SUSANNE PAYNE born and raised in Dayton, Ohio grew up studying intensely in both New York and California at accredited schools such as Idyllwild Arts Academy, Interlocken and New York University/Tisch School of the Arts. Summer study scholarships include Thodos Dance Chicago, River North Chicago Dance Company and Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre. She graduated in 2006 magna cum laude with a B.F.A. in Dance with a minor in Psychology from Wright State University where she was awarded the Dayton Ballet Foundation Merit Scholarship and was the only dance major to be named a “Martin Sheen” Artistic Scholar. Between DCDC and DCDC2, Ms. Payne has been with the company for a total of 7 years. She has been blessed to study under and perform works by such noted choreographers as Eloe Pomare, Donald Byrd, Rennie Harris, Ronald K. Brown, Ulysses Dove and Talley Beatty, just to name a few. In 2008, she was awarded the “Josie” for best Female Performer. She has been a member of NY based Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company and Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre in Chicago, IL. Ms. Payne has been a faculty member for Stivers School for the Arts and teaches modern dance throughout the Dayton area. She also choreographed works for DCDC2, Dayton Ballet, WSU, dance studios and Performing Art High Schools. She is a NASM certified personal trainer and a Juice Plus + representative (vitalandstrongjuiceplus.com) and enjoys singing, musical theatre and piano. Ms. Payne joined in 2005 and re-joins the company in 2011.