Office: College of Education, Deans Office
PO Box 30001
Las Cruces, NM 88003
Dr. Knapp came to New Mexico State University in the fall of 2001. Debra is a Professor of Dance. She has been on the dance faculties of Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana, Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico and the Palucca School Academy of Performing Arts in Dresden Germany. She is certified in the Evans’ Method of Dance Pedagogy.
She has danced professionally with the Bill Evans Dance Company in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Semperoper Ballet Company in Dresden Germany, the Nora Reynolds Dance Company in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Danzantes Dance Company in Albuquerque, New Mexico, InMotion Dance Company in Indianapolis, Indiana, and the Windfall Dancers in Bloomington, Indiana.
Debra has choreographed over 50 dances and produced 60 dance concerts as director of the NMSU dance program. She has received national choreographic recognition from the American College Dance Festival Association and the National Dance Association, where her dance TOUCH was performed at these organization’s national conference in New York City and Ft. Worth Texas. Debra has also been a keynote speaker at conferences and festivals both in the USA, China, and Mexico. Debra has presented close to 100 presentations on dance pedagogy, dance technique and performance, kinesthetic learning, and dance composition.
She has hosted the National Association of Ballet Folklorico Conference,the American College Dance Conference and the National Dance Association’s Pedagogy Conference. several summer dance festival bringing national modern dance, African dance, Flamenco, and ballroom artists to our community.
During her career she has had the opportunities to be the Artistic Director for the Windfall Dancers and Windfall Movement Center, the rehearsal director and modern dance trainer for the Semperoper Ballet, the Artistic Coordinator of Celebrate Youth Summer Dance and the Bill Evans Summer Dance Institute, and guest choreographer and instructor for universities and colleges throughout the United States.
Debra has been an Artist-in-Education since 1977 as a dance/movement specialist. Her creative endeavors in education has included researching and implementing movement programs that enhance the curriculum for the kinesthetic learner for grades pre-school, elementary and middle school students. She is a dance/movement specialist for Young Audiences of Indiana and Arkansas Arts-in-Education program. She served as dance chairperson for the development of dance proficiency for the Indiana Department of Education.
Debra continues to freelance as a choreographer, performer, and dance instructor.