Born and raised in small town, Maquoketa, Iowa, Laura Osterhaus began dancing at a young age. She is the youngest of four children with a family that is very important to her and has heavily contributed to who she is as an artist and person. Laura quickly realized that dance was something she wanted to pursue in a serious way, expanding her dancing horizons to the greater Iowa region, landing at Studio A Dance Company in Davenport, Iowa. Directed by Angela Mappin, Laura began training and performing competitively in styles of ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical/contemporary, and hip hop. Upon graduating high school, she enrolled in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, majoring in dance with a double minor in fashion studies and retail merchandising.
Throughout her four years living and studying in Minneapolis, she fell in love with the city and even deeper in love with dance than she could've imagined. She broadened her understanding of dance way beyond the physical aspects. Her time has also been spent investigating the intellectual complexities and values of dance, and other art forms, represented in our world. She is interested in the continual research there is to be done as to our responsibilities as humans to make good with the space that have on this earth--to share it, tend to it, and be creative thinkers and movers within it.
Laura is also drawn to organization and planning in the fashion sector of retail merchandising. Studying fashion studies and retail merchandising as her double minors at the U of M, she has a growing passion for the visual and choreographic elements of fashion consumption--store layout, visual presentation, branding, and personal styling.
Laura began dancing with Zenon Dance Company in Minneapolis in the fall of 2016 and spent the following three years dancing for the company, up until the company’s closing in 2019. She also worked and continues to do so as a senior stylist for Stitch Fix, a personal styling company, and a teacher/choreographer for various dance studies throughout the Twin Cities including Zenon Dance School. While breaking ground on her own dance project, Slo Dance Company, Laura is simultaneously participating in a handful of other project-based work, including collaborative dance group, Kelvin Wailey, that Laura co-directs with friends/dance-life partners Leila Awadallah and Emma Marlar.
Photo by Isabel Fajardo Photography