Alumni Spotlight: Ted McKnight

 The Vanaver Caravan Company, circa 1983. Dancers from left to right: Bill Vanaver, Sharon Burnston, Rachel List, Calvin Smith, Livia Vanaver,  Ted McKnight , Toni Smith, Byron Richards. Dance: Tribute to Hoary Carmichael, choreographed by Brenda Bufalino. 

The Vanaver Caravan Company, circa 1983. Dancers from left to right: Bill Vanaver, Sharon Burnston, Rachel List, Calvin Smith, Livia Vanaver, Ted McKnight, Toni Smith, Byron Richards. Dance: Tribute to Hoary Carmichael, choreographed by Brenda Bufalino. 

The Vanaver Caravan provides a nurturing atmosphere where a multi-cultural awareness is paramount. The immersive approach promotes diversity and community-building. Audiences, students and performers are inspired, educated, and uplifted through The Vanaver Caravan. This is how we change our world, one (dance!) step at a time!
— Ted McKnight

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Ted McKnight

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Ted McKnight, Vice President of The Vanaver Caravan Board of Directors. After graduating from Julliard, Ted joined The Vanaver Caravan, and danced with them from 1981 – 1996. He then moved to Princeton, NJ, and became a senior a Senior Managing Consultant for IBM. Ted recently returned to his dance beginnings as a member of TVC's board of directors, and has joyously rejoined a community of enthusiasts for Eastern European music and dance. Like many of those who danced in the Hudson Valley with The Vanaver Caravan, Ted was called back to this region and the community that The Vanaver Caravan creates. Just this year, he moved into a new historic 1860's farm house on a hill, surrounded by orchards and vineyards and farm land. Today, Ted enjoys good food, community, and blazing sunrises.

Here's What Ted Has To Say About His Time w/ The Vanaver Caravan . . .

For how many years did you perform with TVC? I first toured through out New England with TVC the summer of 1981 and last performed with them in 1997 at the Bardavon Opera House in Poughkeepsie NY with Pete Seeger.

In what ways has The Vanaver Caravan mpacted/shaped the life you live today? Through my years working with Bill, Livia and the company I learned about community and about family. I have brought that that larger "sense" into all work I do. Community, whether in business or in social groups, is what it is all about.

Tell us a story! Can you share an event, memory, funny anecdote, or quote from your history with Livia and Bill & the rest of The Caravan? So many moments . . . Touring France for the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville with The Company and sitting around after dinner with Bill, Michael and John swapping quips and puns. One day, we arrived very late to an Olympic dorm and The Company was so very tired and we could barely drag ourselves up the 2 flights of stairs to plop into our cots. At around three in the morning a trio of very happily tipsy Fins began pounding on our door. I popped out of bed and persuaded them outside where, after I sang several songs with them in my PJs , I pointed them back towards their own hostel.

Five words you'd use to describe the overall feeling you get when you think of your time with us? Joyous, uproarious, community, clickity-clack, cluck-cluck.

Thank you, Ted, for all that you do. We love you!


What's all this about? See our Spring Fund-Drive 2018 Letter of Giving

This spring, our goal is to fill our alumni scholarship fund, which will help bring new students with low income backgrounds into our after school and summer programs. As a gift to you, we're bringing you stories from our dear alumni each week. Now it's your turn: Our programs make a huge impact on children's lives. You can make a difference too--by sponsoring a student, donating any amount to our after school or arts-ed programs, or becoming a sustaining member. Every cent you donate this spring will go towards bringing new students into our dance community. Make your tax deductible contribution today!