los Angeles, Dr. Walter holds a BA in Economics from the University of California, Riverside, an MBA in Marketing and Management from California State University, San Bernardino, and a PhD in Dance History and Theory, from the University of California, Riverside. During her doctoral research on the history and economics of professional ballet, Dr. Walter did her fieldwork and danced at Stuttgart Ballet, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal, and the Kansas City Ballet. Her dissertation formed the springboard for her book Arts Management: An Entrepreneurial Approach (Routledge 2014). While completing her doctoral studies, Dr. Walter led West Coast Festival Ballet Theatre, a nonprofit professional performing classical ballet company staging contemporary and classical ballets in southern California, to notable acclaim. As an Arts Bridge Scholar during that time, she taught dance in the public schools bringing much needed calming support to students. As a free-lance ballet enthusiast, she has taught and danced in ballet studios around the world.
Currently, Dr. Walter leads Dance in the Spirit, LLC, where she teaches and choreographs pieces for adults and children for performances of classical ballet and sacred and spiritual dance. Her choreography has been performed with both professional and novice dancers at churches and private venues. Additionally, she speaks and lectures professionally on the different aspects of dance and calls for revision of the academic dance cannon to include “Dance (+ Religious) History” courses as part of the curriculum. With this background and dedication, Dr. Walter will teach The Art and Intersections of Indigenous Sacred Dance and Religious Histories during her appointment as the 2022 Martha Daniel Newell Visiting Scholar at Georgia College and State University.
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