Andree Harper, originally from New York City, began her ballet training in El Paso but left at age 17 to join the Harkness Ballet. She returned to El Paso and became the recipient of the first degree in Ballet Performance granted by The University of Texas at El Paso. During her undergraduate years, Mrs. Harper was on the Dean’s list, Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities; and Men and
Women of Mines. She also received much notoriety for her long performing career which included dancing such roles as the Tsarevna in The Firebird, Rosalinde in Romeo and Juliet, the Lilac Fairy in Aurora’s Wedding, Carabosse in Sleeping Beauty, the Hostess, the Snow Queen and Coffee :from Arabia in The Nutcracker, Lucile Grahn in Pas de Quatre and one of the wicked stepsisters in Cinderella.
Mrs. Harper taught ballet at UTEP from 1974-2014. Many of her students have successful careers in ballet. Her students are now performing with such companies as the Sarasotta Ballet, Ballet Memphis Montogomery Ballet, Pittsburg Ballet Theatre, Richmond Ballet and the Royal Swedish Ballet. Some of them are making a name for themselves as teachers and directors at such places as the Peoria Ballet, San Diego Ballet, Pointe Park Ballet, Carnegie Mellon Institute and several local high schools. Mrs. Harper has been a rehearsal assistant for the David Taylor Dance Theatre of Denver, VIVA! El Paso, and Ballet El Paso, as well as a drama coach and choreographer of liturgical dance at St.
Raphael School. From 2004-2008 she was the choreographer for VN A LOS NINOS for the Ysleta
School District. In 2009, Mrs. Harper was a choreographer of”NOSOTROS” for the “Theatre in Education” program for the El Paso Independent School District.
Luz Happy is the Ballet Folklorico Director at Champion Studio and has been part of our staff since 1991. She has studied Mexican Folklore Dances and traditions at the Universidad Autonoma de Ciudad Juarez and graduated from the Instituto Regional de Danza from Chihuahua, Mexico. Luz Happy was assistant Director to Ballet Folklorico Paso Del Norte for three years before starting the Folklorico class at Champion. Her representation of the traditional Mexican Folklore includes performances in several cities of Mexico as well as Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. Her Folklorico Cuauhtli group here at Champion Studio has won 2nd place at the All Star Competition at Americas High School. Mrs. Happy looks forward to welcoming you as a member of out Folklorico family!
Davina Heredia had her first ballet class at the age of 5 and has danced ever since. She has taken classes in such styles as jazz, flamenco and her favorite, ballet folklorico. She has been a proud member of Cuahtli, Paso del Norte and Viva El Paso!. Davina is also a UTEP Alumni and works as a licensed professional counselor when she is not teaching or dancing.
Dane Denning has been practicing martial arts for 33 years and teaching it for 26 years. All his certification is in Martial Arts instructorship with the International Self Defense Federation of Japan and World Martial Art Group. Instructor Denning teaches youth Karate, Kung Fu, and Chanbara (sword sports from Japan) and for mature teens and adults Kobudo the 5 weapons from ancient Okinawa the birthplace of Karate. Lastly, he teaches basic Taichi. “ I have devoted my entire life to the teaching and practicing of Martial Arts. I have high quality programs for everyone, every age.”