Jordan Dehline Burt (Artistic Director) graduated from the University of Montana with a BFA in Dance Education and Choreography / Performance. She has performed as a company member with Bare Bait Dance, Headwaters Dance Company, and The CoMotion Dance Project. Jordan taught for ten years in Missoula County Public Schools, integrating dance with the K-5 curriculum. Jordan is an American Ballet Theatre® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum. She attended the Cross Threads Teacher Training Program at the Paris Opera Ballet School in Paris, France in the summer of 2017. Jordan is the co-author of the textbook Dance Integration: 36 Dance Lesson Plans for Science and Mathematics. She has choreographed parts of Garden City Ballet's The Nutcracker since 2011, and  this is her first season as Artistic Director.

 

Marie Barnett (Choreographer) was trained in the Royal Academy of Dance method in the San Francisco bay area, completing Elementary through Advanced levels as well as earning the Royal Academy of Dance teaching certificate. Marie has performed classical and contemporary roles with San Luis Obispo Civic Ballet and Golden State Ballet. As a choreographer, she has set everything from classical variations to Broadway musicals. Before moving to Montana, Ms. Barnett was the owner and artistic director of the Ballet Conservatory of Saddleback Valley. She is currently enjoying teaching Ballet, Jazz, Pilates and Yoga here in the Missoula valley.

 

Nicole Bradley Browning (Choreographer) is a dance artist and educator based in Missoula, Montana. She has performed, improvised, presented choreography and taught throughout the US and in Taiwan. She is interested in making dances reflective of the human experience, relationships and intimate contact between people and place, and finds great inspiration in building collaborative engagements between dance and other disciplines albeit music, media, poetry, theatre or science. Nicole specializes in contemporary modern dance, contact improvisation, improvisation and composition. At the University of Montana, where she serves as a professor of dance, she also offers a course in World Dance Studies.

 

Haley Ann Budge (Choreographer) began her training under the instruction of Colleen Rosbarsky at the age of 9 years old. While continuing her training with Rocky Mountain Ballet Theatre in Missoula, she was invited to travel and perform as engagement in cultural exchange. Prior to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Haley performed throughout China. In 2010 she performed on the American Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo. While engaging with Missoula’s sister state of Guangxi, she performed the leading role in “White Haired Girl” (famous during China’s Cultural Revolution) on the water stage in Liuzhou, and at the Guangxi Arts Institute in Nanning. In 2011 she joined Young Tanzsommer and performed throughout Italy, Austria and Germany. After her travels, Haley decided to continue her education in dance, receiving her Bachelors of Arts with an emphasis in ballet at the University of Montana. She currently teaches dance at Showtyme Academy in Missoula. Haley has previously performed in Garden City Ballet's The Nutcracker and is thrilled and honored to see this magical production in new light as a choreographer! She would like to thank Garden City Ballet for this wonderful opportunity. 

 

Joy French (Choreographer) is a dancer, choreographer, videographer and producer. After earning her MFA in Performance and Choreography at the University of Colorado Boulder, Joy moved to Missoula, MT, and in 2011 founded Bare Bait Dance (BBD). Joy created BBD to be a home for dancers in the region and to produce nationally and internationally acclaimed artists and their work. In addition to BBD, Joy is on faculty at The University of Montana, teaches in Missoula high school's through BBD's Montana MoDE (Model Dance Educator) program and has been performing professionally with Headwaters Dance Co. and the CoMotion Dance Project.  This is Joy's first year as part of the Nutcracker choreography-family and she's looking forward to being a part of the magic!  

 

Meagen Hensley (Choreographer) is a native Montanan who retired from a professional career to return to her roots and share her love of dance. Her diverse professional career consisted of productions including ‘The Siegfried & Roy Show’, ‘Sirens of Ti’, and ‘Show in the Sky’. She was the lead aerialist at Studio 54 and in three performances on Broadway.  Her modeling experience consists of print campaigns for The Orleans, Treasure Island, and Sports Illustrated. She appeared on Hawaii 5-0 as Jaycee and she has performed in numerous industrials all across the country. Meagen was the Entertainment Director for a theater and nightclub in Honolulu, HI. She choreographed and directed ‘Burn’n Love’ at the Lahaina Theater on Maui and she was the assistant director and choreographer for multiple fashion shows. She is an alum of the University of Montana where she was a cheerleader and received her Bachelor’s Degree. Meagen coached the University of Montana Dance Team for four seasons and she choreographed The Wizard of Oz for Missoula Community Theater. She is currently the Director of On Center Performing Arts, as well as an instructor. Meagen loves this dance community and can't wait to help bring the Garden City Ballet Nutcracker to life.   

 

Anna C. Keller (Choreographer) grew up in Missoula performing in a number of Garden City Ballet productions under the direction of Jan Snow and Michele Antonioli. She started her college career at Texas Christian University and then transferred to and graduated from the University of Wyoming, with a B.F.A. in dance. Her desire to dance led her to New York City and Stockholm Sweden as well as many other places including the University of Arizona were she graduated with an M.F.A. in dance. She has had a variety of performing opportunities that include ballet, modern, jazz, tap, musical theatre and one of her favorites, vertical dance. Teaching is one of her joys and she has had the opportunity to teach at the University of Arizona and the University of Idaho. She has been fortunate to be the ballet mistress for Festival dance in Moscow, Idaho, and Laramie Dance Center in Laramie, Wyoming. Anna is thrilled to again be a part of The Nutcracker with Garden City Ballet and sharing in the magic that this ballet brings to its cast and to the audience.

 

Tara McFarland (Choreographer) holds a Master's of Dance Science degree from the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance (City, University of London) and a Bachelor's of Science degree in Dance from the University of Idaho. She performs professionally with Bare Bait Dance Company, acts as ballet director at On Center Performing Arts, and teaches for BBD's MoDE program and at the Downtown Dance Collective. She has been a past member of Relay Dance Collective (Seattle), Evolving Doors Dance Company (Denver), Louder than Words Dancetheatre, and guested with 3rd Law Dance/Theater. She has studied ballet under Anne Westwick, Mary Cochran, Karen Schupp, Kerry Parker, Christina Noel-Adcock, and Will Aitchinson. She has taught ballet for Spectrum II Art & Dance School, Fusion Dance & Theatre Company, & Kinetic Arts Dance Studio, and acted as co-director of the Youth Ballet Company at Westwoods Center for Performing Arts. She is currently working on contemporary choreography for Bare Bait's Springboard show and is very excited to be working with the team and creating a classical work for Garden City Ballet's Nutcracker

 

Jes Mullette (Artistic Director's Understudy) was born and bred in the mountains of western Montana. She holds an MFA in Experimental Choreography from The University of California, Riverside and a BA in Dance/Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies from the University of Montana. A classical ballerina for the first 12 years of her career, her current work is an amalgamation of her early training and the practices of contemporary dance and improvisation, contact improvisation, and somatics, and is inspired by a constant negotiation with her relationship to grace. During her time in Missoula, Jes has been a member of Headwaters Dance Company, has performed and choreographed for Bare Bait Dance Company, and co-founded the Wrecking Crew Dance Company with her dance partner Anya Cloud. She has also taught dance at the University of Montana, Ballet Arts Academy, and Big Sky High School through the MoDE Project. Mullette is thrilled to participate in the magical tradition of The Nutcracker and would like to thank Garden City Ballet for the opportunity.

 

Colleen Rosbarsky (Choreographer) is on the faculty at Ballet Arts Academy where she teaches ballet, pointe, jazz, musical theatre and choreographs for the BAA Studio Company. In 2012, she served as Artistic Director for Garden City Ballet’s The Nutcracker. Ms. Rosbarsky has a BFA in Ballet from the University of Utah. She has trained in jazz at Lou Conte Dance Studio in Chicago and Broadway Dance Center in New York City. Earlier in her career she performed with Utah Ballet, Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago and Rocky Mountain Ballet Theatre. In recent years she performed lead roles in Winter Wonderettes at Missoula Community Theatre (MCT) as well as Chicago, Pippin and A Chorus Line at the University of Montana Department of Theatre and Dance. She spent two years as a member of Zootown Cabaret, a musical theatre singing group at UM. In the 2017-2018 season she choreographed and danced in MCT's A Christmas Carol, the Musical and choreographed title of show at the Downtown Dance Collective. This season she is choreographing MCT's Sister Act as well as "Waltz of the Flowers" and "Shepherdesses" for Garden City Ballet's The Nutcracker.

 

Lindsey Schwickert (Choreographer) began her training in Whitefish, Montana, at the age of four. Soon traveling to Kalispell, MT, she became a passionate member of the Northwest Ballet Company. Performing in several Nutcracker productions, Spring Showcases, and also a guest artist for Azure Vision Dance Company, her desire to constantly dance landed her at the University of Montana where she earned a BA. Ms. Schwickert has danced with Headwaters Dance Co. and Bare Bait Dance. Lindsey is an American Ballet Theatre® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum. Last Summer, Lindsey traveled to Paris and trained with the Paris Opera Ballet through the Cross Threads Program. She is also a new board member serving Montana dance on the Montana Dance Arts Association committee.

 

Lori Stevens (Choreographer) began her dancing career at the age of four with Valentine’s School of Dance in Orchard Park, New York. She moved to Montana at 17 and studied Elementary Education at The University of Montana. She attended ballet classes at the University of Montana and then with Kitty Van der Linde at the Third Street Studio. Lori then continued her study of Classical Ballet with Jan Snow at Dance Works. Kitty Van der Linde produced Missoula’s first Nutcracker in 1982. Kitty, Lori and two others founded the Garden City Ballet Company in 1984. Lori was an original member of Garden City Ballet’s first Professional Company and served on the board of directors as the Dancer’s Advocate. Lori has been a classical ballet instructor and choreographer for Garden City Ballet, Dance Works and the Missoula Dance Academy. Lori’s repertoire includes roles in 25 Nutcrackers, Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, Montana Sweet, Spartacus, Scheherazade, Rodeo and various original ballets. Lori started the Ballet Outreach program bringing classical ballet to Seeley Lake, Potomac and Stevensville. She also has performed in productions with Missoula’s Children’s (Community) Theater. Lori’s first grandchild was born in August 2008 in Libby, Montana. Upon giving her granddaughter a tutu for Christmas at the age of 2 1/2, she realized the need for classical ballet classes in Libby and so Libby Ballet was started in February of 2011. Lori, with the help of many in the Libby area, produced, directed, choreographed and costumed 3 Nutcrackers, 2 original ballets, Rodeo, A Mid-Summer Night’s Dream and excerpts from Swan Lake, Giselle, and Les Sylphide. Lori is thrilled and extremely honored to be back with Garden City Ballet and working with this tremendous group of talented artists. Her life’s passion for dance and bringing that passion to the youth of Missoula continues with exuberance!

 

(Costume Mistress) My name is Norma Jerome. I was born in Cuba, raised my family in California, however Missoula has been my home for the past 25 years. I am a widow and a two-time cancer survivor. My mother taught me how to sew 50 years ago to help clothe our family of eleven. My love for sewing continually grew over the years. It became a lifelong hobby and was my therapy through my cancer journey. Anyone who has been through cancer understands how it changes your perspective on life and makes you appreciate your friends and loved ones all the more. After the passing of my beloved husband, Jim, I sewed to pass time and ease the pain of my broken heart. Then one day Caroline reached out to me…she asked me to sew for the production of The Nutcracker. I am very grateful that she has given me this opportunity to be the seamstress for the Garden City Ballet and for the chance to be involved with the wonderful people in our community. Caroline’s simple phone call is helping me create my new life… thank you for being a part of my new beginning.