Guest Faculty

Lisa Hess Jones a native of Amarillo, Texas; Ms. Hess trained with her parents, Neil and Camille Hess.  Further training included the San Francisco Ballet, Harkness Ballet, School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theatre.  Ms. Hess joined New York City Ballet in 1975 and later became a soloist.  She danced with Nureyev and Friends, was a guest artist with Sydney Ballet in Australia and toured Asia with Stars of the American Ballet.  In 1989, Ms. Hess became involved with the Carlisle Project allowing her to create choreography for professional dancers and for the Northeast Regional Dance Festival and the Southwest Regional Dance Festival.  She has created works for ballet companies around the country such as Annapolis Ballet Theatre, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Brigham Young University, and West Texas State University.

 Alexia Hess-Sheehan  studied ballet in Amarillo, Texas. At age 10, she received a scholarship to the American Ballet Theatre. The following year, she studied at the world-renowned School of American Ballet in New York City. She joined the New York City Ballet in 1979, working with choreographers George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins. Alexia Hess-Sheehan made her Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning “Jerome Robbins Broadway,” playing Maria in West Side Story. Other Broadway credits are “110 In The Shade,” “Phantom of the Opera” and “Carousel.” Alexia relocated to New Jersey in 1996 and has been teaching in the area for many years.

Jillana Hess Webb is Artistic directress of the Salt Lake Dance Center. Ms. Webb moved to Salt Lake City following her career training and performing with the New York City Ballet, the Chicago Opera Ballet, and the Particia McBride Ballet Company. Ms. Webb also majored in ballet at the University of Utah, as well as performing with Ballet West. Ms. Webb received her first scholarship at the age of 10 to the San Francisco Ballet School. Scholarships followed to the American Ballet Theatre and the New York City Ballet. During her career, Ms. Webb received contract offers with the Frankfurt Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Ballet Met. She has performed in ballets such as "The Nutcracker," "Symphony in C," "Concerto Borocco", "The Four Seasons," "Coppelia," and many others. She was fortunate to train under the truly great teachers of our time, including George Balanchine, Alexandria Danilova, Suki Shorer, and Harold Christensen. Ms. Webb has been a guest teacher for the Oklahoma Dance Masters Association and has been selected as a judge for National competitions.

Sarah Tallman holds a BA with honors in Dance Performance and Choreography from the University of Northern Colorado, where she was the two-time recipient of the esteemed honor of Dancer of the Year. She has participated in the Inside ODC Professional Workshop, Baardar Dance Institute in Oslo, Norway and Perry- Mansfield Performing Arts School. Sarah has danced with David Taylor Dance Theatre, Kim Robards Dance, Lynn Barr, and Gleich Dances Contemporary Ballet. Off- season, Sarah has been a Principal Artist with Central City Opera performing in Carmen, “Anna II” in Seven Deadly Sins and “Dream Laurey” in Oklahoma!. Since joining Wonderbound, Sarah has danced leading roles in Garrett Ammon’sSmile, When the Power Goes Out, Intersection, Rock Ballets,Vagabond Hill, and Love in the Digital Age, as well as Dawn Fay’s Like An Onion. Sarah has been featured in world premiers by Alex Ketley, Maurya Kerr, Amy Seiwert, Mark Godden, Ma Cong and Lauri Stallings. An accomplished choreographer, she has created several works for Wonderbound including See Yourself, In Between Seams, and most recently Intimate Letters. Sarah has taught and created works for Wonderbound’s affiliated school CCD, and has directed the Intermediate Program at Burklyn Ballet Theatre.  

​Mallauri Esquibel a native of Colorado moved to Los Angeles at the age of 17, right away started working with choreographers such as Tina D’Amato, Mark Meismer, Doug Caldwell, and Brian Friedman. Mallauri was a principle dancer for Mark Meismers professional company Evolution where she worked along side Dee Caspary, Justin Giles, Jason Parsons, and Liz Imperio. She then moved to Utah to be a featured dancer in the well respected company Odyssey Dance Theater, where she did shows in Utah, as well as a week at the Ailey center in New York City, a European tour, and had the opportunity to perform at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. Mallauri has assisted Tyce Diorio on Season 2-9 of So You Think You Can dance. Can also be seen dancing on Dancing with the stars, Jimmy Kimmel, Good Morning America, VH1 Divas, Glee, House, Bones, Warren the ape, Cold Case, High school Musical 1, 2 and 3.  She is the featured ballerina in the remake of the legendary 80′s movie FAME. She was also the animated body double for the princess and the frog for Disney’s The Princess and the Frog. She has danced for Artists such as Paula Abdul, Joss Stone, Jordin Sparks, The Gypsy Kings, Florence and the Machine, and Leona Lewis. She toured around the world with AR Rahman, and the opportunity to perform with him for his win of the Nobel Peace Prize. Mallauri was a featured ensemble as well as dance captain for the Broadway musical “Wonderland” choreographed by Marguerite Derricks. She had the opportunity to featured on the cover of the December issue of Dance spirit. She recently finished the 1st national tour of the Frank Sinatra show “Come Fly Away” choreographed by Twyla Tharp. You can see Mallauri as a series regular on the ABC family TV series “Bunheads” as well as dancing in the new movie “Behind the Candleabra” Starring Michael Douglass and Matt Damon. She was also cast as one of the principle dancers for the remake of Dirty Dancing that has recently been postponed. She is anxiously waiting to get back into the studio with Mr. Kenny Ortega. Mallauri is currently on the RED world tour with Taylor Swift. Although Mallauri loves being on the stage her heart is in teaching. Her knowledge of training and technique has taken her around the US, Canada, Japan, Germany and London.

​Cat Cogliandro, a native of Houston, Texas, received her BFA in Dance from SUNY Purchase. Since then, she has worked with choreographers such as Al Blackstone, Tyce Diorio, Mike Esperanza, Talia Favia, Jason Gorman, Nicole Hogg, Juliette Irons, Sonya Tayeh, Teddy Tedholm, and Jaci Royal. Cat's credits include So You Think You Can Dance, America's Got Talent, The 2014 Gypsy Awards,and The Pulse on Tour. She was also named one of Dance Spirit Magazine's "13 of the Dance World's Hottest Young Choreographers" in the November 2014 issue.
Cat is currently on faculty at Broadway Dance Center and The Edge, and guest teaches at studios such as Millennium Dance Complex (LA and Pittsburgh), Peridance, Movement Lifestyle. She also taught forThe Pulse on Tour Annual Teacher Workshop, Wild Dance Intensive and Turn It Up Dance Challenge. Cat's work has been presented at The Young Choreographers Festival, Young! Tanzsommer, Sirens After Dark, Jared Grimes's Feel Good, Dancin' Downtown at The Joyce, Riverside Church, RAW at The Cutting Room, Dixon Place and The Pulse Showcase Finale in New York City. Cat now travels between LA and New York, as she continues to teach nationally and internationally, and is in the process of starting her own company, catastrophe!.

About Summit Dance Academy

At Summit Dance Academy in Parker, Colorado we have year round, ballet and pre-ballet programs in addition to jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary, modern, acro and tap. Please call for information or email us at

Our directors' students have received and are continually awarded scholarships to university and college dance programs such as AMDA, Brigham Young University, University of Utah, Snow College, Rick's College, Colorado State University, University of Arizona, University of Oklahoma, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Texas Tech and the College of Eastern Utah. Graduated students have worked as Rockettes and on cruise lines. Many former students have also received scholarships and have been accepted into summer programs such as American Ballet Theater, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Burklyn Ballet, San Francisco Ballet and Joffrey Ballet/Jazz summer program

Heather Webb Jasso  is Summit Dance Academy's Co-Arstic Director. Mrs. Jasso is also a third-generation dance teacher and studio owner. She was dancing before she could walk; and, aside from training with her mother, aunts, and grandparents (New York City Ballet), she has had the opportunity to travel and study under the dance “greats," Joe Tremaine, Brian Freidman, Tabitha, Mia Michaels, Terry Beaman, Dee Caspary, Wes Veldink, and David Scott. She has also performed key roles in ballets such as the Nutcracker, Snow White, Cinderella, and the Twelve Dancing Princesses. Heather is a title-winning dancer and choreographer at the regional and national level, winning numerous awards such as multiple FDC Judges’ Choice Awards, the Prime Time Scholarship Award, and World Dance Championship Invites in 2009 and 2011. Furthermore, she was awarded the Pulse Tour’s Teacher Scholarship in 2009 and was invited to compete in America’s Got Talent auditions in 2010. Heather was awarded Teacher of the Year in Panama City, Florida in 2011. Heather has also traveled the country and been an adjudicator for national dance competitions for 2013-2017. This last fall Ms. Webb Jasso was invited to adjudicate for Australia's Get The Beat International Competition.  Ms. Webb Jasso is so excited to invite you and your dancer to come share her passion for dance!

Kelly Amadeo is Summit Dance Academy’s Children’s Program Director and Competition Team Communications Administrator. Kelly has an extensive background in child and adolescent development, education, and dance instruction. Kelly is a licensed teacher in the state of Colorado, has a bachelor’s degree in childhood education, and a master’s degree in elementary education. She danced and performed at the advanced level at Colorado State University while obtaining her degrees. Kelly teaches classroom management, communication, and education courses at a local university in her spare time. Kelly was trained in the Russian Ballet Technique and is knowledgeable about a variety of styles and schools of dance. Her areas of specialty included pas de deux, pointe, ballet, and children’s dance. Kelly studied dance at Ballet Northwest, Perry-Mansfield, Colorado State University, and Colorado Ballet. She was also a company member of a traveling dance company that taught elementary students around the western states about the history of dance. Kelly has performed lead roles in The Firebird, Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Dracula, Beauty and the Beast, Robin Hood, and many others in her 30 years of dance.  She has choreographed and directed dance productions including the Nutcracker. Her pedagogy of dance education is that all children can master skills in dance to build a solid foundation for a lifetime of dance through fun, safe, consistent, and structured education. She encourages students and parents to build respectful relationships with each other and their instructors to create a safe and enjoyable environment for all. 

Susan Beens is Summit Dance Academy's Tumbling, Strength, Fitness Director. Ms. Fitness USA 2009. She is a Colorado native, but spent time in Nashville getting her undergraduate degree in business.  While in Nashville, she opened a gymnastics facility. She trained a level 10 gymnast to the national championships, level 8s and 9s to state and regional championships, and had several TOPS national qualifiers.  Susan also worked with a handful of junior fitness competitors and took them to local and national level shows.  She has been teaching tumbling and acro for dance, along with strength and flexibility for many years.  She was a competitive gymnast, stopping at level 9. Susan also trained in ballet, jazz, and lyrical at The Durango Ballet Academy. 

Cricket Keller started dancing in her mom’s studio in New Mexico under the instruction of her mother at the age of three. After Cricket graduated high school she moved straight to Los Angeles, CA where she auditioned for and received a scholarship to study commercial dance at the EDGE Performing Arts Center. Cricket enjoyed a dance career for years following her time as an EDGE scholar; she eventually attended college at UCLA. In 2010 Cricket and her husband moved to Colorado after their daughter was born to be closer to family. Some of Cricket’s dancing credits include re-occurring performances as a featured American Bandstand dancer on NBC’s “American Dreams”, playing a cheerleader in the Hillary Duff movie “A Cinderella Story”, and performing live at the AmericanMusic Awards for pop artist Pink and choreographer Marty Kudelka. She was an original cast member as an aerialist / underwater soloist for the stunt show “Mystic Rhythms” at Tokyo Disney Sea, a beloved show which only recently closed after running for fourteen years. Cricket is an experienced adjudicator for dance festivals and competitions, has taught master classes throughout the U.S. and Canada, and has over fifteen years experience teaching dance and working as a choreographer. Cricket received her Bachelor of Arts in World Arts and Cultures from UCLA in 2008.

Jordan Lefton a native of West Palm Beach, Florida, graduated from Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts and The Juilliard School. Jordan joined James Sewell Ballet in Minneapolis soon after graduation from college and spent three seasons with the company. Over the years, Jordan has trained in ballet, among many other techniques including Limón, Horton, Gaga, Graham, contemporary partnering, contact improvisation, and tap. He has worked with many talented teachers and choreographers including Lawrence Rhodes, Risa Steinberg, Lar Lubovitch, Troy Powell, Andra Corvino, Francisco Martinez, Alphonse Poulin, Loni Landon, and LarryKeigwin. Jordan enjoys teaching and has done so for the past 9 years. He plans to keep spreading the art of dance to as many people as possible.

Joy Prendergast started her dance training in Colorado. She attended the University of Utah as a Ballet Major, and in 2007 relocated to San Francisco to continue her training at the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance under the direction of Summer Lee Rhatigan.  Joy has performed works by notable choreographers Jiri Kylian, William Forsythe, Ohad Naharin, Malinda LaVelle, Alex Ketley, Robert Moses, and Christian Burns. In 2009 Joy joined Alex Ketley's, The Foundry. She has worked and performed for local Bay Area companies and choreographers such as Allyce Finnwall Dance Theater, Katie Faulkner, Amelia Rudolph, Robert Moses, Eric Kupers and Dandelion Dance Theater, and Woodminster Theater. In 2010 Joy  became a founding member of Malinda LaVelle's Project Thrust.  Then, in 2011 she began creating her own Choreography through the Garage Residency Program (RAW) and The San Francisco Conservatory of Dance.  Joy's choreography has been performed at Z Space Theater, The Garage, SFCD, presented in the Annual San Francisco Summer Dance Series, San Francisco Dance Tiny Film Festival, Performa (Tel Aviv), Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, Machol Shalem, and HaMiffal Artist House (Jerusalem).  She also served as a faculty member of San Francisco Youth Ballet Academy and taught as a guest teacher at SFCD, City Ballet School and other local San Francisco schools and academies.  In 2014, Joy relocated to Israel and served as faculty at Bikuray Hi’aitim, Guest Teacher at The Maslool (professional training program), Shira Ganor Dance School, and The Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance .  In 2018, Joy completed her Bachelor Degree in Dance, with and emphasis in choreography, from the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. Joy has recently relocated to her home State of Colorado, to embark on new ventures in teaching, dancing, and choreography.

Lynsey McMullen grew up in Colorado and began dancing in her mother, Marilyn Long’s, dance studio at the age of three. She was the youngest dancer accepted into the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet intensive in Vail where she performed for former President Gerald Ford. She studied at The Academy of Colorado Ballet under Elizabeth Shipiatsky and Zhanna Dubrovskaya, receiving several scholarships from the Denver Ballet Guild. In high school, Ms. McMullen was selected by renowned Hollywood choreographer/director/actor, Debbie Allen as dance captain for the Kennedy Center Imagination Celebration’s production of Pepito’s Story. She received her BA in dance with an emphasis in performance and choreography from University of Northern Colorado studying under Molly Faulkner and Monte Black, and performed with the UNC dance team, the Sugar Bears. After college, Ms. McMullen relocated to Chicago where she was a member of Chicago Dance Crash performing in works choreographed by Mouse McCray and Kyle Vincent Terry. Favorite roles have included Snow Queen in The Nutcracker, Pas de Trois in Paquita, and the Abuelos Pas de Deux in Miranda’s Nightmare. Ms. McMullen has also coached poms/jazz teams at the varsity level. She currently resides in Parker, CO with her husband and two children. In 2015, she achieved her lifelong goal of competing on Jeopardy.

Kayla Scott was born and raised in Aurora, CO. She began dancing at the age of fourteen on her high school hip hop team. From there she began to teach at the age of seventeen and has not stopped since. She now runs her own competitive dance crew COhe One Motive with her Co-direct Jonah Buckley. They are the largest competitive adult dance crew in Colorado. All members are held to the highest of training standards and are teaching through out the Colorado Dance community.

Nicole Younkin is Summit Dance Academy’s Office Manager. Nicole’s daughter Taylor started dancing at the age of 2 and has never looked back. Nicole has an understanding of the dance world through supporting and watching Taylor dance for the last 15 years. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and a Nutrition Certificate. Nicole works at the front desk three evenings a week and will be your main point of contact for questions related to enrollment and billing. ​

Our Vision

Artistic Director

In House Faculty

About Us

Providing artistic excellence driven to enrich and inspire students through prestigious and progressive dance education intended to develop strong technique and a love of the arts.