Schramel Conservatory of Dance Faculty

At Schramel Conservatory of Dance, all of the teachers on our staff are classically trained dancers who have had careers in professional dance companies throughout the United States and internationally.

Marjorie Hardwick Schramel and Gregory Schramel started Schramel Conservatory of Dance in 2002. The Schramels also founded New Orleans Ballet Theatre, a professional ballet company. The Schramels have enjoyed dance careers which spanned some 20+ years in some of America's top ballet companies, such as Cincinnati Ballet, Miami City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Atlanta Ballet and the Broadway musical CATS.

Both trained with The School of American Ballet in New York. Gregory comes from New Orleans, where he was trained privately with Alexander Minz (Baryshnikov's teacher,) and Marjorie from Dallas where she was trained by Marjorie Tallchief, George Skibine and Flemming Flindt. They have performed and taught ballet all over the world and bring to SCOD and NOBT a vast ballet vocabulary. Marjorie is a certified instructor of the American Ballet Theatre (ABT) curriculum which SCOD follows.

Kit Braddick

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Kit Braddick grew up in Mandeville, Louisiana where she began her early dance training at Apetrei Dance center under Constantin and Kelly Apetrei. While there she performed with their studio company Ballet Apetrei and began her teaching career. She has trained at the American Ballet Theatre in Detroit, the Atlanta Ballet, and the Alabama Ballet summer intensives and danced with the Alabama Ballet and the New Orleans Ballet Theatre. She has performed numerous roles in ballets such as the Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, La Bayadere, Don Quixote, Paquita, and many more. She hopes to continue her dancing career, meanwhile spreading her love of dance to her many students.

Diogo de lima

Diogo de Lima is originally from Brazil and became a New Orleans-based dancer/choreographer/filmmaker. He is the artistic director of MindField Productions with headquarters in New York and São Paulo (Brazil) and has produced and directed short and feature-length films, documentaries, TV segments, and dance films. As a dancer he worked with Grupo Corpo, José Limón Dance Company, New Orleans Ballet Theatre, First Physical Theatre, and Compañia Nacional De Danza, among others. He has received many awards for his dancing and choreography, both in Brazil and internationally. He’s also a professor at Tulane University, where he teaches Media and Choreography.

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Lisa Keller

Lisa has come to New Orleans from California, where she managed and taught at Peninsula School of Performing Arts in Palos Verdes, California. A graduate of Duke University with a Bachelor’s in Science in Biology, she performed frequently with Duke Ballet Repertory and Duke Jazz Repertory Ensembles. She has danced professionally as a tap dancer with the Hot Cotton Candies, and also as a principal ballet dancer with Southern California Dance Theatre. Most recently, she has performed with New Orleans Ballet Theatre in The Nutcracker and New Orleans Opera Association’s production of Die Fledermaus. In addition to teaching at Schramel Conservatory of Dance, she has also recently taken on the role of administrative director of New Orleans Ballet Theatre.

 

 

Hannah Whelton

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Hannah began dancing in 2005 at age 10 in Mandeville Louisiana and trained mainly in ballet at the Conservatory of Ballet Aviv where she held lead roles in their Nutcracker including Clara, Dew Drop Princess, Spanish lead and Marzipan Princess. Hannah also performed in many spring concerts with solo roles in Paquita and Carmen on the stage of Loyola University During time with Ballet Aviv. At age 15, she attended Ballet Magnificat’s Summer Dance Intensive in 2011. Other ballet affiliations she was accepted into are American Ballet Theater Summer Intensive program, scholarship to Carry Ballet Conservatory Summer Intensive, Interlochen Summer Arts Camp in Michigan for ballet emphasis week as well as accepted with dance scholarship to Belhaven University dance department. After graduating from NorthLake Christian school in 2012, she auditioned and was accepted into Ballet Magnificats Trainee company based in Jackson, MS where she trained under Kathy Thibadeaux and Jiri Voborsky as well as other former company members. She was given the opportunity to perform in a variety of local venues in the Jackson Metro area including schools, The Salvation Army fundraisers, children's homes, banquets and other charitable events.  Also as a member of the Trainee Company, she toured with Ballet Magnificat’s professional touring company in annual concerts at Thalia Mara Hall and in Birmingham, Alabama at The Wright Center at Samford University. After being promoted to Events company-a select division of Ballet Magnificat’s Trainee program- She was sent out to represent Ballet Magnificat both nationally and internationally. While in Events Company, she toured to New Orleans, Louisiana, Tabasco, Mexico and La Lima, Honduras to perform full length ballets as well as teach a variety of master classes. Since moving to New Orleans, Hannah has taught at Lemoine Academy of Dance for the company dancers ballet class and choreographed for the first time for their spring concert. Currently, she is reccently married and living back in the New Orleans area after being with Ballet Magnificat for 4 years and she now teaches Pilates at Nola Pilates in Lakeview recently completing her certification through Balanced Body Pilates. Also she is still doing what she loves by taking class weekly with the New Orleans Ballet Theatre and has had the privilege of performing this previous winter season in the NOBT Nutcracker as a guest.

Mollie Williamson

Mollie was born in Dallas , Texas and began practicing yoga in high school . She graduated from Newcomb College of Tulane University with a degree in Art History and fell in love with her new home , New Orleans . She is the proud mother of her little ballerina and yogi , Lucie , born in 2004. In 2011 she completed 350 hours of teacher training to become certified through Swan River Yoga. In 2012 she attended a Jivamukti immersion in Costa Rica led by Senior Yoga Teacher Yogeswari and Advanced Certified Yoga Teacher Rima Rabbath. In 2016 she spent a week at a yoga retreat in Thailand.  Her love of dance , music and life is apparent in her vinyasa flow style of teaching infused with a positive dharma message. Listen for tunes from your favorite local artists in her playlist. She is deeply influenced and forever grateful to her teachers Michele Baker, Keith Porteous, Jack Sun Slaughter, Libby Love, Rima Rabbath and Yogeswari.

Maya Taylor

Photo credit Julie Verlinden Photography

Photo credit Julie Verlinden Photography

Maya Taylor is an internationally recognized performer, choreographer and teacher. Born in Omaha, Nebraska, she studied classical ballet for many years before diving into contemporary, jazz and classical modern. Maya has studied at Ballet West Conservatory, The Alley School, Jacob's Pillow and is a graduate of the Alley Fordham BFA Program. Shortly after receiving her degree, Taylor joined Elisa Monte Dance and for several years performed throughout the United States and Europe. Maya had been commissioned to create works from the Midwest to the UK. In 2012 her work, La Dispute was performed at Regional Dance America's National Festival in Montreal and she was chosen to choreograph a large scale piece for Omaha Performing Arts' The Rite Returns festival in February 2013. In April 2015, she premiered her solo, Under a Glass Bell, at the launch of Lets Dance International Frontiers in Leicester, England. Maya is currently the rehearsal director and resident choreographer for Marigny Opera Ballet in New Orleans.

FELICIA MCPHEE

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Felicia McPhee received her early Vaganova training at The Ballet Centre in Salt Lake City, Utah. She continued her dance education with a Bachelor’s degree in Dance from Brigham Young University. There, she was president of BYU’s Ballet Showcase Company and was a member of BYU’s Theatre Ballet Company. Felicia spent a few years in San Francisco dancing as a freelance artist and as a company member with Bay Pointe Ballet, under the direction of Bruce Steivel. Moving to Dallas, she spent two seasons with Contemporary Ballet Dallas and two seasons as a Soloist with Dallas Neo-classical Ballet. This season, Felicia will be dancing with New Orleans Ballet Theatre. She loves teaching and sharing her passion for dance with her students. She believes in the importance of understanding how the body anatomically works and functions in the vocabulary of ballet, and encourages correct usage of muscles, bones, and alignment. Felicia has had many exciting opportunities teaching all over the country, including teaching at Google in California. She feels very fortunate to do what she loves every day and share her passion for dance.

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Mei-Ling Murray, Stage to School Outreach Teacher

Mei-Ling Murray is a classically trained dancer from San Francisco.  She studied with American Ballet Theater, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance. She then attended The University of Arizona’s School of Dance on scholarship. 

Following her undergraduate studies in Dance and Anthropology, Mei-Ling worked extensively in Panama and India, as the Program Director for Movement Exchange, where she developed international dance programs alongside the U.S. Embassies. Since 2011, she has performed with Bay Area contemporary dance company, Project B., and worked as a teaching artist for Performing Arts Workshop, bringing dance education to the San Francisco Unified School District. In addition to being on faculty at NOBT, she currently is in the Pre-Physical Therapy program at the University of New Orleans.