Dance! Laura Stilwell & Company

Faculty

         Laura Roberson Stilwell    

Laura has been dancing since the age of 2, only taking time off to have her children.  With a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physical Education from Hendrix College, Laura continued her education and dance training at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where she received her Master’s in Exercise Science & Physical Education.  Her formal  dance education was continued at the University of Nevada in Las Vagas.

While at the University of Arkansas, Laura studied the Chechetti  method of Ballet. At the University of Nevada she studied Modern Contemporary with Louis Kavoures’, jazz with Gus Giordano, and musical theater with Craig Hempsted.

In addition to opening her own studio 25 years ago, Laura has continued to volunteer and reach out to the community of Saline County and Central Arkansas by offering her expertise in child development and physical education.  She served as the Liturgical Dance Director of First United Methodist Church in Benton and a guest choreographer for many area church liturgical programs in the Little Rock Conference.  Laura, along with her eldest daughter Katie, traveled to Ekatrinburg, Russia to conduct workshops as well as organize and perform in liturgical dance for The Return Church.   The Return Church is a sister church of the United Methodist congregation.

       Jenny Fullington Johnston


A native of Benton, Jenny has 34 years of dance experience. After graduating from Bryant High School, she attended Oklahoma City University where she earned a Bachelor of Performing Arts degree. While at OCU she studied with great choreographers and faculty members, such as Jo Rowan, Lyn Kramer, Nikki Singer, Jennifer Medver, and Erin Robbins. Jenny had the privilege to perform each year with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic as a member of American Spirit Dance Company.
Jenny also has 7 years of professional dancing experience in Branson Missouri.  She graced the stage as lead dancer with magician Kirby VanBurch and performed in side projects with country music artist Neil McCoy and The Oak Ridge Boys. Jenny also had the privilege of singing and dancing with Andy Williams.
The past 9 years, Jenny has been teaching Tap, Jazz, Ballet and Musical Theater in studios throughout the Central Arkansas area. She has been a part of Dance! Laura Stilwell & Company's staff for five years.

     Laura Keyes Pinnell

Laura, an Arkansas native, has been dancing since she was 3 yrs. old.  Laura graduated high school in Siloam Springs, AR and continued her education at the University of Arkansas where she studied business management and currently has her associates in accounting.  Most of her dance experience has been in Northwest Arkansas at Rhythm and Shoes Dance Studio where she later taught and over saw the Ballet program for five years and assisted in beginning, intermediate and advanced tap and jazz classes.  She was a part of a tap and jazz company there for four years and had the opportunity to travel to Atlanta, Georgia and Disney World for performances.  Laura has had the privilege of dancing under the instruction and received choreography from Charles McGowan, Tom Alexander, Ali Woerner, Dustin Phillips and Astrid Soto.  Along with attending the Dance Teachers Convention in New York, she has attended several other dance workshops in Oklahoma, Missouri and Arkansas.  Laura currently lives in Benton, AR with her family and has continued her passion of dance at Dance! Laura Stillwell & Company.
 
 


    
       Craig Hempsted- Guest Teacher/Choreographer
                                                                                Artistic Consultant

Craig, born and raised in Vancouver, BC, Canada, discovered dance in his teens and hasn’t looked back. He caught the attention of some important players in the Canadian dance scene and garnered scholarships to train at some of the finest facilities in the country including the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada and Les Ballets Jazz du Montreal.  

After having toured with Debra Brown’s Company (principal choreographer of Cirque du Soleil), he was invited to train and perform with the artists in Montreal, Canada. Craig soon embraced the musical theatre and toured with a variety of companies for years including “A Chorus Line” and “Peter Pan” starring Cathy Rigby. 

After having done a stint on the cruise ships, he was imported to Las Vegas by Dick Foster Productions. Craig was their principal choreographer and had two shows running simultaneously on the famous Las Vegas Strip-“Spellbound” at Harrah’s and “Imagine” at the Luxor. For the Fosters, he created shows in Auckland, New Zealand and Johannesburg, South Africa and in venues all across America. 

Craig has won awards for his choreography onboard The Silversea Shadow for his show, “Umbra”. He currently has an original show running on the Celebrity Century entitled “Liverpool Knights” 

When choreography wasn’t enough to keep him busy, he started onthe teaching circuit and ended up as the Artistic Director of PRO Dance Centers in Las Vegas as well as principal judge and instructor for Dance Educators of America.

Craig is now sought after by many organizations for his enthusiasm, spirit and selflesscontributions to young artists.

Craig is currently associate choreographer on the Tarsem Singh film “Mirror Mirror” starring Julia Roberts and Nathan Lane.

Website Builder