Patricia Dickinson began training with Nancy Robison and the Southern Ballet of Atlanta under Karen Conrad, formerly with American Ballet and Pittman Corry. She was a scholarship recipient at the North Carolina School for the Arts, studied at The Graham Conservatory in New York, and received a BFA degree with honors from Southern Methodist University. Ms Dickinson danced with the Dallas Opera and the Dallas Ballet, where she worked with such choreographers and teachers as George Skibine, Marjorie Tallchief, and James Clouser. She has performed in film and commercials, and has produced fifteen record albums for the ballet classroom and three instructional videos. Ms Dickinson’s continuing teaching, performing, and choreographic career spans the United States, Canada, Mexico and Europe. (See Ms. Dickinson’s full bio.)
Our faculty are well-educated, highly trained professionals in the art of dance who have danced professionally, taught at the University level and have been international guest artists.
Christopher Arellano is from Tucumcari and moved to Albuquerque two years ago to begin his dance training. He has studied ballet, modern, jazz, tap, contemporary, musical theatre, hip-hop, improv, and musical theatre at the National Dance Institute of New Mexico, Dance Theatre Southwest, Urbanity Dance, and Joffrey Ballet School. In the beginning, Christopher performed works choreographed by Evelyn Cisneros-Legate, Stephen Legate, and Anne Reinking. Recently, he was honored to return to his hometown and choreograph for the Tucumcari Rattler cheerleaders. During his dance journey, he discovered a deep passion for musical theatre. He has had multiple performances in New York City, sharing the stage with performers from Hamilton, Phantom of the Opera, West Side Story, Billy Elliot, and Disney’s The Little Mermaid. He’s also performed original Broadway choreography from Disney’s Frozen, Mean Girls, Wicked, Waitress, A Chorus Line, 42nd Street, and more. Chris currently teacher intermediate Jazz and Hip-Hop at Dance Theatre Southwest.
Jeanne Frye-Mason began dancing in Dallas, Texas and went to Arts Magnet High School with Patricia Dickinson Wells. She was fortunate to work with many wonderful dancers like Bella Lewitzky Company in California and meet Martha Graham. She won a National Foundation for the Arts Award in dance and choreography, which earned her eight scholarships to top dance universities. She went on scholarship to New York University, TISCH School of the Arts, where she was able to dance and choreograph in New York. She then went to Florida State University where she danced in Dance Repertory Theatre. After a dance injury, she moved to New Mexico to finish her BFA in dance from UNM and then went back to earn her MA and PhD in Gifted/Learning Disabilities with a minor in Environmental Education with a balanced passion in education, creativity and nature. She taught Nature Dancing in Dallas and around Albuquerque and at the Albuquerque BioPark for 12 years combining dance and nature observation/facts and has published articles on this program. Jeanne’s experiences include a balance of dance, education, nature, educational research background, professional dancing, teaching in public schools, and leading educational programs with private organizations and universities. She currently does contract and volunteer work in these areas combining dance, nature and gifted education and she loves animals, hiking, classical music, art, reading and teaching nature seminars along the trails. She cares very much about safe and healthy dance and movement styles for a lifetime of healthy dancing and life-long learning. She has three wonderful children and loves teaching modern dance, choreography and improvisation at Dance Theatre of the Southwest.
Justine Flores began dancing at Dance Theatre Southwest (DTSW) at the age of two. She studied ballet, pointe, modern, flamenco, and jazz. She appeared in numerous productions with Festival Ballet Albuquerque and is a founding member. She has performed in Dracula, Peter and the Wolf, Billy the Kid, and The Nutcracker in the Land of Enchantment dancing the role of Maria. At the age of fourteen she moved to New York City on full scholarship to study at the School of American Ballet, which is the associate school of New York City Ballet. She attended the School of American Ballet for four years and is an alumnus. She trained under Kay Mazzo, Susan Pilarre, Suki Schorer, Katrina Killian, Jock Soto, and Jonathan Stafford. While attending the School of American Ballet she performed various works, including a section from Swan Lake, Scotch Symphony, and the Principal role Choleric in The Four Temperaments. She also had the opportunity to perform Scènes de Ballet at the David H. Koch Theater, home of New York City Ballet. Justine is currently a new faculty member at DTSW; she also teaches private lessons and is attending CNM.
Beth Griffin began her ballet studies with Terrell Paulk of the Atlanta Ballet and Sonia Manzi of the Vienna State Opera Ballet. She danced with Mr. Paulk’s regional ballet company before continuing her dance studies in college where she earned a BSEd in biology education. She had the privilege of performing in many classical and contemporary works, including Swan Lake, Cinderella, Les Sylphides, Nutcracker, Giselle, Graduation Ball, and Paquita. She continued study with Duncan Noble (North Carolina School of the Arts), Andree Harper (Ballet El Paso), Marc Ligon (American Ballet Theater) and Maria Hirsch (Ballet de San Juan). In 1994 she and Ms. Hirsch co founded the Columbus Ballet in Georgia where Beth served as assistant artistic director, artistic director and executive director for over 10 years. In 2003 Beth founded the Columbus Ballet Conservatory at Columbus State University where she organized a training program that served as a school to the Columbus Ballet. For over 30 years Beth has taught and directed classical ballet, served as choreographer for the Miss Columbus and Miss Georgia pageants, served as choreographer for the Springer Theater and Columbus University Theater department working on such productions as A Christmas Carol, A Doll’s House, and Nunsense. During her time in Albuquerque she has had the privilege of serving as ballet mistress and rehearsal coach for area companies and continuing to train dancers in classical ballet. Beth is currently on faculty at Dance Theatre Southwest and serves as a primary rehearsal coach for Festival Ballet Albuquerque.
Dominic Guerra grew up in Albuquerque and began his dance training at Fishback’s Studio, Lana’s School of Dance, and traditional Mexican folk dance with Miguel Caro. When Guerra was a senior in high school, he joined Luis Fuentes Ballet New Mexico. After graduating from Albuquerque High, Guerra moved to New York City to pursue his dream of being a professional dancer in a ballet company. In the summer of 2000, Guerra auditioned for the Ailey School and received a scholarship, where he refined his technique for the following three years. In 2003, Guerra became a company member of American Repertory Ballet and danced with ARB for four years. While living on the east coast Guerra worked for several companies including Connecticut Ballet and Astrid Von Ussar & Jennifer Muller’s The Works. Guerra returned to Albuquerque and stated dancing for Patricia Dickinson Wells at Festival Ballet Albuquerque immediately. Guerra has danced several lead roles, such as Dracula from Dracula, a Love Story, and Cavalier from The Nutcracker in the Land of Enchantment, along with many other roles. Guerra was commissioned by UNM’s Friends of Dance to create a ballet, titled Las Soldaderas, which is based on the women of the Mexican Revolution. Dominic has also been selected as a choreographer for Festival Ballet Albuquerque by Regional Dance America Southwest.
Kyle Linzer started dancing as a senior in high school in California and has now been dancing for over 25 years. He started the dance program at Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho after teaching in the dance program at Rio Rancho High School for 10 years and has now been teaching dance for the Rio Rancho schools for 19 years. He has worked with many dance companies over the years including Festival Ballet Albuquerque, NMBC, BRT, and as a guest artist with many others in New Mexico and California. He currently teaches all of the dance classes at Cleveland high school and the Advanced Partnering (Pas de Deux) class for Dance Theatre Southwest. In addition to teaching dance and performing, Kyle teaches Yoga for the Rio Rancho Schools, Defined Fitness, and Blissful Spirits Hot Yoga, where he has the pleasure of training other instructors. He also teaches yoga workshops and trainings nationally and internationally, most recently in Alaska, Cancun, and Jamaica.
Christo McMaster began dancing in 2012 when he participated in Festival Ballet Albuquerque’s production of Billy the Kid. He began his formal ballet training at Dance Theatre Southwest with Dominic Guerra and Patricia Dickinson Wells. He has since been performing with Festival Ballet Albuquerque. Christo has recently performed with other companies such as Louisiana Delta Ballet, as a guest artist in their production of Beauty and the Beast, and more extensively with Connecticut Ballet, in the productions of Giselle and The Nutcracker, as well as various outreach programs. With his apprenticeship and trainee scholarship he studied under Mr. Brett Raphael, Director of Connecticut Ballet. Christo is currently on faculty at Dance Theatre Southwest where he teachers Boys Class, Beginning Partnering for teenagers and Adult classes as well.
Alex Ossadnik (guest artist) was trained in Dresden, in the formerly Soviet occupied East Germany. After his career on the stage in Germany, France and the United States, he served numerous companies as teacher, balletmaster, choreographer and director since 1996 before joining Ballet Idaho in 2008. As artistic director, choreographer and balletmaster, Alex has worked over the past fourteen years with artists from Alberta Ballet (Canada), Boston Ballet, Colorado Ballet, Compania Nacional de Danza de Mexico and with personalities such as Natalia Krassovska and Galina Mezentseva. Alex has choreographed a repertory of chamber music ballets for Santa Fe Festival Ballet, for which he was Co-Founder and Ballet Director from 1996 to 1999. He is also co-founder of the Public Academy for Performing Arts in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Atlantic Southeast Ballet in Charleston, South Carolina. He has choreographed Coppelia, The Nutcracker , The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake for Ballet Repertory Theatre of New Mexico. Alex has also choreographed The Rite of Spring, The Four Seasons, Violin Concerto, Midnight Shadows, The Creation of the World and Circus for Ballet Idaho. In April, Alex will choreograph Alice in Wonderland. Alex has taught around the world… from Veronique’s Ecole d Danse in Bordeaux, France to the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Marr Mac Dance Studio in Edmonton, Alberta.
Rosalinda Rojas is a dance educator, choreographer, circus and aerial arts specialist and mentor. She is the founder of Albuquerque School of Circus Arts (est. 1999) “You Don’t Have To Run Away From Home To Join The Circus” and is currently a faculty member of Albuquerque Academy Performing Arts Department since 2001, and Dance Theater Southwest Circus Arts and Aerial Dance program extension. Rosalinda worked as a teaching artist and facilitator at Ballet Hispanico, ArtsConnection Young Talent Circus Training Program in conjunction with the NYCPS, New York School of Circus Arts and Harbor School of Performing Arts in East Harlem. Rosalinda was born and artistically nurtured in New York City. Her family migrated to the United States from Puerto Rico and Cuba for career and educational opportunities. Her desire to advocate for community-based dance, equity and inclusion in classical ballet as a core value led Rosalinda to pursue certification with ABT NTC Project Plié diversity initiative program. Rosalinda studied dance at Performing Arts High School, Dance Theater of Harlem, Ballet Hispanico and Joffrey Ballet. She was awarded merit scholarships to study dance full time at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (The Ailey School), Graham School of Contemporary Dance and May O’ Donnell School of Dance. Awarded global travel & study grants, Rojas traveled to Havana, Cuba to study Cuban Ballet Methodology at Laura Alonso Centro Pro Danza, Warsaw, Poland, and the former USSR to study Vaganova ballet methodology. She has performed as a principal dancer with the Puerto Rican Dance Theater, NYC under artistic director of Julio Torres, and mentorship of Brunilda Ruiz. Rojas has collaborated with and performed works by: Franco Zeffirelli, Louis Falco, Michael Crawford, Tony Orlando, Stacy Keach, Clay Taliaferro, Loretta Lynn and as well as other artists. Artistic credits include: The Metropolitan Opera productions, the Flying Karamasovs Brothers at Lincoln Center production of Shakespeare’s “The Comedy of Errors” , Barnum on Broadway and London, and the II Rampe International Circus School Festival Competition in Monte Carlo. Her work and circus troupe were awarded the Nice Martin and Junior Jury high honors for innovative choreography and technical excellence. Rosalinda is celebrating another year as a company member at Festival Ballet Albuquerque under the artistic direction of friend and mentor, Patricia W. Dickinson. Rojas earned a B.F.A. in Choreography from the University of New Mexico and a MA in Education Dance from the University of Northern Colorado. Rojas intends to pursue an interdisciplinary specialization as a post graduate student with the Arts Leadership and Cultural Management program at Colorado State University. Her research interests include innovative and collaborative leadership, cultural hierarchy of arts education, improving arts education leadership and dance advocacy.
Jordan Slocum is the owner of East Mountain Dance and has trained at Lana’s School of Dance, Tara’s Dance Academy, National Dance Institute of New Mexico, Keshet, East Mountain Dance, Alwin School of Dance, and Dance Theatre Southwest (DTSW). She was a member of Manzano High School’s Dance Team and studied dance at the University of New Mexico with Simone and Vladimir Conde Reche, Eric Newton, and Donna Jewell. She attended the 2018 DanceLife Teacher Conference with Rhee Gold in Scottsdale, AZ as well as a pedagogy workshop in Santa Fe, NM with Sheila Rozann. While at DTSW, Jordan has received training from Zippora Karz, Jock Soto, Christine Spizzo, Mel Tomlinson, Alex Ossadnik, Jefferson Baum, Thom Clower, and many other nationally renowned master instructors. Jordan has studied and taught ballet, jazz, pointe, hip-hop, and modern/contemporary. She has participated as a dancer/dance captain for Landmark Musicals and served as Assistant to the Director, Rehearsal Repetituer/Coach, and dancer for Festival Ballet Albuquerque. Jordan is currently Office Administrator and on faculty as a dance instructor for Dance Theatre Southwest. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in Criminology with two minors, studied abroad in Brazil and Cuba, and completed and received a Master’s of Science in Information Systems and Assurance from the Anderson School of Management. Jordan is currently enrolled in UNM’s Educational Psychology graduate program. This is her seventh season with FBA where she has performed many ballets, including George Balanchine’s Serenade and Valse Fantaisie. She has danced as a principle dancer in ballets choreographed by Mel Tomlinson and Patricia Dickinson Wells, and as a soloist for David Chavez. Jordan has also performed with Festival Ballet Albuquerque in Sacred Journeys and Sacred Journeys II, with choreography by Jock Soto, Patricia Dickinson Wells, Vladimir Conde Reche, Dominic Guerra, and others, and was the FBA Co-Festival Coordinator for the Regional Dance America Southwest 2019 Festival.
Antionette Segura, a native of Albuquerque, began her dance training at the age of three with Fishback Studio of The Dance in ballet, jazz, tap, acrobatics, hip hop and contemporary. She has competed regionally and nationally with Fishback’s dance team, receiving numerous awards and titles, including Youth America Grand Prix 3rd place contemporary winner and IDC Junior Miss Global. In 2005, Antionette joined NMBC, then under the direction of Patricia Dickinson Wells, where throughout the years she has performed in various roles in the productions of The Nutcracker Ballet, Alice in Wonderland, Spartacus, Pucci Sports, Romeo and Juliet, Dracula, and Don Quixote. She has performed in George Balanchine’s Tchaikovsky Pas de Duex, Serenade, and Valse Fanatisie. Antionette has trained with various artists and is currently a dance instructor for Kids Love to Dance, NDI-NM, and Dance Theatre Southwest. This is Antionette’s fifth season with FBA.
Lora Sturm has been dancing for nearly her entire life. She has studied ballet, modern, and flamenco in Albuquerque and bharata natyam, South Indian classical dance, in Middletown, Connecticut and Paris, France. When she was ten years old, she began studying with Patricia Dickinson and her company and performed leading and corps roles in productions of The Nutcracker, Dracula: A Love Story, and Coppelia, as well as Balanchine’s Serenade and Valse Fantasie, to name a few. Ms. Sturm holds a B.A. in French Studies from Wesleyan University. She currently works as a massage therapist. Lora is currently on faculty with Dance Theatre Southwest.
Jaimasan Sutton is a sophomore at UNM double majoring in Math and Philosophy. She enjoys experimenting with many hobbies, but has an affinity for drawing, singing, and writing. She enjoys participating in local musical theatre and some of her favorite shows were Spamalot, Pippin, and Bring it On because of the heavy amount of dancing involved in each. She enjoys exploring dance styles, but with little formal training in any of them, musical theatre gives her a the opportunity to study many different dance genres. Jaimasan currently serves as Receptionist at Dance Theatre Southwest where she is also is training in Ballet, Jazz, and Hip-Hop, looking to add more styles with the new 2020-2021 Season.
Jennifer Winkless-Hall is an Albuquerque native and began her ballet training at age four. She has studied with Patricia Dickinson-Wells at Dance Theatre Southwest since 1998 and has attended numerous intensive workshops with Jilliana (New York City Ballet), Arthur Mitchell (Dance Theatre of Harlem), Mel Tomlinson (Alvin Ailey) and Antoinette Peloso (Metropolitan Opera Company of NY). Jennifer has taught ballet classes of every age and level and loves working with children (especially now that she has a little one of her own!) Her performance credits include various roles in The Nutcracker for Festival Ballet Albuquerque, NMBC and Ballet Repertory Theatre of New Mexico as well as Balanchine’s Serenade for NMBC and BRT’s Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella. Mrs. Winkless-Hall has been a member of Festival Ballet Albuquerque since its inception performing in The Nutcracker in the Land of Enchantment, Dracula, The Firebird and Coppelia.
Sean (“Sgt Winks”) Winkless-Hall started dancing in Albuquerque in 1983 at the ripe old age of two and a half. It was love at first stretch. Since then life has taken many twists and turns and always ballet has remained a major component in his story. He trained primarily at Lana’s School of Dance with a variety of amazing teachers. He also attended numerous summer intensive programs ranging from the University of NM to the Joffrey Ballet in New York. For two summers he studied at the Nutmeg Conservatory for the Arts which allowed him to take classes from dancers from companies such as Momix, NYCB, SAB, and former dancers from the Bolshoi. Locally, Sgt Winks danced many times with Bill Evans, Eva Encinias, and Judith Bennahaum. Beginning in 1988 he appeared on stage with NMBC in his first Nutcracker under David Chavez, and continued to develop his dance career for the next 13 years. In 1996 he took his first classes with Patricia Dickinson and they have been working together off and on ever since. He spent several years at the end of the 90s doing guest appearances with companies around the southwest before taking time off to finish school. In 2011 Sgt Winks joined the Army National Guard and has completed 8 years of military service. By day Sgt Winks has a 9-5, is the father of two beautiful girls, and is the husband of Jennifer whom he met and fell in love with while dancing for FBA.