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Mary Ellen Bryan's movement career began in 1987, studying ballet under the Royal Academy of Dancing technique, which lead her to a professional dance and choreographic career. In 1999, studying with master teachers Michele Larson and Virginia Nicholas, she earned a Pilates Certification through Core Dynamics Pilates. Mary Ellen has trained with many great movement teachers who have played a part in building her unique and accessible teaching style in dance, the Pilates Method and GYROTONIC®.  Having always lived with a great passion for people and holistic health, she pursued Thai Massage, Dance and Nutrition at Arizona State and Athletic Training at Lindenwood University. With access to various movement modalities, Mary Ellen has facilitated many clients with a wide variety of physical conditions from surgery rehabilitation to professional athletes, to obtain strength and healing. Inspired by the desire to reach people in all walks of life, Mary Ellen opened Central Studio in October of 2012. Supported by the love of her husband, four amazing children, her parents, six siblings and many long standing clients and friends, the journeys continues together. 

 

PILATES + GYROTONIC®

 
Kristen came to Pilates from academia, where she honed her skills as an educator. She began her training through Balanced Body University and later became certified with the Pilates Method Alliance. She brings her love of learning to her teaching practice by exploring movement through creative metaphor and detailed explanation, and believes in having a lot of fun in the studio without sacrificing technique or precision. She particularly enjoys working with beginners, older clientele and those new to fitness in general, and specializes in rehabilitative work for clients with neck, shoulder and back pain.

Kristen came to Pilates from academia, where she honed her skills as an educator. She began her training through Balanced Body University and later became certified with the Pilates Method Alliance. She brings her love of learning to her teaching practice by exploring movement through creative metaphor and detailed explanation, and believes in having a lot of fun in the studio without sacrificing technique or precision. She particularly enjoys working with beginners, older clientele and those new to fitness in general, and specializes in rehabilitative work for clients with neck, shoulder and back pain.

Kristen Schaffenberger

Kasia’s lifetime passion for sport and involvement in disciplines such as archery, dressage and downhill skiing led her into a career in physical therapy. She graduated with her Master’s in 1993 from the Academy of Physical Therapy Education in Krakow, Poland. After years of exploring tools to deepen her approach, she discovered Pilates and received her teaching certification through Balanced Body and under Mary J. Brown. She also teaches The Hoffman Concept and practices Craniosacral Therapy with clients; her intentions are to assist them in overcoming their unique challenges and return to pain free, harmonious movement.

Kasia’s lifetime passion for sport and involvement in disciplines such as archery, dressage and downhill skiing led her into a career in physical therapy. She graduated with her Master’s in 1993 from the Academy of Physical Therapy Education in Krakow, Poland. After years of exploring tools to deepen her approach, she discovered Pilates and received her teaching certification through Balanced Body and under Mary J. Brown. She also teaches The Hoffman Concept and practices Craniosacral Therapy with clients; her intentions are to assist them in overcoming their unique challenges and return to pain free, harmonious movement.

Kasia Stockie

 
 
Christine is an independent dance teacher, choreographer, and certified GYROTONIC® trainer and GYROKINESIS® instructor.  She holds a Bachelors Degree in Psychology from the University of Missouri and a Masters Degree in Liberal Arts from Washington University.  She has comprehensive ballet pedagogical knowledge as well as extensive experience in choreography and musical theatre.  Ms. Kardell owned and operated her own dance studio, DuFrenne Dance Academy, for many years and has been an adjunct faculty member at Webster University, University of Missouri-St Louis, and guest faculty for Stephens College, Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp, and the American College Dance Festival.  She worked at COCA, The Center of Creative Arts, as the Pre Professional Division Manager, Rehearsal Director for Ballet Eclectica, and member of the dance faculty teaching advanced ballet, pointe and variations, jazz, choreography, and floor barre.  Ms. Kardell currently conducts independent dance/movement workshops throughout the Midwest as well as private lessons to promising young dancers. Ms. Kardell has been training in the GYROTONIC EXPANSION SYSTEM®, a movement, rehabilitation, and body conditioning system created by Juliu Horvath and is a Level 2 Certified trainer.  Since becoming certified, Ms. Kardell has enriched her movement knowledge by completing the GYROTONIC® Applications for Dancers course, becoming certified to teach on the specialized Jump Stretch Board and Leg Extension Unit, and completing her GYROKINESIS® certification. Through her experiences as a former professional dancer, choreographer, business owner, university teacher, yoga practitioner, and movement educator, Ms. Kardell is able to provide students of all levels with the essential guidance and instruction to realize their full potential effectively and safely.

Christine is an independent dance teacher, choreographer, and certified GYROTONIC® trainer and GYROKINESIS® instructor.  She holds a Bachelors Degree in Psychology from the University of Missouri and a Masters Degree in Liberal Arts from Washington University.  She has comprehensive ballet pedagogical knowledge as well as extensive experience in choreography and musical theatre.  Ms. Kardell owned and operated her own dance studio, DuFrenne Dance Academy, for many years and has been an adjunct faculty member at Webster University, University of Missouri-St Louis, and guest faculty for Stephens College, Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp, and the American College Dance Festival.  She worked at COCA, The Center of Creative Arts, as the Pre Professional Division Manager, Rehearsal Director for Ballet Eclectica, and member of the dance faculty teaching advanced ballet, pointe and variations, jazz, choreography, and floor barre.  Ms. Kardell currently conducts independent dance/movement workshops throughout the Midwest as well as private lessons to promising young dancers.

Ms. Kardell has been training in the GYROTONIC EXPANSION SYSTEM®, a movement, rehabilitation, and body conditioning system created by Juliu Horvath and is a Level 2 Certified trainer.  Since becoming certified, Ms. Kardell has enriched her movement knowledge by completing the GYROTONIC® Applications for Dancers course, becoming certified to teach on the specialized Jump Stretch Board and Leg Extension Unit, and completing her GYROKINESIS® certification.

Through her experiences as a former professional dancer, choreographer, business owner, university teacher, yoga practitioner, and movement educator, Ms. Kardell is able to provide students of all levels with the essential guidance and instruction to realize their full potential effectively and safely.

Christine Kardell

Lisa began studying Pilates to strengthen her dancing, and in 2013 replaced her ballet classes for a period to rehabilitate herself from chronic tendonitis. In 2006 she received her certification from Michele Larson and Core Dynamics Pilates in Sante Fe, NM, and in 2012 became the only Fletcher Pilates Licensed Provider for Floor, Barre, and Tower work in the St. Louis area. Today she continues to dance and is excited to share the technique work with the dancers and students at Central Studio!

Lisa began studying Pilates to strengthen her dancing, and in 2013 replaced her ballet classes for a period to rehabilitate herself from chronic tendonitis. In 2006 she received her certification from Michele Larson and Core Dynamics Pilates in Sante Fe, NM, and in 2012 became the only Fletcher Pilates Licensed Provider for Floor, Barre, and Tower work in the St. Louis area. Today she continues to dance and is excited to share the technique work with the dancers and students at Central Studio!

Lisa LeMasters

Jacqueline was introduced to Pilates in her teens while dancing with Pacific Northwest Ballet and State Ballet of Missouri. She has taught her holistic approach to movement throughout the US, Japan and France, integrating principles of yoga, dance and biomechanics into her professional practice. In addition to her background in physicality, she works in interactive content production and holds a Master’s degree in Global Communications and Design Studies from the American University of Paris. She received her Pilates certification from the Kane School of Core Integration in New York.

Jacqueline was introduced to Pilates in her teens while dancing with Pacific Northwest Ballet and State Ballet of Missouri. She has taught her holistic approach to movement throughout the US, Japan and France, integrating principles of yoga, dance and biomechanics into her professional practice. In addition to her background in physicality, she works in interactive content production and holds a Master’s degree in Global Communications and Design Studies from the American University of Paris. She received her Pilates certification from the Kane School of Core Integration in New York.

Jacqueline Fritz

 

 

DANCE + FITNESS

Rachel is originally from Indianapolis and moved to St. Louis to dance with Common Thread Contemporary Dance. She received her BFA from Ball State University, and has been teaching and setting work on dancers for the past five years. As a member of Ball State Dance Theatre, Rachel performed in numerous productions and festivals, and looks forward to future opportunities in her burgeoning dance career!

Rachel is originally from Indianapolis and moved to St. Louis to dance with Common Thread Contemporary Dance. She received her BFA from Ball State University, and has been teaching and setting work on dancers for the past five years. As a member of Ball State Dance Theatre, Rachel performed in numerous productions and festivals, and looks forward to future opportunities in her burgeoning dance career!

Rachel Brown

Christa is a graduate of North Carolina School of the Arts, where she studied ballet under Melissa Hayden, Duncan Noble and Nina Danilova, among others. As a member of Charleston Ballet she performed in Serenade and The Nutcracker, and with MADCO, the Muny, Stages and Theatre Factory productions in St. Louis. She holds a Communications degree from UMSL, and took additional Summer dance training at the School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theater and Hungarian National Ballet School in Budapest.

Christa is a graduate of North Carolina School of the Arts, where she studied ballet under Melissa Hayden, Duncan Noble and Nina Danilova, among others. As a member of Charleston Ballet she performed in Serenade and The Nutcracker, and with MADCO, the Muny, Stages and Theatre Factory productions in St. Louis. She holds a Communications degree from UMSL, and took additional Summer dance training at the School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theater and Hungarian National Ballet School in Budapest.

Christa Frisella

Melanie is from Collinsville, IL, and holds a BFA from Webster University with an emphasis in Modern dance. In 2015 she studied Thai Classical dance in Thailand and performed a self-choreographed solo at the Patravadi Theatre in Hua Hin. At Webster she was part of the Dance Ensemble, choreographed six works for student concerts, and is the first Department of Dance student to receive a Collaborative Research Grant, used to create The Living Space, which premiered at the Kranzberg Black Box in Spring 2016.

Melanie is from Collinsville, IL, and holds a BFA from Webster University with an emphasis in Modern dance. In 2015 she studied Thai Classical dance in Thailand and performed a self-choreographed solo at the Patravadi Theatre in Hua Hin. At Webster she was part of the Dance Ensemble, choreographed six works for student concerts, and is the first Department of Dance student to receive a Collaborative Research Grant, used to create The Living Space, which premiered at the Kranzberg Black Box in Spring 2016.

Melanie Harvengt

Robert Poe is from Aiken, SC and has danced professionally with classical and contemporary companies such as Columbia City Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Missouri Ballet Theatre, Cedar Lake II, and guested for The Nashville Opera. His choreography has been set on Nashville Ballet, Nashville Ballet II, Missouri Ballet Theatre and multiple dance studios across the country. He has been a member of The Big Muddy Dance Company for the past four seasons, and serves as a member of the Senior Outreach team and Board Nominating Committee.

Robert Poe is from Aiken, SC and has danced professionally with classical and contemporary companies such as Columbia City Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Missouri Ballet Theatre, Cedar Lake II, and guested for The Nashville Opera. His choreography has been set on Nashville Ballet, Nashville Ballet II, Missouri Ballet Theatre and multiple dance studios across the country. He has been a member of The Big Muddy Dance Company for the past four seasons, and serves as a member of the Senior Outreach team and Board Nominating Committee.

Robert Poe

Michelle is a Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher and founder of Dandelion Yoga Productions, LLC. She creates an energetic arc to each class through the movement of your body, flow of the music, and the subtle smoothness of your breath. Her students leave feeling rejuvenated, while having experienced substantially deep work. All levels of experience are welcome to her classes. Check out her website here!

Michelle is a Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher and founder of Dandelion Yoga Productions, LLC. She creates an energetic arc to each class through the movement of your body, flow of the music, and the subtle smoothness of your breath. Her students leave feeling rejuvenated, while having experienced substantially deep work. All levels of experience are welcome to her classes. Check out her website here!

Michelle Abounador

Victoria is completing her Master’s in Public Health at the Brown School at Washington University, and is committed to promoting healthy living through social change and community building. She is a certified group fitness instructor and personal trainer, but her specialty is Zumba, which she has been teaching for five years throughout Sacramento and since her undergraduate experience at the University of Richmond.

Victoria is completing her Master’s in Public Health at the Brown School at Washington University, and is committed to promoting healthy living through social change and community building. She is a certified group fitness instructor and personal trainer, but her specialty is Zumba, which she has been teaching for five years throughout Sacramento and since her undergraduate experience at the University of Richmond.

Victoria Lyon

Carlos is originally from Honduras, where he became interested in music such as Merengue, Reggae, Calypso and native rhythms. In 1997 he moved to North Carolina and was introduced to Salsa and Bachata, and joined a Salsa Casino Rueda group to learn how to dance to the beat. In 2003 he was asked to join Mambo Dynamic Dance Co. to learn a variety of Afro-Cuban dance styles including Mambo, Chachacha, and Pachanga, among others. After six months he began performing across the US and abroad, and in 2003 moved to St. Louis. Here he has started Mambo Revolution with his partner, and is helping to develop the local social dance and performance community.

Carlos is originally from Honduras, where he became interested in music such as Merengue, Reggae, Calypso and native rhythms. In 1997 he moved to North Carolina and was introduced to Salsa and Bachata, and joined a Salsa Casino Rueda group to learn how to dance to the beat. In 2003 he was asked to join Mambo Dynamic Dance Co. to learn a variety of Afro-Cuban dance styles including Mambo, Chachacha, and Pachanga, among others. After six months he began performing across the US and abroad, and in 2003 moved to St. Louis. Here he has started Mambo Revolution with his partner, and is helping to develop the local social dance and performance community.

Carlos Reyes

Paige began dancing at four years old in Cincinnati, OH, and found her love for choreography and performance art at Webster University. In addition to the study of ballet, jazz, modern, tap, classical Thai Dance and improvisation that has taken her around the globe, she choreographed and performed in the dance film, To Cause a Dream, featured at Editions Futura gallery in Paris, produced and choreographed the pieces  Embracing Contact and Finite/Infinte in the Saint Louis Fringe Festival, and performed with Karlovsky & Company Dance and Leverage Dance Theater.

Paige began dancing at four years old in Cincinnati, OH, and found her love for choreography and performance art at Webster University. In addition to the study of ballet, jazz, modern, tap, classical Thai Dance and improvisation that has taken her around the globe, she choreographed and performed in the dance film, To Cause a Dream, featured at Editions Futura gallery in Paris, produced and choreographed the pieces  Embracing Contact and Finite/Infinte in the Saint Louis Fringe Festival, and performed with Karlovsky & Company Dance and Leverage Dance Theater.

Paige Walden-Johnson

Instructing since 2012, and bringing His message of Movement, Music and Meditation to the masses, King Ausar is the premiere Zumba teacher in St. Louis. Fortunate to have taught well over 500+ classes in St. Louis, nationwide and abroad, these classes are focused towards the Novice, Intermediate and Master Zumba Fitness enthusiast. For losing pounds and inches, exercising the physical body as well as the mental and emotional, and being in an environment that is supportive and uplifting, come and Party with "Tha King"…

Instructing since 2012, and bringing His message of Movement, Music and Meditation to the masses, King Ausar is the premiere Zumba teacher in St. Louis. Fortunate to have taught well over 500+ classes in St. Louis, nationwide and abroad, these classes are focused towards the Novice, Intermediate and Master Zumba Fitness enthusiast. For losing pounds and inches, exercising the physical body as well as the mental and emotional, and being in an environment that is supportive and uplifting, come and Party with "Tha King"…

King Ausar

Mike and Natalia began teaching tango together 10 years ago. Natalia began ballet as a child and later pursued modern, and holds a BA in Dance and Anthropology from Washington University. She traveled to tango festivals and took workshops with internationally known teachers, while Mike began as a salsa dancer in Seattle, learning from masters throughout the West Coast. The pair believes in teaching tango in an organic way, focusing on connection, both within yourself and with your partner. They want their students to understand the mechanics of movement in the body, and how that turns into tango. Mike and Natalia identify fundamental building blocks of all tango, and their goal as teachers is to pass this knowledge on to their students. 

Mike and Natalia began teaching tango together 10 years ago. Natalia began ballet as a child and later pursued modern, and holds a BA in Dance and Anthropology from Washington University. She traveled to tango festivals and took workshops with internationally known teachers, while Mike began as a salsa dancer in Seattle, learning from masters throughout the West Coast. The pair believes in teaching tango in an organic way, focusing on connection, both within yourself and with your partner. They want their students to understand the mechanics of movement in the body, and how that turns into tango. Mike and Natalia identify fundamental building blocks of all tango, and their goal as teachers is to pass this knowledge on to their students. 

Mike Tennant + Natalia Kolk

Noelle's dance knowledge spans an array of forms, including ballet, jazz, tap, modern, and acro/tumbling. She minored in dance at Missouri State University, where her involvement in Inertia Dance Company allowed her to teach creative movement to elementary school children in Missouri and Arkansas. The company also traveled to Greece and Cyprus to participate in the International Dance Council's World Congress on Dance Research. Noelle has taught both dance and gymnastics locally throughout her years in St. Louis. Currently, she teaches English at Lindenwood University-Belleville.

Noelle's dance knowledge spans an array of forms, including ballet, jazz, tap, modern, and acro/tumbling. She minored in dance at Missouri State University, where her involvement in Inertia Dance Company allowed her to teach creative movement to elementary school children in Missouri and Arkansas. The company also traveled to Greece and Cyprus to participate in the International Dance Council's World Congress on Dance Research. Noelle has taught both dance and gymnastics locally throughout her years in St. Louis. Currently, she teaches English at Lindenwood University-Belleville.

Noelle Jones

Health at the Brown School at Washington Lena has been a natural teacher since she began teaching aerobics classes during college. She found yoga through DVD's, and soon made it her top priority. In 2013 she took a local 200 hour teacher training, and became committed to the power of her home practice. Lena is also a certified Pilates instructor (500 hour), and was mentored by Mary Ellen Bryan.  

Health at the Brown School at Washington Lena has been a natural teacher since she began teaching aerobics classes during college. She found yoga through DVD's, and soon made it her top priority. In 2013 she took a local 200 hour teacher training, and became committed to the power of her home practice. Lena is also a certified Pilates instructor (500 hour), and was mentored by Mary Ellen Bryan.  

Lena Dolter

 

HEALING ARTS

Kelly graduated from Healing Touch Institute in Watertown, MA and has practiced since 1995 on clients varying from professional athletes to those who are paralyzed. She understands that massage is just a piece of a wellness regimen, and prefers to approach healing through a combination of mindfulness, food, massage, and exercise. With exposure to many specializations including Craniosacral work, Fibromyalgia treatment and reflexology to name a few, she has found her niche in deep tissue work and sports massage.

Kelly graduated from Healing Touch Institute in Watertown, MA and has practiced since 1995 on clients varying from professional athletes to those who are paralyzed. She understands that massage is just a piece of a wellness regimen, and prefers to approach healing through a combination of mindfulness, food, massage, and exercise. With exposure to many specializations including Craniosacral work, Fibromyalgia treatment and reflexology to name a few, she has found her niche in deep tissue work and sports massage.

Kelly Reilly

Darek offers therapeutic massage with an emphasis on Swedish and myofascial release, a gentle, yet effective technique involving the slow freeing of accumulated tension from the muscles and connective tissues. Having practiced yoga and martial arts for over 15 years, Darek understands the needs of active people as well as the importance of integrating the body, mind, and spirit in our everyday lives and practices. His motto is: a body in motion stays in motion.

Darek offers therapeutic massage with an emphasis on Swedish and myofascial release, a gentle, yet effective technique involving the slow freeing of accumulated tension from the muscles and connective tissues. Having practiced yoga and martial arts for over 15 years, Darek understands the needs of active people as well as the importance of integrating the body, mind, and spirit in our everyday lives and practices. His motto is: a body in motion stays in motion.

Darek Russell

Pippin is a graduate of the Mueller College of Holistic Studies in San Diego, CA and has been practicing massage since 2006. Prior, she worked as a graphic designer and suffered from carpal tunnel and other repetitive, task related injuries. Using massage to both aid in personal healing and meet her client’s unique needs, she integrates a blend of techniques to reduce stress and speed recovery from both daily aches and pains, and acute or chronic conditions. Pippin offers deep tissue, sports, Craniosacral, Swedish, prenatal massage, as well as reflexology.

Pippin is a graduate of the Mueller College of Holistic Studies in San Diego, CA and has been practicing massage since 2006. Prior, she worked as a graphic designer and suffered from carpal tunnel and other repetitive, task related injuries. Using massage to both aid in personal healing and meet her client’s unique needs, she integrates a blend of techniques to reduce stress and speed recovery from both daily aches and pains, and acute or chronic conditions. Pippin offers deep tissue, sports, Craniosacral, Swedish, prenatal massage, as well as reflexology.

Pippin Schupbach

 

Costume Design + Fabrication

Elisa Pritchett

Elisa Pritchett

 

Administration

Nichole Bryan

Karin Hounsell

Karen Hounsell