Faculty

Sandy Morgan

Sandra Morgan(Artistic Director) has studied dance since the age of seven with such instructors as Frank Hatchett (at the Broadway Dance Center in NY), Joe Tremaine, Michael Newton and Jill Duncan. She has more than 20 years experience as a teacher and choreographer and attends continuing education classes and workshops across the country.

Sandy is Artistic Director and President of Dimensions Dance Center and founded Dimensions Dance Company in 1990. She has choreographed for the Jazz Dance World Congress, St. Louis University, Barbara Harbach’s opera “O Pioneers”, local musicals, and collaborations with the St. Louis Women”s Chorale, Dimensions Dance Company and other local dance organizations. Dimensions Dance Company began presenting an annual production of the Nutcracker to great acclaim in 2002.

Sandy graduated Magna Cum Laude from Webster University with honors degrees in Computer Science and Business Management. Sandy is especially proud to be mom to daughters, Annie and Hayley, and son Jake.

Michelle Seymour

Michelle Seymour began her training at the St. Louis Ballet School in 1990. She attended the Joffrey Ballet School Summer Intensive before returning to St. Louis to join the St. Louis Ballet Company. Michelle performed a wide array of roles with the company including Coulante Fleur de Farine Fairy, Little Red Riding Hood in Sleeping Beauty, Four Little Swans in Swan Lake, roles in George Balancine’s Allegro Brilliante and Serenade and Christopher d’Amboise’s Tribute. Michelle has extensive teaching experience with students ages 5 to 18 in ballet and pointe. As a professional dancer, Michelle brings a knowledge of both performance and education to her classes.

Laura Maier

Laura Maier began her dance training at the age of 3 studying ballet, tap, and jazz. She began teaching and choreographing Becky Kern’s Dance studio and has taught students ages 2 up to 50. Laura was a member/choreographer of the Belleville East High School Drill Team and Choreographer for the Belleville East Swing Choir. She performed “Anything Goes” with the University of Illinois and danced with the University of Illinois Dance Department. Laura has a BS in psychology (emphasis on child psychology) from the University of Illinois and earned her elementary education teaching certificate with the University of Laverne in California.

Laura worked as a mental health case manager and a 2nd grade teacher for several years, until she stopped working to raise her two children. Laura continued her dance career in Bakersfield, California with Civic Dance Center as a tap, ballet, creative movement, and jazz instructor/ choreographer. Laura then went on to study a new and inventive form of tap dance with Rosie Radiator and became a member of the dance troupe Rosie Radiator and the San Francisco Rad Tap dance team. She performed throughout the streets of San Francisco during the annual “Tour De Tap for Clean Air” as well as many performances in the Royce Gallery.

 

Alison Zagarri

Alison Zagarri is a graduate of Lindenwood University with degrees in dance and physical education (2004) and a masters of business administration (2006).

She is a native of St. Louis and began dancing at the age of 5 studying ballet, tap, and jazz, and in college focused on ballet and modern.

Alison’s teaching experience includes ballet and jazz classes for ages 3 to 8 at the YMCA , adult beginning jazz through Lindenwood University, and teaches movement and gymnastics for children ages 10 months through 12 years at the Little Gym where she is also the Assistant Program Director. Alison has also developed choreography for local dance teams and youth groups and has contributed several pieces to the Lindenwood University dance concerts.

Reggie VanDerson

Reggie VanDerson is best known for his creative and energetic style. His dance background includes hip hop, jazz, street, modern, and ballet.

Reggie danced with Atrek Contemporary Dance Co. for seven years and Dimensions Dance Co. for two years, and frequently performs throughout Saint Louis at special events. He has taught hip hop/jazz dance for many years and is the former dance director for Saint Louis Extreme, a competitive dance and cheer organization.

Reggie has appeared on “Fear Factor” and was the Missouri winner for the national “Nabisco Open up a Box and Make up a Snack” contest. He has also choreographed for several Trendmasters Children’s toy commercials, and choreographed many music videos.

Reggie is also owner/artistic director/producer of Pure Entertainment Company, an interactive dance/DJ/video entertainment company.

Leigh Brockman-Horowitz

LEIGH M. BROCKMAN HOROWITZ comes to St. Louis by way of New Orleans, Louisiana where she began her classical ballet and character dance training under Bobbe Willard at the Lelia Haller School of Classical Ballet.  She continued her classical ballet and character dance training with the Loyola University New Orleans Ballet Preparatory Program under the guidance of Gayle Parmelee and Laura Zambrano (Vaganova Syllabus). Ms. Brockman Horowitz studied voice, musical theater, and stage management in high school (Mount Carmel Academy), college (University of Mary Washington, VA), as well as with the Okanogan Valley Chorus and Orchestra under the direction of David Baker (Omak, WA). Joining the Komenka Ethnic Dance and Music Ensemble (New Orleans, LA) in 2000, Mrs. Brockman Horowitz worked through the company until achieving a senior soloist position, in which she stayed until her retirement in 2013.  Ms. Brockman Horowitz’ repertoire includes over 100 works, spanning the classical, character, folk and contemporary genres, including principal and soloist roles in:   Svetlana Al Neyadi’s “Tango Suite,” “Pase Doble,” “Ukranian Suite,” “Moldavian Dances,” and “Russian Suite”; Lula Elzy’s “Zimbabwe Suite” and “Congo Square”; Valerie Concha Smith’s restaging (with permission of The Ballets Russes) of “The Prodigal Son” and “Le Beau Danube”; Diane Lala’s “Frankie and Johnny”; Daniel Gianfala’s “The Appalachian Suite,” Eddy Villalta’s “Women Without Voices” and “Caliente”;  and as, The Spanish Dancers (La Traviatta) for The New Orleans Opera Association, as well as The Flower Girl (Gaite Parisienne), Czardas Lead Couple (Swan Lake), Mazurka Couple (Swan Lake), Russian Pas de Deux (The Nutcracker), Spanish Pas de Deux (The Nutcracker), Frau Silberhaus (The Nutcracker), and Mazurka Lead Couple (Coppelia).

Mrs. Brockman Horowitz began her study of the Vaganova (Russian) Syllabus while at Loyola University New Orleans and continued her studies of this syllabus at the Arts Ballet Theater of Florida (Miami, Florida). She achieved her Certification of Study of the Vaganova Ballet Syllabus, Years I-IV, through intensive study under Vladimir Issaev, Artistic Director, Arts Ballet Theater of Florida and Members of the Vaganova Ballet Academy (St. Petersburg, Russia).  Ms. Brockman Horowitz was an integral part of the 2015 Valentina Kozlova International Ballet Competition, New Orleans “Fleur de Lys” Semi-Final (“NOVKIBC”).  As the Assistant to the NOVKIBC Director, Olga Guardia De Smoak, , Ms. Brockman Horowitz had the opportunity to work closely with nationally and internationally recognized teachers, judges, and coaches.  Through this event, Ms. Brockman Horowitz was nominated for and accepted a position as a member with the International Dance Council (UNESCO, CID). Most recently, Ms. Brockman Horowitz attended Kansas City Ballet’s Character Dance Teacher’s Workshop under Inna Stabrova, where she earned her certification for teaching Character Dance, Level I (Vaganova Syllabus).

Ms. Brockman Horowitz is currently the owner of Storytellers Dance Project, through which she choreographs, offers master classes and private lessons.  She also is a faculty member at COCA, where she teaches Character Dance and Ballet.  Over the past 17 years, Ms. Brockman Horowitz has taught students from coast to coast and is thrilled to be bringing her passion for dance to Dimensions Dance Center!

Robert Poe

Robert Poe is originally from Aiken, SC and began dancing with Carl Crosby at Crosby’s School of Dance. Later, for high school, he graduate from the S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities with honors. Once graduated, Robert performed as a dance artist with the Columbia City Ballet, the Nashville Ballet, Cedar Lake II, The Missouri Ballet Theatre and even the Nashville Opera before finding his way to The Big Muddy Dance Company where he is walking into his 6th season. Robert’s passion for dance education has led him to teach in studios all over Missouri, South Carolina, North Carolina, Nashville and Illinois while his choreography has been seen on the Nashville Ballet as well as their training company (NB II), Missouri Ballet Theatre, The Big Muddy Dance Company and most recently, Texture Contemporary Ballet. Beyond teaching and choreography, Robert is on fire for the Senior Embrace program that the company provides to the community and sits on the Senior Outreach Committee.

Jessie Philbrick

Jessie Philbrick began dancing at the age of three in Wheaton Park District’s “Creative Movement” class, and from that day on, she was hooked. Her formal training began with Salt Creek Ballet, where she studied under Zhanna Dobrovskaya and Sergey Kozadayev. After high school, Jessie continued her dance training at Butler University, majoring in Dance Pedagogy. While at Butler, Jessie performed corps, soloist and principle roles in main stage productions of the classics, such as The Nutcracker, Giselle, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella, as well as numerous world premiers of contemporary works. During the summers, Jessie continued her training with Alonzo King Lines Ballet, NorthWest Dance Project, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. After graduating from Butler University in May of 2017, Jessie joined the Big Muddy Dance Company with the Convergence Trainee Program, and is thrilled to be joining the company as an apprentice this season.

Ariel Brown

Ariel has spent 11 years training in Hip Hop and a variety of dance styles under Reggie VanDerson and Sandy Morgan. She brings creativity and energy to both her classes and her choreography. She is so excited to be joining our staff this season!

Michael Newton

Michael Newton
September 10, 1951 –  April 23, 2012

Michael founded the Newton School of Ballet in St. Louis in 1978. He has trained with such masters as Michael Simms, David Howard, Luigi, Brian McDonald, Fernand Nault, Merce Cunningham, Anna Sokolov, and Ben Harkarvy.

Michael performed with Les Grandes Ballets Canadiens and American Ballet Theatre II. He was a Principal dancer with the Alberta Ballet Company and a guest artist with the New York City Opera Ballet and Ballet Master for St. Louis Ballet. His students have gone on to dance on Broadway and with many professional jazz and ballet companies.