Owners

Deirdre Hawkins, the founder and artistic director of Hawkins School, holds an MA in Education, with a specialization in dance, from Stanford University.  Her early training began with William and Harold Christensen and the San Francisco Ballet School.  Deirdre studied modern dance under Frank Shawl and Victor Anderson and was a company member of the Shawl Anderson Modern Dance Center in Berkeley. As a graduate student at Stanford University, Ms. Hawkins was a teaching assistant in ballet and modern dance. She also co-founded “Children’s Dance at Stanford,” a program for children of students and alumni, and established the “Friends of Dance at Stanford,” a fundraising organization.   Owner and director of the Hawkins School of Performing Arts for the past 26 years, Ms. Hawkins has won numerous regional and national awards for her choreography.  She was recognized in 2003 by the City of Folsom for her “Outstanding contribution to the performing arts in Folsom,” her third such commendation by the city council.   Deirdre has had the honor of working with Maestro Michael Neumann and the Folsom Symphony in productions of Peter and the Wolf and The Nutcracker as well as with the Camilla Symphony’s production of Stravinsky’s The Firebird.  Ms. Hawkins is the proud mother of Luke, a dancer/singer/actor currently living in New York City.

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LUKE HAWKINS BEGAN HIS DANCE TRAINING AT THE HAWKINS SCHOOL OF PERFORMING ARTS AT THE AGE OF SEVEN.  LUKE LANDED HIS FIRST PROFESSIONAL JOB WHEN HE PLAYED YOUNG DON LOCKWOOD IN CALIFORNIA MUSICAL THEATRE'S PRODUCTION OF SINGIN' IN THE RAIN.  WITH THE MENTORING OF TAP MASTER JERRY BURKE, LUKE WON THREE NATIONAL DANCE COMPETITION TITLES. AFTER ATTENDING THE BOSTON CONSERVATORY, LUKE TAPPED HIS WAY INTO ROLES IN XANADU ON BROADWAY, CIRQUE DU SOLEIL'S BANANA SHPEEL, AND NEW YORK CITY CENTER ENCORE'S PRODUCTIONS OF NO NO NANETTE, GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES AND ON YOUR TOES.  REGIONAL THEATRE:  OKLAHOMA! WILL PARKER, (MUSICAL THEATRE WEST); FOOTLOOSE, REN, (THE PALACE THEATRE NH); BIG RIVER, HUCK; GYPSY, TULSA (BARNSTORMERS THEATRE NH); JOHNNY GUITAR, TURKEY (SPEAKEASY STAGE CO., BOSTON); A GRAND NIGHT FOR SINGING, JASON (GLOUCESTER STAGE COMPANY); OVER THE TAVERN, RUDI PAZINSKI (SACRAMENTO THEATRE COMPANY); IRVING BERLIN'S WHITE CHRISTMAS; SACRAMENTO MUSIC CIRCUS, VARIOUS ROLES IN 15 DIFFERENT SHOWS.  TELEVISION CREDITS: GOSSIP GIRL, ONE LIFE TO LIVE, AMERICA'S GOT TALENT, THE JERRY LEWIS TELETHON, THE COLBERT REPORT.  WORLD TOUR:  WEST SIDE STORY (ACTION).  EUROPEAN TOUR: MAGIC OF THE DANCE.  CHINA TOUR WITH THE MANHATTAN SYMPHONY. LUKE PERFORMED IN AMMAN JORDAN AS ONE OF THE ORIGINAL MEMBERS OF NOAH RACEY'S NEW YORK SONG AND DANCE COMPANYHE IS AUXILIARY ARTISTIC DIRECTOR OF HAWKINS TAP COMPANY IN FOLSOM CA., MR. NEW YORK 2012; A CAPEZIO ATHLETE AND A MEMBER OF SAG/AFTRA/AEA/AGVA.  WWW.LUKEHAWKINS.COM

Faculty

TESSA BUYS GREW UP IN UTAH WHERE SHE TRAINED EXTENSIVELY IN JAZZ, HIP HOP, BALLET, CONTEMPORARY, ACTING, TAP AND BALLROOM WITH TEACHERS INCLUDING DERRYL YEAGER, Kim DelGrosso AND GARTH PEAY. AS A STUDENT SHE TOURED THE US PERFORMING AND COMPETING, AND SPENT TIME DURING HER SUMMERS TRAINING AT PRESTIGIOUS LOS ANGELES STUDIOS. AFTER LOCATING TO THE SACRAMENTO AREA, TESSA BEGAN TEACHING JAZZ, HIP HOP, CONTEMPORARY AND CHILDREN’S CLASSES AND WAS A MEMBER OF THE RUTH ROSENBERG DANCE ENSEMBLE. Today Tessa continues her education by attending master classes and teacher intensives across the country. Outside of dance TESSA IS A MOTHER TO THREE rambunctious BOYS and a darling little girl, as well as a published ARTIST IN THE SCRAPBOOKING INDUSTRY. She FEELS BLESSED TO HAVE BEEN TEACHING AND DIRECTING COMPETITION TROUPES AT THE HAWKINS SCHOOL OF PERFORMING ARTS SINCE 2001.

TESSA BUYS GREW UP IN UTAH WHERE SHE TRAINED EXTENSIVELY IN JAZZ, HIP HOP, BALLET, CONTEMPORARY, ACTING, TAP AND BALLROOM WITH TEACHERS INCLUDING DERRYL YEAGER, Kim DelGrosso AND GARTH PEAY. AS A STUDENT SHE TOURED THE US PERFORMING AND COMPETING, AND SPENT TIME DURING HER SUMMERS TRAINING AT PRESTIGIOUS LOS ANGELES STUDIOS. AFTER LOCATING TO THE SACRAMENTO AREA, TESSA BEGAN TEACHING JAZZ, HIP HOP, CONTEMPORARY AND CHILDREN’S CLASSES AND WAS A MEMBER OF THE RUTH ROSENBERG DANCE ENSEMBLE. Today Tessa continues her education by attending master classes and teacher intensives across the country. Outside of dance TESSA IS A MOTHER TO THREE rambunctious BOYS and a darling little girl, as well as a published ARTIST IN THE SCRAPBOOKING INDUSTRY. She FEELS BLESSED TO HAVE BEEN TEACHING AND DIRECTING COMPETITION TROUPES AT THE HAWKINS SCHOOL OF PERFORMING ARTS SINCE 2001.

Emily Lee Chew initially discovered her enthusiasm for dance and instructing as a student director for her high school dance company in Elk Grove, CA. Emilee has had the privilege to expand her hip-hop, contemporary, modern, jazz and ballet dance horizons training and performing with Red Bucket Dance Theatre, Greathouse of Dance, the CSU Sacramento Dance Department and several local hip-hop based dance companies. She currently co-directs Earth Kids (contemporary hip-hop), performs with TwoPoint4 Dance Theater (modern-contemporary) and teaches an array of classes at Hawkins School of Performing Arts. Miss Emilee strives to encourage strong work ethic, positive energy and individuality in her students. She hopes to instill a lesson she learned from her mentor, Melissa Bramham: Never say, "I can't."

Emily Lee Chew initially discovered her enthusiasm for dance and instructing as a student director for her high school dance company in Elk Grove, CA. Emilee has had the privilege to expand her hip-hop, contemporary, modern, jazz and ballet dance horizons training and performing with Red Bucket Dance Theatre, Greathouse of Dance, the CSU Sacramento Dance Department and several local hip-hop based dance companies. She currently co-directs Earth Kids (contemporary hip-hop), performs with TwoPoint4 Dance Theater (modern-contemporary) and teaches an array of classes at Hawkins School of Performing Arts. Miss Emilee strives to encourage strong work ethic, positive energy and individuality in her students. She hopes to instill a lesson she learned from her mentor, Melissa Bramham: Never say, "I can't."

Samuel Fulk is a professional ballet dancer with experience in Contemporary, Modern and Classical styles.  A dancer since a young age, Sam enjoys studying and performing many styles of dance, including Modern, African, Jazz, Hip Hop and Tap.  Born and raised in California, he grew up performing in musical theatre and dramatic productions.  When he decided to pursue a career in the performing arts, Sam joined the pre-professional company Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre, directed by Robert Kelley and Diane Cypher.   Samuel then went on to become a company member with Utah Regional Ballet for five seasons, a professional ballet company directed by Jacqueline Colledge.  While in Utah, Samuel also pursued a degree in dance from Utah Valley University (UVU) graduating in 2014 with a 3.8 GPA, and now holds a BFA in Dance, emphasis in Ballet.  A member of the prestigious honors society Phi Kappa Phi, Samuel had a full academic merit scholarship at the University and was a member of the Honors Program.   Sam has performed many principal and soloist roles in both classical and contemporary ballets.   With the experience gained from the dance program at UVU, Sam taught at Academy of Ballet directed by Lynne Thompson, and served as the Director of their second company Ballet Utah II North.  Since moving back to California, Sam has become a highly sought after dance instructor, teaching master classes in ballet technique and classical pas de deux.  In addition, Samuel has had numerous opportunities to choreograph on dancers with varying levels of experience, from beginning ballet dancers (age 10+) to professionals.  

Samuel Fulk is a professional ballet dancer with experience in Contemporary, Modern and Classical styles.  A dancer since a young age, Sam enjoys studying and performing many styles of dance, including Modern, African, Jazz, Hip Hop and Tap.  Born and raised in California, he grew up performing in musical theatre and dramatic productions.  When he decided to pursue a career in the performing arts, Sam joined the pre-professional company Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre, directed by Robert Kelley and Diane Cypher.  

Samuel then went on to become a company member with Utah Regional Ballet for five seasons, a professional ballet company directed by Jacqueline Colledge.  While in Utah, Samuel also pursued a degree in dance from Utah Valley University (UVU) graduating in 2014 with a 3.8 GPA, and now holds a BFA in Dance, emphasis in Ballet.  A member of the prestigious honors society Phi Kappa Phi, Samuel had a full academic merit scholarship at the University and was a member of the Honors Program.   Sam has performed many principal and soloist roles in both classical and contemporary ballets.  

With the experience gained from the dance program at UVU, Sam taught at Academy of Ballet directed by Lynne Thompson, and served as the Director of their second company Ballet Utah II North.  Since moving back to California, Sam has become a highly sought after dance instructor, teaching master classes in ballet technique and classical pas de deux.  In addition, Samuel has had numerous opportunities to choreograph on dancers with varying levels of experience, from beginning ballet dancers (age 10+) to professionals.
 

Since the age of three, Aly Homen has felt that dancing is more essential to her being than oxygen. Growing up in Roseville, CA, she trained at various family-oriented studios in ballet, jazz, lyrical, and contemporary, and dabbled a bit in Irish, tap, and musical theater. From age ten to nineteen, she performed with her studios’ jazz competition teams, performing styles ranging from Fosse and Broadway jazz to a capella lyrical pieces. At her very last competition, Starbound Nationals in South Lake Tahoe, she was honored to place in the top ten soloists as well as receiving the title of Miss Dance Spirit, an award for which she was nominated by her peers and mentors in recognition of her constant positivity and continual encouragement of those around her. The following year, Aly moved to Los Angeles to attend Santa Monica College as a Dance major. Though she had been training in technique and performance her entire life, it was during this time that she tapped more deeply into the artistry of dance. Her passion was fueled by her peers and mentors encouraging her to dig down and find the most honest expression of herself. She was introduced to classical modern techniques and explored the range of stories and impressions a dance piece can say to an audience, as well as training pointe technique approximately twenty hours per week. After a year and a half of rigorous training, Aly moved back home to Roseville and received her Associate’s degree from Sierra College in Natural Science. She began teaching jazz and ballet at Hawkins School of Performing Arts, finding an intense fulfillment in inspiring future generations of dancers. She is currently attending CSU Sacramento and will graduate in Spring 2017 with a minor in Philosophy and a B.A. in Dance. Aly is thrilled to be broadening her horizons in the dance education world, adding to her repertoire African-Caribbean Dunham technique as well as learning dance history and theory, and furthering her understanding of her own choreographic process. Under the artistic direction of Jacob Montoya, Aly is honored to be involved with Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, a nonprofit contemporary performance company. She thrives on the energy of those around her and loves to share her passion of dance and self expression!

Since the age of three, Aly Homen has felt that dancing is more essential to her being than oxygen. Growing up in Roseville, CA, she trained at various family-oriented studios in ballet, jazz, lyrical, and contemporary, and dabbled a bit in Irish, tap, and musical theater. From age ten to nineteen, she performed with her studios’ jazz competition teams, performing styles ranging from Fosse and Broadway jazz to a capella lyrical pieces. At her very last competition, Starbound Nationals in South Lake Tahoe, she was honored to place in the top ten soloists as well as receiving the title of Miss Dance Spirit, an award for which she was nominated by her peers and mentors in recognition of her constant positivity and continual encouragement of those around her. The following year, Aly moved to Los Angeles to attend Santa Monica College as a Dance major. Though she had been training in technique and performance her entire life, it was during this time that she tapped more deeply into the artistry of dance. Her passion was fueled by her peers and mentors encouraging her to dig down and find the most honest expression of herself. She was introduced to classical modern techniques and explored the range of stories and impressions a dance piece can say to an audience, as well as training pointe technique approximately twenty hours per week. After a year and a half of rigorous training, Aly moved back home to Roseville and received her Associate’s degree from Sierra College in Natural Science. She began teaching jazz and ballet at Hawkins School of Performing Arts, finding an intense fulfillment in inspiring future generations of dancers. She is currently attending CSU Sacramento and will graduate in Spring 2017 with a minor in Philosophy and a B.A. in Dance. Aly is thrilled to be broadening her horizons in the dance education world, adding to her repertoire African-Caribbean Dunham technique as well as learning dance history and theory, and furthering her understanding of her own choreographic process. Under the artistic direction of Jacob Montoya, Aly is honored to be involved with Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, a nonprofit contemporary performance company. She thrives on the energy of those around her and loves to share her passion of dance and self expression!

This is Shannon Mahoney's fourth year of teaching at Hawkins School of Performing Arts. She comes from both a strong dance and theatre background. She has danced with Colorado Ballet, receive her Bachelors in Fine Arts from the University of Wyoming, and her Masters in Fine Arts with an concentration in acting from California State University, Fullerton.  Upon graduating, she performed at the Kennedy Center, helped to co-found Six Chairs and a Couple Artists Theatre Company in Long Beach, and danced for Synthesis Dance Company in Los Angeles.  After moving to Sacramento, Shannon and her husband co-founded Big Idea Theatre where she held the position of Managing Director from 2008-2014.  She is proud that Big Idea Theatre is entering its tenth season, and is recognized as one of the best places to see theatre in Sacramento according Sacramento Magazine and Sacramento News and Review. In the past 5 years Shannon has choreographed Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play, Anna Karenina, Uncanny Valley, and ENRON at Capital Stage Theatre Company, Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice and Grapes of Wrath at Sacramento Theatre Company, and Not Medea and Spinning Into Light at B Street Theatre Company. She directed Rapture Blister Burn at Capital Stage, Sense and Sensibility at Sacramento Theatre Company, and New Jerusalem at Big Idea Theatre (where she received an Ely Award for Best Direction 2013). She has taught dance at The Dance Factory in Los Angeles and locally at Lines School of Performing Arts and Impulse Dance Studio in Roseville. As an artist and educator, she believes the role of dance is to inspire, communicate, educate and build a sense of community.  She approaches her work with the belief that the best creative environments are those that embrace a well-organized process, collaboration, communication, respect, and fun.  Shannon is thrilled to be a part of the Hawkins family.

This is Shannon Mahoney's fourth year of teaching at Hawkins School of Performing Arts. She comes from both a strong dance and theatre background. She has danced with Colorado Ballet, receive her Bachelors in Fine Arts from the University of Wyoming, and her Masters in Fine Arts with an concentration in acting from California State University, Fullerton.  Upon graduating, she performed at the Kennedy Center, helped to co-found Six Chairs and a Couple Artists Theatre Company in Long Beach, and danced for Synthesis Dance Company in Los Angeles.  After moving to Sacramento, Shannon and her husband co-founded Big Idea Theatre where she held the position of Managing Director from 2008-2014.  She is proud that Big Idea Theatre is entering its tenth season, and is recognized as one of the best places to see theatre in Sacramento according Sacramento Magazine and Sacramento News and Review.

In the past 5 years Shannon has choreographed Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play, Anna Karenina, Uncanny Valley, and ENRON at Capital Stage Theatre Company, Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice and Grapes of Wrath at Sacramento Theatre Company, and Not Medea and Spinning Into Light at B Street Theatre Company. She directed Rapture Blister Burn at Capital Stage, Sense and Sensibility at Sacramento Theatre Company, and New Jerusalem at Big Idea Theatre (where she received an Ely Award for Best Direction 2013).

She has taught dance at The Dance Factory in Los Angeles and locally at Lines School of Performing Arts and Impulse Dance Studio in Roseville. As an artist and educator, she believes the role of dance is to inspire, communicate, educate and build a sense of community.  She approaches her work with the belief that the best creative environments are those that embrace a well-organized process, collaboration, communication, respect, and fun.  Shannon is thrilled to be a part of the Hawkins family.

SHANNON MCFADDen has been dancing since age 10 and still continues her training. She has studied ballet, tap and jazz under the direction of Joan Fee, LaVerne Krei and Rita Matthews among others. It was her daughter's training that brought her to Hawkins in 2013. While her daughter was busy taking her numerous dance classes, Shannon took adult classes, was occasionally asked to substitute, and began teaching her own classes this year. Though her background is not in teaching, she has always found herself in teacher/coaching roles including a position with Easter Seals where she worked with people with disabilities helping the to be independent. Her favorite part of teaching is sharing her knowledge with others and watching students reach their goals. When she is not teaching, Shannon can be found dancing with Hawkins adult company Steppin' Out, spending time with her husband and two daughters, camping, snowshoeing and hiking. 

SHANNON MCFADDen has been dancing since age 10 and still continues her training. She has studied ballet, tap and jazz under the direction of Joan Fee, LaVerne Krei and Rita Matthews among others. It was her daughter's training that brought her to Hawkins in 2013. While her daughter was busy taking her numerous dance classes, Shannon took adult classes, was occasionally asked to substitute, and began teaching her own classes this year. Though her background is not in teaching, she has always found herself in teacher/coaching roles including a position with Easter Seals where she worked with people with disabilities helping the to be independent. Her favorite part of teaching is sharing her knowledge with others and watching students reach their goals. When she is not teaching, Shannon can be found dancing with Hawkins adult company Steppin' Out, spending time with her husband and two daughters, camping, snowshoeing and hiking. 

Jacob Montoya is a highly sought-after teacher and internationally awarded choreographer trained in ballet, modern, tap and jazz. Based in Sacramento, Jacob received his education in dance at the University of Nevada Las Vegas where he was certified in the Erick Hawkins Technique and later received Lester Horton training while dancing with the Las Vegas Contemporary Dance Theatre. He has also danced professionally throughout the world at numerous festivals, competitions and shows. Currently, he is the Artistic Director for the award-winning Hawkins Contemporary Jazz Company in Folsom, California, and is the Founder and Artistic Director for Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre. As Artistic Director for the Hawkins Contemporary Jazz Company, Jacob trains over 75 students each year. Focusing on both technique and performance, he was recognized in 2013 as Dance Educator of the Year by Co Dance. He stages a critically acclaimed production each spring and travels throughout the country to competitions where his companies have won hundreds of awards, including a coveted “Judge’s Pick” award at The Dance Awards. His students have been accepted into such prestigious programs as the American Ballet Theatre, Bolshoi Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre to expand their dance training.  Jacob is passionate about furthering his own training to provide the best instruction to his students.  He attends workshops across the nation to gain experience and understanding from as many dance styles as possible. He has been on staff at The Sacramento Ballet, Northern California Dance Conservatory and Sacramento Theatre Company and currently is the Resident Choreographer for the Roseville Unified School District. His choreography has won dozens of awards at national and international conventions and competitions including the 2015 Grand Prize at the Palm Desert International Choreographers Festival, where he has been selected as a finalist for three consecutive years. Jacob has choreographed more than a dozen shows for theaters throughout the region and has been recognized with a Sacramento Area Regional Theatre Alliance Elly Award. In 2015, Jacob founded Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, a non-profit dance company designed to support other local charities and to encourage young dancers and choreographers in the region. In just it’s first year, Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre raised over $15,000 for local programs. In partnership with the Hawkins School of Performing Arts, they hosted the first ever Choreographer’s Initiative, providing over $2000 in dance scholarships to the teen winners. 

Jacob Montoya is a highly sought-after teacher and internationally awarded choreographer trained in ballet, modern, tap and jazz. Based in Sacramento, Jacob received his education in dance at the University of Nevada Las Vegas where he was certified in the Erick Hawkins Technique and later received Lester Horton training while dancing with the Las Vegas Contemporary Dance Theatre. He has also danced professionally throughout the world at numerous festivals, competitions and shows. Currently, he is the Artistic Director for the award-winning Hawkins Contemporary Jazz Company in Folsom, California, and is the Founder and Artistic Director for Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre.

As Artistic Director for the Hawkins Contemporary Jazz Company, Jacob trains over 75 students each year. Focusing on both technique and performance, he was recognized in 2013 as Dance Educator of the Year by Co Dance. He stages a critically acclaimed production each spring and travels throughout the country to competitions where his companies have won hundreds of awards, including a coveted “Judge’s Pick” award at The Dance Awards. His students have been accepted into such prestigious programs as the American Ballet Theatre, Bolshoi Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre to expand their dance training. 

Jacob is passionate about furthering his own training to provide the best instruction to his students.  He attends workshops across the nation to gain experience and understanding from as many dance styles as possible. He has been on staff at The Sacramento Ballet, Northern California Dance Conservatory and Sacramento Theatre Company and currently is the Resident Choreographer for the Roseville Unified School District.

His choreography has won dozens of awards at national and international conventions and competitions including the 2015 Grand Prize at the Palm Desert International Choreographers Festival, where he has been selected as a finalist for three consecutive years. Jacob has choreographed more than a dozen shows for theaters throughout the region and has been recognized with a Sacramento Area Regional Theatre Alliance Elly Award.

In 2015, Jacob founded Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, a non-profit dance company designed to support other local charities and to encourage young dancers and choreographers in the region. In just it’s first year, Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre raised over $15,000 for local programs. In partnership with the Hawkins School of Performing Arts, they hosted the first ever Choreographer’s Initiative, providing over $2000 in dance scholarships to the teen winners. 

Erin (Born) hogan received her primary dance training under the direction of Margurite Phares.  At age ten, she joined the Phares Theatre Ballet.  During the eight years she was with PTB, Erin trained with many professional choreographers and teachers, spent two summers with the Boston Ballet, and gained an extensive background in ballet, modern, jazz and character dance.  At the age of eighteen, Erin began her professional career with Ballet Iowa under the directorship of internationally known and former Bolshoi Ballet dancers, Konstintin Uralsky and Irina Vasssileni-Uralsky.  Erin was a principal dancer with the company and danced in several classical and neoclassical ballets such as, Nutcracker, Chopiniana, La Bayadere, Swan Lake and many more.  Upon returning to Sacramento, Erin began teaching at Hawkins School of Performing Arts in 1999.  Erin has worked as a guest choreographer for The Folsom Lake civic Ballet and now the Hawkins Ballet Company.  Erin has taken several Hawkins' dancers to the international ballet competition "Youth America Grand Prix" in San Francisco and New York.  The students had an opportunity to work with internationally known teachers and choreographers in workshops at the San Francisco Ballet School and throughout New York City.  Erin is currently staying busy with teaching, private instruction and guest work with the Hawkins Ballet Company.  Erin is recently married to her husband, Robert and is also a busy mom to her eleven-year-old son, Colin, eight-year-old step-daughter, Haley and is happily expecting her third child at the end of August.

Erin (Born) hogan received her primary dance training under the direction of Margurite Phares.  At age ten, she joined the Phares Theatre Ballet.  During the eight years she was with PTB, Erin trained with many professional choreographers and teachers, spent two summers with the Boston Ballet, and gained an extensive background in ballet, modern, jazz and character dance.  At the age of eighteen, Erin began her professional career with Ballet Iowa under the directorship of internationally known and former Bolshoi Ballet dancers, Konstintin Uralsky and Irina Vasssileni-Uralsky.  Erin was a principal dancer with the company and danced in several classical and neoclassical ballets such as, Nutcracker, Chopiniana, La Bayadere, Swan Lake and many more.  Upon returning to Sacramento, Erin began teaching at Hawkins School of Performing Arts in 1999.  Erin has worked as a guest choreographer for The Folsom Lake civic Ballet and now the Hawkins Ballet Company.  Erin has taken several Hawkins' dancers to the international ballet competition "Youth America Grand Prix" in San Francisco and New York.  The students had an opportunity to work with internationally known teachers and choreographers in workshops at the San Francisco Ballet School and throughout New York City.  Erin is currently staying busy with teaching, private instruction and guest work with the Hawkins Ballet Company.  Erin is recently married to her husband, Robert and is also a busy mom to her eleven-year-old son, Colin, eight-year-old step-daughter, Haley and is happily expecting her third child at the end of August.

JEANNE MARIE JACOBSON is a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association and a former soloist with The Sacramento Ballet, where she was honored to perform featured roles in works by George Balanchine, David Lichine, Ron Cunningham, Bobbi Smith, and Amy Seiwert.  She has performed professionally with the ABC and CBS networks, Universal Pictures, California Musical Theatre, and E:motion Dance Ensemble (as a principal artist).  Ms. Jacobson has taught dance professionally since 2003 and was one of the founding faculty members of The School of The Sacramento Ballet. Her teaching style encourages students to develop an appreciation and understanding of classical and neoclassical ballet technique, musicality, performance, injury prevention, and dance history, enhancing their ability to make connections with their art and the world around them.  Jeanne received her classical ballet training from Yvonne Mounsey (New York City Ballet/Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo) and Rosemary Valaire (Royal Ballet, London) at The Westside School of Ballet in Santa Monica, California and studied theater and voice at The Santa Monica Playhouse, Crossroads School for The Arts and Sciences, and The Adderley School of Musical Theatre.  She received additional training from The San Francisco Ballet School (under Lola de Avila), American Ballet Theatre (under Rebecca Wright), and The Miami City Ballet School (under Edward Villella).  She was an inaugural recipient of The Rosemary Valaire Scholarship from Westside Ballet, won the First Place Award in Ballet at the Phi Beta Fraternity for the Creative and Performing Arts Competition, and placed as a semi-finalist in ballet at the prestigious Spotlight Awards at the Los Angeles Music Center.  For more information, please visit www.jeanneteachesdance.blogspot.com

JEANNE MARIE JACOBSON is a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association and a former soloist with The Sacramento Ballet, where she was honored to perform featured roles in works by George Balanchine, David Lichine, Ron Cunningham, Bobbi Smith, and Amy Seiwert.  She has performed professionally with the ABC and CBS networks, Universal Pictures, California Musical Theatre, and E:motion Dance Ensemble (as a principal artist).  Ms. Jacobson has taught dance professionally since 2003 and was one of the founding faculty members of The School of The Sacramento Ballet. Her teaching style encourages students to develop an appreciation and understanding of classical and neoclassical ballet technique, musicality, performance, injury prevention, and dance history, enhancing their ability to make connections with their art and the world around them.  Jeanne received her classical ballet training from Yvonne Mounsey (New York City Ballet/Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo) and Rosemary Valaire (Royal Ballet, London) at The Westside School of Ballet in Santa Monica, California and studied theater and voice at The Santa Monica Playhouse, Crossroads School for The Arts and Sciences, and The Adderley School of Musical Theatre.  She received additional training from The San Francisco Ballet School (under Lola de Avila), American Ballet Theatre (under Rebecca Wright), and The Miami City Ballet School (under Edward Villella).  She was an inaugural recipient of The Rosemary Valaire Scholarship from Westside Ballet, won the First Place Award in Ballet at the Phi Beta Fraternity for the Creative and Performing Arts Competition, and placed as a semi-finalist in ballet at the prestigious Spotlight Awards at the Los Angeles Music Center. 

For more information, please visit www.jeanneteachesdance.blogspot.com

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Annabelle keesee

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Will McCray began teaching dance in Florida when he was in the United States Air Force for which he served four years. He has competed at various noteworthy hip-hop competitions throughout the west coast, choreographed for local hip-hop artists and collaborated with local art galleries to put on shows and has danced professionally for more than eight years. Currently, Will dances with TwoPoint4 Dance Theater and directs the Contemporary Hip-Hop company, Earth Kids. Will is excited to bring technical training to Hawkins students and help them explore areas outside the box known as hip-hop.

Will McCray began teaching dance in Florida when he was in the United States Air Force for which he served four years. He has competed at various noteworthy hip-hop competitions throughout the west coast, choreographed for local hip-hop artists and collaborated with local art galleries to put on shows and has danced professionally for more than eight years. Currently, Will dances with TwoPoint4 Dance Theater and directs the Contemporary Hip-Hop company, Earth Kids. Will is excited to bring technical training to Hawkins students and help them explore areas outside the box known as hip-hop.

 Kim Miles began dancing at the age of three and has received training in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, acrobatics and musical theatre in the Sacramento Region.  She danced competitively throughout high school as well as attending many dance conventions.  She taught dance for 10 years at Foothills Dance Studio in Shingle Springs and also at CF Dance Academy in Orange County. Kim graduated from Sacramento State with a Bachelor of Arts in Child Development. During her college years Kim received dance training at Fullerton College and Sacramento State. Kim currently works for Diamond Dance Company teaching in preschools and elementary schools. Her enthusiastic and gentle nature has helped her success with teaching preschool age children. She also enjoys being a role model to the older dancers as well. Kim is extremely passionate about teaching and she is very focused on creating an atmosphere in which her students can develop a love for dance. Creating an environment that is filled with energy, positivity, support, and confidence is very important to Kim. Her goal is to instill confidence and passion in each dancer she teaches.  

 Kim Miles began dancing at the age of three and has received training in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, acrobatics and musical theatre in the Sacramento Region.  She danced competitively throughout high school as well as attending many dance conventions.  She taught dance for 10 years at Foothills Dance Studio in Shingle Springs and also at CF Dance Academy in Orange County. Kim graduated from Sacramento State with a Bachelor of Arts in Child Development. During her college years Kim received dance training at Fullerton College and Sacramento State. Kim currently works for Diamond Dance Company teaching in preschools and elementary schools. Her enthusiastic and gentle nature has helped her success with teaching preschool age children. She also enjoys being a role model to the older dancers as well. Kim is extremely passionate about teaching and she is very focused on creating an atmosphere in which her students can develop a love for dance. Creating an environment that is filled with energy, positivity, support, and confidence is very important to Kim. Her goal is to instill confidence and passion in each dancer she teaches.  

Ashley Celaya Mondragon began her training at InnerRhythms Dance Theatre in her hometown of Truckee, CA and then went on to graduate early with her Bachelors of Arts from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, CA. While living in LA, she had the opportunity to represent LMU at American College Dance Festival, choreograph for LMU’s dance concerts and musicals, as well as work professionally with various choreographers including Justin Giles, Sonya Tayeh, Mike Esperanza, Holly Johnston, Jason Myre and Kate Hutter. Ashley has professional dance experience on stage, in music videos, motion pictures, television and contemporary companies, as well as runway and print modeling. She has traveled and competed in international festivals including The White Wave Dance Festival in Brooklyn, NY, Jazz Dance World Congress in Pittsburgh, PA, and Palm Desert International Choreographers Festival in Palm Desert, CA. Currently, Ashley dances professionally with Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, where she is also the assistant rehearsal director, as well as with Yemaya Salsa Dance Company. Ashley is also finishing prerequisite courses for a doctorate in physical therapy. She has furthered her dance career by holding faculty positions at various studios and has fallen in love with being a director of youth dance companies. Ashley wants to express her love and gratitude for the never-ending support of her loving husband and family.  

Ashley Celaya Mondragon began her training at InnerRhythms Dance Theatre in her hometown of Truckee, CA and then went on to graduate early with her Bachelors of Arts from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, CA. While living in LA, she had the opportunity to represent LMU at American College Dance Festival, choreograph for LMU’s dance concerts and musicals, as well as work professionally with various choreographers including Justin Giles, Sonya Tayeh, Mike Esperanza, Holly Johnston, Jason Myre and Kate Hutter. Ashley has professional dance experience on stage, in music videos, motion pictures, television and contemporary companies, as well as runway and print modeling. She has traveled and competed in international festivals including The White Wave Dance Festival in Brooklyn, NY, Jazz Dance World Congress in Pittsburgh, PA, and Palm Desert International Choreographers Festival in Palm Desert, CA. Currently, Ashley dances professionally with Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre, where she is also the assistant rehearsal director, as well as with Yemaya Salsa Dance Company. Ashley is also finishing prerequisite courses for a doctorate in physical therapy. She has furthered her dance career by holding faculty positions at various studios and has fallen in love with being a director of youth dance companies. Ashley wants to express her love and gratitude for the never-ending support of her loving husband and family.  

Julia Neal has been dancing since the age of three at various dance academies, and finally found a home at Hawkins School of Performing Arts in 2011. Since then she has embraced the kind but rigorous environment that Hawkins is known for, which helped her find her way to the Hawkins Ballet Company where she has spent the last four years perfecting the art of ballet. She has developed a passion for the beauty and grace of ballet, and it has influenced many aspects of her life. Because of both her love for dance and her love for children, she can’t wait to embark on her third year of teaching at Hawkins. In her time when she is not teaching or dancing, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, babysitting, working out, being outdoors, and dancing around the house. She is so excited to be back for another amazing year at Hawkins.

Julia Neal has been dancing since the age of three at various dance academies, and finally found a home at Hawkins School of Performing Arts in 2011. Since then she has embraced the kind but rigorous environment that Hawkins is known for, which helped her find her way to the Hawkins Ballet Company where she has spent the last four years perfecting the art of ballet. She has developed a passion for the beauty and grace of ballet, and it has influenced many aspects of her life. Because of both her love for dance and her love for children, she can’t wait to embark on her third year of teaching at Hawkins. In her time when she is not teaching or dancing, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, babysitting, working out, being outdoors, and dancing around the house. She is so excited to be back for another amazing year at Hawkins.

MICHAEL SEPAROVICH BEGAN HIS TRAINING AT THE AGE OF 11 IN SACRAMENTO WITH MARGUERITE PHARES. AFTER HIGH SCHOOL HE ATTENDED THE JUILLIARD SCHOOL WHERE HE RECEIVED HIS BFA IN 96. HE HAS DANCED FOR HUBBARD STREET DANCE CHICAGO, THE SACRAMENTO BALLET, ROBERT OSES’ KIN, THE SAN FRANCISCO OPERA AND AMY SEIWERT’S “IM-IJ-RÉ”. MICHAEL TEACHES DANCE AND PERFORMS CHARACTER BASED ROLES WITH THE SACRAMENTO BALLET. MICHAEL JOINS THE STAFF AT HAWKINS, TEACHING THE “PAS DE DEUX” (PARTNERING) CLASS FOR the HAWKING classical and contemporary BALLET company PRINCIPAL DANCERS.


MICHAEL SEPAROVICH BEGAN HIS TRAINING AT THE AGE OF 11 IN SACRAMENTO WITH MARGUERITE PHARES. AFTER HIGH SCHOOL HE ATTENDED THE JUILLIARD SCHOOL WHERE HE RECEIVED HIS BFA IN 96. HE HAS DANCED FOR HUBBARD STREET DANCE CHICAGO, THE SACRAMENTO BALLET, ROBERT OSES’ KIN, THE SAN FRANCISCO OPERA AND AMY SEIWERT’S “IM-IJ-RÉ”. MICHAEL TEACHES DANCE AND PERFORMS CHARACTER BASED ROLES WITH THE SACRAMENTO BALLET. MICHAEL JOINS THE STAFF AT HAWKINS, TEACHING THE “PAS DE DEUX” (PARTNERING) CLASS FOR the HAWKING classical and contemporary BALLET company PRINCIPAL DANCERS.

Carly Snyder stepped foot into her first ballet class at the age of three and hasn’t stopped dancing since. She began training at The Hawkins School of Performing Arts at age 7, where she dedicated her study to the art of ballet. She became one of the first members of the former, Folsom Lake Civic Ballet Company, under the direction of Deirdre Hawkins. She also studied jazz and musical theatre with Beverly Stewart-Short. In addition, Carly was active in the theatre.  Her favorite performance to date was Sacramento Theatre Company’s “Cinderella”. Carly attended Sac State where she obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations. She spent three seasons dancing for the NBA as a Sacramento Kings Dancer and one season as a Charger Girl dancing for the NFL. All of her wonderful training and performance experience have led her to become a versatile and proud dance teacher.She teaches ballet, jazz and musical theatre classes. Her excitement and passion for dance and self expression is contagious! She loves the opportunity to mold students of all ages.

Carly Snyder stepped foot into her first ballet class at the age of three and hasn’t stopped dancing since. She began training at The Hawkins School of Performing Arts at age 7, where she dedicated her study to the art of ballet. She became one of the first members of the former, Folsom Lake Civic Ballet Company, under the direction of Deirdre Hawkins. She also studied jazz and musical theatre with Beverly Stewart-Short. In addition, Carly was active in the theatre.  Her favorite performance to date was Sacramento Theatre Company’s “Cinderella”. Carly attended Sac State where she obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations. She spent three seasons dancing for the NBA as a Sacramento Kings Dancer and one season as a Charger Girl dancing for the NFL. All of her wonderful training and performance experience have led her to become a versatile and proud dance teacher.She teaches ballet, jazz and musical theatre classes. Her excitement and passion for dance and self expression is contagious! She loves the opportunity to mold students of all ages.

Tony Nguyen obtained a BA in Dance at CSU, Sacramento. He has furthered his artistic and performance voice locally in the Sacramento Community and in the Bay Area performing with Project Bandaloop, Paufve Dance, Mid to West Dance, Joe Goode Performance Group, Nolan T'Sani, Lisa Ross, Red Bucket Dance Theatre, DIG, Lori Bryhni, Felipe Barrueto, Shakiri and many other movers and shakers. He recently finished touring with Project Bandaloop to NCSU, Taiwan and Shanghai for the fall tour season hanging from ropes and dancing vertically. He is enjoying the adventure directing and dancing with TwoPoint4 as they work with choreographers locally and abroad. He loves his wife, his two cats, teaching dance, cooking pizza, eating pizza and holding a camera against his right eye. You can see his beautiful photography throughout our website and on the walls at the studio. www.tony-nguyen.com.

Tony Nguyen obtained a BA in Dance at CSU, Sacramento. He has furthered his artistic and performance voice locally in the Sacramento Community and in the Bay Area performing with Project Bandaloop, Paufve Dance, Mid to West Dance, Joe Goode Performance Group, Nolan T'Sani, Lisa Ross, Red Bucket Dance Theatre, DIG, Lori Bryhni, Felipe Barrueto, Shakiri and many other movers and shakers. He recently finished touring with Project Bandaloop to NCSU, Taiwan and Shanghai for the fall tour season hanging from ropes and dancing vertically. He is enjoying the adventure directing and dancing with TwoPoint4 as they work with choreographers locally and abroad. He loves his wife, his two cats, teaching dance, cooking pizza, eating pizza and holding a camera against his right eye. You can see his beautiful photography throughout our website and on the walls at the studio. www.tony-nguyen.com.

Kelley Saia is thrilled to be back "home" teaching at Hawkins, where she grew up dancing! Kelley was a former principal dancer with the Folsom Lake Civic Ballet Theater under the direction of Dierdre Hawkins. During her time with the ballet company, she was also a member of the jazz company through which she was awarded Dance Spirit Magazine's technical skill award and KAR Kids New York City Scholarship for her solo work. She went on to earn her BA in both English and Dance from Sacramento State. Kelley had the opportunity to perform for faculty, student, and guest choreographers at Sac State and was privileged to be an ArtsBridge Scholarship recipient and a performer at two American College Dance Festivals. Upon graduation, Kelley realized her passion for teaching and began her career as a founding teacher at a now thriving charter school where she taught 7th grade Language Arts and 9th grade Performing Arts. When Kelley is not teaching, she can be found spending time with her husband and two kids.

Kelley Saia is thrilled to be back "home" teaching at Hawkins, where she grew up dancing! Kelley was a former principal dancer with the Folsom Lake Civic Ballet Theater under the direction of Dierdre Hawkins. During her time with the ballet company, she was also a member of the jazz company through which she was awarded Dance Spirit Magazine's technical skill award and KAR Kids New York City Scholarship for her solo work. She went on to earn her BA in both English and Dance from Sacramento State. Kelley had the opportunity to perform for faculty, student, and guest choreographers at Sac State and was privileged to be an ArtsBridge Scholarship recipient and a performer at two American College Dance Festivals. Upon graduation, Kelley realized her passion for teaching and began her career as a founding teacher at a now thriving charter school where she taught 7th grade Language Arts and 9th grade Performing Arts. When Kelley is not teaching, she can be found spending time with her husband and two kids.

Gretta Smith is a dance teacher, yoga instructor, and owner of Ohana Moon Yoga in Cameron Park, CA. She began her dance training at age five at Tinsel Town Performing Arts. Gretta's love of dance and movement led her to continued education at Sacramento Ballet, Colorado State University, Canyon Concert Ballet, and most recently Soul Activist Yoga Teacher Training with Diana Vitantonio. Gretta has taught a variety of dance styles including jazz, acrobatics, lyrical, strength & conditioning, musical theater, ballet, and tap. She enjoys watching her students evolve and transform through each season of dance. In her free time, Gretta practices yoga daily. She has found yoga to be a rewarding and complimentary practice for dance. Gretta is very excited to share her love of teaching and dance with students at Hawkins School of Performing Arts!

Gretta Smith is a dance teacher, yoga instructor, and owner of Ohana Moon Yoga in Cameron Park, CA. She began her dance training at age five at Tinsel Town Performing Arts. Gretta's love of dance and movement led her to continued education at Sacramento Ballet, Colorado State University, Canyon Concert Ballet, and most recently Soul Activist Yoga Teacher Training with Diana Vitantonio. Gretta has taught a variety of dance styles including jazz, acrobatics, lyrical, strength & conditioning, musical theater, ballet, and tap. She enjoys watching her students evolve and transform through each season of dance. In her free time, Gretta practices yoga daily. She has found yoga to be a rewarding and complimentary practice for dance. Gretta is very excited to share her love of teaching and dance with students at Hawkins School of Performing Arts!

Joanna summerhays

Joanna summerhays

Marissa Tidrick is a teacher, coach and choreographer to dancers of all ages in the greater Sacramento area. She is trained in the classic styles of Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre, and certified in Cecchetti (Italian style) Ballet. Growing up in a military family Marissa moved frequently, being exposed to an eclectic array of instructors. Today she proudly acts as Artistic Director to two thriving tap troupes at the Hawkins School of Performing Arts. She strongly feels her program not only teaches dancing but also that it helps dancers learn to believe they can accomplish anything. Her choreography has successfully assisted dancers gain access into both Alvin Ailey and The Joffery Ballet dance programs. She frequently strives for personal excellence and regularly partakes in teacher workshops to continue growing as an educator and artist. Marissa still loves to perform and will occasionally take to the stage for a musical theatre production. Some of her favorites include, Chicago, Cabaret, Wild Party, Curtains and The Drowsy Chaperone.

Marissa Tidrick is a teacher, coach and choreographer to dancers of all ages in the greater Sacramento area. She is trained in the classic styles of Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre, and certified in Cecchetti (Italian style) Ballet. Growing up in a military family Marissa moved frequently, being exposed to an eclectic array of instructors. Today she proudly acts as Artistic Director to two thriving tap troupes at the Hawkins School of Performing Arts. She strongly feels her program not only teaches dancing but also that it helps dancers learn to believe they can accomplish anything. Her choreography has successfully assisted dancers gain access into both Alvin Ailey and The Joffery Ballet dance programs. She frequently strives for personal excellence and regularly partakes in teacher workshops to continue growing as an educator and artist. Marissa still loves to perform and will occasionally take to the stage for a musical theatre production. Some of her favorites include, Chicago, Cabaret, Wild Party, Curtains and The Drowsy Chaperone.

The Staff

Monica Watts, Assistant Director, received her early Ballet training with the Bolf Dance Academy in Ottawa, Canada.  After moving to California, she earned a degree in Physical Education with a Dance emphasis from California State University, San Jose. She then furthered her dance training with the Los Gatos Academy of Dance under the direction of Gloria Mohrs, formerly with George Balanchine and the New York City Ballet.  Monica brings management skills to the school with a background in business as a troubleshooter for Crocker National Bank and office manager and real estate agent for LADEVCO (Land Development Corporation).  While managing Hawkins' business affairs for the last 25 years, Monica has also raised three children all of which have received Hawkins’ training; including her daughter, Melinda, who has used her training to pursue a career in musical theatre.

Monica Watts, Assistant Director, received her early Ballet training with the Bolf Dance Academy in Ottawa, Canada.  After moving to California, she earned a degree in Physical Education with a Dance emphasis from California State University, San Jose. She then furthered her dance training with the Los Gatos Academy of Dance under the direction of Gloria Mohrs, formerly with George Balanchine and the New York City Ballet.  Monica brings management skills to the school with a background in business as a troubleshooter for Crocker National Bank and office manager and real estate agent for LADEVCO (Land Development Corporation).  While managing Hawkins' business affairs for the last 25 years, Monica has also raised three children all of which have received Hawkins’ training; including her daughter, Melinda, who has used her training to pursue a career in musical theatre.

Karen Slattery

Karen Slattery

Angie Teter

Angie Teter

julie Blakeney

julie Blakeney

Carrie Elzea

Carrie Elzea