Classes & Programs / Dance

Mini-Summer Dance Intensive

Mini-Summer Dance Intensive

Ages 9 years- High School

June 18-29 M-F 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Performance June 29, 6:30 p.m.

Are you ready to dance your day away? Here is your chance! Each day dancers will warm up in a ballet class, build foot and ankle strength in pre-pointe, dabble in different theory classes such as dance history, composition (choreography), and theatre, rounding out their dance experience with a “genre of the day” class, including jazz, modern, musical theatre and hip hop. Each day will end with a rehearsal for a final showcase that will be in our Academy Theatre for friends and family. NEW this year we will have special Guest Artists including Natasha Posey who is on faculty at Milwaukee Ballet and Danceworks, Inc.

Our child’s personal growth had been amazing. The programming challenges her, but also makes her successful. The instructors genuinely care about her both as a dancer and as a person.

Parent of Dancer

Questions & Answers about the Mini-Intensive

Who is this Intensive for?

MCA’s mini-intensive is the perfect experience for young male and female dancers ages 9 years old through high school who love to dance. Dancers should have at least three years of dance experience or be in a level equal to or higher to Ballet II at MCA. Students who have not danced at MCA are welcome, please contact us if you need help accessing if this program is a good fit for you or your dancer since levels vary greatly from studio to studio. During the camp dancers will be broken into groups or given differentiated instruction to make sure each dancer is nurtured and challenged.

This is a perfect experience for dancers who are serious about dance and ready to take their dance experience to the next level, stay conditioned over the summer and explore the dance world in new ways.

Students aged 11-22 who are interested in an all-day/ boarding program should check out our annual Summer Dance Intensive.

When and where is the Intensive?

The mini-intensive will run Monday- Friday, June 18-29, 9am- 4pm at Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts home the Valencia Arts Center. A final showcase complete with costumes will be performed for friends and family on Friday June 29th, 6:30pm in the Academy Theatre.

Are there Auditions for the Intensive?

No, there are not auditions for the mini-summer dance intensive. Intermediate dancers must be at least 9 years old and have at least 3 years of dance experience.

Click here information about auditioning as a boarding or commuter student in our intermediate-advanced Summer Dance Intensive for 11-22.

What is the cost?

$319 (Early Bird Special), $375 (after May 1). Fee includes over 60 hours of instruction and camp t-shirt. Students will need to bring a lunch and water bottle daily.

There will be no admission charge for the final showcase.

What will a normal day look like?

As you will see from the sample schedule below, dancers will have the opportunity to learn from a variety of qualified teaching artists, explore dance forms and important dance related topics that will help dancers grow into a well-rounded dancers. Ballet technique and pre-pointe classes (males will participate in pointe classes for strengthening) are offered daily, as this is the foundation for all dance forms. Repertory is time spent learning a dance piece that will be rehearsed and performed during the final showcase at the end of camp.  2018 MCA Mini-SDI Daily Schedule (subject to change)

Day 1:

9-10:30 am- Ballet Technique

10:40-11:40 am- Pre-Pointe Conditioning

11:40 am-12:45 pm – Lunch and free time

12:45-1:45 pm- Repertory

1:50-2:50 pm -Jazz Technique

2:55-4:00 pm -Modern Technique

Day 2:

9-10:30 am- Ballet Technique

10:40-11:40 am-Pre-Pointe Conditioning

11:40 am-12:45 pm -Lunch and free time

12:45-1:45 pm -Repertory

1:50-2:50 pm- Theatre Workshop

2:55-4:00 pm- Modern Technique

Day 3:

9-10:30 am- Ballet Technique

10:40-11:40 am- Pre-Pointe Conditioning

11:40 am-12:45 pm -Lunch and free time

12:45-1:45 pm- Hip Hop Dance

1:50-2:50 pm-Repertory

2:55-4:00 pm – Dance Composition

Is there boarding available for this program?

Unfortunately, at this time our mini-intensive is only open to area students.

Dancers who are 11-22 years are welcome to audition for our full-day Summer Dance Intensive which does welcome students from afar who are housed overnight at the Alverna Center which is located right next door to MCA.

Do you need to be a current MCA student to participate?

No, MCA welcomes dancers who have danced at any studio. If you have questions about the level of dance experienced needed for success in this camp or any other MCA program, please feel free to contact us at 507-453-5500 or by email:

Meet the 2018 Mini-Summer Dance Intensive Faculty

(subject to change)

Natasha Posey

Natasha Posey

Instructor - Dance

Natasha Posey, a Georgia native, began her dance career performing with Augusta Ballet Company. She earned a BFA in dance from Point Park College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has since performed with Lynda Martha Dance Company (Chicago), Wisconsin Ballet Theatre (Green Bay), Ballet Madison and Danceworks Performance Company. Natasha is currently on staff at Milwaukee Ballet and Danceworks Inc. of Milwaukee. Natasha’s “day job” is a schoolteacher at Maryland Avenue Montessori School.  She earned her teaching certification at UW-Madison where she graduated with honors. Natasha then began integrating the arts into education with her project “Language Arts Learned Through the Creative Arts.” As an artist-in-residence at Schenk Elementary School in Madison, Natasha taught classes that combined dance with reading, writing, and arithmetic to the whole school. She has led teacher-training workshops through Very Special Arts-Wisconsin where educators are taught how to integrate movement with students of all abilities.

Jennifer TeBeest

Jennifer TeBeest

Instructor - Dance

Jen started dance training at age four and continued to study ballet, jazz, modern and tap at La Crosse Dance Centre.  She continued her to study modern at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and at Viterbo University in La Crosse where she graduated cum laude in 2005 with a B.A. in English Writing and minor emphases in Dance and Art-Graphic Design from Viterbo University.  She has attended the Miami Dance Festival; American College Dance Festival, PULSE workshop in Minneapolis, Jump Rhythm Jazz Project Summer Intensive, and was fortunate enough to work with Broadway tap legend Ted Levy through his work with La Crosse Dance Centre in 2006 and 2007. Jen was on staff at Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts in Winona, MN from 2005-2010 and has choreographed for MCA’s Dance Repertory Company and taught in more recent Summer Dance Intensives. Currently, she is an instructor at Viterbo University, Winona State University, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota and La Crosse Dance Centre.  She has choreographed numerous musicals throughout the area, including “Oklahoma,” “L’il Abner,” “King and I,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” and “42nd Street;” “Suessical the Musical” for Appleseed Community Theatre, and many annual summer musicals with Home and Community Options of Winona.

Tammy Schmidt

Tammy Schmidt

Director of Dance

Schmidt holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Ballet from Texas Christian University and a Master of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Oklahoma. In 2017 she became an ABT (American Ballet Theatre) Certified teacher for Pre-Primary-Level 3 and in 2018 she was certified as Progressive Ballet Technique (PBT) Instructor. As director of dance, Schmidt leads and teaches in the dance division of MCA, as well as the dance minor program at Saint Mary's University. Additionally, she serves as artistic director for MCA's Dance Repertory Company. Schmidt has restaged and choreographed several full-length ballets for the company including: Cinderella, Paquita, The Nutcracker, Excerpts from Swan Lake, and the Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadère. Schmidt received the State of Oklahoma's Miguel Terekhov award for her original ballet, A Tender Age. Schmidt is a member of the American College Dance Festival Association and the National Dance Education Association. She has previously taught at Viterbo University, Winona State University, La Crosse Dance Centre, the University of Oklahoma, North Houston Ballet, and Backstage Dance Theatre. Her performing career includes work with Ballet Dallas, Houston Ballet, Ballet Austin, Milwaukee Ballet, and Oklahoma Festival Ballet. Contact Tammy at: or 507-453-5502.

Rachael (Moore) Nehring

Rachael (Moore) Nehring

Instructor - Dance

Moore has been studying ballet since she was four years old. Moore has studied abroad in St. Petersburg, Russia with the Mussorgsky Theatre of Opera and Ballet as well as the Rimsky-Korsakov School. Moore was a member of a pre-professional company for 12 years prior to graduation from Butler University with her Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance Pedagogy. Some of her roles have included the Rat Queen in The Nutcracker, Berthe in Giselle, Queen Mother in Sleeping Beauty, all with the Butler Ballet; and Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland with Alexandra Ballet Company. Moore has taught for the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts and Saint Mary's University Department of Theatre and Dance for three years. Her work with the Dance Repertory Company includes serving as rehearsal assistant and choreographer for the 2008 and 2010 Nutcracker productions as well as choreographing original works for the DRC II in 2009 in 2011.  She plans to further her education by obtaining her Masters in Dance.

Jessica Dienger

Jessica Dienger

Instructor - Dance

Jessica has been studying all forms of dance since the age of three. She eventually turned her lifelong passion for the art into a career when she began teaching at the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts in 2006. She was a founding member and dancer of the Two Lakes Dance Project in 2010, and in 2014 restaged Plum's Divine Crazy Quilt for the DRC 40th Anniversary Concert. Dienger has created original works for both DRC & DRC. Dienger now teaches jazz, hip hop and tap at MCA. In 2017 she became a certified PulsePointe Barre Instructor. She resides in La Crosse, WI with her husband, Mitch and daughter Elliotte.

Sharon Mansur

Sharon Mansur

Dance Professor & SHIFT Curator

Originally from the East Coast, Sharon Mansur is a dance and visual artist integrating movement and images within live performance events, site-specific installations and dance films. She is currently based in Winona, MN, and her dance films have been screened throughout the U.S. as well as Ireland, Canada, Germany and Italy. variation on residue won Best Performance Award at the Mirror Mountain Film Festival in 2015.  Sharon has been a dance professor at Winona State University and the University of Maryland, and was recently a guest artist at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Luther College, and the Texas Dance Improvisation Festival. She has guest taught at several other universities, dance festivals and studios, including at MCA’s Summer Dance Intensive.  Sharon is currently on staff at Infinity Chiropractic & Wellness Center in Winona as a Certified Massage Therapist, Reiki energy healing practitioner and Somatic educator, and curates their SHIFT~ performance salons. 

Jamie Schwaba

Jamie Schwaba

Managing Director

Schwaba earned a Masters degree in Adult and Continuing Education Leadership from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre with a minor in Communications from Carroll University in Waukesha, WI, and is a certified Rhythm Works Integrative Dance Instructor. In addition to her role at MCA, Jamie is a member of the Education Committee for Great River Shakespeare and a former Secretary of the River Arts Alliance. Before relocating to Winona for this position she was the Director of Continuing Education and Children's Theatre Director at University of Wisconsin- Marinette from 2007-2014.  Also while living in Marinette Schwaba was an active member of the Menominee Area Arts Council who's mission was to promote, educate and support local arts activities.  Prior to living in Marinette she spent 8 years in the Milwaukee area where she was the Education Director at Milwaukee Youth Theatre, taught at First Stage Milwaukee, Danceworks, To The Pointe Fine Arts Academy and the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music as well as performed professionally with Skylight Music Theatre, Discovery World and Windfall Theatre. Contact Jamie at: or 507-453-5501


Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts
1164 West Howard (10th) Street
Winona, MN 55987

Phone: 507-453-5500
Fax: 507-453-5507


Monday - Tuesday
9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

11:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Building and Galleria open during programming



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This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

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