School Faculty | Chamberlain School of Ballet | Plano, TX
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Chamberlain School of Ballet – Faculty

Ms. Chamberlain is recognized for her high caliber training standards. Each year her students are accepted and awarded scholarships to nationally recognized dance academies and have been accepted to many prestigious institutions of higher education. Ms. Chamberlain, a Texas native, began her training in Dallas at the Etgen-Atkinson School of Ballet, where she later began her teaching career.  She received a Ford Foundation Scholarship to study at the School of American Ballet in New York before ultimately returning to Texas to teach. Since 1977, her focus has been to lovingly teach and work with young dancers whose dreams are based, like hers, on a love for the art and beauty of dance.

Ms. Chamberlain has served as an adjunct faculty member at Southern Methodist University Meadows School of the Arts.  She is actively involved in supporting the arts within North Texas.  Altrusa International Inc. of Richardson, Texas recognized Ms. Chamberlain as one of the Outstanding Women of Today in Small Business for 2006, and she was a nominee of ArtCentre of Plano’s 2008 Love of Arts award.  Ms. Chamberlain is the recipient of the ArtCentre of Plano’s 2010 Central Market’s Arts in Education Award.  In August 2011, Ms. Chamberlain was named one of the Top Ten Women of Collin County by Neiman Marcus Willow Bend for her contributions to the community. During the 2010 winter season, she was among a select group of twenty dance instructors who were invited to attend The School of American Ballet’s Teacher Conference in New York City.  On Saturday, February 1, 2014 the Richardson Arts Alliance presented Ms. Chamberlain with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Heart for the Arts Gala. Ms. Chamberlain worked with HIT Entertainment, Inc. as a consultant for the Angelina Ballerina® animated television series which premiered on PBS in the fall of 2009.

As Founder and Artistic Director of Chamberlain Performing Arts, she originally established Chamberlain Ballet in 1984 as a non-profit organization dedicated to giving dance students professional training and performance experience.  Ms. Chamberlain is proud of the growth of her school and non-profit company and looks forward to the many more years to come.

Kathy Chamberlain


Kathy Chamberlain

Carter Alexander

Carter Alexander

Ballet Instructor

Carter Alexander is Visiting Guest Artist in Residence this year for the dance division at Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University. Mr. Alexander began his ballet training with his mother Amanda Stone in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He continued his training at Booker T Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and Dallas Ballet Academy before joining the Hartford Ballet, where he studied with his mentor Truman Finney. He danced principal and soloist roles with the Kansas City Ballet, and also danced with Pennsylvania Ballet (where he taught on the faculty of the Rock School of the Pennsylvania Ballet). Mr. Alexander received an offer to become the principal teacher at the Ballet Workshop New England in Boston, where he taught for five years, as well as serving as artistic associate of the Massachusetts Youth Ballet. He then joined Truman Finney at The School of Ballet Arizona as Assistant Director of the school. For seven years, Carter served as School Principal at the Miami City Ballet School where he has helped over 60 students to achieve professional careers with dance companies nationally and internationally. He is enjoying being a faculty member at Chamberlain School of Ballet as a ballet instructor and is Associate Artistic Director for Chamberlain Performing Arts.

Carolyn Cox

School Registrar

Offering more than 40 years involvement in dance and business arts administration, Ms. Cox received her dance training in Fort Worth with Margo Dean and Ballet Concerto and with the San Francisco Ballet.  She has been involved with Chamberlain Performing Arts as the mother of two past company dancers and a past member of the Board of Directors. Ms. Cox is 3M retiree where she worked as an administrative assistant with 3M Health Care for twenty–four years.

Carolyn Cox

Tim Fox

Ballet Instructor, YAGP Coordinator, Coach & Choreographer

Chamberlain School of Ballet is pleased to welcome Tim Fox as a full time faculty member. Mr. Fox began his training at the age of nine in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with Moscelyne Larkin and Roman Jasinski. He studied on full scholarship at The School of American Ballet (SAB) where he was asked to join New York City Ballet. While with the NYCB, Mr. Fox worked under the direction of George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, and Peter Martins. He danced as a Principal Dancer with the Tulsa Ballet and the San Francisco Ballet under the direction of Helgi Tomasson. Mr. Fox is grateful to have had teachers like Stanley Williams, Andrea Kramarevsky, Alexandra Danilova, Irna Kosmovska, Antonina Tumkovsky, Bill Martin-Viscount, Wilhelm Bermann, David Howard, Patricia Wilde, Leon Danielion, and John Clifford, who have influenced both his dancing and teaching careers. Throughout his career, Mr. Fox has performed principal roles in Divertimento #15, Symphony in C, Four Temperaments, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Serenade (George Balanchine), Fancy Free, Four Seasons (original cast), and Interplay (Jerome Robbins) as well as works by Jiri Kylian, Val Caniporoli, Michael Smuin, and Paul Taylor.

Leslie A. Hale-Benavides
Modern Instructor

A native Texan, Leslie grew up in Amarillo, where she studied Classical Ballet, Jazz and Musical Theatre under Neil and Camille Hess from the age of five.  In West Texas, she studied instrumental music/theory and voice, and performed in such productions as Carousel, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, and the outdoor musical drama Texas, set in the Palo Duro Canyon.  As a young adult, she accepted opportunities to model and perform in Tokyo, Japan and Asuncion, Paraguay, which enriched her global perspective and artistic lens.  At the University of Oklahoma, Leslie majored in Letters and Dance Pedagogy, studying History and Philosophy, as well as Classical Ballet, Jose Limon, Doris Humphrey and Martha Graham dance techniques.  As a member of the Modern Repertory Dance Theatre under Denise Vale, she performed the role of Medea from Graham’s 1946 Cave of the Heart and received training from Dudley Williams and Earl Mosley, former principal dancers of NYC’s Alvin Ailey Company.  As a scholarship student at the Alvin Ailey American School of Dance, her foundation in ballet and modern dance were reinforced through the study of Martha Graham, Katherine Dunham (West African), Lester Horton and Classical Ballet.  She continued her professional career from 2000 to 2005 with the Martha Graham Ensemble in New York, where she was privileged to study under contemporaries of Graham such as Yuriko and Pearl Lang, while also training with principle dancers Therese Capucilli, Jacqueline Buglisi, Donlin Foreman, Christine Dakin, Martin Lofsnes, Tadej Brdnik and Virginie Mecene.  Leslie performed Steps in the Street from Graham’s 1936 piece, Chronicle at Lincoln Center’s State Theatre in Stars of the 21st Century, alongside companies such as Paris Opera Ballet, Munich Ballet, and NYC Ballet.  Leslie also performed with Pearl Lang Dance Theatre, Pascal Rioult Ensemble, Buglisi-Foreman, and Linda Diamond Company, performing historical repertoire by Anna Sokolow.  Upon returning from New York, Leslie earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance Composition on a full scholarship from Southern Methodist University, Meadows School of the Arts.  As a graduate student, she performed the principal role of Mother in Eleo Pomare’s 1967 Las Desenamoradas, based on Garcia Lorca’s The House of Bernarda Alba.  During her time at SMU, she served as Secretary of Meadows Graduate Student Council, became certified in Elementary Labanotation and attended San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, training under Summer Leigh Rhatigan, as well as Alessio Silvestri of the Bejart Ballet.  In Lyon, France, Leslie participated in avant garde theatre with international artists at Les Subsistence.  She coordinated, directed and performed in Site Specific Improvisations at Dallas Museum of Art, and danced Leni Wylliams’ Sweet in the Morning at the Winspear Opera House.  She concluded her creative and academic studies in a collaborative presentation of original choreography in the 2010 MFA Thesis Concert, Body/Voice at SMU’s Bob Hope Theatre.  She has since become a certified Yoga Instructor, served as Adjunct Professor of World Dance for five years at Texas Christian University, and instructed Ballet and Modern dance at Hathaway Academy, Frisco Dance Studio and Contemporary Ballet Dallas, where she appeared as guest artist/choreographer.  She periodically teaches workshops in public schools and Oak Cliff, and plans to continue integrating her multi-genre training and performance experience as a lifelong teacher.  Leslie loves sharing her fiery passion for movement, music and knowledge…fully engaging young dancers in the spirit of learning, while helping them discover the most incredible potential within themselves.

Elaine Hanson
Pre-Ballet and Ballet Instructor

Ms. Hanson began her dance training at age 4 in Lewisville, TX at Ballet Conservatory where she studied ballet, tap, jazz, modern, and musical theater.  After 11 years, she moved to New York at attend Manhattan Youth Ballet under a full scholarship.  There she trained with amazing teachers such as Daniel Ulbricht, Deborah Wingert, Michael Vernon, Peter O’Brien, and Marina Staviskaya and performed in The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Serenade, Don Quixote, Divertimento No. 15,  and in contemporary works by Brian Reeder and Attila Csiki.

In 2013 she moved back to Texas and began training with the Texas Ballet Theater School Dallas Campus and performed with Texas Ballet Theater in The Nutcracker.  Over the years she has attended summer programs at Cincinnati Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet School on full scholarship, School of American Ballet, and Houston Ballet.

Ms. Hanson gained her first experience teaching in NYC at Manhattan Youth Ballet where she assisted teaching a pre-ballet class.  She then taught ballet and variations classes at the Dance Project Dallas from 2014 until early 2015.  She taught  at Innovative Dance Inc. and is continuously looking for new ways to use her passion.

Mendy Lea

Director of Sales and Marketing

Mendy Lea grew up in Plano,Texas and attended Richland College which led to a career in sales and marketing. First, as VP of the McKinney Chamber of Commerce developing marketing plans and Director of Tourism for the City of McKinney. Then after starting a local magazine for the McKinney Chamber, she began selling advertising for Dallas Child, D Magazine Medical Directory and Associate Publisher of Plano Profile magazine. She enjoy’s the arts, travel, wine tasting and gardening.

Chamberlain School of Ballet is excited to have Mendy join our staff and use her expertise in the Sales and Marketing field.

Dory Kyrias

Tap Instructor

Ms. Kyrias started her dance training at the age of three.  She is proficient in many styles of dance including tap, her first love, ballet, jazz, music theatre, modern, pointe and lyrical.  Her first 1st place trophy was at the age of 10 where she continued to compete and win in many dance competitions until her direction focused on teaching excellence in dance after college.

She was a dancer in such events as opening acts for The Fabulous Thunderbirds, and The Monkees and in Mary Kay productions.  After graduating from Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts she attended Oklahoma City University where she performed with the American Spirit Dance Company and the O.C.U. Pep Dancers.  She was in Casa Manana’s 42nd Street and has performed with her students at the L.A. Tapfest.  She served as Coach to the Lady Lynx Dance team in Augusta, GA; the Baby Backs Dance and Promotional team for the Iowa Chops Hockey Team in Des Moines, IA, and the Assistant Director of the Inaugural Ice Breakers Dance team for the Texas Tornado.  She was also a member of the Rhythm Junkies Tap Company.  She has trained many dancers to perform on Broadway, become Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, Dallas Mavs dancers and even to open their own studios.

Dory continues to expand her knowledge by attending tap festivals and dance conventions regularly where she studies from legends such as Lady “Di”anne Walker, Dormesha Sumbry-Edwards, Robert Reed, Sarah Petronio, Roxanne Butterfly, Lane Alexander, Debbie Bray, Jason Samuels Smith, Derrick Grant, Bril Barrett, Dr. Jeni LeGon, Jason Janas, Chloe Arnolds, Kaitlin Harris, Keira Leverton and many more. Dory loves teaching and her goal is to spread rhythm into every sole.

Dory Kyrias

Katie Martin Lewis

Katie Martin

Pre-Ballet, Ballet, Tap, and Creative Movement Instructor

Ms. Martin began her dance training at the age of three and later trained with Kathy Chamberlain for five years.  She was a member of Chamberlain Ballet for four years performing in numerous productions.  Her summer studies included Ballet Austin, Joffrey Workshop in San Antonio, San Francisco Ballet, Ballet Workshop of New England, and extensive training with Truman Finney at Chamberlain Ballet. She also studied and danced professionally as a trainee with Ben Stevenson’s Fort Worth Dallas Ballet, performing roles in Giselle and The Nutcracker.  This spring, Ms. Lewis restaged her Peter and The Wolf for Chamberlain Performing Arts Family Ballet Series.

Suzette Mariaux

Ballet Instructor

A Dallas native, Ms. Mariaux began her training at the Etgen-Atkinson School of Ballet. She went on to study on full scholarship at the School of American Ballet in New York City. Subsequently, Suzette performed professionally with New York City Ballet under George Balanchine. In Europe, Ms. Mariaux was a soloist with the Frankfurt Opera Ballet under the direction of Alfonso Cata and Kent Stowell. Chamberlain School of Ballet is proud to have her as a well loved faculty member.

Suzette Mariaux

Jane Martin

Ballet Instructor

Jane Scichili Martin grew up in Richardson and received her ballet training with the Dallas Metropolitan Ballet, Kathy Chamberlain and the School of American Ballet in New York. She was a principal dancer with the Hartford Ballet Company in Connecticut for 11 years. She danced lead roles in Concerto Barocco, Moors Pavane, Esplanade, Romeo and Juliet, Nutcracker and Coppélia. She originated many lead roles in choreography by director Michael Uthoff. Jane returned to Texas in 1990 to teach for Kathy Chamberlain and was ballet mistress for Chamberlain Ballet for 7 years before taking a break to raise her twin boys.  She returned in January 2013 as Ballet Mistress for Chamberlain Performing Art’s production of Coppelia and began teaching full time again in the fall of 2013 as well as working as Ballet Mistress for the non-profit company.

Gabriel Speiller

Contemporary, Creative Movement, Improv and Modern Instructor

Gabriel Speiller is a native New Yorker, raised in Queens. He is a graduate of Frank Sinatra School of the Arts. Mr. Speiller received his BFA in Dance at Belhaven University. He has performed works choreographed by dancers from Doug Varone and Dancers, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Houston Ballet, Joffrey Contemporary, José Limón Dance Company, Martha Graham Dance Company, Mark Morris Dance Group, and Battleworks. He previously danced with Ad Deum Dance Company, Paul Taylor 2, The Brooklyn Tabernacle Dance Company, Katherine Maxwell, NOW Dance Project, Jessica Gaynor Dance Company, and Robert Mark Dance Company. He is also passionate about teaching and choreographing. Mr. Speiller is excited to be in his second season with Bruce Wood Dance Project.

Chamberlain School of Ballet welcomes Gabriel as a new addition to the 2017-18 faculty.

Catherine Mooney-Burton

Catherine Mooney-Burton

Ballet, Composition, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre Dance Instructor

Ms. Mooney-Burton is a graduate of SMU where she studied under Karen Kriete, Toni Beck, Bob Beard and David Kirby.  An instructor of Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Musical Theatre Dance, Catherine performed with the Dallas Opera under the direction of Francesca Zambello, Harry Silverstein, Bliss Herbert and under the musical direction of Graeme Jenkins with roles in L’incoronazione de Poppea, Rigoletto, Don Giovanni and Romeo et Juliette.  She also performed for two seasons with the Lone Star Ballet, directed by Neil Hess, artistic director and choreographer of the award winning musical, Texas.  Ms. Mooney-Burton’s experience also includes television and industrial work as well as commissioned choreography for Plano Metropolitan Ballet over seven seasons.  Her other creative interests include costume and set design, and her efforts have been featured in several original productions including costuming for Celebrate Broadway II for Chamberlain Performing Arts.  Ms. Mooney-Burton also choreographed The Toy Shop Ballet in Chamberlain Performing Arts’ collaboration with Plano Children’s Theater’s production of Scrooge.  In addition to her stage pursuits, Ms. Mooney-Burton has taught throughout the metroplex and was also on the summer faculties of Parish Day School and The Hockaday School where she taught ballet, jazz and musical theatre.  Ms. Mooney-Burton has been with Chamberlain School of Ballet for eight years where she teaches tap, jazz and musical theatre dance and enjoys volunteering each season for the annual production of The Nutcracker.

Leslie Peck is an Associate Professor at Southern Methodist University’s Meadows School of the Arts. She was trained by the legendary dancer Andre Eglevsky and the School of American Ballet. At the age of 17, Peck joined the New York City Ballet under the direction of George Balanchine. She went on to dance soloist roles with the Pennsylvania Ballet and later became a principal dancer with Houston Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Richmond Ballet and Ballet International in London. She is a recognized authority on Balanchine ballets and one of the few dancers authorized to stage Balanchine ballets by the Balanchine Trust.

Leslie Peck’s professional experience includes being a member of New York City Ballet, Houston Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Ballet International of London, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Richmond Ballet. Ballet Mistress for 16 years with the Richmond Ballet.

Leslie Peck


Anastasia Waters

Jazz and Modern Instructor

Asia Waters

Ms. Waters received her BFA in modern dance at Texas Christian University. At TCU, she performed in works choreographed by Susan Douglas Roberts, Elizabeth Gillaspy, Suki John and guest artists Robert Battle, Loretta Livingston, and Alexandera Beller. During her attendance at TCU, she also began nurturing and feeding her love for choreography. In her final year at TCU she was awarded the “Emerging Choreographers Award” for her creation of modern pieces, “Bedtime Story” and “Omnipotence”. “Bedtime Story” was also chosen be performed and adjudicated at the 2010 American College Dance Festival.

In the summer of 2009, she attended the American Dance Festival in North Carolina, where she studied modern dance technique and choreography with Mark Heim. In the summer of 2010, she attended Bates Dance Festival in Maine, where she performed and collaborated with renowned dance artist, Doug Varone to make an original work. She also studied modern dance technique with Natalie Desch, of Doug Varone and Dancers, and Omar Carrum of Delfos Danza Contemporanea.

Anastasia has, also, been teaching dance to young children, and young adults for 7 years. She has taught ballet, modern, jazz, and tap in many studios around the DFW metroplex.  In 2010-2012 she had the opportunity to dance professionally with Muscle Memory Dance Theatre, performing in works choreographed by Meghan Cardwell-Wilson, and Amy Sleigh.

After her lovely years with M2DT, she decided to begin a company of her own, so she began the creation of the imPULSE dance project. She hopes with the fantastic dancers, artists, and choreographers she has by her side, to reach out, and bring dance to the doorstep of those who have not experienced the joy, and happiness that dance and art brings.

Hilary Werthmann

Jazz, Tap, and Musical Theatre Dance Instructor

Hilary Werthmann is a proud alum of the Chamberlain School of Ballet and just recently finished the national tour of Guys and Dolls.  Ms. Werthmann graduated with a BFA in musical theater from the Boston Conservatory, and has since been blessed with a consistent career on the stage.  Some of her favorite roles include Bonnie Parker in Bonnie and Clyde, Roxie Hart in Chicago, and Lina Lamont in Singing’ In The Rain.  Ms. Werthmann has also traveled with the national and Singapore tours of My Fair Lady as an ensemble singer and dancer.  While performing is a true love for Ms. Werthmann, teaching also holds a very strong place in her heart.  She teaches jazz, tap, musical theater, and modern dance styles.  She is also a choreographer and has staged full fledged productions such as Bye Bye Birdie, Hair, and Little Shop of Horrors.  Ms. Werthmann is very excited and honored to be a part of Chamberlain School of Ballet’s faculty this year.