Meet the superstars that make up Puddle of Mud Productions Calgary!
Meet Miss Alexa
Alexa Elser trained as a competitive dancer for over 10 years. Along with holding her Royal Academy of Dance Grade 8 Ballet Certification and Al Gilbert Tap Syllabus Tap 9 Certification, she also trained in styles such as jazz, contemporary, hip hop, and musical theatre.
Alexa’s love of performing began in dance and then grew into a career in theatre. She graduated from the University of Lethbridge with a BFA in Performance and now can be found working with many Calgary based organizations such as Evergreen Theatre, Theatre Calgary, and Bach Tots (to name a few).
Alexa loves to combine and share her passions for dancing, acting, and singing through performing and teaching, and is always ecstatic to do that with Puddle of Mud!
Meet Miss Liisa
Liisa was trained in both tap and hip hop from an early age. In 2008, she took her first belly dancing class and fell in love and a year later, was in her first performance. In 2010, Liisa was given the opportunity to lead a troupe and founded Bahiti Belly Dance out of Penticton, B.C. That same year, Liisa's mother was diagnosed with breast cancer so she began "Shimmy for a Cure, " a non profit show held annually to raise money for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. She has had the great pleasure of dancing alongside Delhi2Dublin and the Belly Dance Superstars. Liisa loves teaching people of all ages and showcasing how diverse dancing can be with different styles of music and movement. Since moving to Calgary, Liisa has continued training in ballet, contemporary, tap and hip hop. Her love of dance has offered her both performance and teaching opportunities. Most recently, Liisa joined Banat al Sahara, a belly dance troupe, and Nrityangen dance academy by Pinky, a Bollywood performance troupe.
Miss Liisa teaches Hip Hop, Dance Explosions, and So You Think You Can Dance at New Brighton! She'll also be teaching Ballet at McKenzie Towne!
Meet Miss Brynna
Born in Calgary, Brynna has been dancing for over 15 years. She has trained in all forms from Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Modern, Hip Hop, to Musical Theatre and Tap. She is currently in her 5th year as a member of the Tri-Tone Rhythm Ensemble in Calgary. Through her dance journey, she has travelled to New York, San Antonio, Toronto, Orange County and has trained in well-respected facilities such as Broadway Dance Centre, Alvin Ailey School of Dance and Steps on Broadway. In 2019 Brynna will join Team Canada in Germany to compete in tap dance.
Academically Brynna is also a graduate of Central Memorial High School’s Performing and Visual Arts program in dance and is currently working towards her Bachelor of Communications and Media Studies at the University of Calgary.
Brynna looks forward to sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm with her students!
Miss Brynna is currently teaching our Thursday evening classes at Tuscany!
Meet Miss Kim
Kim is a born and raised Calgarian who grew up with a passion for gymnastics, dance, and theatre.
Her passion for performing began at a very young age with her family’s involvement with Pumphouse Theatre. Kim's gymnastics career began at age 5 and took her until age 15. She also began dancing in middle school.
Kim's gymnastics career unfortunately came with a few too many injuries, which eventually brought Kim to her current passion and devotion to yoga and dance.
Kim's love for all arts then led her to leave the corporate world, where she worked for 10 years, to go back to school and pursue a degree in Drama and Education at the University of Calgary.
Kim has always loved leading, inspiring, and encouraging others and looks forward to where this next chapter takes her! She is thrilled to be a part of the Puddle of Mud instructor team.
Miss Kim currently teaches Thursday night Hip Hop, Dance Explosion, and So You Think You Can Dance at McKenzie Towne.
Meet Miss Marlea
Marlea began dancing at the age of four. Her love for dance quickly grew as she trained in the genres of ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, tap, and hip hop. After many years of dancing, her love for dance expanded into a passion for teaching. Marlea has been teaching for six years and is currently working towards her Associate Diploma in both Tap and Modern through the ISTD.
Marlea loves to inspire young minds to have fun and be creative through movement. She is excited to continue to share her love of dance in the Puddle of Mud classes.
Miss Marlea currently teaches Wednesday night classes at McKenzie Towne Hall.
Meet Miss Veronica
Veronica started dancing at the age of three and has been dancing ever since. She has an endless passion for dance and has trained in various styles although tap and jazz are her areas of focus. She has studied and trained in both the RAD and ADAPT syllabus.
Veronica is currently studying at the University of Calgary to receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts Majoring in Dance with a concentration in Dance Pedagogy and hopes to expand her knowledge in Modern, Contemporary and Jazz. She is also a certified Acrobatic Arts instructor. Veronica is in the process of completing the Healthy Dance Practice Certificate by Safe in Dance International. She loves being able to pass on her passion and knowledge for dance to children.
Miss Veronica currently teaches the Saturday morning dance classes at the Tuscany Club.
Meet Miss Chantel
Chantel Dixon is a full-time university student at the University of Calgary pursuing a degree in drama and education. She has worked as an educational assistant as well as a facilitator of small student groups.
On top of her career goals, she is a mother to two wonderful children.
Additionally, she is a karaoke enthusiast who competes at a national level.
Miss Chantel will be teaching Triple Fun and Junior Performers at McKenzie Towne this Winter Session.
Meet Miss Claire
Claire is beyond excited to be teaching with Puddle of Mud Productions!
Her love of sharing her craft with young minds was born from her internship with Quest Theatre; where she is still an active member of their Artist in Residency Program and Coordinator of their Summer Camps. Through her decade with Quest and her half a decade with Calgary Opera’s Let’s Create an Opera Program Claire has traveled the province and shared her love of theatre, dance, and music with young people. It is her passion and Puddle of Mud is a wonderful addition to her teaching life.
Miss Claire will be teaching Saturday mornings at the
Meet Miss Rohini
Miss Rohini expresses her creative love as an artist, professional actor, dancer, model & teacher. She has 20+ years experience in dance including East Indian styles of dancing such as Kathak, Bollywood and Bhangra as well as hip hop, ballet, Salsa, Bachatta, Waltz and Cha Cha. She has appeared in movies including Sanam Re, TV shows (Bollywood Star) and has hosted a number of TV-shows. She loves continuous learning and has performed with the University of Calgary's Dance Montage Team enjoying Hawaiian dancing and contemporary Chinese dancing to name a couple.
She completed her B.Comm in Human Resources and B.A in Psychology and has worked in the field of Training and Development and e-Learning in Human Resources. Alongside she has taken various acting courses with Company of Rogues and workshops across Calgary. She teaches East Indian dance at various Calgary Board of Education schools ranging from kindergarten to high schools. Her goal is to use her education, experience & skills to work with kids using various artistic mediums to help them unlock and practice their true selves.
She has been with Puddle of Mud Productions for many years and loves the lesson plans and enjoys teaching and being around kids. She has taught kids yoga, ballet, hip-hop and is currently teaching Triple Fun at the Tuscany Club!
Meet Miss Tonja
Tonja Bokkel is a Manitoba born multi-faceted performing artist. She moved to Calgary a few years ago after graduating from the Canadian College of Performing Arts in 2016 with a Certificate in Choral Mentorship.
Tonja grew up with a big imagination; she was always creating a melody when she should have been doing her chores on the farm. She is always looking to expand her knowledge and skills in voice, acting and dance.
Within the city, Tonja has performed an original work at the Ignite! Festival with Sage Theatre, was featured in Storybook’s MISCAST, in The Sound of Music with Swamp Donkey Musical Theatre, and as a vocal soloist in various events.
Tonja is very grateful for the teaching and mentoring opportunities she has been challenged with in her journey as an artist and can’t wait to see where else her career will take her.
Miss Tonja will be teaching Triple Fun and Hip Hop at Mahogany this Winter session.
Meet Mr. Joseph
Joseph is a professional voice actor from Calgary, AB who loves making live action videos and music videos on the side.
He has been a facilitator for digital media literacy in film, teaching children and adults of all ages how to bring their creative ideas onto the big screen for the past 6 years.
Joseph has shared his passion for film with others and has helped bring film created by his students to the Calgary International Film Festival.
Joseph graduated from the University of Calgary with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in drama in 2013 and has currently decided to return to the university to receive his Bachelors of Education to become a Drama and Film Studies teacher.
When Joseph isn't voice acting for animated television shows or teaching film in Calgary, he travels across Alberta to various schools in a project to bring more digital media into the classrooms.
Mr. Joseph is the amazing filmographer for our Music Video Birthday Parties!
Meet Miss Maddy
Miss Maddy was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. Throughout the years, she has been immersed in the arts. She began dancing at the age of 8 and immediately developed a passion for dance. Trained formally in ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, tap, hip hop, west african and contemporary, Maddy is currently part of the BFA Dance Program at the University of Calgary.
Alongside her dance training, Maddy has always been very involved in music. At the age 6, she began playing violin and piano and her passion for music has flourished ever since.
Maddy has also spent the last three summers dancing, singing and performing with Calaway Live and will be entering her fourth year with them this summer.
Maddy has a never ending passion for working with children and sharing the arts through teaching and performing. She is thrilled to share her expertise with the students enrolled in Puddle of Mud Productions classes.
Meet Miss Mandy
Mandy Faye has been passionate about music and performance her whole life. In 2010 she graduated from Grant MacEwan University with a Vocal Performance Diploma. She has performed with multiple groups including corporate cover bands as well as original projects. She has directed "Cinderella Kids", "Mulan Jr." and "Dinostars!" Her passion for teaching grows every class as she shares her love of creativity with children of all ages.
Check out Miss Mandy's latst adventure Music with Mandy!
Meet Miss Natasha
Natasha has been dancing since the age of three. Starting her dance journey in Ukrainian Dance she has since been trained in Hip hop, Jazz, Ballet, Belly Dance as well as numerous other forms of World dance. Having the opportunity to dance in New York, Ireland and Dubai has given Natasha an appreciation for numerous styles of dance, music and costumes. She recently moved back to Edmonton from Vancouver where she was dancing with the Ukrainian Dance Ensemble Tropak as well as a Latin Dance Company called Grupo America. Being back in Alberta she is getting back into the swing of things dancing with Volya and Vinok World Dance and loving teaching for Puddle of Mud Productions.
“Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music.”
Meet Miss Brianna
Brianna began dancing at the age 4, with ballet. Her love of dance fueled she expanded her skills to include jazz, tap and pointe. She has also recently taken an interest in modern and contemporary dance and she is currently working towards pursuing her Associate Diploma in Modern from ISTD.
Dance has always been an important creative outlet and form of expression for Brianna and she is excited to continue sharing her passion for the arts with the students that she teaches!
Meet Miss Maggie
Miss Maggie recently completed her degree at the University of Calgary with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. Throughout her university career, she was featured as both a performer and choreographer. Maggie teaches dance and theatre around the city to ages three and up. Including teaching Barre Fitness and Jazz for adults at Free Spirit Dance, and recently choreographing Mary Poppins Junior at Storybook Theatre. Miss Maggie has a passion for movement and is very excited to share this with her students!
Performance Experience: Mary Poppins, Miscast, West Side Story, Seussical the Musical, Beauty and the Beast, Grease (Storybook Theatre) Mainstage Dance – 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Dance Montage – 2016, West Side Story – 2015, Dance @ Noon – 2015, 2016, 2017, Dance @ Night – 2017, 2018 (School of Creative and Performing Arts, University of Calgary), The Addams Family Musical (The CAST Program), We Day (illFx Entertainment), Aurora (The Calgary Stampede Showband), Century, Century2, Barnburner (The Young Canadians of the Calgary Stampede, Grandstand shows – 2012, 2013, 2014).
Meet Miss Kelly
Kelly grew up dancing in her hometown of Kelowna, BC at the Robb Card Dance Studio. She started ballet at the age of 4 and expanded her dance education to include, Tap, Jazz, Hip-Hop and Pointe. She has been passionate about dance and performing her whole life.
Kelly began teaching in 2003, and has taught pre-school ballet, various levels of tap, jazz and hip-hop. She provided many years of help with the studio’s year end dance production, and always looked forward to seeing her students on stage performing.
After moving to Calgary, AB, Kelly continued to passion of dance by taking various classes at Decidedly Jazz.
She is thrilled to continue to develop the passion of dance with as many smiling faces as she can. “It is always so fulfilling to witness the transformation of a dancer into a performer”.
Meet Miss Kendra
Kendra is a Calgary-based dancer, teacher and choreographer. Select performance credits include Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and A Christmas Carol (Theatre Calgary), Beauty and the Beast (Citadel Theatre) and Guys and Dolls (Gateway Theatre). Recently she co-choreographed Seussical The Musical (Story Book Theater), as well as Crime Does Not Pay (Downstage). Kendra graduated from the Musical Theatre Performance Programme at Sheridan College, and has taken numerous courses at The Second City Toronto. Kendra loves teaching and is thrilled to be working with Puddle of Mud this season.
Meet Miss Kristen
Miss Kristen loves to dance, act, teach, laugh and have fun! She has been dancing since the age of 3 and has trained in various styles such as Ballet, Musical Theatre, Jazz, Hip Hop, African, Bollywood and Zumba.
Growing up, she spent 2 summers as a member of Calaway Live performing in live stage shows, and also attended the Canadian College of Performing Arts.
Miss. Kristen is currently a member of the Pro Team with 'Sparq Productions' as a Bollywood Dancer and teaches Grade4/5 at a Calgary elementary school. She runs a Dance Club at school for students in grade 4-6 and currently has 35 students enrolled.
Miss Kristen has been teaching for Puddle of Mud Productions for more than 5 years, and loves getting to work with all the fantastic students!
Meet Miss Christa
Christa grew up dancing in Calgary, starting at the age of two, and has participated in ADAPT exams as well as numerous competitions over the past fifteen years. She has trained in
disciplines such as tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, contemporary, musical theatre, and hip hop. Christa has been fortunate enough to take classes at Broadway Dance Centre and Steps on Broadway in New York as well as Harbour Dance Centre in Vancouver. She has also had the opportunity to perform on multiple Disneyland stages. Christa loves to share her love of dance with all of the beaming, young faces she gets to meet and is looking forward to an awesome season!
Meet Miss Kara
Kara is a Vancouver born dance artist graduated from the Arts Umbrella Professional Dance Program and is an alumnus of their Senior Dance Company. Her training took her to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Summer Program, L’Ecole Superieure de Ballet du Quebec, the Banff Summer Training Program and Springboard Dance Montreal. As a performer, Kara apprenticed with Josh Beamish’s MOVE: the Company and Amber Funk Barton's the Response, toured Western Canada with Judith Marcuse's interdisciplinary show Earth=home and John Kaplan's Fundraising Magic show. Her work has been shown across Canada and she has been growing her choreographic practice in Calgary through residencies with W&M Physical Theatre, Theatre Junction’s TJ Labs and Springboard Performance’s containR.
Kara has been teaching since the age of 15 and seeks to cultivate a love and respect for the work of dance in her students. She has taught all ages and skill levels across British Columbia and Alberta, setting choreography on advanced students and young professionals. She is a much sought after instructor and choreographer having worked with students at the Alberta Dance Academy, Leap Studios, Urban Dance Projects, FreeHouse Dance Plus, Decidedly Jazz Dance Centre, Springbank Dancers, Counterpoint Dance Academy, Trip the Light Youth Company, Caulfield School of Dance, and Danza. Kara has worked independently to bring dance into communities, working with students of mixed physical and developmental abilities, facilitating workshops at the Calgary Chinese Elderly Citizen’s Association and coaching participants to create a show fostering diversity with Richmond Multicultural Services in British Columbia
Meet Miss Alex
Miss Alex has trained in multiple dance forms from a young age including ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical & musical theatre. She has early memories of going to the theatre with her family, where she fell in love with the idea of performing and connecting with the audience. Shortly after, she begged her mum for ballet slippers and the rest is history! Alex quickly became a competitive dancer, travelling all over Canada to compete with her friends and teammates. During her training years, she studied with the Royal Academy of Dance, and acted as a lead and chorus member in multiple Musical Productions and trained in New York and Los Angeles.
Most recently, Alex has spent many years travelling across Canada to perform as a Magician’s Assistant for Wonder Entertainment.
Alex works full time for an Energy company, where she provides free dance advice to the dance parents of the company. When she's not working or teaching, you can find her spending time with her loved ones, taking tap classes and eating pizza - 'live your best life' as she would say.
Alex hopes to encourage confidence and creativity through her teaching journey, and is very excited to share her love of dance and performance with the little ones. See you on the dance floor!
Meet Miss Caitlyn
Miss Caitlyn O’Connor has been enjoying and exploring dance in a variety of forms including tap, jazz, ballet, hip-hop, West African, and contemporary from the time she was three years old. A recent graduate of Rosebud School of the Arts, Caitlyn has had the pleasure of delving into music, acting, and movement over the four years of her post-secondary study. She is pursuing a triple threat career, and just released her first album this summer. Her theatre credits include: The Last Five Years (Madness & Merriment), Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,The Christians, The Skin of Our Teeth (Rosebud Theatre), Oh Manny! (Playing Possum), Game of Soaps (Dirty Laundry), and The Monument (Theatre of Consequence). She will also be performing in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at Storybook Theatre this Christmas!
Caitlyn has taught and choreographed for the Canadian Badlands Performing Arts Camp, Rosebud School of the Arts, and Rosebud Theatre, and is very happy to be stepping onto the Calgary dance scene with Puddle of Mud.