Erin Archambault, Owner/Dance Instructor

Erin has 19 years of experience as a dance instructor/choreographer, with 2 of those years also as a director. Her own dance training began at age 4 at the Ballet Arts Center in southeast Missouri and continued for more than 35 years into her adult life in studios at Missouri State University, University of Colorado Boulder, and several local dance studios in Springfield, MO. She has trained in a variety of dance styles including ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, and ballroom/Latin. Her performances include roles in Swan Lake, La Bayadere, Sleeping Beauty as the Lilac Fairy, and The Nutcracker as the Sugar Plum Fairy.

She began instructing dance in 2000 while also earning her Master's degree from MSU in Education for the Deaf/Hard of Hearing. She then taught for Springfield Public Schools from 2003-2006 as a teacher for students with learning disabilities and hearing loss.

In 2006 she started her own business, Dance Mission LLC, teaching dance on-location in area preschools. Since July 2016, Erin, her husband, Nick, son, Rowan, and daughter, Iyla, have been delighted to open Dance Mission's studio doors to you.

Leah Haines, Acro Yoga Instructor   Leah has always set out to experience new activities and interests. Her background includes hiking, biking, roller skating, softball, and snow skiing since early childhood. Later in life she took on paddleboarding, rock climbing, pole fitness, modeling, lyra hoop, and running 5K races. In 2015, her quest for a new amazing experience led her to Acro Yoga. Now, a practitioner in Acro Yoga for the past three years, Leah brings her skills to the students of Dance Mission. With her help and encouragement, students reach movement goals they never thought possible!

Leah Haines, Acro Yoga Instructor

Leah has always set out to experience new activities and interests. Her background includes hiking, biking, roller skating, softball, and snow skiing since early childhood. Later in life she took on paddleboarding, rock climbing, pole fitness, modeling, lyra hoop, and running 5K races. In 2015, her quest for a new amazing experience led her to Acro Yoga. Now, a practitioner in Acro Yoga for the past three years, Leah brings her skills to the students of Dance Mission. With her help and encouragement, students reach movement goals they never thought possible!

Jessica Manuel, Acro Yoga Instructor   Jessica began gymnastics at age 8, and since then has taken up a variety of athletics including weight lifting, pole fitness, Lyra hoop, and rock climbing. In 2015, Jessica discovered the growing community of acro yoga, which combines themes from gymnastics, dance, Icarian, and yoga into a flow-based art for two partners. She fell in love with it, and was especially inspired by acro yoga experts such as Victor Togunde and Max & Louis Lowenstein. Jessica is on a mission to see the budding art of acro yoga flourish in Springfield and is elated Dance Mission is a place where she can help acro yoga students emerge!

Jessica Manuel, Acro Yoga Instructor

Jessica began gymnastics at age 8, and since then has taken up a variety of athletics including weight lifting, pole fitness, Lyra hoop, and rock climbing. In 2015, Jessica discovered the growing community of acro yoga, which combines themes from gymnastics, dance, Icarian, and yoga into a flow-based art for two partners. She fell in love with it, and was especially inspired by acro yoga experts such as Victor Togunde and Max & Louis Lowenstein. Jessica is on a mission to see the budding art of acro yoga flourish in Springfield and is elated Dance Mission is a place where she can help acro yoga students emerge!

Maddy Mills, Dance Instructor   Maddy grew up in northern Indiana and spent most of her dance career at Works in Motion Dance Company. She began dancing at age 4, competing around age 13, and began instructing at age 17. She has experience in numerous styles of dance including ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, and Broadway, and she also received training in a Rockettes’ style dance workshop. Currently she is minoring in dance at Missouri State University and is ready to teach at Dance Mission!

Maddy Mills, Dance Instructor

Maddy grew up in northern Indiana and spent most of her dance career at Works in Motion Dance Company. She began dancing at age 4, competing around age 13, and began instructing at age 17. She has experience in numerous styles of dance including ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, and Broadway, and she also received training in a Rockettes’ style dance workshop. Currently she is minoring in dance at Missouri State University and is ready to teach at Dance Mission!

Cortney Denbow, Substitute Dance Instructor   Cortney started her dance career in jazz, pom, and hip hop and began competing at age 14. She earned a national title, several top 5 finishes, multiple regional titles, and special judges’ awards. She was also on the dance team at her high school, which won 3 state titles in hip hop, as well as winning 2nd and 3rd places for jazz and pom/dance. In 2014, she began teaching jazz, lyrical, ballet, and hip hop as well as coaching the petite/junior competitive team at her home studio in Illinois. She has been attending Missouri State University since 2015, was a dancer in the MO State Movement dance group from 2016-2017, and a Diamond Girl dancer for the MSU 2018 baseball team. Cortney is thrilled to be working at Dance Mission!

Cortney Denbow, Substitute Dance Instructor

Cortney started her dance career in jazz, pom, and hip hop and began competing at age 14. She earned a national title, several top 5 finishes, multiple regional titles, and special judges’ awards. She was also on the dance team at her high school, which won 3 state titles in hip hop, as well as winning 2nd and 3rd places for jazz and pom/dance. In 2014, she began teaching jazz, lyrical, ballet, and hip hop as well as coaching the petite/junior competitive team at her home studio in Illinois. She has been attending Missouri State University since 2015, was a dancer in the MO State Movement dance group from 2016-2017, and a Diamond Girl dancer for the MSU 2018 baseball team. Cortney is thrilled to be working at Dance Mission!

Kayla Sivils, Dance Instructor   Kayla started dance at age 3 and started competing around age 12. As a competitive dancer, she won numerous awards including “Judges Choice” and the title of “Miss Dance America” in 2014. In addition, her choreography for competitive dances has been awarded “First Overall” multiple times, and a special duet with her younger brother, Cory, won Talent on Parade’s Grand Champion Award. Aside from competitive dance, she has experience as a commercial dancer for Children’s Miracle Network, participating in their performance fundraisers and commercials. After graduating high school, she began working as a dance instructor, teaching in her areas of expertise, which include contemporary, tap, ballet, and jazz.

Kayla Sivils, Dance Instructor

Kayla started dance at age 3 and started competing around age 12. As a competitive dancer, she won numerous awards including “Judges Choice” and the title of “Miss Dance America” in 2014. In addition, her choreography for competitive dances has been awarded “First Overall” multiple times, and a special duet with her younger brother, Cory, won Talent on Parade’s Grand Champion Award. Aside from competitive dance, she has experience as a commercial dancer for Children’s Miracle Network, participating in their performance fundraisers and commercials. After graduating high school, she began working as a dance instructor, teaching in her areas of expertise, which include contemporary, tap, ballet, and jazz.

Kara Pagel, Dance Instructor   Kara started gymnastics and dance at age 4. After competing in gymnastics for 7 years and dance for 3 years, she was asked as a high-school student to begin her 19-year career as an instructor and competitive gymnastics coach. She has the unique abilities of being able to teach children expertly in the areas of both gymnastics and dance.

Kara Pagel, Dance Instructor

Kara started gymnastics and dance at age 4. After competing in gymnastics for 7 years and dance for 3 years, she was asked as a high-school student to begin her 19-year career as an instructor and competitive gymnastics coach. She has the unique abilities of being able to teach children expertly in the areas of both gymnastics and dance.

Rebecca Wallace, Aerial Silks and Dance Instructor   Aerial training at the Boulder Circus Center in Colorado for 3 years after competitive dance training in Illinois for 12 years has given Rebecca Wallace a solid background for instructing at Dance Mission! Her lifetime of dance has led her to conventions such as Urban Jam and Chicago Dance Connection, where she received instruction from the celebrity, Paula Abdul! Rebecca's love for ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop eventually led her 7 years ago to Aerial Silks. Since then she has instructed Aerial students for 4 years, ages 6-adult, and performed at 3 of the largest EDM festivals in the country: Caffeine, Glo, and Global Dance Fest at Red Rocks Amphitheatre. She is excited to share her passion for dance and aerial silks with her students at Dance Mission!

Rebecca Wallace, Aerial Silks and Dance Instructor

Aerial training at the Boulder Circus Center in Colorado for 3 years after competitive dance training in Illinois for 12 years has given Rebecca Wallace a solid background for instructing at Dance Mission! Her lifetime of dance has led her to conventions such as Urban Jam and Chicago Dance Connection, where she received instruction from the celebrity, Paula Abdul! Rebecca's love for ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop eventually led her 7 years ago to Aerial Silks. Since then she has instructed Aerial students for 4 years, ages 6-adult, and performed at 3 of the largest EDM festivals in the country: Caffeine, Glo, and Global Dance Fest at Red Rocks Amphitheatre. She is excited to share her passion for dance and aerial silks with her students at Dance Mission!

Ashlee Hanson, Office Assistant and Substitute Dance Instructor   Ashlee started dancing as a child and then danced throughout college on a competitive dance team and in college classes. She has been enrolled in the adult dance program at Dance Mission from 2017 to present. She has practiced and performed in multiple styles including ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, aerial silks and acroyoga. In addition to dancing, she obtained her Bachelors in Sociology from Central Methodist University, her Graduate Certificate in Forensic Child Psychology from Missouri State University, and became a Certified Personal Trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Inspired by her dance background, she was motivated to become part of the health and fitness world, where she aspires to help others achieve their goals in weight loss, strength, and flexibility. She feels at home at Dance Mission, which reminds her of being at the studio where she grew up learning to dance with values and passion for the art. Ashlee is proud to be a member of Dance Mission and happy to assist families with having wonderful life-long experiences and love for dance!

Ashlee Hanson, Office Assistant and Substitute Dance Instructor

Ashlee started dancing as a child and then danced throughout college on a competitive dance team and in college classes. She has been enrolled in the adult dance program at Dance Mission from 2017 to present. She has practiced and performed in multiple styles including ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, aerial silks and acroyoga. In addition to dancing, she obtained her Bachelors in Sociology from Central Methodist University, her Graduate Certificate in Forensic Child Psychology from Missouri State University, and became a Certified Personal Trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Inspired by her dance background, she was motivated to become part of the health and fitness world, where she aspires to help others achieve their goals in weight loss, strength, and flexibility. She feels at home at Dance Mission, which reminds her of being at the studio where she grew up learning to dance with values and passion for the art. Ashlee is proud to be a member of Dance Mission and happy to assist families with having wonderful life-long experiences and love for dance!

Lisa Smith, Piano Instructor   Lisa has played the piano for more than 17 years. In her spare time, she loves to dance - ballet, jazz, hip hop, ballroom, you name it! She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Music Therapy with an emphasis in piano from Drury University. Lisa began teaching piano lessons in 2014. Her teaching approach is to briefly delay the use of method books in order to focus on student awareness of their own personal motivations, strengths/weaknesses, and abilities regarding piano. Once students have the foundational understanding of self-awareness, they can better pursue their musical and non-musical goals. Lisa’s teaching methods include memorizing musical notation and rhythms to develop excellent sight-reading skills. Additionally, students learn how to process the music internally (through inner hearing) in order to execute the piece’s musicality. Lisa aspires to assist piano students at Dance Mission in developing their love for playing the piano and their love for music itself.

Lisa Smith, Piano Instructor

Lisa has played the piano for more than 17 years. In her spare time, she loves to dance - ballet, jazz, hip hop, ballroom, you name it! She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Music Therapy with an emphasis in piano from Drury University. Lisa began teaching piano lessons in 2014. Her teaching approach is to briefly delay the use of method books in order to focus on student awareness of their own personal motivations, strengths/weaknesses, and abilities regarding piano. Once students have the foundational understanding of self-awareness, they can better pursue their musical and non-musical goals. Lisa’s teaching methods include memorizing musical notation and rhythms to develop excellent sight-reading skills. Additionally, students learn how to process the music internally (through inner hearing) in order to execute the piece’s musicality. Lisa aspires to assist piano students at Dance Mission in developing their love for playing the piano and their love for music itself.

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