Nicole Lechner - Owner/Director | email@example.com |
Nicole is an accomplished dancer in all fields of dance. She began dancing at 5 years old in Minnetonka, MN. Nicole continued her training through college and experienced many classes at conventions with industry professionals. She began teaching at 13 years old and signed with KMA agency her senior year of high school as well as being invited to study with Myron Johnson and his dance company, Ballet of the Dolls. She also taught with Grant Whitaker, associated with Ballet of the Dolls, teaching international conventions and master classes through the Twin Cities. Nicole is best known for her unique and exciting choreography. Her students have earned many successes including, numerous title awards and scholarships at competition and conventions. As a teacher, Nicole combines technical expertise with artistry, using a precise method of training based on the Russian method. Nicole has taught at numerous distinguished dance studios around the Twin Cities area. In 2014 Nicole Lechner, Owner and Creative Director, dared to make her dreams come true by opening her own studio. Nicole's passion for dance, teaching and mentoring children and young adults has laid the foundation for her successes in the dance industry.
As a teacher I feel my job is to inspire, to give dancers the tools they need to be successful at whatever level of dance they want to achieve, to push dancers to their limits with discipline. I believe no matter what age or level a dancer is, they are there to grow and have fun. Whether it's a dancer aspiring to be a professional or a dancer who comes once a week, each one has his or her own personal goals and ambitions. We, as teachers, are here to take the time to teach and share our knowledge to young dancers on their way up.
Jessica Alstad | Ballet Director | firstname.lastname@example.org
Jessica Alstad is excited to begin her 2nd year at Northstar Dance our primary ballet/pointe instructor. She began her training at Southwest School of Dance, Marshall, MN. During her high school career, she competed at the regional and national level for Dance Olympus and Statewide Dance Competitions in ballet, jazz, tap, musical theatre, lyrical, and modern dance. She received several elite titles in solos, duets and small groups at Dance Olympus Nationals. Highlight performances included coveted roles as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Clara in the school's annual Nutcracker production, which she performed alongside professional company members of Minnesota Dance Theatre, Duluth. While on a Dance Management scholarship to Oklahoma City University, she completed a two-year tenure and performed with the OCU Spirit Dance Company and Liturgical Dance Company, under the artistic direction of Jo Rowan. Coursework for her dance minor was completed at Minnesota State University, Mankato where she performed with MSU's Theatre and Dance Department in their bi-annual student showcase. Currently, Jessica continues her dance education at Zenon Dance Company, as well as performs, choreographs, and teaches at Fine Arts School of Ballet, Mankato. Her choreography has been performed at the historic Fitzgerald Theatre in St. Paul and displayed in productions of the Nutcracker, Miracle on 34th Street The Ballet and multiple community-based stage shows. Jessica believes ballet is the root of all dance genres and strives to instill in her students the importance of controlled technique, strong dance vocabulary, and appreciation for classical artistry.
Alexis Heruth | Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Contemporary, & Modern.
Graduated from Mankato State University with the honorable distinction of cum laude. In the spring of 2014, She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in dance. While at MSU Alexis traveled to St. Olaf College, University of Wisconsin, Madison and Milwaukee, and hosted the American College Dance Festival, where she was the assistant to the director. She performed in several Gala concerts, including Daniel Stark's Crash, which was selected for the Kennedy Center. During her time at school she had a opportunity to dance in works by Zenon Dance Company, Stuart Pimsler, Alan Sener, Mary Davies Stark, Jeffrey Petterson, Penelope Freech, Gabriel Anderson, Lynn Andrews, Dr. Julie Kerr-Berry, and Daniel Stark. At Mankato, she was the student choreographer for two main stage shows, the musical, Spring Awakening, where she received recognition from the Kennedy Center and Carmina Burana, the first collaboration between the theatre and dance department along with the music program. Alexis hopes to continue her journey creating other choreographic material. She received the Bunny Just Musical Theatre scholarship two years in a row, along with several outstanding performance awards. Alexis currently dances with Alternative Motion Project.
Katherine Griffs | Leaps & Turns, Flexibility & Stretching
Katherine began dancing at the age of three when her mother noticed her inability to sit still during violin lessons. She started dancing recreationally and later moved on to compete at both regional and national levels in the styles of tap, jazz, ballet, and lyrical for 15 years. Katherine’s passion for dance was further nurtured at St. Olaf College where she pursued a dance major, graduating magna cum laude with departmental distinction in dance. Katherine has had the privilege to work with countless talented artists and companies including Mandy Moore, Greg Russell, Alex Little, and Off-Leash Area. She continues to follow her love of movement as an instructor of dance and as a performer with Stuart Pimsler Dance & Theater, a touring dance company based in Minneapolis. Katherine strives to empower her students, finding no greater joy than seeing dancers learn and grow in the safe space they create together.
Abby Pleiss | Creative Movement, Recreational Tap & Jazz
“Dance is the hidden language of the soul”. Abby is as passionate about performing dance, as she is teaching dance. She has spent all of her life involved in dance. From putting on imaginative dance concerts for her dolls, studying at private and public dance studios, a member of her high school dance team, as well as choreographer and captain, a dance teacher for children ages 4 to 11 for summer recreational programs and most recently (March 2017), a historical dancing tour of Paris, France. This May (2018), she will graduate with an undergraduate degree in Dance Education from Minnesota State University, Mankato. A highlight of her senior year of college was to have her student work chosen to perform for the Faculty Spring Dance Concert. While in college, Abby has had the opportunity to train and perform in works choreographed by Dr. Julie Kerr-Berry, Daniel Stark, and Giselle Mejia. Abby is excited to share the language of dance and her passion with her students and watch her students grow.