Tom Shoemaker was a principal dancer with companies including the Atlanta Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Louisville Ballet, Augusta Ballet, and Charleston Ballet Theatre in a professional career that spanned 25 years. As a guest artist, he has worked with numerous dance and theatre companies throughout the U.S. and abroad. Mr. Shoemaker also served as ballet master for the Augusta ballet from 2001-2004. As a teacher, he has worked with students in high schools, performing arts schools, and colleges and at numerous summer programs and festivals throughout the southeastern United States. He received his training, starting at the age of 10, from Tommy Armour, Robert Pike and Judith Newman, in his hometown of Miami, Florida. Mr. Shoemaker now resides in Nashville, where he is currently teaching and choreographing for the Vanderbilt University Dance Program and is Artistic Director of Vanderbilt Dance Theatre. He has also been on faculty with MTSU Dance Program, APSU Dance Program and the Tennessee Governors School for the Arts Summer Program, and he also serves as Associate Artistic Director for StillPoint Dance Theatre. In May 2009, Shoemaker's ballet, just let go, was awarded "Best Ballet" at the Panoply Choreographic Competition, and he was again honored with the same award in 2010 for his work, vs. His ballet, Foreverly, (based on the lives of the Everly Brothers) was awarded "Best Live Performance of 2005" by the Augusta Chronicle. In 2006, Thomas created his first children's ballet, an original adaptation of The Princess and the Pea and followed that up with The Ugly Duckling in 2008.