Instructors

 

At St. Croix Valley Dance Academy, we strive to provide you with quality dance instruction in a positive and creative environment.  All of our instructors are CPR and First Aid certified since the interest and safety of your child is our first and foremost priority.

 

Each of our instructors have a wide range of training, performance and teaching experience and we all share one common goal; sharing our love of dance with your children.

Melanie Kofal: Owner/Director/Instructor

Melanie has over 37 years of dancing, teaching and performing experience. She began her career with 13 years of studio training and then continued on to the University of Minnesota where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance in 1999.

 

Her past professional experience ranges from being a member of the American All-Star Dance Team, a MN Lynx cheerleader, Head Coach of the Stillwater Chevals Dance Team along with choreographing for numerous local plays/productions.  Most recently, she has been instructing several award winning competition lines and has taken home several National Titles.  She continues her dance education by attending classes in the Twin Cities area.

 

By sharing her passion and knowledge of dance, she hopes to not only just teach others how to move, but to instill in them; confidence, self-esteem, responsibility, respect, a positive body-image and commitment…qualities that they will possess long after their dance education is over.

 

“Dance has truly been the most amazing influence in my life. The skills that I have learned over the years have carried over into every area of my life. It has given me knowledge, understanding and respect of my body, strength and coordination, confidence and self-esteem, dedication and also humility. I hope to share my passion with others, to see them experience all the many rewards that dance can offer and all the new possibilities it can bring into their lives.” ~Melanie

Dana Peterson: Studio Manager

 

Anna Johannsen: Instructor 

 

Bio Coming Soon!

 

 Melanie Kellar: Choreographer/Instructor

Melanie Kellar began recreational dancing at the age of 7 and began competition dance at the age of 10 at Spotlight Productions Dance Studio in Eagan, MN. Trained in classical ballet en pointe, tap, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop, her team has won numerous regional and national awards, and has worked with renowned choreographers such as Derrick Schrader, Nick Bowman and Keri LaGrand. More recently, Melanie has been instructing both recreational and competition dancers at SCVDA and continues to share her love of dance with the students here.  Melanie believes in teaching not only the importance of technique, but the importance of the love and passion that goes in to every step.  She is a graduate of UW-River Falls with a B.A. in Psychology.

“To experience the joy of dance is one thing. To share it with someone else is another.” -Melanie

 

 

Greta Lewis: Instructor/Substitute Teacher

Greta Lewis has been teaching dance for 9 years and has been an instructor at SCVDA for 7 years. She attended the University of Wisconsin-River Falls majoring in Elementary Education with a minor in Dance Education. She is currently a 2nd grade teacher in Hudson, WI. Greta is trained in jazz, tap, hip hop, ballet, contemporary, lyrical, and swing. In high school she competed on her high school dance team and has performed for Minnesota Timberwolves games. She performed as a member of the UW-River Falls Dance Theatre for four years. During her time in Dance Theatre she performed for adjudication at the American College Dance Festival and was selected as a student choreographer. Greta’s goal as an instructor is for her students to experience dance in a positive, fun and creative atmosphere.

 

 

 

“Fostering a love of movement through dance is one of the greatest things I can ever do for my students.” ~ Greta

 

Holly Tonolli: Instructor

Holly Tonolli has been dancing since the age of 3, beginning at 4th Street Dance Center in White Bear Lake, MN.  In high school, Holly was a member of the Stillwater Chevals Dance Team where she served as captain and choreographer her junior and senior year.  Holly continued dancing at Gustavus Adolphus College where she was a member of the dance team and also participated in dance classes offered by the college’s dance department.  She also performed in Gustavus’s annual student led dance show. Holly currently dances at Summit Dance Shoppe in Plymouth, MN on the Young Adult competition line.  She has been a part of the SCVDA teaching staff since 2013.

 

Candace Kuhl:  Instructor 

 

 

 Taylor Hamersley:  Instructor

 

Sarah Norton:  Instructor

 

Leah Waite:  Instrutor

 

Tara Huppert:  Instructor

 

Katya Poulin:  Instructor