Michiana’s Premiere Classical Ballet School and Home of the Southold Dance Theater Pre Professional Ballet Company

DSC_0050 In the 1970’s and 80’s, JoAnn Barkes danced some of ballet’s most coveted roles as a principal dancer with Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and a soloist with The National Ballet of Canada   With these prominent companies, JoAnn danced in many of the 50 states, Canada, and Europe.  She has worked with some of the most celebrated people in the ballet world including:  Frederic Franklin, Leonide Massine, John Butler, Patricia Wilde, and Erik Bruhn.  JoAnn created the role of Juliet in Lorenzo Monreal’s Romeo and Juliet for Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre.  In 1979, she won a bronze medal in the senior women’s division of the First International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi.
Since arriving in Michiana, JoAnn Barkes has been active as a teacher, choreographer and coach.  She served as ballet mistress, later co-artistic director at Southold Dance Theater during a period of rapid growth for that organization.  JoAnn’s students were accepted to summer ballet programs such as Boston Ballet School, Joffrey Ballet School, and San Francisco Ballet School.  Two of her students were accepted to the Suzanne Farrell Summer Dance Program at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (which only accepts 32 students per session).  In 1998, JoAnn worked with Maestro Tsung Yeh on stage for the symphony’s school shows educating children on music and dance.


TomTom Barkes has been the Director of Business Affairs of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, University of Notre Dame since 2005. He has worked at Notre Dame for the past 24 years, first as the manager of Washington Hall before moving to the performing arts center after its construction. Tom began studying dance in college as a way to augment his skills as a wrestler and football player.  In the second semester of his senior year, he was accepted at the Joffrey Ballet School where he earned his final college credits studying ballet with Francoise Martinet, Basil Thompson, Dorothy Lister and Meredith Baylis. While on scholarship at the Joffrey, Tom danced with the Joffrey Concert Group, the school’s company. After two years in the school, Ohio Ballet awarded him a contract. Tours with Ohio Ballet took him to 40 states and Europe. From Ohio Ballet, Tom moved back to New York where he auditioned for and was awarded a contract by Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. After retiring from ballet, Tom earned a Masters in Theatre Management at the University of Michigan and a Masters in Business at the University of Notre Dame. Tom has taught ballet for the Ohio Ballet Institute, the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre at Notre Dame, and for Southold Dance Theater. Tom often serves on the Indiana Arts Commission Individual Artist Panel for Dance.


ShakurahShakurah Grumbacher was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, but spent many of her early years traveling.  Ms. Grumbacher began dancing at the age of six.  She was soon awarded a scholarship to the Acting Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) in San Francisco, California.  While attending A.C.T., she studied dance, acting and improvisational movement.  Ms. Grumbacher attended Rockford College where she was a dance major.  There she expanded her arts experience by participating in several plays, singing in the Women’s Choir and performing in the Arts Department Showcase.  While in Rockford, Ms. Grumbacher was a Rockford Lightning Silver Streak, a cheerleader for a semi-pro basketball team.  After leaving Rockford, Ms. Grumbacher moved to Chicago where she taught hip-hop, jazz and modern.  In 2003, Ms. Grumbacher relocated to Indiana where she headed up Penn High School’s Marching Band Movement Program, where she led the color guard to their first state title.  For the past three years, Ms. Grumbacher has been working with John Glenn’s High School Color Guard and teaching dance.


Michele KMichele Kriner received her Bachelor of Science in education from Ball State University and her Master of Fine Arts in dance performance from the University of Iowa. She was on faculty in Ball State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance and served as ballet mistress and modern faculty at the Anderson Young Ballet Theatre before coming to South Bend in 2007 to teach at Saint Mary’s College Program in Dance and Clay High School Magnet for the Visual and Performing Arts. She is a founding member of the Charlotte Adams Dance Company with whom she has performed in New York, Arizona, and around the United States. She has served as guest teacher, choreographer, and performer at University of Iowa, Illinois State University, American College Dance Festivals, and regional dance studios for the past 10 years.


GailSusan Margetts began her career as a child model in New York City. She appeared in numerous print ads as well as commercials and runway shows. Ms. Margetts continued to model until her acceptance into the Joffrey Ballet at the age of eleven. She studied and performed with the Joffery II in New York City for two years. Ms. Margetts left the Joffery Ballet and accepted a scholarship to the School of American Ballet in New York City at the Lincoln Center. During her Time with the American Ballet she studied under such renowned teachers as Alexandra Danilova, Muriel Stewart, Suki Shore and Suzanne Farrell. Ms. Margetts was a principal dancer with the New Jersey Dance Theatre Guild for five years. Her performances include The Nutcracker, Dance of the Hours, an original ballet by the late Harry Asmus called “Rhoda Roda”, as well as many classics. Ms. Margetts has also appeared on and off Broadway in many musicals which led her to several television specials in New York and Miami. For many years now Susan has been passing on her knowledge to students in South Bend, New York, New Jersey and California.


Jenny Smith HeadshotKristy Howell is motivated and inspired by intentional, functional movement and I believe in honoring your body where you are in the present moment. My goal is to give clients a great high intensity, full body workout and have them be able to KEEP COMING BACK because their bodies feel good and are pain free. My teaching style is uplifting, motivational, and challenging while giving great attention to form and offering modifications for all levels. My classes are informed by ongoing study in multiple disciplines, international travel, and meditation.  I have always been a lover of fitness and exercise and after moving to South Bend from NY as a first time mom, exercise was a way for me to connect with people and feel like part of a community.  I still feel connected to this community, and would like to share my practice with YOU! Above all, I believe fitness should be fun and enriching.


Tara Hennig PhotoOriginally from Green Bay Wisconsin, Tara Hennig received her BFA in Dance Performance from Butler University in Indianapolis, focusing on classical ballet and pedagogy.  During her four years at Butler she performed many soloist roles with Butler Ballet, as well as dancing professionally with the Gregory Hancock Dance Theater.  With GHDT she toured Latvia, performing soloist roles in various cities and venues including the Latvian National Opera House in Riga where she performed for and met the President of Latvia. In 2000 she got hired as lead dancer for Carnival Cruise Lines, and was honored to be in the inaugural casts of the Conquest in 2002, and the Valor in 2004. In 2006 she was promoted to Dance Captain in which she was in charge of teaching, staging, and rehearsing all of the shows, as well as maintaining all costumes and props for multi million dollar production shows. These shows embodied all styles of dance, mostly Broadway, Vegas style, and jazz.  She did this on over 12 different Carnival ships for 13 years, visiting many exotic ports of call and performing nightly in front of thousands. Tara retired from Carnival in 2013, after her 15 year professional dance career, and completed her comprehensive BASI Pilates teacher training. She currently teaches Pilates Reformer, Mat, and private equipment classes at Beyond Zen in Granger, ICE Athletic Center in Mishawaka, and ballet, jazz, and contemporary at Citadel Dance and Music Center in Benton Harbor, Michigan. She is very honored to be invited to be a part of the Southold faculty.


Jenny Smith HeadshotJenny Claire Smith began taking ballet lessons at the age of four and has continued her dance training for the past eighteen years. A Georgia native, Jenny took classes in classical ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, and modern at Dance Arts, Inc., in Valdosta, Georgia, where she also served on the studio faculty in the Primary division as well as an assistant instructor in the Advanced division. Jenny has taken master classes and summer intensives from Valery Lantratov, Francis Patrelle, Jeffrey Rockland, Joan Buttram, and Jay Jernigan. She also completed over twenty-five credit hours of elective coursework in ballet, pointe, and tap in the Department of Dance at Valdosta State University where she earned both a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, summa cum laude, as well as a Master of Arts degree in History. She moved to South Bend in Fall 2015 to begin a PhD in early modern British history at the University of Notre Dame. Jenny is thrilled to join the Southold faculty this year where she teaches Creative Dance I & II classes.

DSC_0025Zoé Curry is a South Bend native that found her love for dance at the age of 13; although being a late bloomer to the dance world, over the year’s, she has been able to train in Ballet, modern, jazz, hip-hop, tap, African, praise, and poms. Zoe was apart of the Clay High School Poms team all throughout her high school career, and also a fine arts dance major at Clay High School. Becoming a co-captain her senior year she was able to gain many awards at NDA dance camps, becoming an All-American NDA dancer, getting a 3rd. place medal in a solo competition and won the state championship competition jazz team. Zoe is in second year of college at Indiana University South Bend, she is an Early Education Major with a dance minor. Being able to perform with the IU Dance Company and IU African dance troop as a first year student. Now she is currently a member of the IU Tap Kickline.


DSC_0069Tricia McCann was born in South Bend, IN but has lived around the country. Ms. McCann began dancing 6 years ago at Indiana University South Bend and studied ballet, Middle Eastern and jazz. While attending she joined the dance company and began choreographing her own pieces, as well as, collaborating with fellow students. She has since graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication and minor in dance. It has been a pleasure to work with the youth at Southold and see a new generation of dancers taking the stage.


DSC_0008Shannon Porowski began dancing at age five in a musical and continued her love of dance appearing in many musicals, as well as dance and show choir performances at Penn High School. She continued her dance education at IU South Bend where she will earn a Dance Minor along with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology in May 2016. At IU South Bend, she has performed with the IUSB Tap Kickline and IUSB Dance Company numerous times.  She has performed many solo, duet, and group roles in these companies. Shannon motivates her students with her fun and uplifting personality.  She is very excited to be a part of the Southold Faculty.

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