Faculty

 

Lauren Lorentz de Haas, Artistic Director

A North Carolina native, began her training in Fayetteville with Josephine von Strasnicsak. She studied ballet with Constance Hardinge at Virginia Intermont College in Bristol, VA and North Carolina School of the Arts. An anthropology graduate of UNC, she received her MA in dance from UNC-Greensboro with recognized credits from American Dance Festival. Ms. Lorentz de Haas has been teaching ballet for over 35 years. She founded the Triangle Youth Ballet to serve the needs of young aspiring dancers and has served as director since 1995.


Kate Currin, Associate Director

Is a graduate from the Walnut Hill School of Performing Arts with a major in Dance. Kate studied at Fordham University in the Fordham/Alvin Ailey B.F.A. dance program.  She continued her dance training at Steps on Broadway and graduated from Fordham University summa cum laude with a B.A. in Religious Studies in 2007.  She has performed with Sweet Enuff Dancers and Jette Performance Company in New York, and was a member of Sidelong Dance Co. 2008-2009.  Kate also toured with the world-renowned acrobatic dance company Galumpha. Kate’s choreography has been performed by Sidelong Dance Co. and was selected to appear at the Southeastern Regional Ballet Association Festival in May 2009.  She taught Ballet and Jazz at Dance Cavise in Mamaroneck, NY throughout college and is currently teaching in Chapel Hill, NC at the Triangle Youth Ballet. 


Sharon McClellan, Director of Children’s Curriculum

Studied Ballet and Musical Theater at Jacksonville University, Children’s Theater and Choreography at the University of Kansas and South Indian Classical Dance at the University of Washington. Performed and choreographed for Dansync Performing Arts Ensemble. She has taught continuously in the area for 25 years.


Christiana Barnett-Murphy

Has been a part of the Triangle Youth Ballet family since 2002. She began dancing professionally while in high school with

2 Near the Edge Dance Company in the ongoing production “Night of Renewal”, which was performed throughout the North Carolina region including First Night Raleigh, Duke University, and The University of North Carolina. She also has performed with the Duke Repertory Company in works by Andrea E. Woods and Ava Lavonne Vinesett and with Dendy Dance Theater at the grand re-opening of the North Carolina Museum of Art. Christiana has attended the American Dance Festival for six summers and has had the opportunity to learn from and perform with some of the best in Modern dance. During the summer of 2012, Christiana was the personal assistant to ADF faculty member, Jesse Zaritt. She is currently a company member of Andrea E. Woods/SOULOWORKS and works as a freelance dancer, choreographer and teacher.


William Commander

Is a dancer, teacher, and choreographer based in Durham, North Carolina. William graduated from Elon University in 2011, where he earned a BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography. In 2013, he, along with Stephanie Blackmon Woodbeck, started Tobacco Road Dance Productions, with the goal of helping North Carolina choreographers create and improve dance in this incredible state. He currently teaches at the ADF’s Samuel H. Scripps studios and Triangle Youth Ballet, and dances for Renay Aumiller Dances, VECTOR- a dance and multimedia company- Diego Carraso Dance, and Sara Tourek. In the past, William has worked with Lauren Kearns, Gaspard Louis, Adrienne Clancy, Jon Lehrer, and Killian Manning. William believes strongly in artistic collaboration, and is constantly striving to improve those around him as much as himself. 


Abbie Stone

Began dancing at the age of three studying the basics of ballet, tap, and jazz. At age eight she began her formal training with the Louisville Ballet where she trained in many different styles including: ballet, jazz, modern, salsa, tap, character, pointe, and more. She also studied with the school, Ballet Espagnol, where she trained in the beautiful art of flamenco dancing. She furthered her dance education by attending numerous summer intensives, including the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington D.C. and taking classes with the renown teacher Finis Jhung. By attending these various summer intensives and dance festivals, Abbie was exposed to a world of dance that stretches far past the typical ballet, tap, and jazz training. Traditional Indian dance, African, and Capoeira are just a few of the many unusual styles presented at these programs. In high-school she trained at the Youth Performing Arts School in Louisville, KY, where she was exposed to choreography classes and some musical theatre on top of a rigorous ballet and modern program. In college she continued her dance studies as a ballet major at both the University of South Florida and Butler University. She continued her passion for dance professionally as a soloist with the De la Dance Company in Cincinnati, performing roles in new works as well as classical full length ballets. Abbie graduated summa cum laude with her BS in Exercise Science with a minor in Dance. She has held numerous teaching positions, including many with children of all ages. Along with dance, Abbie has also maintained a consistent yoga practice for the past 8 years and most recently acquired her CYT 200 from Marianne Wells School of Yoga.  Abbie has been on the faculty of the Triangle Youth Ballet since 2015 Hannah Widener

Received her BFA in dance with a minor in English from UNC-G in 1994. She has performed in modern dance companies: Dansync, A Performing Arts Ensemble, and North/South Dance of NYC. Her teaching experiences include teaching children’s classes in ballet, jazz, tap, creative movement, and modern dance. She has also taught ballroom dance to adults.


Abby Williamson

Is originally from Chapel Hill, NC, where she began her dance training at Bounds Dance Studio under Lauren Lorentz de Haas. She was a member of the Triangle Youth Ballet for their first production of the Nutcracker in 1994. Abby went on to train with Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet under Marcia Dale Weary and spent her summers attending summer intensives at Pacific Northwest Ballet School in Seattle, WA. After graduation, Abby danced in the Professional Division at Pacific Northwest Ballet on a full tuition scholarship. She danced with the company in various performances. In 2010, Abby graduated from Cornish College of the Arts magna cum laude with a B.F.A. in Dance. The following year, Abby returned to Pacific Northwest Ballet, working in their Education and Outreach program. She has lived abroad and taught dance at two different international schools; International School of Kabul and Yongsan International School of Seoul. She also danced with Ad Deum Dance Company in Houston, TX. Abby loves merging her passions for the arts, other cultures, and mentorship to see students grow into stronger leaders and learners.


Grace Yeyeodu

A native of Chapel Hill, Grace trained under Lauren Lorentz de Haas and Christine Cervino Grider of the Triangle Youth Ballet. There she had the opportunity to dance various roles in ballets such as The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, and The Nutcracker. As a member of the Performing Company, she attended dance festivals at UNCSA and RDA/SERBA, performing in works including Kate Currin’s “Barefoot Tango” and Christine Cervino Grider’s “Bubble Gum”. Grace participated in Ballet Magnificat!’s summer dance intensive in Jackson, Mississippi for four years and was selected for a solo role in the student dance concert the final year. In 2016, Grace graduated from Georgetown University with a BA in Government and currently enjoys teaching children’s ballet classes.