Sammy Baker Weise is a graduate of Central Methodist with a double major in child development and Psychology. Sammy was born and raised in Columbia, MO. She has been dancing for over twenty year. Sammy has danced and competed in New York, Las Vegas, Chicago, and LA while winning many awards. She won Tribute National Dance Competition 2017 Teacher of the Year Award. Sammy has a true passion for dance and her students. She taught at The Academy of Fine Arts for seven years. She was a youth ministry leader at The Crossing Church for the last five years. She has been the Head Coach for Hickman High School's Dance Team since 2017. She is the wonderful owner and Director of TDA. She teaches most of our tap classes and plays a huge role with our competition program! You will be able to catch Mrs. Sammy either in the classroom or behind the front desk. She is always around!
Emily Carr is from Columbia, MO. She is currently a freshman at The University of Missouri majoring in Nursing. Emily has been the front desk manager since TDA first opened in 2017. She is the brains of TDA! Any question you have, she is able to answer it. We love Miss. Emily and couldn't have TDA without her!
Peyton Lee is from Kansas City, MO and is currently a freshman at Mizzou. She trained at Heart of America Dance Centre in Lees Summit, MO. Peyton also danced for her high school dance team. Her favorite dance style is jazz. Most importantly, Peyton is so excited to be a part of TDA's family!
Delphine Chang graduated from the University of Arizona summa cum laude, Outstanding Senior for the College of Fine Arts, with a B.F.A in Dance alongside a minor in Arts Management. Her love of dance ignited as she entered the world of traditional Chinese and Indian dance in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Eventually that translated into a passion for Ballet, Contemporary, Modern, and Jazz after moving to Portland, Oregon. She grew up dancing at The Portland Ballet as well as a performing arts high school. She continued her training into college with a triple track program while attending national summer workshops including Boston Ballet, Ballet West, Visceral Dance Chicago, DanceWorks, and Ballet Austin. Along with faculty works at the University of Arizona, she has had the privilege to perform masterworks from Balanchine, Jessica Lang, Christopher Wheeldon and Nacho Duato ballets, to quirky modern and Jazz pieces by Larry Keigwin, Samuel Watson, and Amy Ernst. Delphine was also involved in various aspects of the College of Fine Arts at UA and led their ambassador program, worked closely with the recruitment team, and worked with local Tucson nonprofit arts organizations. Delphine has always had an inclination towards all facets of the arts. She has directed and taught at BodyVox Kids Dance Camp, taught adult open classes, created virtual classes, and assisted in Barre Burn, Tabata, and other fitness class formats. She also co-founded a small visual arts company, models, teaches, and engages with other artistic endeavors through philanthropic and social event programming. She is entering her first season with Missouri Contemporary Ballet this fall and is feeling inspired, grateful, and excited to be teaching for The Dance Academy!
Julie Artemova Schauwecker was born and raised in Moscow, Russia, where she studied and performed with the Bolshoi Ballet Academy and Company for ten years. Julie moved to the United States, where she discovered her love for teaching. She has taught classical ballet, lyrical, pointe, character and historical dance. Julie has taught in multiple studios across the country and is bringing years of experience and a passion for working with children to TDA. She is a mother of two almost grown up children and has been married for 26 years to the love of her life.
Nikki Hartmann is from Kansas City, MO and is currently a freshman at Mizzou. She trained at Heart of America Dance Centre in Lees Summit, MO for 12 years. Nikki also danced for her high school dance team for 3 years where she was the captain during her 11th grade season. Her favorite dance styles are lyrical and jazz. Most importantly, Nikki is so excited to be a part of TDA!
Olivia Zacharias was born and raised in Columbia, MO. She graduated from Rock Bridge High School in May 2018 and is now a freshman at Columbia College; pursuing a degree in Elementary Education. She has danced competitively since she was four years old, starting at the Academy of Fine Arts. She finished her senior year of dance at TDA. She has been a demo for years under Sammy and now is one of the tap teachers at TDA. She has also taken over the Inclusive Program, which is a dance program for kids of any age with any special need or disability. We are so thankful and blessed to have Olivia on our staff
Amy Snow is from Springfield, Missouri. She started dancing competitively from a young age at Ann's Performing Arts Centre and was a member of Kickapoo High School's dance team. Now, she is a Senior at Mizzou and a University of Missouri Golden Girl. She competed nationally on a collegiate and competitive level, holding multiple national titles and Senior Miss Masquerade 2016. Amy trained with the Radio City Rockettes in New York City at Rockette Summer Intensive 2019. Last year, while studying at the University of Oxford in England, she took professional classes at Pineapple Dance Studios in London and also trained in ballet, contemporary, jazz, and latin fusion in Madrid, Spain. Amy is graduating in May of 2021 with a Bachelors in Anthropology and Spanish and plans on applying to law school for the following year. She absolutely adores all the girls at TDA and loves coming into work every time!
**If you are interested in joining TDA's Staff please contact Sammy Baker, firstname.lastname@example.org**