Amber is excited to return to her hometown of St. Louis after four years of living and teaching in the greater Atlanta area! Her early training began at Carr Lane Visual and Performing Arts School where she cultivated her interest in ballet, jazz, tap, vocal performance, and theater with Vivian Watts, Diane McCullough, and Thomasina Clarke. She continued her studies in ballet, tap, jazz, and musical right here at DaySpring under Robyn Hartley, Ginger Hedrick, Ali Grimshaw, and Nancy Schaaf. It was here that she discovered her love for teaching and performing ballet and was mentored as an assistant teacher until graduating from high school in 2003. She continued her own dance training at St. Louis Ballet School with Ellen Costanza and Gen Horiuchi until attending the University of Oklahoma as a ballet pedagogy major where she had the opportunity to study ballet theory with special focus on the psychology of learning and motivation among dance students. While an undergraduate student at OU she danced with the Oklahoma Festival Ballet for two seasons and received a B.F.A. in Dance in 2010. She returned to St. Louis to continue her teaching career at DaySpring School of the Arts as well as staging and directing performances for her students such as You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown! (2011), selections from La Bayadere (2011), and Are You My Mother? (an original ballet production, 2012). During her time in Atlanta she taught ballet and pointe at all levels for several traditional and competition dance studios around the city. This will be Amber’s fourteenth season teaching dance.
Ashley began her journey in the arts at DaySpring at age 10. She enjoyed musical theatre, ballet, tap and jazz and went on to study at Missouri Baptist University, receiving a Bachelors of Music in Musical Theatre. She moved to Kansas City in 2009 where she joined staff at the International House of Prayer and joined the voice faculty at IHOPU, teaching group voice classes to college-aged students. She helped to pioneer Forerunner Arts, a program that facilitated classes, artist galleries, and original productions in which she also performed. In recent years, she continued to perform around Kansas City’s thriving theatre community while raising her two lovely daughters. She and her husband are thrilled to return to their St. Louis roots and Ashley especially looks forwards to investing her time and energy into DaySpring’s growing students and programs.
Young Dancers, Adult Ballet
Kim grew up here in St. Louis, Missouri. She began taking classes at DaySpring when she was six years old and continued to grow in her performing arts education there for twelve years. In those years, she gained experience and training in ballet, jazz and modern dance as well as being involved in the Musical Theater, Voice and Drama departments. For two summers she also attended Ballet Magnificat!’s Summer Dance Intensive for additional dance training. She graduated from Parkway North High School in 2006. When she was 18, she was the Assistant to the Director of the ballet “La Sylphide”, and of the Musical “Tom Sawyer”. After taking classes at Lindenwood University for a semester, she moved to Madrid, Spain and began helping in the process of establishing a school of music and dance in the heart of the capitol city. After six months, she returned to the States and was the Teacher’s Assistant in Creative Movement classes at DaySpring. Upon her return to Spain, she became involved in Youth With A Mission’s Discipleship Training School and helped to choreograph evangelical dance pieces to be performed in the streets of Spain. Soon after, she returned to the dance school in Madrid and taught Creative Movement, Intermediate Ballet and Hip Hop classes for a semester. After two and a half years in Spain, she returned home to St. Louis. Since then, she has gotten married and now has four children.
Originally from Medford, Oregon, Kimberly Biesiadecki trained locally at various ballet schools. At the age of fourteen, she moved to the East coast and trained at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet under Marcia Dale Weary for three years. In 2012 she Joined Oregon Ballet Theater for one season before joining the Eglevsky ballet in New York. In 2015 she joined Saint Louis ballet and retired in 2019. Kimberly spent her summers training on scholarship at Pacific Northwest Ballet, Harid Conservatory, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Oregon Ballet Theater, Ballet West, and School of American Ballet. Beginning in 2012, Kimberly began teaching at various ballet schools and studios including Oregon Ballet Theater, Eglevsky Ballet, and Saint Louis Ballet School. Some of her favorite ballets to perform have been George Balanchine’s: "Serenade, Who Cares?", "Divertimento No. 15", Gerald Arpiono’s "Reflections", and Gen Horiuchi’s "Romeo and Juliet".
Christine Settembrino began her training at Center Stage Dance and Theatre School in East Brunswick, New Jersey, and she continued through high school at Princeton Ballet School’s Professional Training Program. During her summers she attended programs at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Ellison Ballet, and Charlotte Ballet. Christine went on to graduate magna cum laude from the University of Cincinnati with a BFA in Ballet from the College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). Professionally, Christine began her career dancing in Dayton Ballet’s The Nutcracker for two years as a member of the corps de ballet. She was a company member with Missouri Contemporary Ballet for two seasons where she performed works by Karen Grundy, Lindsey Matheis, Jennifer Medina, and Princess Grace Choreography Fellowship winner Thang Dao. While freelancing, Christine has toured the northeast as a soloist with Albany Berkshire Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker and has performed throughout North Carolina with Terpsicorps Theatre of Dance, where she performed in Salvatore Aiello’s Afternoon of a Faun and original works by Heather Maloy. Most recently, she has performed featured roles with Arova Contemporary Ballet, Magic City Nutcracker, Birmingham Ballet, and Deos Contemporary Ballet. As an instructor, Christine has taught ballet, pointe, variations, modern, contemporary, and jazz to students ranging from three years old to adulthood. She has been on faculty with the School of Missouri Contemporary Ballet and Relevé Dance Academy and guest taught at schools throughout the country. Christine has also coached students to compete in the Youth America Grand Prix and choreographed pieces for both regional and national-level dance competitions. Christine Settembrino is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.
Ballet, Modern, Young Dancers
Mary, a native of Saint Louis, is a proud DaySpring Alumna, teaching at the same school where she first fell in love with dance. Mary received additional training at Kansas City Ballet, St. Louis Ballet, Thodos Dance Chicago, and Ballet Magnificat!, where she was a merit scholarship recipient. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Dance from UMSL, where she trained with Christine Kardell, Michael Uthoff, and Ronderrick Mitchell . In 2010, Mary became a member of Common Thread Contemporary Dance Company, under the artistic direction of Jennifer Medina, where she has transitioned from being the youngest dancer to the longest company member, now in her 8th season. With CTCDC, acclaimed artists have featured Mary in works: Tyrone Brooks, Jessica Lang, Uri Sands, Christine Knoblauch- O’Neal, and Paula Weber. Additionally, Mary has also performed with SmashedWorks Dance Collective, Kinetic Tapestry, and aTrek, currently Leverage Dance Theater. Mary is a passionate dance educator, with over 9 years of teaching experience; she has had the joy of teaching a variety of dance styles to all different ages, including senior citizen chair and water ballet classes with Vitality Ballet. You can also find Mary teaching ballet for local professional dance companies. Mary teaches company ballet class for Consuming Kinetics Dance Company, she has also taught ballet for AshleyLiane Dance Company, and Common Thread Dance Company. She has taught master classes for University of Missouri St. Louis and Eastern Illinois University. Mary enjoys any opportunity to travel and is a member of the dance ministry at the Gateway House of Prayer, where she has taught, choreographed, and performed for local and international outreaches.
Tap, Musical Theatre Dance
Tasha Roberts is a St. Louis native and trained has in theatre, dance, drama, vocal training, and technical theater right here at DaySpring for many years. She is currently a sophomore in college earning a degree in dance at Lindenwood University. Tasha is thrilled to start teaching at DaySpring helping to share my love of theater and dance with my students while encouraging them to recognize their own unique talents.