Resident Artist Program


The Vitacca Resident Artist Program (RAP) furthers our mission to stay current and grow with the ever evolving contemporary and modern dance forms. Vitacca’s RAP offers a holistic approach to dance training, artistic development and an experience in both a personal and professional environment with leading dance professionals. The RAP is designed to build relationships with influential industry professionals and bridge the gap between guest master teacher and student. Audition required. 


Program Includes

Throughout the Vitacca season and over a pre-scheduled, five weekend commitment, invited RAP dancers will:

  • Participate in choreographic laboratories

  • Rehearse repertoire for performance

  • Attend master classes led by Resident Artists

  • Receive private coaching sessions by Resident Artists



Jess Hendricks + Spencer GAVIN Hering


jess Hendricks

JESS HENDRICKS graduated from the University of Colorado with a BFA in Dance. Her training includes Perry Mansfield School of the Performing Arts, American Dance Festival, Harvard Dance Festival, EDGE Scholarship, Gus Giordano and Hubbard Dance Street. 

Her credits include commercials and industrials for Godiva, L’Oreal, Reebok, Toys R Us, Universal Studios, Volkswagen and Warner Brothers. Jess worked on the tour of HAIR as Dance Captain for years, performed for the opening premiers of Moulin Rouge and The Great Gatsby and can be seen in such movies as Living Out Loud and Between The Sheets. She has danced in or been the assistant choreographer to the Elan Awards, Bob Fosse Awards, Ms. America Pageant, Carnival, Dance Break and Broadway Bares. Jess has choreographed the New York musicals The Shaggs, The Book Of The Dun Cow and Dead City as well as the movie musical Free Fall. 

She has choreographed the music video Just A Dress for the Berlin Film Festival, Mia Agapi Fotia for European artist Sofia Strati’s Eurovision and has been a finalist for the ACE Awards. Jess has taught at Universities and Festivals throughout Canada, Costa Rica, Cyprus, France, Italy, Japan, Korea, Norway and the United States. Jess has danced with “The Wes Veldink Movement” and co-created her own company “Two Peas & A Pod”. 

She recently created live work for the band “A Great Big World” at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, set work to be performed at Carnegie Hall and assisted with choreography for the Alicia Keys tour. Jess recently debuted a 30-minute work on Houston Met Dance that debuted this Spring. She is currently an adjunct professor at Pace University, on faculty with 24 Seven Dance Convention and a Co-Founder of Dancers Give Back Dallas.


Spencer Gavin Hering by Peter Mellekas.jpg


SPENCER GAVIN HERING was born in Munich, Germany, is the son of two professional ballet dancers. With a life immersed in the arts, Spencer eventually, at the age of 16, began training with his mother Cecilia Hering in Redlands, California. After two years in Pacific Northwest Ballet School-Professional Division, he joined Ballet Pacifica in Irvine, California and has since danced as a principal artist with Maximum Dance Company/Ballet Gamonet, Dominic Walsh Dance Theater, Miami Contemporary Dance Company, State Street Ballet as a Principal, Hope Stone Dance Company as a company member and Island Moving Co. as a principal artist. Mr. Hering currently Co-Directs Mandelstam DANCE and is the Co-Founding Artistic Director of iMEE Dance Company. His dance career repertory includes principal roles by acclaimed choreographers that are both current and iconic: David Allan, George Balanchine, Maurice Causey, Colin Conor, Anne Marie DeAngelo, Jimmy Gamonet, Choo-San Goh, Paola Georgudis, Jamie Hampton, Emily Johnson, Molly Lynch, Stephanie Martinez, Rick McCullough, Lindsey McGill, Michele Merola, Stephen Mills, Miki Ohlsen, Jerry Opdenaker, David Palmer, Yanis Pikieris, Peter Pucci, Andrea Dawn Shelley, William Soleau, Ray Sullivan, Robert Sund, Paul Vasterling, Raymond Van Mason, Dominic Walsh and Jane Weiner.

As a choreographer Mr. Hering has created original works for professional dance companies and festivals such as: State Street Ballet, E.magine Dance Ensemble, O Dance, Houston Met Dance, FestOval of Dance, Triple Focus, palcoscenico danza, Island Moving Co., the black box INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL THEATRE & DANCE, Festival Ballet Providence, Austinmer Dance Theatre (AU) and iMEE in Santa Barbara, CA; Irvine, CA; Moorpark, CA; Houston, TX; New York, NY; Newport, RI; South Miami, FL; West Palm Beach, FL; Turin, Italy; Plovdiv, Bulgaria and Mexico City. Mr. Hering served as Island Moving Company's (IMC) Associate Artistic Director, Resident Choreographer and Ballet Master for their 2013-2014, 2014-2015 seasons in Newport, Rhode Island. During his time with IMC, Hering created eight original works including "Brom Bones" an evening length, site specific work based on Washington Irving’s classic tale “The legend of a sleepy Hollow” featuring an original score created in collaboration with Lewis Patzner & Sascha Jacobsen. He has participated in Residencies and created original works for the dance programs at Sam Houston State University and Salve Regina University (SRU.) His work "Schoen" was presented by SRU at the American College Dance Association in Providence, RI and received much praise from a distinguished panel of adjudicators.

Mr. Hering has received many accolades for his dancing and choreography; including winning the "Outstanding Choreographer Award" for his work, Dichotomy at the Youth America Grand Prix Ballet Competition in Los Angeles, CA, awarded as a “Finalist” in the 17th Annual Choreography Festival in Palm Desert, CA for his works Elliptical Capture & Fibonacci and winning “Second Place”in the 17th Annual Choreography Festival for his work, Fibonacci with dance artist Jack Wolff. Mr. Hering was a Co-Founding member of the five week, summer dance festival, the Houston Dance Festival: HERE & NOW alongside iMEE Co-Founding Director, Andrea D. Shelley, Light Designer, Jeremy Choate, Hope Stone Dance and NobleMotion Dance companies. Since 2016, Hering and Shelley have served as the Co-Directors of Mandelstam DANCE in South Miami, FL. This opportunity provides iMEE Co-Directors the platform to share their love of ballet & movement with dance artists of all ages, as well as, implement their vision for training a well-rounded young dance artist. Hering & Shelley present a monthly "blank | SLATE" choreographic lab for emergent & established choreographers hosted at Mandelstam DANCE. iMEE Co-Directors recently created, presented and produced soMi DANCE FEST which featured a weekend master class series and premiere performance with three professional dance companies from the South Florida dance community. After an extremely successful inaugural 2018 festival, soMi DANCE FEST will continue to be presented at the Mandelstam Theater in South Miami, Florida annually.