Deirdre Hawkins, the founder and artistic director of Hawkins School, holds an MA in Education, with a specialization in dance, from Stanford University. Her early training began with William and Harold Christensen and the San Francisco Ballet School. Deirdre studied modern dance under Frank Shawl and Victor Anderson and was a company member of the Shawl Anderson Modern Dance Center in Berkeley. As a graduate student at Stanford University, Ms. Hawkins was a teaching assistant in ballet and modern dance. She also co-founded “Children’s Dance at Stanford,” a program for children of students and alumni, and established the “Friends of Dance at Stanford,” a fundraising organization. Owner and director of the Hawkins School of Performing Arts for the past 26 years, Ms. Hawkins has won numerous regional and national awards for her choreography. She was recognized in 2003 by the City of Folsom for her “Outstanding contribution to the performing arts in Folsom,” her third such commendation by the city council. Deirdre has had the honor of working with Maestro Michael Neumann and the Folsom Symphony in productions of Peter and the Wolf and The Nutcracker as well as with the Camilla Symphony’s production of Stravinsky’s The Firebird. Ms. Hawkins is the proud mother of Luke, a dancer/singer/actor currently living in New York City.
Tapping since the age of seven, Luke Hawkins has grown from a three-time national champion to a highly sought-after performer and choreographer. Based out of New York City, Luke performs, choreographs and teaches, sharing his passion for tap around the world.
A string of performing credits began at age 8 and has included stage, screen and television. Stage highlights include the Broadway production of Xanadu and the Cirque du Soleil productions of Banana Shpeel (NYC) and Joya (Cancun, Mexico), along with the City Center Encore's productions of No, No, Nanette, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and On Your Toes. Dozens of regional performances across the country round out his extensive list of stage productions including starring roles in Footloose, Big River, Mary Poppins, West Side Story, Oklahoma and Gypsy.
He has lit up screens both large and small including tapping alongside Channing Tatum in Hail, Caesar! His television credits include the 2015 Tony Awards, Gossip Girl, One Life to Live, America's Got Talent, The Jerry Lewis Telethon and The Colbert Report.
Luke has tapped around the world including a tour as a soloist with the Manhattan Symphonie Orchestra. Closer to home he was assistant choreographer to Tony Nominee Sergio Trujillo in Chasing The Song at the Lajolla Playhouse.
His boyish charm and contagious enthusiasm mask a killer work ethic and dedication to his craft. When he isn’t performing and choreographing, Luke is on faculty at The Broadway Dance Center, is co-owner of the Hawkins School of Performing Arts in Folsom, California where he is Co-Artistic Director of the Hawkins Tap Company, and is on faculty of the Broadway Dreams Foundation. Luke was named Mr. New York in 2012, is a Capezio Athlete and is a proud member of SAG, AFTRA, AEA and AGVA.
Photos by Tony Nguyen Photography