CFA Faculty Biography

Russella Brandman
School of Theater + Dance
Emeritus Professor
T: (352) 265-0768
F: (352) 392-5114

PO Box 115900
Gainesville, Fl 32611-5900

Rusti Brandman , (PhD Florida State University), is Coordinator of Dance for the School of Theatre and Dance and Co-Director of the Center for the Arts in Healthcare Research and Education (CAHRE) at the University of Florida. She teaches mainly in the areas of modern dance, dance composition, dance history, dance teaching methods and dance in medicine. She has produced more than 70 choreographic works for the concert stage and has served as performer, choreographer and/or director for several dance companies, including the professional groups Kinetics Repertory Dance Theatre and New Moves Productions.

Dr. Brandman has presented choreography, master classes and workshops with UF dancers and as a guest artist regionally, nationally, and internationally. She has received awards from the Florida Fine Arts Council, the National Dance Association and the American College Dance Festival Association, was an American Biographical Institute Woman of the Year for 1996 and is currently listed in Who's Who in Entertainment and the International Directory of Distinguished Leadership. She has served as Southeastern Regional Representative on the National Board of Directors for ACDFA.

During her fall 1996 sabbatical, Dr. Brandman did in-depth study of the use of the arts in healthcare, becoming an artist in residence for the Shands Hospital Arts in Medicine program. In September 1998 she became the first dancer in residence at Shands at Alachua General Hospital. She has worked with several hundred patients, families and staff on most units of both hospitals, and has performed, led workshops, and presented invited or refereed lectures on the subject of the arts in healthcare at numerous international conferences, including the Society for the Arts in Healthcare,the International Arts in Healing Institute, and the Hawaii International Conference on the Arts and Humanities. As Co-Director of CAHRE, she is involved with curriculum development,research, and outreach activities. She recently served as PI for the Vital Visionaries Project sponsored by the National Institute on Aging and as an on-site consultant in establishing a new Arts in Medicine Program at the Mater Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya.  She has received six Scholarship Enhancement grants to date through which she produced the video "Dancing in Hospitals." She is presently working on more videos documenting her recent projects, and is an editor of a soon to be released book entitled "The Arts and Health.


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