SUMMER FACULTY 2023
Ballet, Contemporary, Conditioning
Michael Burke of Mexico, Missouri received his year-round training at Presser Performing Arts Center, School of Missouri Contemporary Ballet, and Beijing Dance Academy. Additionally, he spent his summers studying at Point Park University, Milwaukee Ballet, and Nashville Ballet. Michael graduated magna cum laude with a BFA in Ballet from University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music, where highlights of his performances included dancing in Anthony Krutzkamp’s Similar and the role of Benno in Swan Lake. Professionally, Michael has appeared with Terpsicorps Theatre of Dance, Kentucky Ballet Theatre, Birmingham Ballet, and Deos Contemporary Ballet and is currently in his fifth season as a company member with Saint Louis Ballet under the direction of Gen Horiuchi. During his time with Saint Louis Ballet he has enjoyed performing in the pas de deux of Christopher Wheeldon’s The American, Twyla Tharp’s Nine Sinatra Songs, George Balanchine’s Rubies and Serenade, as Hilarion in Giselle, and as an original cast member in works by Amy Seiwert, Emery LeCrone, Frances Patrelle, Kameron Saunders, and Kevin Jenkins.
Ms. Costanza brings years of professional experience and dance education to our summer program this year. Her knowledge and insight stems from her technical and traditional training as a scholarship student at the American Ballet Theatre School in New York City. Prior to joining Cleveland San Jose Ballet in 1978, she performed as a soloist with the Eglevsky Ballet in New York and Ballet International in London, England and throughout South Africa. As a principal dancer with Cleveland San Jose Ballet, her roles included Dennis Nahat's The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, George Balanchine's Serenade, The Four Temperaments, Jose Limon's Moor's Pavane, Anthony Tudor's Jardin Au Lilas, Agnes DeMille's Rodeo and Leonid Massine's Gaite Parisienne.As a rehearsal assistant and company teacher, Ms. Costanza also had the privilege of setting Mr. Nahat's Brahms Quintet on Ballet Nuevo Mundo de Caracs, Venezuela and Coppelia with the Atlanta Ballet. In 1990 she retired from the stage, becoming Artistic Coordinator for the School of Cleveland San Jose Ballet. Ms. Costanza's aspiration to teach dancers a conscious approach to movement is evident in her foundation and creative process.
Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary
Emily Fugett is originally from the south suburbs of Chicago. She first began dancing at the age of 3. Over the years she has danced at numerous local studios, striving for the best training. She has trained in various styles and competed at the national level. In 2012, with a love of ballet, she moved her training to Ballet Chicago. At Ballet Chicago she performed in various productions and honed her technique, with hopes of a career in dance. Emily started her professional career with the Chicago Repertory Ballet, a contemporary ballet company, for two seasons. She is now a company member of The Saint Louis Ballet. She is excited to have the opportunity to pass her knowledge and passion on to the young dancers.
Born and raised in St. Louis, Lauren began her dance education later in life at the age of 16. She grew up training in gymnastics and competitive cheerleading before finding and pursuing her passion in dance. Beginning at a local studio she was introduced to the dance world before moving to Springfield for college. While attending Missouri State University for a degree in Animation and Computer Science, Lauren studied ballet, modern, and conditioning with Springfield Ballet. She also performed in their pre-professional productions including a variety of roles in their annual performance of "The Nutcracker". Additionally, during her time in Springfield, she choreographed, directed, and animated multiple fine arts dance projects for the Missouri State Animation and Electronic Arts programs, as well as professionally. Now back in St. Louis Lauren has been training with St. Louis Ballet’s school and assistant teaching for over 4 years. She is excited to share her experience and passion with the younger dancers alongside the St. Louis Ballet staff.
Contemporary, Musical Theater, Yoga
Avery Lux graduated from the University of Wyoming with a B.F.A in Dance in 2017. While in college, she studied ballet, jazz, modern, contemporary, musical theatre, dance composition, pedagogy, and more. She had the honor of working with Limon Dance Company member, Pablo Fracisco Rubalcaba in a reconstruction of The Winged which was selected to perform at the Kennedy Center in the National College Dance Festival. After graduating, Avery choreographed Fascism: The Musical which received a Meritorious Achievement Award for choreography from KCACTF. She also attended the Open Jar Summer Institute where she trained with some of Broadway’s best including: Thayne Jasperson (from Hamilton), Jeff Whiting, and James Gray. Avery also has been teaching dance for 8 years and is a certified yoga, cycle, and group fitness instructor. She is currently the head of the dance program at Principia High School and a freelance dancer, choreographer, and actor. She just finished a season as a Trainee with the Big Muddy Dance Company. Some of her favorite credits include: Duke and Ella in Big Muddy’s Black, Brown, and Beige (soloist), That’s Life (choreographer), Assassins (Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme), 9 to 5 (Judy), Grease (Frenchy), The Music Man (Zaneeta Shinn), Almost Maine (Rhonda), Footloose (Dance Captain).
Christine Settembrino is an alumna of Princeton Ballet School’s Professional Training Program and the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). Additionally, she trained at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Ellison Ballet, and Charlotte Ballet during their summer programs. During Ms. Settembrino’s ten-year performance career, she danced with Dayton Ballet, Terpsicorps Theatre of Dance, Albany Berkshire Ballet, Birmingham Ballet, Missouri Contemporary Ballet (now Mareck Dance), and Deos Contemporary Ballet. Her classical repertoire has included Lilac Fairy and Princess Florine in The Sleeping Beauty, Sugar Plum Fairy and Snow Queen in The Nutcracker, Fouetté Girl in Graduation Ball, Kitri in Don Quixote (excerpts), and Pas de Trois and Four Little Swans in Swan Lake. Highlights from Ms. Settembrino’s contemporary performances have included Afternoon of a Faun by Salvatore Aiello (staged by Mel Tomlinson and Heather Maloy), Spun to the Sky by Dwight Rhoden, S.O.S. by Princess Grace Choreography Fellowship recipient Thang Dao, Similar by Anthony Krutzkamp, Responding to You by Ben Needham-Wood, and Andante by Steve Rooks. Ms. Settembrino is the Assistant Rehearsal Director for St. Louis Ballet and Rehearsal Director for Deos Contemporary Ballet’s summer seasons. She is also currently on faculty with DaySpring Arts & Education in St. Louis, where she has directed and choreographed a one-act production of The Dream and full-length Cinderella. Over the years, her students have received Top 24 placement at the Youth America Grand Prix and have gone on to careers with classical and contemporary ballet companies. Ms. Settembrino is an ABT® Certified Teacher and is also certified in Progressing Ballet Technique.
Ms. Wolfsberger's dance background is broad in scope and has taken her nationwide and throughout Europe. Born in St.Louis, she has been a teacher of classical ballet for over 40 years. Her early training came from Alexandria Zaharias, Nathalie LeVine, and Michael Simms. Her professional career began with Missouri Concert Ballet (now St.Louis Ballet) where she danced as Principal for over 10 years with directors Ludmila Dokoudovski and Antoni Zelewski.
In all humility and with great pride Lisa wants it known that she was one of the original and pioneering members of the St Louis Ballet Company. All those years ago Lisa and a group of local dancers dedicated themselves to realizing a dream for a professional ballet company in their home town of St Louis. She is extremely proud of her legacy and the dream realized!
She studied under Gary Hubler at Webster University while working towards a Bachelors degree in Dance. She has also studied extensively in New York City. Ms. Wolfsberger later became the ballet director at Dancers' Alley in Jefferson City Missouri. While living in Columbia Missouri, she was guest artist in residence, teaching ballet for Stephens College. Lisa has taught ballet at St. Mary's College and Notre Dame University in South Bend Indiana. When she lived in England, Ms. Wolfsberger taught master classes throughout the country and intiated her own training school. Lisa has been on staff with Chicago National Association of Dance Masters where she taught ballet and adjudicated dance competitions. Her students have gone on to dance professionally, earning college dance degrees, and teaching. Lisa continues to be invited as a guest artist, teaching master classes and summer programs throughout the country. She helped to intiate and was co-director of St. Louis Ballet School Ensemble, a student performance company. Ms. Wolfsberger has been on staff with St.Louis Ballet School since 2001.
Originally from Kansas City, Lauren began her training at the Kansas City Ballet. Upon graduating she moved to New York City to dance under Gelsey Kirkland at the Joffrey Ballet. She continued her training and performance at Ballet Austin, Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet, and Nashville Ballet’s 2nd company. Since joining the Saint Louis Ballet in 2013, Lauren has performed in numerous ballets by renowned choreographers including George Balanchine, Twyla Tharp, Christopher Wheeldon, Gen Horiuchi, Emery Lecrone, and Christopher d’Amboise. Her featured roles include the Pas de Deux couple in Gerald Arpino’s “Light Rain”, Snow Queen in “The Nutcracker”, Candide and Jewels from “Sleeping Beauty”, Lead Swan in “Swan Lake”, Summer Fairy and Gypsy Queen in “Cinderella”. Lauren discovered her love of teaching in 2015 when she joined the Saint Louis Ballet School faculty.
Born and raised in St. Louis, Ms. Elgani has toured the world with Britney Spears, N’ SYNC, Justin Timberlake, Backstreet Boys, Christina Aguilera and more. Local grown dancer and performer, Angela is back in her home town with her 6 year old daughter. Her lifelong passion for dance has accumulated over the years as she has trained/mastered almost every style of dance. She also has skills in choreography, productions, and singing.
Ms. Golio is a native of the Bronx, New York. She has been in the dance world for over 35 years with experience in dance training, instruction, performing and choreography. Dana comes from a dancing family. Her sister at present owns two studios in the NY area. Her parents, who were professional ballroom dancers, started training Dana at the tender age of 5. Dana along with her sister and parents won numerous awards. Dana took all subjects of dance throughout her life, such as Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Modern, Acro and of course Ballroom. Dana also trained with many teachers in the New York City area such as Mr. Al Gilbert, Charles Kelley, the Hoctor Family, and many other renowned instructors. She has always stayed faithful to her teacher and mentor Miss Dorothy who is still teaching in the Westchester area of NY. She was also a member of the dance troupe "The Doreyettes," which traveled around the tri-state area performing for all types or organizations, primarily the New York State Beauty Pageant.
Courtney's performing arts career spans the last two decades. She got her start in the circus where she has performed, coached, and trained a variety of aerial and ground acts throughout the United States, Caribbean, Canada, and China. Her touring experience has taken her to 45 states with shows such as Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, SeaWorld, Club Med, and others. Her earliest professional aspiration, however, was to be a dancer. She was most influenced by the training she received at The Center for Contemporary Dance in Winter Park, FL and Esquina Tango in Austin, TX. She began teaching ballroom dance at Majestic Dance Studio in St. Louis in 2016. Courtney can currently be found producing dance content for special events throughout the greater St. Louis region as a way of sharing her love of all things ballroom.
Ms. McCart received her training at St Louis Ballet School with Gen Horiuchi and Ellen Costanza. She continued her training at Charlotte Ballet’s Summer Intensive and attended Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Summer Intensive with a merit scholarship from the Dance Council. Lauren has danced professionally with the Saint Louis Ballet and with Missouri Ballet Theatre. She has performed in George Balanchine's “Serenade”, Pas de Trois in "Swan Lake",The Sugar Plum Fairy in "The Nutcracker", as well as in various roles in "Giselle", "Cinderella" and "The Sleeping Beauty". Along with her passion for ballet, she loves musical theatre and trained with LifeLight Youth Theatre. She performed as Belle in “Beauty and The Beast”, The Narrator in “Joseph and the Technicolor Dream Coat”, and has performed in the Muny chorus.
Ashley Taylor is a pre-professional dancer, choreographer, educator, makeup artist and model in the STL area. Soaring in the limelight you can catch her dancing alongside The Voice's Kennedy Holmes in the downtown STL Blues victory parade, strutting down the runway of The Fur and Leather Centre's celebrity viewing, or giving back to her community teaching and enriching the youth. She is an educator to young adolescents at Church on the Rock, St. Louis Ballet, Karah's Academy of Dance and Performing Arts, and an advocate for inclusivity and positivity. Teaching them dance fundamentals and basic skill sets, making sure each child leaves feeling seen, challenged, and in good spirit. At Yes Honey Studios she teaches high interval follow-the-leader dance classes offering everyone the safe space to move freely and love their body- while still breaking sweat. As a creative artist, she's very versatile. Catch her in front of the camera of fashion shows, print, commercial, lifestyle, and fitness media. Expanding her artistry moving forward she plans to pursue a degree in social media marketing/management and fashion business administration to combine her passions all in one.
Rebecca Cornett has been dancing as a company dancer with the St. Louis Ballet since 2014, where she has danced various roles such as Juliet in Gen Horiuchi’s Romeo and Juliet, Nine Sinatra Songs by Twyla Tharp, the Turning Girl in George Balanchine’s Who Cares?, Neapolitan in Gen Horiuchi’s Swan Lake, Winter Fairy in Gen Horiuchi’s Cinderella, and Princess Florine in Gen Horiuchi’s Sleeping Beauty. She has also worked with several choreographers, including Greg Dolbashian, Emery LeCrone, Tom Gold, and Michael Uthoff. Before St. Louis Ballet, she trained at Pacific Northwest Ballet under the direction of Peter Boal and Boston Ballet School under the direction of Margaret Tracey. She won the bronze medal at the World Ballet Competition in the pre-professional category in 2010.
Mr. Ellis was born and raised in McHenry, IL. After 14 years of training with Judith Svalander School of Ballet; Colin attended Indiana University and graduated in three years with a BS in Ballet Performance with an outside field in arts management. After graduating, Colin went to BalletMet of Columbus, OH’s 2nd company for a year before beginning his career as a company member with St. Louis Ballet in 2017. Colin will be approaching his 4th season with the St. Louis ballet Company. Throughout his college and company years, Colin has had the privilege to perform works from George Balanchine, Anthony Tudor, Paul Taylor, Merce Cunningham, Gen Horiuchi, Edwaard Liang, Gustavo Ramirez Sanso, Michael Pink, and Michael Vernon, among others. Colin has been teaching ballet, character, contemporary, men’s, partnering, pre-pointe, and pointe since 2014 and is excited to continue to teach the students of St. Louis.
Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz,
Musical Theater, Storybook
Kendall is thrilled to be in her second year on faculty at Saint Louis Ballet School. Originally from Springfield IL, Kendall grew up dancing with the Springfield Ballet Company and performed in theatrical productions such as “West Side Story” with the Springfield Muni Opera. In May of 2020, she graduated with departmental honors with a BFA in Dance, emphasis in Ballet, from Webster University. At Webster, Kendall trained with Michael Uthoff, Alicia Graf Mack, Maggi Dueker, Beckah Reed, and worked with many choreographers around the country. In the summer of 2018, she studied abroad in Geneva, Switzerland to study Ballet and European Contemporary Dance. Since Graduating, she danced in “Do not go Gentle” with choreography by Jacob Henss and performed with The Big Muddy Dance Company as a trainee for their 2020-2021 season.
Ms. Houston received her training as a scholarship student from Theresa Lee Crawford in Detroit, Michigan, the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, and the Virginia School of the Arts under the direction of Petrus Bosman and David Keener, augmenting studies at summer programs in Houston, Boston, Cleveland, and Italy. As a former member of Saint Louis Ballet, Ms. Houston performed featured roles in ballets by numerous choreographers including George Balanchine, Gen Horiuchi, and Francis Patrelle. Ms. Houston has taught ballet in the St. Louis area since 1998. Also previously holding the title of Co-Artistic Director at Alexandra Ballet, during her twelve years there she taught all levels, oversaw rehearsals, served on the Board of Directors, tended to administrative duties, was a director for Regional Dance America, choreographed original works and restaged classics by Bournonville and Petipa. A lifelong enthusiast of various syllabi and repertoire, Ms. Houston has been influenced by the styles of Ashton, Balanchine, Cecchetti, Preobajenska, Vagonova, and considers the Bournonville style to be a particular specialty in her teaching. Having returned to the staff of Saint Louis Ballet School in 2015, Ms. Houston also serves as Rehearsal Director for the company.
Ms. Paxton took her first dance class at the age of 5 and it was love at first step. Over the past 38 years she has studied the art of Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Contemporary, Lyrical, Musical Theater, Hip-Hop & Modern. In her years of training, she has been lucky to study under some of the biggest names in the industry today, such as Janice Barringer (Pace University NYC), Mia Michaels (Choreographer of Broadway’s Finding Neverland and Radio City Rockettes NYC Spectacular),Tyce Diorio (Emmy award winning choreographer on So You Think You Can Dance), Ray Leeper (Choreographer on So You Think You Can Dance), Marguerite Derricks (Choreographer of the 2009 movie "FAME" and the T.V. show "Bunheads.") Andrea has trained with Tremaine Dance, LA Dance Magic, The Edge Dance Center & Dupree Dance. She also minored in dance at Lindenwood University while majoring in Education. She is fortunate to have made a career out of her passion working as a professional dancer/singer, as well as dance instructor and award winning choreographer for the past 27 years. This job has offered many exciting opportunities and taken her all over the country, and across the world. Some highlights of her professional career include performing in shows at the Fox Theatre in St. Louis, The Lotte Theatre in Busan, South Korea, The Empire Theatre at Six Flags St. Louis, The Rio Hotel in Las Vegas, Harrah's in St. Louis, Kansas City and San Diego and Line Captain and Choreographer for St. Louis Steamers Steam Heat Dance Line. In 2020, she choreographed an ensemble piece for YAGP for Saint Louis Ballet School, which was invited to compete at the Grand Finals in New York City. Andrea is committed to her craft and committed to sharing and passing her passion and knowledge of dance onto her students.
Lori Wilson began her training at Ballet Lubbock under the direction of Yvonne Racz, and finished her training at The Rock School for Dance Education with Christopher Fleming, Mariaelena Ruiz and Servy Gallardo. She competed in Youth America Grand Prix and was a top twelve finalist. She studied at the Chautauqua Institute with Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux, Patricia McBride and Mark Diamond. She has performed with the North Carolina Dance Theatre and as a guest artist with the Evansville Dance Theatre. She joined Saint Louis Ballet in 2008 where she has performed in THE NUTCRACKER, ALLEGRO BRILLANTE, Gen Horiuchi's LE REVE, MORE MORRA, CINDERALLA, as Black Swan in SWAN LAKE as well as the leading role in DON QUIXOTE.