Growing up the daughter of a dancer and studio owner exposed Katie Griffin to all types of dance from an early age. She focused on perfecting her technique and performing through her high school studies then went on to attain her BFA in Dance with an emphasis in Modern Dance Performance from CSU Long Beach in 2005.
After graduation, Katie attended American Dance Festival where she had the privilege of working with Neta Pulvermacher, dancing in Five Beds: Children of a Dream, and in a new work created by Donald McKayle. She returned to San Diego and spent six years making a career in dance. She instructed, performed, and presented her own work. She was a company member with Patricia Rincon Dance Collective and Butterworth Dance Company. In 2007, she worked with Mizerany Dance! in the premier of Riding In My Car. A review of the evening named her “…the most seasoned female dancer in San Diego.” (Rob Appel, BRAVO San Diego). She spent three seasons as a company member with Malashock Dance Company and was on the faculty for the Malashock Dance School for four years. Katie was fortunate to work with the brilliant Monica Bill-Barnes twice for San Diego Trolley Dances. She has also performed for San Francisco Trolley Dances.
Katie was a guest dancer with hip-hop company Kruciaal Element during their 2008 season. The experience sparked the inspiration for a collaboration with Anthony Rodriguez. Their work, A-range i+n K-oncert, was named the “most entertaining dance piece of the evening” (Rob Appel, Sign On San Diego ) in Emerge Dance Festival in 2009. Katie was commissioned to present A-range i+n K-oncert with Axiom Dance Company in 2010. She also re-staged it on Mission Hills High School students during her residency in 2011, and most recently on Motion Pacific’s Youth Company in Santa Cruz.
Katie’s work has been commissioned and showcased at numerous events and venues including The Vine, Sushi Performing Arts, San Diego GLBT Pride Festival, Ignite, The Movement, 4x4xFloor, the Malashock Dance School Showcases and during San Diego Dance Theater’s Summer Workshop. She was invited to create a new work for Diversionary Dance Theatre in 2010, where “this beautiful mover” (Janice Steinberg, San Diego Union Tribune) earned a great review for her work I Don’t Know Any Other Way, inspired by the play Dangerous Beauty. Katie joined Mojalet Dance Collective as a guest artist in 2010 for an interpretation of the 3-Penny Opera. She also danced in the Carmen Opera in Rome, Italy, and has been a soloist at public and private events, conferences, and corporate parties.
In 2008, Katie organized a benefit to help her Aunt Susie in her battle with breast cancer. She was honored to bring together several local artists and dance companies from throughout San Diego County for an evening of original work. The event raised funds to help with her treatment and drew a diverse audience from all over southern California.
Her love for collaborative projects has given her the opportunity to be a guest dancer for many of her talented colleagues, including Sadie Weinberg, Matthew Carney, Heather Zornes-Almanza, and Bradley Lundberg. She was a company dancer with Erica Buechner's Sound Dance Company, and Anjanette Maraya-Ramey and Dancers. She has also worked with D’Shire Dance, DK Dance, and joined somebodies dance theater to tour Hello, My Name Is Group in Mexico in 2010/2011.
Katie has given master classes all over southern California at colleges, camps and studios. She has had several residencies in high schools. She was part of Malashock Dance School’s Emotion in Motion, a long running program that brings underprivileged fifth graders exposure to and an appreciation of dance. She was a long term faculty member of Ramona/Julian Academy of Dance, Malashock Dance School, and was a Resident Artist at City Ballet, Academy of Performing Arts, and San Diego Dance Theater. She continues teaching in the Bay Area. She was a Hot Spot Artist at ODC in 2015, and is a Resident Faculty Member at both Western Ballet and Santa Cruz’s Motion Pacific Dance. In 2016, she participated in the Dance for Parkinson’s Disease Teacher Training with Mark Morris Dance Company. She now leads Dance for Parkinson’s classes at Stanford Neuroscience Center, The Parkinson’s Institute, and wherever there is interest or a need for one.
Upon their 2011 relocation to the Bay Area, Katie and her girlfriend launched their artisan nut butter and hummus company, Nut ’n Bean. While Nut ’n Bean has focused on growing their company in local farmers’ markets, Katie has immersed herself in Bay Area performance. Her first Bay Area on stage appearance was as a “Factory Worker” in Catherine Galasso's brilliant work, Bring On The Lumiere. Her San Francisco performance debut came at the conclusion of NEW/FRESH/NOW where she performed in new works by Abby Crain, Sara Shelton-Mann, and Jana Meszaros. She was part of the Underground Resident Artist Program at KUNST-STOFF arts in the heart of downtown San Francisco where she premiered Frank… an excerpt from theRedchairdiaries… during the 2012 KUNST-STOFF arts Festival. In 2013, she premiered the second installment, Proem to Staynd… at MARK|MOVE, a collective showing of works from six west coast artists. Katie was also a founding member of San Francisco’s collective company of women, vîv, and a participating artist in the PEER Practices summer program.
Katie worked closely with Kathleen Hermesdorf from 2011 until 2016, and played a large part in ALTERNATIVA |Alternative Conservatory’s FRESH Festival since 2012, as both an administrator and artist/performer. She was stage manager and coordinator for their 2012 Home Season, Songs of Innocence and Experience. At FRESH Festival 2013, she performed Unadorned, a new solo directed by Kathleen, and was part of the company for San Francisco Trolley Dances 2014 and FRESH Festival 2015.
Katie is currently focused on producing her own work and teaching. She's joined many local dancers in teaching Dance for Parkinson's programs throughout the Bay Area. The most recent of her long term endeavors was the production of her first evening long work I looked and I saw you...theRedchairdiaries… She launched the three year project in 2013 and produced the show as the Incubator Artist in Residence at Motion Pacific in November of 2016. More about this project, and footage of the installations leading up the the completed show can be found throughout theredchairdiaries.com. She recently began her studies of Plant-Based Exercise Science and Nutrition and looks forward to incorporating that knowledge into her future endeavors.