Masterclass Series

Spring 2018 Company Class Guest Teacher Bios

Rosemary Miles-

Rosemary Miles (Ballet Mistress) is in her 18th season with Atlanta Ballet. One of eight children of an English brigadier general, Rosemary Miles trained at Elmhurst and the Royal Ballet School in England, during which time she successfully passed all Royal Academy and Cecchetti examinations. Throughout her professional career, rosemary danced with the Royal Ballet, the National Ballet of Canada, and the London Festival Ballet. In America, she performed with the educational division of the New York City Ballet and as a soloist with the National Ballet of Washington, Chicago Ballet, and Houston Ballet. Upon retiring as a dancer, Rosemary has enjoyed being a principal teacher at the Houston Ballet Academy; a guest teacher throughout the United States, England, and the Far East; artistic director of the Lexington Ballet; and a member of John McFall’s artistic team for 18 years. Rosemary is the proud aunt of 22 nieces and nephews and 28 grandnieces and nephews. Rose thanks the dancers of Atlanta Ballet for being such an inspiration and Dr. Thomas Bradbury for letting her run with life again.

Allison Gupton-

Allison Gupton, a native of Powder Springs, Georgia, graduated with honors from Pebblebrook High School, the Cobb County Center for Excellence in Performing Arts. Following high school, Ms. Gupton graduated with honors from the University of Alabama earning a  B.A. degree in Dance and Public Relations. At Alabama, she performed in and choreographed for several dance concerts and musicals. Her professional and local choreography credits include: Little Women, Little Shop of Horrors, Hairspray, and Spring Awakening at Fabrefaction Theatre Company, and The 25th Annual...Spelling Bee, Godspell, Pippin, andYou’re a Good Man Charlie Brown at Cartersville High School. In 2013, Allison had the honor of working with Dakota Fanning, Kevin Kline, Bryan Batt, and Susan Sarandon as choreographer for the movie The Last of Robin Hood.  She has appeared on various TV shows, including The Vampire Diaries and Drop Dead Diva. Ms. Gupton is a part of the Dance Informa Magazine team as Administration Manager/Journalist and was the resident choreographer for the CW Network show The Originals before the show wrapped. Ms. Guptonis a master dance instructor and choreographer at several studios in and around Atlanta.Allison loves being in the classroom, molding young lives, and watching the art of dance grow and evolve in our world today. Roll Tide! @allisongupton

Stacey Slichter-

Stacey Slichter began training in Miami, Florida under the direction of Lynne Dresson, Gloria Gaither and Victoria Leigh. She spent her summers training at The Houston Ballet Academy. After attending and graduating from The Harid Conservatory, Stacey joined The Sarasota Ballet of Florida as a company member. She has also danced professionally with Ballet Eddy Toussaint USA, Ballet Memphis, and Atlanta Ballet, in addition to performing with The Sarasota Opera.

Sarah Hillmer-

Sarah Hillmer, an Atlanta native, began her professional career with Atlanta Ballet, where she performed both classical and contemporary works. She danced principal roles in classics such as Giselle, Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, and Swan Lake and originated roles in a variety of contemporary works. Sarah’s desire to further explore contemporary movement led her to become a founding member of glo, where she performed the original works of Lauri Stallings in both Atlanta and New York. Sarah’s love of coaching brought her back to Atlanta Ballet, where she is currently a ballet mistress. In this role, she has had the privilege of collaborating with choreographers at every level of the creation process: assisting in the building of full-length ballets by Twyla Tharp and Helen Pickett; re-staging repertory works by Ohad Naharin and John McFall; and assisting in the staging of works by Jiří Kylián, Wayne McGregor and Gustavo Ramírez Sansano. Sarah has restaged choreographers’ works at Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Oklahoma City Ballet, Smuin Ballet, New York Theatre Ballet, and UNCSA. Sarah has also been commissioned to create her own works for Wabi Sabi, Backside of the Tent Productions and Emory Dance Company. Sarah recently formed ImmerseATL, a contemporary dance training environment in Atlanta, who’s aim is to cultivate creators and shape leaders, pouring into the arts world people that are vibrant and wholly engaged. immerseatl.com

Paul Stevens-

A native of Atlanta, Paul Stevens obtained a music performance degree in 2012 from the University of Georgia where he studied percussion with Timothy Adams, former principal timpanist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Although solidly grounded in classical music, Paul remains versatile, moving fluidly between jazz, rock, electronic, and experimental contemporary styles. He maintains a busy schedule as a freelance musician, composer, and educator, playing anything from vibraphone to musical saw. Paul has given concerts throughout the United States, Europe, and South America, including world premiers at the 2011 and the 2012 soundSCAPE Composition & Performance Festival in Maccagno, Italy, the 2015 South By Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas, and the 2015 Sō Percussion Summer Institute at Princeton University. Current projects include the Albany Symphony Orchestra, corporate keynote ROC Ensemble, and electro-pop duo Moloq. As a composer, Paul’s works have been performed in Spain, Israel, and throughout the United States.

AJ Paug-

AJ Paug started his dance teaching career at the age of 16 at Great Gig Dance Co. as a hip-hop intstructor. Within five years with Great Gig Dance Co. At the age of 19 AJ attended Kenessaw State University as a dance major for three years where he learned valuable pedigogy skills and granted performance opportunities.

Since leaving the school AJ has been invited to teach contemporary and hip-hop master classes at their annual KSU Dance Festival and to the dance company. At the age of 25 AJ started branching out teaching at numerous dance studios in Georgia such as Dan&Co. Studios, North Atlanta Dance Academy, etc. Now at the age of 29 he is signed with Xcel Talent agency dancing as a professional dancer in Atlanta and working annually at studios teaching classes ranging in levels in contemporary, choreography, and hip-hop all around the state of Georgia.

AJ is also Co-Artistic Director of Gotta Dance Contemporary, which is a professional dance company that provides performance and teaching opportunities to professional dancers in the Atlanta. He has been with the company for five years and was granted the position after two years with GDC. In total AJ has been teaching dance for thirteen years and hopes to expand his career even further with new skills that will merit future teaching opportunities.

 Dr. Scott Ragsdale-

Dr. Scott Ragsdale has over 40 years of combined experience as a professional musician, educator, college professor of psychology, and acclaimed workshop presenter, Dr. Ragsdale uniquely combines standard psychotherapy with energy healing techniques based on Reiki and Qigong principles. Throughout the last two decades, Dr. Ragsdale has expanded his passion for and research of the breath to develop a path to overall wellness.


 Fall 2017 Company Class Guest Teacher Bios

Lloyd E. Whitmore-

Lloyd Whitmore, a native of Philadelphia Penna., began his dance career at age 20. Since then he has spent 30 years in dance as a teacher and choreographer. Trained in the Lester Horton and Martha Graham techniques, Mr. Whitmore has performed all over the world with companies such as Philadanco, The New Orleans Opera, and the DC Contemporary Dance Theater. From 1991 – 1993, Mr. Whitmore served as Artistic Director of his own modern dance company, the New World Dance Company of Washington, DC. Mr. Whitmore was the first male recipient of a scholarship to the Craft of Choreography Conference from the North East Regional Ballet Association in 1983. He was also a scholarship student at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA. He has received fellowships from the DC Commission on the Arts, the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has served on the faculties of City College of NY, The Washington Ballet, American University, Howard University and the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. He presently resides in Atlanta, GA and serves on the faculties of The Governors School of the Arts and Humanities (SC) and the Atlanta Ballet (GA).

Mr. Whitmore also freelances throughout the country teaching Master Classes and choreographing for various performing arts schools, colleges, universities and regional dance companies. He is the owner of LEW Design, a Graphic Design Agency.

Sharon Story-

Sharon Story is currently in her 21st season with Atlanta Ballet. She joined Atlanta Ballet after a professional dance career that spanned more than 20 years, including tenures with Joffrey Ballet, the School of American Ballet, New York City Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, and ten years with Boston Ballet. In 1996, in addition to her role as ballet mistress, John McFall’s vision and mentorship brought Sharon to her current position as dean of the Centre for Dance Education, which has rapidly grown to one of the largest dance schools in the nation. The Centre for Dance Education is nationally recognized for great accomplishments in its programs and community initiatives. Under Sharon’s direction, the Centre achieved accreditation with National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD). Sharon is a member of the Board of Directors for NASD and is delighted to serve on many community and national boards. Sharon received the 2015 "Women Making a Mark" award from Atlanta Magazine. She is committed to providing a noncompetitive atmosphere and access to dance education that is shaped by the community needs, is innovative, and inspires the commitment and excellence that are the trademarks of Atlanta Ballet.

She is very proud of the dancers who have studied at the Centre for Dance Education and continue to share their experiences onstage in the Atlanta Ballet company and around the globe. She thanks her family for all their love and support during her career.

AJ Paug-

AJ Paug started his dance teaching career at the age of 16 at Great Gig Dance Co. as a hip-hop intstructor. Within five years with Great Gig Dance Co. At the age of 19 AJ attended Kenessaw State University as a dance major for three years where he learned valuable pedigogy skills and granted performance opportunities.

Since leaving the school AJ has been invited to teach contemporary and hip-hop master classes at their annual KSU Dance Festival and to the dance company. At the age of 25 AJ started branching out teaching at numerous dance studios in Georgia such as Dan&Co. Studios, North Atlanta Dance Academy, etc. Now at the age of 29 he is signed with Xcel Talent agency dancing as a professional dancer in Atlanta and working annually at studios teaching classes ranging in levels in contemporary, choreography, and hip-hop all around the state of Georgia.

AJ is also Co-Artistic Director of Gotta Dance Contemporary, which is a professional dance company that provides performance and teaching opportunities to professional dancers in the Atlanta. He has been with the company for five years and was granted the position after two years with GDC. In total AJ has been teaching dance for thirteen years and hopes to expand his career even further with new skills that will merit future teaching opportunities.

Stacey Slichter-

Stacey Slichter began training in Miami, Florida under the direction of Lynne Dresson, Gloria Gaither and Victoria Leigh. She spent her summers training at The Houston Ballet Academy. After attending and graduating from The Harid Conservatory, Stacey joined The Sarasota Ballet of Florida as a company member. She has also danced professionally with Ballet Eddy Toussaint USA, Ballet Memphis, and Atlanta Ballet, in addition to performing with The Sarasota Opera.

Toni Jenkins-

Toni Doctor Jenkins, an Atlanta native began her professional career with the Atlanta Ballet. During her tenure with the company, she performed many soloist and principal roles in ballets such as The Nutcracker, Carmen, The Sleeping Beauty, Dracula and Hamlet. She also graduated summa cum laude from Georgia State University with a degree in sociology. In 2007, she left the company to join the cast of one of Broadway's most successful touring productions: The Lion King. Upon her return to Atlanta, she was also fortunate to be a founding dancer of Lauri Stalling's visionary contemporary platform gloATL. Shortly thereafter, she also discovered a passion for teaching. She is also a wife and a proud mother of two beautiful sons. She feels very privileged to be educating the next generation of aspiring dancers.

Julie Galle Baggenstoss-

Flamenco dancer Julie Galle Baggenstoss has performed Flamenco from the Southeast to New York City, including in projects in her home state of Georgia, where she has worked for the Atlanta Opera, Georgia State University’s School of Music, and The Latin American Association. She is a member of Emory University’s Dance Program, teaching Flamenco as part of the university curriculum. Julie’s dance style reflects decades of continuing education with Spanish Flamenco artists, including Angelita Vargas, Juan del Gastor, Manuela Reyes, Pilar Ortega, Manuel Liñán, Antonio Granjero, and Juan Paredes. Off stage, Julie produces Flamenco performances and educational seminars involving Spanish Flamenco artists in residence in the United States of America via her company Berdolé and the non-profit A Través.

Julie is the co-founder of jaleolé, a grass-roots marketing organization that shaped Atlanta’s Flamenco landscape for a decade. She has an M.A. in Spanish, based on a course of scholarly investigation in mathematics, literature, and African concepts in Flamenco.

Lonnie E. Davis Jr. -

Mr. Davis received his training at the Ohio University and while on scholarship at the American Dance Festival and the Ailey School. Davis has spent the last 11years teaching jazz and modern technique at Cobb County Center for Excellence in Performing Arts (CCEPA) at Pebblebrook HS.  Currently he is on faculty at the Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education and the Atlanta Dance Theatre.  Lonnie is a highly sought after guest instructor/choreographer all over the U.S. and abroad.  Some engagements include: 2017 Alabama Dance Festival, Emory University, Kennesaw State University, Melbourne Australia, Atlanta’s Dance Canvas, The Landing Dance Centre-Vancouver BC, Georgia Ballet, Gainesville Ballet, Dance ALIVE National Ballet, University Missouri KC, Brenau University, Ohio University, Project Dance NYC-ATL, Alabama State University, Ruth Mitchell Dance Theatre, Refuge Dance Company and Georgia’s Governors Honors Program.  Lonnie recently had the pleasure of creating a new work for Kansas City based-Wylliams Henry Contemporary Dance Company and The Georgia Ballet.  Lonnie also, traveled to Leeds where he was invited as a guest instructor for England’s premiere contemporary dance company-Phoenix Dance Theatre.

As a performer Lonnie has danced and trained with Dayton Contemporary Dance Co, Gus Giordano Dance Chicago, Wylliams-Henry Contemporary Dance Company and Royal Caribbean Productions to name a few.  Mr. Davis has danced works by several notable choreographers including: Gus Giordano, Margo Sappington, James Truitte, Rod Rodgers; Kevin Iega Jeff, Sean Curran, Talley Beatty, Leni Wylliams and Lester Horton.

Mr Davis recently returned to the stage in a reconstruction (from labanotation) of the Lester Horton classic modern duet “The Beloved”.  Summer 2017 he completed a two-week intensive Horton Pedagogy teachers training at the Ailey School with Horton Master Teacher Mrs. Ana-Marie Forsythe.

His choreography was introduced to Atlanta audiences during Dance Canvas’ INTRODUCING THE NEXT GENERATION choreographers showcase. There he presented world premieres to rave reviews.

Here’s what some are saying:

“Lonnie Davis blends the technical demands of ballet with the phrasing and speed of jazz dancing, the rhythmic, articulated spine of African dance, and powerhouse spatial clarity of Lester Horton technique.”

-ArtsCriticATL
(C.Bond-Perry)

 “…Davis’ sense of invention and play, seemed to explode”

-Creative Loafing Atlanta.
(A.Andrews) 

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