Faculty

Christine Mashburn-Paul, Director

Originally from Atlanta, Christine grew up studying the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus under the training of Kelly Oakes-Dent at Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. By the time Christine graduated high school, she had completed RAD examination grades II through VIII Award and the major syllabus examinations Pre Elementary through Intermediate II (recently renamed Intermediate Foundations through Advanced I). Christine went on to receive her minor in dance at the University of Georgia, performing in the UGA Ballet Ensemble as well as the modern dance company, CORE. From 2002-2006 Christine taught, choreographed and directed for Freedom of Movement Dance Academy in Athens, Georgia and completed a 230 hour yoga teacher training at Asheville Yoga Center. Christine has a professional career dancing, teaching, and choreographing with the Chattanooga Ballet, and also directed the Orange Grove Dancers. Christine is currently the president of the Tennessee Association of Dance and chair person for their AspireDance performance at the Statewide Festival each fall. With experience in many forms and dance, Christine directs the Chattanooga Dance Theatre to have classes and productions in many forms of dance and movement for all ages.

Brittany Johnson-Mills, Assistant Director

Brittany Johnson-Mills began her dance training with Ballet Tennessee at the age of ten. For eight years she continued as a TIP Scholarship student and completed the professional training program upon her graduation. For three summers she danced in New York City receiving a full tuition scholarship from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. While studying in New York Ms. Johnson-Mills studied ballet, pointe, Horton, Graham, and hip-hop under teachers such as Melanie Person, Denise Jefferson, Troy Powell, and Ana Marie Forsyth. Ms. Johnson-Mills was awarded the Kitty Sharp scholarship Award from the Tennessee Association of Dance. She also received an award from the City of Chattanooga’s Youth and Family Development department recognizing her unselfish love and dedication to the youth through dance. Ms. Johnson-Mills is a 2016 graduate of the Holmberg Arts Leadership Institute with Arts Build. 2019 marks Ms.Johnson- Mills thirteenth year as an instructor and choreographer.

Morgan Forster, Dance Instructor, Choreographer

Morgan received a minor in dance from Middle Tennessee State University, where she had a chance to study and refine her skills as a modern dancer and choreographer. While performing with the MTSU Dance Theatre she had opportunity to study and be featured in many guest artists’ pieces including Alberto Del-Saz- the Artistic Director and Repertory Director of the Nikolai/Louis Foundation for Dance Inc. During her years at MTSU she participated with performance tours to New York City and Chicago. Morgan also worked and performed with Heritage Dance Company. Since graduating, Morgan has had the immense pleasure of teaching and performing with CDT. She has also taught and choreographed as a guest artist at Center for Creative Arts. She is a member of Tennessee Association of Dance where she has attended professional summit training. Morgan is thrilled to call CDT her home.

Kelli Gibson, Office Staff

Kelli Gibson is currently a senior at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and is majoring in Communications with a minor in Business Administration. She has been dancing for ten years and trained at Chattanooga Ballet for seven of those ten under Frank Hay. She graduated from Center for Creative Arts in 2015 and was a member of Project Motion for two years. She was a member of Boss Dance Company at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 2015-2016. She is co-founder of UTC Dance Company in hopes to bring dance on UTC’s campus. This is her third year at CDT and she could not ask for a better place to not only work but to call home.

 

 

Jenny Hannah, Dance Instructor

Jenny Hannah is from Chattanooga. She began in baton twirling and gymnastics at the age of six. Jenny trained in ballet with Anna and Barry VanCura at Ballet Tennessee. Jenny is currently a baton twirling athlete on the elite level. A member of Team USA, Jenny is a nine time World Baton Twirling Championships medalist and a seventeen time Grand National Champion. Jenny is a graduate of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a BS in Biology and a M.Ed. in Health and Physical Education. She is a licensed Physical Therapist Assistant. Jenny is an adjunct instructor in the Health and Human Performance department at UTC where she is the coach for the UTC Majorettes. Jenny teaches twirling with United Twirling in Chattanooga.

 

Frank Hay, Ballet Instructor, Performer

Frank Hay grew up in California where he studied dance and gymnastics with his father. His early training included performing children’s roles with such notable companies as the San Francisco Ballet and the touring Bolshoi and Mariinsky Ballet Companies. He majored in ballet with an emphasis on performance technique at the University of Utah under an academic scholarship. Frank then joined Ballet West where he trained with Willam Christensen, Bruce Marks, Toni Lander and Leon Danilian. Frank was a principle dancer with the Atlanta Ballet, the Tampa Ballet and the Louisville Ballet. His first engagement with Louisville Ballet included a tour of Texas with Mikhail Baryshinikov. He most recently served as Ballet Master with the Chattanooga Ballet where he taught company class and classes for the Chattanooga Ballet School. In addition to restaging many of the works from the classical repertory, Frank is an award winning choreographer and his credits include many original works for Chattanooga Ballet including “The Nutcracker” and “The Creation”, based on the Hayden Oratory. He also served as the adjudicator for the Pacific Northwest Music Fest and coached a dancer in the 2002 USA International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi. He is well-versed in the Russian, Cecchetti, and Bournonville schools of ballet.

Abigail Lee Haynes, Dance Instructor, Choreographer

Abigail was born and raised in Sevierville, Tennessee and began her training at Elizabeth Williams School of Dance. During her early dance career, she trained with Nutmeg Ballet Conservatory, Joffrey Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts. She has competed at numerous competitions including Youth America Grand Prix, where she placed in the top 12 for the contemporary division in 2011. She graduated from the University of Alabama fall of 2017 with a Bachelor’s of Arts in Dance. During her time at UA, Abigail performed in the pre-professional dance concert, Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre, where she held lead roles in classical ballets such as Paquita in Paquita and Odette in Swan Lake, as well as, leads in contemporary ballet works including Today is History, The Last Military Salute, and Trainer. She has also been apart of student-choreographed concerts, Dance Alabama! and Dance Collection, where her choreography made debut. Abigail was honored to represent the University of Alabama with her performance in co/lapse at the International Collegiate Theatre Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland. She was also selected to represent the University of Alabama’s Dance department at the Alabama Dance Festival and was chosen as a counselor for American Ballet Theatre’s summer intensive in 2015. Abigail was recently a company apprentice and faculty member with Chattanooga Ballet. Now she is managing The Batterie, choreographing and teaching for local companies, and focusing on her dance photography.

Keri Lamb, Dance Instructor, Choreographer

Trained in Hip Hop, Jazz, Contemporary, Ballet, and Modern, Keri Lamb is a versatile and energetic dancer, with extensive experience in teaching and performance.  Keri is the curriculum designer and teacher of Chattanooga State Community College’s only hip hop course, and is delighted to be teaching teen and adult Hip Hop at Chattanooga Dance Theatre! Her Hip Hop training includes classes in Lyrical Hip Hop, Locking, Popping, Breakdancing, and Boogaloo, and in her own teaching she strives to deliver an authentic hip hop vibe in a relaxed and inclusive environment.

 

 

 

Chloe Russell, Dancer, Dance Instructor, Choreographer

Chloe Russell is a dancer, teacher, and choreographer with CDT. She teaches ballet, modern, and jazz. She received her early training with the Ballet Memphis junior company and Collage Dance Collective’s pre-professional training program. She received additional training through programs at The Ailey School, The San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, and Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts. She has earned a degree in Political Science: Nonprofit Management with a minor in Spanish from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Throughout her college career she danced demi-soloist and corps roles with Chattanooga Ballet and Tennessee Ballet Theatre in ballets such as Giselle, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Sleeping Beauty and new works. Additionally, Chloe is a producer and grant-writer for a local arts event called Celebrations, where she has showcased and danced in her original contemporary ballet works. This is Chloe’s first season with Chattanooga Dance Theatre.

 

Brie Timmons, Dance Instructor, Choreographer

Baylor School alumna, Brie Timmons, Started classical training at the Armfield Dance Academy in Athens, Tennessee at the age of three. Throughout middle and high school she danced and choreographed for Baylor School’s Dance Company, Verve’, and competed with United Cheer leading Junior and Senior level hip-hop teams. At thirteen, she attended the Rockettes Summer Intensive, and at seventeen, auditions for the University of Alabama’s 15th nationally ranked dance program under Ailey danseur, Cornelius Carter. Here she received classical ballet training from American Ballet Theater and Vaganova Academy certified, International Ballet Competitor, Professor Qainping Guo, along with training in modern, jazz, choreography, history, anatomy, pedagogy and stage mechanics. She earned her spot as a freshman in the pre-professional company, Alabama Repertoire Dance Theatre, and danced with renown artists such as George Staib, Stacey Alley, Sarah Barry, Rita Snyder, Rebecca Salzer, and Lawrence Jackson. By graduation, she had multiple pieces of her own choreography adjudicated for production. She graduated with a Bachelors of Arts and Sciences in Dance with a minor in Business in May 2016 and since has taught lower and upper school dance for Baylor School and pre-primary through primary classes for Ascension Dance. This is her first year with Chattanooga Dance Theatre, and she lead the 2018 Contemporary Dance Camp and held master classes for the Advanced Summer Intensive.