Brook Andrews

Founding member of MWDCCo, 1974, Washington, DC.

Brook was a  founder of Maida Withers Dance Construction Company.  He was born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Bethesda, Maryland, Mr. Andrews began dancing at a very early age. He donned costumes at age four and performed for family members while his grandmother accompanied him on the piano. The urge to dance continued through his school years. He created many dances for variety shows and was deemed “best dancer” in his Walter Johnson High School yearbook. His serious training began when he was a high school senior and took a year of training at the Washington School of Ballet under the direction of Mary Day and Martin Buckner. Mr. Andrews attended Miami University in Oxford, Ohio where he majored in Visual Art. While there, he became a member of Orchesis, the university dance society where he spent many hours choreographing and developing his technique under the direction of Olga Bibza and Charlotte Honda. Eventually, in 1971, he earned a Master’s Degree in Dance Education from The George Washington University where he was heavily influenced by professors Maida Withers and Elizabeth Burtner. Following his graduation, Mr. Andrews spent a year in New York City studying and performing with many of the top Dance professionals including Merce Cunningham, Martha Graham, Twyla Tharp, Viola Farber, Richard Thomas, Zena Rommet, Gus Solomons, and Murray Louis. He was heavily influenced by Yvonne Rainer, Steve Paxton, David Gordon, Pat Catterson, and Douglas Dunn to name a few. In the fall of 1972, he accepted an assistant professorship at California State University in Fresno where he was in charge of artistic directing dance concerts, as well as, teaching all levels of modern dance technique and composition. In the fall of 1974, he accepted an assistant professorship in Washington, D.C. as part of The American University’s newly established Department of Performing Arts where he remained until 1979 when he was granted tenure and promoted to associate professor. Beginning in 1975, he became one of the charter members of The Dance Construction Company under the artistic direction of Maida Withers. Along with fellow collaborator, John Bailey, the trio created an extensive repertoire of innovative choreography performing in many venues in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere. Mr. Andrews retired from performing in 1985 after his appearance in Withers’ “Laser Dance” at Lisner Auditorium. He remained active as a board member of The Dance Construction Company for many years until he relocated to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware in 1997.

Letter to Maida from Brook, August 1, 2020:
“Guess we are “Birds of a Feather.” Dance was in our genes and identities since we were born. I remember all the musical stage shows my mother took me to see at the National Theater when I was growing up including Mary Martin in “Peter Pan” and “South Pacific.” There were so many “The Boyfriend” and later “Hello Dolly” with Carol Channing who was such a fantastic performer/comedienne. At home before my teen-age years, I would go to the basement, put on the music, and dance for hours. In junior and senior high-school, my girlfriend also loved to dance so we were always making up dances performing in the school shows. I did a great sword dance in “Brigadoon” in high school. All the while I was always drawing and painting for which I received much encouragement. That is why John was such a unique friend to be blessed with two artistic outlets like I was. He is mightily missed. At least the visual arts leave tangible images while dance is fleeting. I am so happy that you enjoy viewing my print. Fate brought us together Maida. I can’t imagine my life without your genius and generous spirit. What fun we had! Great histories to look back upon. I love you, Brook”