PRICE INCREASES $50 on 8/1!
Any intermediate/advanced dancer is welcome to attend!
One session is mandatory for all dancers wishing to audition for the RJ's Ellisville or RJ's Chesterfield Competition Team!
Once the schedule is set (closer to the date of the event), you will receive an email with your specific class schedule & meal times.
Dancers should wear dancewear and bring all of their shoes. Hair should be pulled away from the face.
Dancers should pack plenty of water, healthy snacks, and a sack lunch/dinner.
Teacher lineups are subject to change without prior notice. Not all teachers will be present at all sessions.
Elijah Gibson Is the founder & Artistic Director of Social Movement Contemporary Dance. Gibson is originally from San Diego, California, he attended the San Diego School for the Performing Arts. Mr. Gibson continued his education and studied dance in college at Sam Houston State University under the direction of Dana Nicolay and received his Master of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, with a focus on dance history, somatic studies, and pedagogy. In 1999, Gibson joined the world-renowned Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago where he toured nationally and internationally for eight years. He has worked with or performed the works of the late Gus Giordano, Margo Sappington, Christopher Huggins, Jon Lehrer, Mia Michaels, Liz Imperio, Randy Duncan, Tony Powell, Ron De Jesus, and Davis Robertson among many others. He’s also had the privilege of guest performing with Instruments of Movement, Cirqua Rivera Dance Theater, Thodos Dance Chicago, and Especialty Tap Chicago just to name a few. He has performed and taught throughout the United States as well as in Germany, France, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Latvia, Spain, Ecuador, Canada, and Mexico.
Mr. Gibson has served on the faculties of RDA Midwest, Gus Giordano Jazz Intensive, American College Dance Festival Association, Jazz Dance World Congress, Dance Masters of Wisconsin, Chicago National Association of Dance Masters, Leon Dance Arts NY, Embrace Dance Convention, and Key West Modern Dance just to name a few. Dance companies have performed his choreography nationally and internationally such as Nomi Lamad, Inaside Dance Chicago, Thodos Dance Chicago, Jayson Tisa Dance Company, City Dance Company of Houston, Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago II, and Naway Dance Company, as well by university dance ensembles throughout the country.
Mr. Gibson has been on faculty at Shenandoah University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Sam Houston State University, and the University of Texas at Austin. Gibson has dabbled in every aspect of the arts from dance, theater, and film.
Andrea Dobbins is originally from St. Louis, Missouri. She graduated from Chapman University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance and Summa Cum Laude Honors. She now lives in Los Angeles pursuing commercial dance professionally. She currently is touring with the dance convention, Adrenaline, as an assistant for choreographers such as Sonya Tayeh, Marty Kudelka and Nick Bass. She is also a member of IAMFORCE Dance Company; and on-camera based company under the direction of Chehon Wespi-Tschopp. She has been featured on Nike and House of Hoops commercials and has also choreographed for artists such as Marshmello and the documentary, G-Funk, starring Snoop Dogg. Most recently Andrea has been cast in stage productions of In the Heights, The King & I, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat.
Madison Johnson is an actor/singer/dancer from St. Louis, Missouri. The daughter of studio owner, Renee Johnson, she grew up in the dance competition circuit and also began working in professional theatres at a young age. She earned her BFA from Elon University and has since been seen regionally at theatres such as The Muny, Paper Mill Playhouse etc. She also toured with the first national tour of the Tony award-winning revival of Hello, Dolly! as a member of the ensemble and understudy of Minnie Fay. Madison has a passion for musical theater and has choreographed several pieces for the RJ's Competition Teams and Performance Teams.
Courtney Barclay Born and raised in Southern California and received her dance training from any and every teacher, studio, and convention around. A graduate of Orange County School of the Arts, Courtney went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from UCLA with two degrees in World Arts and Cultures/Dance as well as in Communication Studies. Upon graduating college, Courtney became the Creative Director of Evoke Dance Movement in Carlsbad, CA. There, she developed the studio’s contemporary curriculum, contributed to the students’ reputation for performance quality and commitment, and discovered her true love for choreography. Concurrently, Courtney trained and performed as a member of Entity Contemporary Dance Company under the direction of Will Johnston and Marissa Osato. Since her career began, Courtney has received countless choreography awards and accolades and has gone on to choreograph stand-out pieces at studios and high schools throughout the country. Most notably, Courtney was a selected choreographer for the 2017 Capezio ACE Awards, where she was honored to display her work alongside some of the best choreographers around. Courtney constantly strives to offer an original and unique choreographic perspective on dance, performance, and the music that accompanies them. Above all else, Courtney takes immense pride in being a role model to young dancers, offering them an example of hard work and commitment to one’s craft.
Nate Poole is a professional dancer and choreographer from the Twin Cities. He trained in all styles of dance at Larkin Dance Studio in Minneapolis, MN. In 2008, Nate became an assistant for WCDE and traveled the US working under John Crutchman and Alan Sherfield. Nate was chosen as a Monsters of HipHop Alumni and performed in the 2011 Monsterʼs Showcase in Los Angeles under the direction of Chonique Sneed and Lisette Bustamante; contributing choreographers were Kevin Maher, Laura Edwards, and Luther Brown to name a few. Nate is also currently assisting for The Monsters Tour across the US. He has also had the opportunity to work in Indonesia where he performed as a back up dancer with choreographer Luam. You can see Nate in numerous music videos such as Jason Deruloʼs “Otherside” and in live industrials for companies like Delta Airlines. Other credits include performing and choreographing with Poetry In Motion Dance Company in Minneapolis, MN as a contemporary dancer. Nate continues to share his passion of dance through master classes and setting work for students from the US, Canada, and Europe.
Maggi Dueker is a former ballet instructor and RJ's Ellisville Competition Team Assistant Director. She is currently an assistant professor and the chair for the Department of Dance at Webster University. She founded and is the director of Webster’s Summer Dance Intensives. Her choreography has been performed by the Webster University Dance Ensemble, Convergence, and at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, American College Dance Festival, Dancing in the Streets, and National Dance Day among others. Dueker has an MFA in Dance from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and received her BFA in Dance and BA in History from Webster (Summa cum laude). She performed professionally with Giordano Dance Chicago II, Royal Caribbean International, the MUNY and as a freelance performer with Melissa Thodos and Dancers and the Chicago Arts Project under the direction of Jay Franke. She has previously taught at Northwestern University, Giordano Dance Center and currently teaches for the Big Muddy Dance Company. For her work at Webster, Dueker has been nominated for the Kemper Excellence in Teaching Award.
Chris Jacobsen was born and raised in Northern California. Stepping into his first dance class, Chris felt himself come alive. A connection with the art was created that has guided him through life since that moment. His journey of creative discovery continued while attending The San Francisco School of the Arts, where he studied Ballet, Modern, Jazz and Afro-Haitian. Armed with a deeper understanding of dance, he then began to experiment with the art of choreography. In 1999, Chris established The Dance Company of San Francisco. As the Artistic Director, he created an alternative environment for passionate dancers to explore the art of dance with less focus on commercial standards and more on personal growth. Continuing through to today, the desire to share his passion consistently challenges his dancers to exceed their perceived capabilities. Chris travels nationally with the highly acclaimed dance convention Adrenaline Dance Inc and continues to create choreographic works for companies and schools across North America. As co-director and founding member of The Dance Sessions, Chris is driven to educate dancers in a loving and safe environment so his students can enlighten and inspire each other with their own passion.
Lilly Sheppard, originally from Howell, MI, trained under the direction of Liz Schmidt at Spotlight Dance Works and has recently graduated from Marymount Manhattan College receiving a BFA in Dance. Lily has worked closely alongside and performed works by Peter Chu, Sonya Tayeh, johannes wieland, Micaela Taylor, Yin Yue, Jenn Freeman, Martha Graham and more. She has also attended training programs that include b12 festival in Berlin, Springboard Danse Montreal, GibneyPro and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Upon graduation from Marymount in 2022, Lily was awarded the Gold Key in excellence for modern dance. She has also most recently been the creative/choreographic associate for ‘Is It Thursday Yet?’, an evening length show performed and created by Jenn Freeman and created and directed by Sonya Tayeh.
Eve Mason-O'Malley, is a St. Louis native and grew up dancing competitively in the area. She graduated from Webster University earning a BFA in dance and choreography along with an MA in management and leadership before beginning her own dance career. In her first few years in LA, she was able to work on MTV’s MADE as a MADE Coach, Disney’s Glowfest, Disney Jr.’s Choo-Choo Soul Tour, America’s Got Talent, Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game with Cee-Lo Green, Playboy Jazz Festival with Shelia E., Nike Industrials, Mexican Billboard Awards, and a Wii Zumba Video Game, to name a few. She also had the opportunity to act as the Assistant as well as the Assistant Choreographer on many projects, including Jennifer Lopez’s 2013 American Music Awards performance, Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull’s performance at the American Billboard Music Awards in 2014, the Mexican Billboard Awards, the Latin American Music Awards, Princess Cruise Lines, and various TV commercials... In 2012, Eve and her childhood friend, Cory Jones, launched Velocity Dance Convention and have been the owners and directors since.