Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts has always incorporated theory classes within it’s summer dance intensive trainings to help offer a well-rounded dance experience, however in the past it has always been an exclusive opportunity only for intensive participants. Thanks to the virtual format this year we are so excited that we are able to open these workshops to a wider community of performing artists and or those interested in careers related to dance who might want to learn from and interact with an amazing roster of national specialists. July 6-24, 2020 on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Below are the course descriptions and guest artist bios. Each workshop can be registered for individually ($9 a week) or as a session in order to realize a cost savings ($67 for all 9 sessions). Learn more about our 2020 Virtual Summer Dance Intensive.

Dance Composition- This class will explore a number of creative tools to inspire movement phrases. Students will meet via Zoom each Monday to discuss work and receive peer feedback. Choreography, once created will need to be recorded and uploaded to a class Google drive folder. Days/Dates: Mondays: July 6-20 Time(s): 2:30-3:45pm (Ages 10-13), 4-5:15pm (Ages 14+), Instructor: Tammy Schmidt, MCA Director of Dance. Fee: $27 (Students must register for all 3 weeks)

Preparing for Performance Workshop- These three theory classes will provide insight into preparing for a dance production. Our guest lecturers will provide interesting background on how dance costuming is designed and created, how theatrical makeup is designed and applied, as well as a discussion of utilizing dance performance psychology to create success and consistency onstage. Each virtual workshop has a hands-on component to keep students engaged.  Days/Dates: Wednesdays, July 8-22 Time: 4-5:15pm Fee: $27 (all 3 weeks) or $9 ea. Guest Speakers: Anastasia Goodwin (Saint Mary’s University of MN Costume Designer)- July 8, Daniel Klingler (Broadway make-up and wig professional and author of Everyday Make-up Secrets)- July 15, and Tammy Schmidt (MCA Director of Dance)- July 22.

Careers in Dance- This workshop series will explore three exciting careers in dance that might be overlooked by students that wish to combine their love of dance with other interests. MCA will host engaging virtual chats with a dance studio owner, a professional dance photographer, and a dance medicine practitioner with a specialty in hypermobility in dancers. 

Days/Dates: Fridays, July 10-24 Time: 4-5pm Fee: $27 (all 3 weeks) or $9 ea. Guest Speakers: Linda Bluestein, MD (Hypermobility Disorder Specialist at Hyper Mobility MD)- July 10, Ron McKinney (Photographer and Co-founder of Pas de Deux Photo)- July 17, and Stefanie M. Best (Artistic Director of Allen Conservatory of Dance)- July 24.

Register Now:

Meet the Guest Speakers & Instructors:

Ron McKinney

Ron McKinney

Guest Speaker

Ron McKinney is an international leader in dance photography. Ron and his wife, Beth, are the founders and directors of Pas de Deux Dance Photo, an online community that supports the art and business of dance photography in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia and South America.

They are the official photographer for Ballet Chicago, the DePaul University Dance and Cheer teams, and we partner with more than 20 local dance studios and many college, high school and professional teams and companies. They have also worked for Hubbard Street, the Houston Ballet, the Grand Rapids Ballet, and at the Joffrey Ballet in Chicago.

Learn more about Ron McKinney Photography and Pas de Duex Photo

Stefanie Best

Stefanie Best

Guest Speaker

Stefanie M. Best is the the Artistic Director of Allen Conservatory of Dance in Allen, Texas. Stefanie was born in San Fancisco and was encouraged in classical arts by her mother, a Russian emigree. Stefanie furthered her ballet training at Southern Methodist University, and received a Masters Degree in Dance from the University of Houston. She also spent three years at the Houston Ballet Academy. 

Upon returning to Dallas, Stefanie spent ten years dancing for Krassoska Ballet Jeusnesse, under the direction of Nathalie Krassovska, former prima ballerina of the Balllet Russes de Monte Carlo and the London Festival Ballet. 

In 1995, Ms. Best founded the Allen Conservatory of Dance. Her students have been accepted into some of the most prestigious ballet programs in the county, many on scholarship. She has coached many dancers who have Top 12 or Top 24 in both Junior and Senior Classical Categories at YAGP. 

In 1999, Stefanie founded the Allen Civic Ballet, and functions as it's President and Artistic Director. The Allen Civic Ballet is a non-profit organization, funded in part by the City of Allen and the Allen Arts Alliance. 

Learn more about the Allen Conservatory of Dance.

Dr. Linda Bluestein

Dr. Linda Bluestein

Guest Speaker

Dr. Linda Bluestein has been practicing medicine for over 20 years and has helped countless people restore function and improve their quality of life.  As a former ballet dancer and instructor, she has a special interest in treating flexibility athletes (dancers, gymnasts, acrobatic artists, etc) and others at increased risk of hypermobility disorders.

Dr. Bluestein, national, international and invited speaker, is at the forefront of research on pain, hypermobility and dance medicine.  She has written and lectured extensively on the topics of pain neuroscience, chronic pain, and hypermobility disorders. Dr. Bluestein repeatedly receives top reviews from medical students for her teaching abilities and is a member of the clinical faculty at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Central Wisconsin where she also serves as the Course Director for the RISHI Healer’s Art Program.


  • Anesthesiology Residency, Mayo Graduate School of Medicine

  • Doctor of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine

  • Bachelor of Science, University of California, Irvine​


  • Performing Arts Medicine

  • Board Certified, American Board of Anesthesiology

  • Pediatric Advanced Life Support and Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support

  • Diplomate, National Board of Medical Examiners, July 1991

  • Wisconsin Medical License, Active since June 1996


  • Chief Resident, Department of Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic

  • Phi Beta Kappa, University of California

  • Magna Cum Laude, University of California

Learn more about Linda and hypermobilty by exploring her Bendy Bodies Podcast and the Hypermobility MD website

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: Tschmidt@smumn.edu or 507-453-5502.

Anastasia Goodwin

Anastasia Goodwin

Guest Speaker

Anastasia Goodwin is a costume designer, fabricator, and educator with more than fifteen years of experience in the field.  Born and raised in Saratov, Russia, she has worked in her hometown as well as the Midwest, Santa Fe, New York, and the greater Seattle area. Anastasia’s experience with dance comes from working in the costume shop and wardrobe department at Pacific Northwest Ballet on a range of productions, including Swan Lake (designed by Paul Tazewell) and Kent Stowell’s The Nutcracker. She was the costume designer for Approaching Extasy, a modern ballet performance produced by Whim W’Him in Seattle, as well as the construction lead on the University of Washington’s School of Dance production of The Rite of Spring. Anastasia holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Costume Design from the University of Washington. She is currently the Costume Designer and Shop Manager at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.

Daniel Klingler

Guest Artist

Daniel currently works in the Hair/Makeup Department of Broadways ALADDIN. Previous Broadway credits include: FROZEN and MEAN GIRLS. Head of Hair/Makeup for the International tour of ANNIE. Head of Hair/Makeup for the National Tours of ANNIE and Andrew Lloyd Webbers WIZARD OF OZ. Additionally, he designed wigs for FROZEN for Disney Cruise Line. Daniel trained at the prestigious British Wig Academy in Eastbourne, UK.