FACULTY

 

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Michelle Bellamy-Arndt

Principal / Executive Director

Michelle Bellamy-Arndt, founder and Director of The Dance Works, has been dancing thru life from the moment she put on her first pair of tap shoes. Michelle began her dance training at an early age concentrating on ballet, tap, jazz, and lyrical styles of dance. She attended the University of Nebraska, and Creighton University where she studied business management and dance.

Michelle has over 30 years of teaching and directing experience, and has had the pleasure of studying with renowned teachers such as Gus Giordano, Brenda Buffalino, Frank Hatchett, Diane Walker and Luigi. Michelle is grateful to all of the masters of the dance art form in which she has had the opportunity to study with or simply be influenced by. Michelle continues to be a student of dance by attending seminars, regional and national conventions and teacher workshops.

Michelle has owned and operated dance studios in Iowa, Colorado, and Virginia before opening The Dance Works in Round Rock, Texas in 1998. Michelle believes The Dance Works is a vehicle for her dancers in bringing them together not only with the talents of a professional staff and quality facilities, but giving them true community and opportunity as both dancers and young leaders. Whether their goals are recreational, regional success or professional, Michelle wants her students to come away with impeccable technique, responsible discipline and a positive character that goes with them throughout their lifetime.


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Tracey Hill Lowe

Director of TheatreWorks
Primary Levels, and Body Drop: Instructor/Choreographer

Tracey has been part of The DanceWorks family since 2003, and opened The TheatreWorks as Director in 2014. She is a current member of the Texas Educational Theatre Association, and a three year veteran and yearly attendee of the Broadway Teachers Workshop in New York City.

Tracey has studied dance (tap, jazz, ballet, hip hop, contemporary, and musical theater) in Utah, Missouri, Washington, and Texas. As a dancer/actor, Tracey has appeared in television and print ads, and performed in numerous shows and reviews. Favorites include How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, No, No, Nannette, Wizard of Oz, Oklahoma!, Can Can, and Carnival, among others. She has been blessed to learn from and study with many of her dance and theatre heroes, including Ann Reinking and Megan Hilty.

As an instructor, director, and choreographer, Tracey has taught various levels of tap, jazz, ballet, and musical theater for the last 18 years. She is also a certified group fitness instructor and currently teaches a hip hop cardio format that she absolutely loves. She is grateful to have been recognized with entertainment and choreography awards over the years, and especially proud of the DanceWorks Elite Team winning the Encore 2016 National Championship title with their hilarious and spirited performance of “Stepsisters Lament”.

Ms. Tracey has added writing to her list of interests, and after several skits, one-acts, and songs over the years, her first musical was completed and opened TheatreWorks second season. It is currently under copyright and set to be published later this year.


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Kali Boyd

Team Director
Instructor/Choreographer

Kali attended Kilgore College where she was a Kilgore College Rangerette and Swingster for two years. As a Rangerette, she performed in Washington D.C. for the inaugural celebration for President George W. Bush and for Carnival Cruise Lines. After Kilgore, she studied dance at Texas Woman’s University where she performed with CholoRock a local dance company. For the past 10 years, Kali has traveled all over the United States teaching summer camps and judging regional and national competitions with MA Dance and StageOne National Dance Competitions. Kali has had the opportunity to be the Head Choreographer for the Capital One Bowl games in Orlando, FL. Working with Grammy nominated country singers Dierks Bentley and Hunter Hayes for the halftime performance. She is also the Head Choreographer for the AT&T Cotton Bowl Pre-game performances. She also spends time choreographing for the NHL Dallas Stars Ice girls, Frisco Texas Legends Dancers AHL Texas Stars Ice Girls. For the Past 7 years she travels to New York to work with the Spirit of America dancers who perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.


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Stephanie Patrick

Instructor/Choreographer

Stephanie Patrick is happy to be back in Texas! Since 2012, she has directed, choreographed, written, and performed for Stephanie Patrick Dance in Texas, North Carolina, and California. In 2015, the company was granted the Starving Artists Award from Principal Creative Performing Arts, and two residencies from SAFE House Arts in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2016, SPD received the Dance Artist Development Award from Arcos Dance in Austin. Stephanie has danced for Andrea Torres Dance Company, Twisted Oak Theatre, Asheville Contemporary Dance Theatre, Asheville Ballet, and apprenticed with Tapestry Dance Company. She has professionally taught for eight years, including at City Dance in San Francisco. You can view her work at www.StephaniePatrick.me.


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Rachel Clear

Instructor/Choreographer

Rachel Clear began dancing at the age of four, and continued on through college. Growing up, she competed with Dancentre of Edinburg’s intermediate, junior, and senior companies at Showtime International and Showstopper competitions, sometimes competing with her own choreography. She also taught and choreographed for Dancentre’s young choreographer’s showcase during her time as a student there. Rachel performed as a principal dancer for three years with Edinburg Dance Theatre's pre-professional ballet company, and has studied under teachers from multiple professional companies around the world; including Maxsim Knish from The Moscow Ballet, Peter O'Brien from The Royal Ballet of London and Alvin Ailey Dance Company, Susan Connally from the San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet, Kathy Dacey from the New York City Rockettes, Iyun Harrison from the Julliard School and Ballet Hispanico of New York,  current "Cats" star Tyler Hanes, and Andrea Guajardo from Ballet Nepantla. In middle and high school, she was accepted into multiple ballet intensives, including programs at Ballet Austin, American Ballet Theater, the Joffrey Ballet, and Cornish College of the Arts. She graduated as a dance major from the North East School of the Arts, one of the top 10 performing arts schools in America, in 2015. She competed with Texas Dance at the National Cheerleading and Dance Team Championship during her time at UT, and graduated as a 4-year member in the spring of 2019.


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Jason Rhodes

Instructor/Choreographer

Jason Rhodes is a native of Round Rock, TX and a graduate from McNeil High School. His professional pursuits revolve around various aspects of dance both in Texas and California as a performer, instructor and choreographer as well as freelance dance videography/photography.

Jason currently teaches Hip Hop in the Austin area and travels to produce dance videos throughout Texas. He also has traveled with dance conventions for onsite video production and social media management. He is continuously enhancing his skills by participating in choreography and fundamental dance classes throughout Texas along with conventions such as Monsters of Hip Hop and Misfits Dance Camp. His journeys have taken him to Los Angeles to receive lessons from many well-known top industry Hip Hop choreographers, such as Anthony Thomas, David Moore, Tony Bellissimo, SuperDave, Bdash, Ian Eastwood, Phillip Chbeeb, Matt Steffanina, and Kyle Hanagami.

Jason began his formal dance training at the age of nine. After a short break to explore sports and other arts, he came back to dance, specifically Hip Hop. What started as learning Hip Hop for fun turned into his passion. It led him to join a competitive dance crew while in high school and to compete in various dance competitions locally and regionally. Soon after, he began experimenting with many other styles of dance leading to participation in other competitive dance teams and duets of many of those other styles. Jason is grateful for the cross pollination of the other dance genres and their positive impact on his first love, Hip Hop.

Jason’s crew choreography and dance skills have been featured numerous times through RAW: Natural Born Artists. RAW is a non-profit artist organization with a global event footprint. His association with RAW has allowed him to perform and showcase his abilities through these large art show events and has been a featured entertainer at Emo’s Austin on numerous occasions.

Jason is a member of EPEK an Austin based competition team and New Genesis an Austin based performance company. He is also a backup dancer for Gisselle an iTunes top 100 pop artist, who has opened for some of today’s biggest artist including Sean Paul and T.I. She also headlines her own sold out tours.

Jason loves every aspect of dance and is ready to share his knowledge and passion.


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Liz Oxley

Instructor/Choreographer

Liz is originally from just outside Denver, Colorado and started her dance training at Parker Dance Academy. Alongside her ballet, jazz, modern, contemporary and hip hop training there, she was able to study with local companies; Cleo Parker Robinson and Kim Robards Dance. Once graduating from high school, Liz continued her Dance Education at Wichita State University, majoring in Dance Performance. While at school she performed and toured with Mid-America Dance Theatre, where she had the opportunity to work with Chelya Clawson, Sabrina Vasquez, Dre Dance (Andrew Palermo and Taye Diggs), Janice Garrett, Doug Varone, and Darrell Moultrie. Once leaving school, Liz moved to New York City where she had the pleasure of dancing with Decavich Choreography, Captiveflow Dance and Gotham Dance Theatre. Most recently before relocating to Austin, Liz presented her own choreography at ‘Launch’ a showcase for emerging choreographers in NYC. She is so excited to be joining the Danceworks family and can’t wait to share her passion for dance.



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Haley Sikes

Instructor/Choreographer

Haley Sikes is a dancer, performer, choreographer, and teacher based out of the Austin area. Haley is trained in all genres and has won numerous awards for her choreography.  In addition to working in the Austin Area, Haley also creates work for shows in Nevada.  Haley has worked alongside artists such as JoJo Gomez, Jake Kodish and Celeste Cancel. She has a fresh new view that she uses to spark creativity among other young artists and her students.  She’s extremely excited to be a part of the studio and working with all of her dancers.


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Brittany Johnson

Instructor/Choreographer

Brittany Johnson is a dance educator and choreographer who earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and a Minor in Management from Sam Houston State University (SHSU). Brittany began dancing at the age of three in Austin, TX. She has advanced training in ballet, tap, jazz, modern, contemporary, hip-hop, improvisation, partnering, and Pilates. Brittany has performed for notable artists such as Andy Noble, Dionne Sparkman Noble, Dana Nicolay, Evelyn Toh, and Vincent Calleros. She performed at The Vortex Theatre as a part of The Austin Tap Ensemble and danced professionally for Nicolay Dance Works in “A Wynne Home Alice.” Brittany also performed in two works at the American College Dance Association (ACDA) South-Central Conference, both of which were chosen for the ACDA Gala Concert. In addition to performing, Brittany presented her own choreography in several shows at SHSU, and set work at McNeil High School on both the McNeil Majestics and the McNeil Sapphire Dancers. Brittany is a strong believer in fostering a love of dance within her students and is excited to share her passion for the art form.


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Emmalie George

Instructor/Choreographer

Emmalie grew up in Houston TX where she began dancing at Boni’s Dance & Performing Arts Studio in The Woodlands, TX. From a young age she knew she wanted to pursue a career in dance, and trained with The Houston Metropolitan Dance Company, as well as joining their youth company. Emmalie graduated from the high school program at The University of North Carolina School of the Arts in 2015, under the direction of Susan Jaffe & Brenda Daniels. Here she had the opportunity to work with many esteemed choreographers, and was given the opportunity to dance works by Merce Cunningham, George Balanchine, Lucinda Childs, Twyla Tharp, and many more. After graduating from UNCSA, Emmalie left North Carolina to train at SUNY Purchase in Harrison, NY. There she had opportunities to work with many prestigious artists and choreographers throughout the summers as well as her time at Purchase. She had a wonderful opportunity to dance in a work commissioned by the Eryc Taylor Grant Foundation, which was performed at the Martha Graham Studio Theater in October of 2018. Emmalie graduated Magna Cum Laude from Purchase in May 2019, with her BFA in dance and is excited to be back in Austin to share her love for Ballet with The Dance Works!


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Yelena Konetchy

Instructor/Choreographer

Dance artist, teacher and filmmaker Yelena Konetchy lives in Austin, Texas, where she performs, teaches and choreographs for the stage and screen. Yelena began her career at The Illinois Ballet, followed by Charleston Ballet Theatre, Thel Dance Theatre as Company Manager, and a free- lance artist. She has been teaching for over 10 years and dancing over 20 years. Recently, she has introduced herself to film and has made short films, Solace Is, Bloom, and The Ivory Seed. In addition, she has worked with Sally Bliss of Tudor Foundation, Amanda McKerrow, Andrei Bossov, Grace Holmes, Meg Brooker, Lori Belilove, and Dawn Karlovsky. She can be found at the Library of Congress in preserving works of Isadora Duncan. She is also certified in Vaganova Ballet Technique on scholarship by Ballet Master John White, RAD syllabus by Lynn Wallis, and Lester Horton technique under Ana Marie Forsythe. She loves dance and encourages all to partake in one way or another.


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Lauren Mancias

Instructor/Choreographer

Lauren has been dancing since she was only 4 years old & spent most of her time training in the Austin area. She primarily learned from the DanceWorks, and spent 10 years performing on their various competition teams. This gave her the opportunity to expand her knowledge of dance at numerous conventions such as Adrenaline, Tremaine, Soul Escape and more. Some of Lauren’s most notable accomplishments in her dance career, thus far, have been many scholarships from programs such as AMDA & plenty of performance opportunities with Encore, Ballet Austin’s Youth Festival and more. Lauren has trained in many styles of dance, with ballet and contemporary being her favorite. She is happy to be back at her home studio to share her knowledge with other dancers!


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Ava Robles

Assistant Operations Manager, Master Barista and Baker Extraordinaire

Ava was born in Juarez, Mexico but raised in El Paso, TX. She moved to Austin, TX in 1998 to pursue a business degree but ended up in the culinary field. Ava is an honors graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in Austin, TX finishing up her certificates in the culinary and baked arts. Miss Ava served as the Executive Chef of La Union Station in New Mexico from 2008-2012. Her specialties include Latin and Hispanic pastries and various baked goods. Ava has been with the Dance Works since 2010.


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Mohra Johnson

Barista Extraordinaire

Mohra was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She moved to Georgia in 1990 to pursue a degree in Psychology. It was at Georgia College and State University where she met her husband Scott. They have been married for 17 years and have two daughters. They have lived all over the country settling in Austin in 2001.

After the birth of her oldest daughter Mohra decided to stay home full time. It was a rewarding choice, but in 2004 inspired by her grandmothers recipes and a passion for baking she decided to open her own business. Mama J’s Brownies. Mama J’s ships brownies and desserts all over the country and makes local deliveries.