Our faculty at the Martha Graham School are experienced dance professionals.
Most of our Graham teachers performed with the Martha Graham Dance Company and several danced with Martha Graham herself.
Jennifer Patten, John and Lorraine Oler Head of School

Jennifer Patten holds a B.A. in English and Music from Boston College, an M.M. in Musicology from Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music, and an M.A. in Arts Administration from Teachers College, Columbia University. Prior to moving to New York in 2014, she served in the pilot Rhode Island Teach for America Corps and was hired as the founding humanities teacher at the Trinity Academy for the Performing Arts in Providence. Ms. Patten led arts integration initiatives with fellow academic instructors and artists-in- residence, crafting the trajectory of the school’s curriculum. After several years in the classroom, she served as Curriculum Director and formalized the school’s approach to arts-integrated education, oversaw all curriculum development, and provided administrative leadership. She is a recipient of the Laetitia M. Blain Award for Excellence in Music Performance and the Boston College Arts Council Award. Ms. Patten was also acknowledged as the 2012 Rhode Island District Teacher of the Year and a Regional Representative for the Sue Lehmann Award for Excellence in Teaching. Passionately dedicated to the arts and education, she actively seeks to intertwine these disciplines in both her life and professional philosophy.

Virginie Mécène, Program Director and Inger K. Witter Director of Graham 2

Director of Graham 2 since 2007 and Director of Programs, Virginie is a former Principal Dancer with the Martha Graham Dance Company touring the world and performing many roles of the repertoire from 1994 to 2006. Her direction has focused on training next generations of dancers for the Martha Graham Dance Company and other companies around the world as well as next generations of Graham teachers through her pedagogic instructions. She has served as the Director of the Martha Graham School from 2007 to 2015 maintaining and developing the School curriculum while sustaining the integrity of the Martha Graham technique and nurturing the process that continues its development. She created the Intensive Graham Teacher Workshop for teachers of all background. She has re-staged, reconstructed, and directed numerous works of Martha Graham in Universities and dance companies as well as taught the Graham TechniqueTM at multiple national and international conferences. In 2017, she reimagined and choreographed Graham’s lost solo, Ekstasis, for the Martha Graham Dance Company. Ekstasis was featured at The Palais Garnier, in Paris, performed by Étoile and Director of the Paris Opera Ballet, Aurélie Dupont. Ms. Mecene’s choreographic work has been presented in other venues such as New York City Center, The Joyce Theater, in New York City, The Adrienne Arhst Center and the Broward Center, in Florida, and Kaastban International Dance Center, in New York State. Ms. Mecene was also Principal Dancer with Buglisi Dance Theater since its inception in 1994; the Pearl Lang Dance Theater; and Battery Dance Company. A native of France, she graduated from the University of Bourgogne with a Licence Professionnelle in Artistic and Cultural Management. Ms. Mecene has also served as a Lecturer at Barnard College, NY, in 2004 and served as the president of EFSD (Emergency Fund For Student Dancers) regrouping member schools: the Ailey School, Limon Dance Institute, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Peridance Capezio Center, and the Martha Graham School, from 2012 to 2016. Ms. Mecene also serves as an adjudicator for dance competitions nationally and internationally.