Dancin' Dreams provides a family-friendly, non-competitive atmosphere which sets us apart from many other studios in town. Multi-sensory learning techniques are incorporated into all classes and instructors provide a fun and relaxed learning environment to help all students reach their full potential. Dance is our passion and we believe that this wonderful art form can increase self-esteem, boost self-confidence and provide an important outlet for all ages to learn how to use movement to express emotions.
We are not only a dance school, we are a family and welcome students of all ages (age 18 months - adult) and all abilities. Our instructors not only get to know their students but also strive to have open communication with parents.
Dancin' Dreams provides the opportunity for students to participate in one large recital production each year. We do not enter competitions and we do not have a competitive dance team or company. Our mission is to provide students with a place to have fun and build new friendships as well as an atmosphere that embraces the development of a solid dance foundation.
Karen has been dancing since 1976 and has been choreographing and teaching for 23 years. Karen’s dance training includes Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Broadway and Hip Hop along with some wonderful opportunities to learn from top choreographers: Mia Michaels, Wade Robson, Shane Sparks, Laurieann Gibson, Dave Scott and Chris Judd. She opened Dancin’ Dreams to offer a place where everyone can have fun and just enjoy the art of dance. Karen is very proud to share her love of dance with kids with special needs and is also proud to embrace many different styles of dance at Dancin' Dreams.
Karen’s life-long dance training and love of teaching children has led her to teach in local preschools incorporating many early childhood education principles into her fun movement/dance and music classes. Karen also works with teachers helping them to incorporate creative movement into their daily learning schedules. As a parent, she sees dance as a way to build self-esteem and self-confidence and also a very important outlet for children to learn to express themselves through movement.
"Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain!" - Anonymous
Traci has been dancing since she was 3 years old and has been choreographing for Dancin' Dreams since its opening in 2007. Her training includes ballet, tap and jazz. She believes dance is not just movement but a love for life. She wishes to instill in all her students the beauty of inner confidence, the gorgeousness of teamwork, of perseverance and of self-expression. She considers every student "her kids" because in their time together they aren't just kids on a class list, they become a part of her heart.
"Dance is the hidden language of the soul." ~Martha Graham
Hannah began her dance training at the age of eight in Circle Pines, MN. Here she grew studying Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Modern, and Pilates under the instruction of Laura McClanahan and dancers from companies James Sewell Ballet and Stuart Pimsler Dance and Theater. She has studied the Cecchetti method of ballet extensively at both her home studio and through three years participation in the Cecchetti Council of Americas Summer Intensives, bringing home a scholarship her final year. Hannah attended high school at the Saint Paul Conservatory for the Performing Artist in St. Paul, MN. Here her dance studies intensified under the direction of many notable performers and instructors. Hannah graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 2013 with a BA in dance. Along with performing, she has worked as a Director and Stage Manager for numerous productions. She is a certified Pilates mat instructor through Balanced Body University and is looking forward to expanding her work to include Pilates instruction. Hannah has taught at many outreach programs at local high schools, as well as workshops in Thailand and Iceland. She is very excited to be located here in Colorado, and looks forward to seeing what this new experience will cultivate in her both as a teacher and an artist.
Gretchen Hughes has been dancing since the age of 4. She received the majority of her classical ballet training through high school from The Northeast Atlanta Ballet in Lilburn, Georgia. With the Northeast Atlanta Ballet, Gretchen performed several premier roles such as Aurora in Sleeping Beauty and Snow Queen in The Nutcracker. Gretchen supplemented much of her dance training by attending rigorous summer intensives such as the Joffrey Ballet Summer Intensive, the Milwaukee Ballet Summer Intensive, and the Atlanta Ballet Summer Intensive. Additionally, Gretchen earned her Bachelors of the Arts degree in Dance with a ballet concentration from Kennesaw State University. She was a company member with Ballethnic Dance Company for three years. Gretchen has relocated to the Denver area, and she is so excited to continue pursuing her teaching career here at Dancin’ Dreams.
Kendyll began dancing before she could walk! She started dance classes at the age of two and seriously danced until the age of 17. She has a background in ballet, pointe, lyrical, modern, jazz, tap, hip-hop, ballroom, and danced competitively with a company for four years. Now, 23 years old Kendyll works as an elementary school teacher teaching 2nd grade. She loves to combine her biggest passions in life- teaching, dancing and working with children! She strives to be a prepared, proactive, and reflective dance teacher that facilitates the growth of all children though encouraging creativity and independence. She believes in being nurturing, involved, and patient and building a fun environment for all!
Bailey Levitt has been dancing for 16 years now. She has trained in hip hop, ballet, pointe, tap, poms, jazz, and lyrical. This will be her fourth year teaching at Dancin' Dreams. Bailey was on the Rangeview High School Poms Squad for all four years and was Head Captain for two of them. Bailey attends Metropolitan State University of Denver. She is majoring in Human Performance and Sport with a concentration in K-12 Physical Education. Bailey loves to run and stay moving. She cannot remember her life without dance and she is so excited to share her passion with others who want to express themselves through music and movement.
Shannon’s dance journey started at the impressionable age of 3, studying all phases of dance for 15 years in Rochester, MN. The dance studio quickly became her second home as she began an early teaching career at the age of 13. After graduating high school, she moved to Minneapolis, MN to attend the University of Minnesota, taught Hip Hop at the University, and coached at a competitive studio for 4 years. In 2008, Shannon created the first ever Competition Program at her hometown studio where she was the Director and Coach for 5 years. In 2014, Shannon worked as the Director and Coach for a Performance Program in Edina, MN. Her passion for dance continues to grow as she enjoys expanding her knowledge by attending various workshops, hosting workshops and clinics for dance teams, choreographing for various organizations, and finding innovative ways to bring dance to the community. Shannon is thrilled to be part of the Dancin’ Dreams family for her second season!
Sarah began dancing in second grade, at the Academy of Ballet Arts. She studied Ballet, Modern, Jazz, and Tap. She continued her dance training through the years, before attending college to study Early Childhood Education. After working as a preschool director for ten years, she once again turned toward dance, and began teaching Ballet, Jazz, and Tap at Alpine Academy of Dance. Sarah taught classes full time, in Gypsum, Eagle, Edwards, Avon, and Vail. Sarah has recently reenrolled in college, this time for an Elementary Ed degree, which she is seeking at Metropolitan State University. Teaching dance is the perfect opportunity for her, as she gets to combine her two great loves, Teaching and Dance!
Stephanie grew up dancing in the styles of Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical and Hip Hop. All four years of High School she was a part of and competed with the Arapahoe High School Cheerleading squad. Stephanie is currently attending school to become a Laboratory Technician and thinks that dance is a wonderfully fun way to work through life's stresses and challenges. She enjoys keeping a friendly and fun environment without pressure so that children are free to be who they are. She never takes herself too seriously and hopes to impart her love of dancing into all of her students.
Kaylee slipped on her first pair of ballet shoes at the age of 2 and has been dancing ever since! She grew up in Manchester, New Hampshire where she trained both recreationally and competitively for 15 years in ballet, pointe, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, tap, modern, and musical theatre. She performed and competed throughout New England where she received a ballet scholarship from Dance Masters of America and the opportunity to perform as a studio showcase dancer at the New York City Dance Alliance. She has also held roles in theatre productions including Oliver, Guys & Dolls, and Mary Poppins. Kaylee shared her passion for dance on a national stage when she competed for the title of Distinguished Young Woman of America at the 2013 National Finals in Mobile, Alabama. Since then, Kaylee has worked as an administrative assistant for The Dance Complex in Boston, MA and Your Soul’s Movement Performing Arts in Denver, CO. She was also a member of the Simmons College Dance Company and an officer on the University of Denver Dance Team. Kaylee recently graduated from DU with a B.S. in Biological Sciences and will be working as a 6th grade science teacher in DPS this fall! She is so excited to be joining the Dancin’ Dreams family this season and can’t wait to continue sharing her love of dance with her students!
Raul Orozco began his ballet training at Master Ballet Academy under Slawomir and Irena Wozniak. He continued his training at Houston Ballet Academy where he attended for the summer and year round program. Upon completion of the program, Raul competed in the 2014 YAGP semi-finals under the guidance of Slawomir Wozniak in Denver, Colorado. Raul and his partner placed first for pas de deux and made it to the final round in NYC. After the competition, Raul joined Colorado Ballet for the 2014-2015 season as a member of the studio company. He then went on to do various guest performances for Classical Ballet of Colorado, International Youth Ballet, Zikr Dance Ensemble, Phoenix Ballet and several others. For the 2017-2018 season, Raul will be dancing with Boulder Ballet as a member of the company.
Sarah grew up in Kentucky with limited access to dance programs. She did not take her first dance class until her freshman year of college. From that point on, she developed a love of dance. For over 10 years, she has been trained in Jazz, Tap, Ballet and Hip Hop, mostly at Dancin Dreams. She enjoys working with children and believes that every child should have the opportunity to express themselves, while also having fun. This will be her forth year teaching at Dancin Dreams.
Claire hails from Durango, Colorado where she began her training under the instruction of Shannon Mitchell-Hyatt, and Lisa Bodwalk. While there, she worked with renowned choreographers Nancy Cranborn, Brian Fisher and Robert Moses. She spent summers training at Ballet West Summer Academy, Atlanta Ballet, and Ballet Austin. Claire spent her time in Salty Lake City for Ballet West Academy's year round program and Ballet West 2. Claire spent time dancing with St. Louis Ballet in various roles in The Nutcracker, Serenade, Giselle, Sleeping Beauty, and Gen Horiuchi’s More Morra, along with other original works. After moving back to Colorado, Claire continued her education at Colorado State University, and danced with Canyon Concert Ballet Northern Colorado's premiere dance company in Principle roles as Wendy in Peter Pan, Clara and Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, while there she also grew her love for teaching with the Canyon Concert school. Claire joined Ballet Ariel five seasons ago, and has been teaching throughout the Denver area. She continues to grow as a dancer and teacher, and thanks her loving Husband and Family for their love and support.
Martha has been dancing since the age of 5. Her formal ballet training started in Texas at Newcomb School of Ballet and continued later in New Mexico with Hayden School of Ballet. In New Mexico Martha found her love and passion to be modern dance. She trained under Joanne Emmons who studied under Jose Limon, Merce Cunningham, and Eric Hawkins. Martha now blends those techniques with lyrical and contemporary tones. She has performed, directed, and choreographed for The Thorn, a now nationally touring production as well as performed with Christian recording artist Shannon Wexleberg. Martha has traveled around the country doing dance workshops for church dance groups and has lectured on dance at a local school. Martha recently taught at The Ballet Society in Colorado Springs where she choreographed over 30 pieces. Martha’s desire is to inspire and pull out of her students, emotion and passion. Besides dance Martha is a wife, mother of two, artist and has her own photography business.
Sara VanderVoort began dancing at the age of four in Pennsylvania. At age twelve she began her ballet training with Metropolitan Ballet Academy under the direction of Lisa Collins Vidnovic, Natalya Zeiger, and Denise D’Angelo. While in school she was selected by Roy Kaiser to perform in Pennsylvania Ballet’s The Nutcracker as Spanish. She also competed in YAGP, and went to Regional Dance America where she won several full scholarships to summer programs. Sara spent summers training with BalletX, Washington Ballet, and Atlanta Ballet. She joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company in 2012 and was promoted to apprentice in 2017. Then danced with Nashville Ballet under the direction of Paul Vasterling for a few seasons where she performed in several ballets, including Balanchine’s Serenade and Fairies in Peter Pan. In 2015 she returned to Colorado Ballet where she had the opportunity to perform some of her favorite ballets with the company, including Swan Corps in Swan Lake, Balanchine’s Serenade, and Princesses in Possokhov’s Firebird. Sara has been teaching ballet since 2012. She has taught for many schools including Nashville Ballet, Colorado Ballet, Legacy Dance Academy in TN, and for Denver Academy of Ballet’s summer intensives and young dancers’ workshops. Sara is currently working on her certification in Power Vinyasa Yoga with CorePower.