Jen Garry

Studio Director
Head Competitive Dance Coach
Hip Hop | Jazz | Lyrical

Jen GarryI have over 30 years experience teaching and coaching dancers of all ages.  With all that experience has come numerous choreography awards at the local, regional, and national levels.  But, for me, all that recognition is not the end as you must continue to learn and grow as a dance professional.  I have been blessed to have had a chance to learn from and cultivate friendships with Mike Peele, Kassidy Bright, Liam Keflezgy, Talia Favia, Chaz Buzan, Gigi Torrest to name just a few.

I believe in helping dancers push themselves to new heights by striving to do better than the last time they danced.  Since dance is an art and no two artist grow and learn the same, I do whatever it takes to help them achieve their goals and to find their inner passion.  I started at MDC in the beginning with a goal of nurturing a "family vibe" and to make sure that dancers never became just a number.  My daughters danced at MDC, my grandchildren dance and tumble at MDC, and my forever "boyfriend," Mike, has done so many things over the last 30 years that I can truly say that MDC is a family.

I will always be there for you and your dancer. I will also push your dancer harder to become their best. And everyone that knows me will agree that I am the loudest and biggest supporter of dance and what your dancer can achieve.


Katelyn Trei

Asst. Competitive Dance Coach
Hip Hop | Lyrical | Technique |
The Ellové Technique
(certified instructor)

Katelyn Trei

I was born in Sioux Falls and continue to call this city my home. I started my dance career and my journey at the ripe young age of 10 with the Just for Kix dance studio. After two years, I decided to change studios and showed up at Midwest Dance Center. For the next several years I experimented with different styles of dance to find my groove.  It really started to come together when I tried out for the competitive senior team.  Wow, we won three National Champion titles for senior Lyrical small group and Grand Champions for senior Hip Hop.

In 2014/2015 I attended South Dakota State University and danced with their competitive dance team that eventually competed at Nationals in Florida.  As with many things in life, I decided to travel a different route and became a dance teacher at Dynamic Cheer & Dance in Brandon.  I concentrated on the Mini and Youth Hip Hop/Jazz teams there and traveled with the competitive teams as an assistant coach.

Sometimes life comes full circle for whatever reason and I found myself at the doorsteps of Midwest Dance Center again but this time as a coach.  It was at MDC that I found my true passion for teaching and choreographing exceptional routines.  I have had such a great time with all the competitive Lyrical teams and watching everyone grow as dancers.

In my free time, I like pushing myself with challenging workouts and choreographing short Hip Hop and Lyrical-Hip Hop combos. The lessons I have learned have been invaluable in my life and given me so many great friendships.  I want each and every dancer to have such a wonderful experience with dance just like I have had and continue to have. MDC has been a wonderful opportunity for me to continue with dance and to pass my love of dance on to others!


Julie Dziedzic

Competitive & Recreational Programs
Tap | Musical Theater

Julie Dziedzic

I would like to think that I am an excellent choreographer, performer, teacher and motivator. I love working with all age groups and enjoy helping them achieve self-discipline and a positive self-image through dance.

I began dancing at the age of three and when I was sixteen, I moved to Los Angeles.  There I studied with top teachers and choreographers in the country, concentrating on all styles of Jazz, Tap and Musical Theatre. I also assisted Carol Conners, who was teaching at L.A. Dance Academy at the time and is one of the co-founders of L.A. Danceforce.  Through L.A. Danceforce and the Academy of EDGE, I was able to perform and also work with Bill Prudich, and Keith Clifton. At seventeen, I had the distinct honor of dancing with Rita Moreno on Good Morning America.

I later moved to Scottsdale, AZ, and taught Jazz and Tap for the Dance Department Chairman at Scottsdale Community College.  After awhile, I returned back to the Chicago area in 1994 and taught for several dance studio in the Northwest Suburbs.  I later became the Orchesis Director at St.Viator High School in Arlington Heights.  Over these years, I took pride in improving every dance program I had the honor of teaching for.

I later decided to move to Ottawa, IL in 2009 and became the artistic director and later owner of Ottawa Dance Academy.  It was so much fun to grow the dance program there and to be regionally and nationally recognized at many conventions and competitions including Dupree, Applause, Hollywood Dance Experience, Talent on Parade, Bravo and Groove, to name a few.

I am also the choreographer for recording artist Jason Antone, and most recently choreographed and performed in his show, The Real Thing. As a choreographer, I have won numerous awards, including “Top Score” for small group, solo, duet and production numbers at Creation dance competition.

After 10 successful years, my family and I decided to close the studio and start a new chapter in our lives by moving to Sioux Falls.  I cannot tell you enough how excited I am to have a chance to grow the Musical Theater program and to help dancers find a new dance passion at MDC!


Jordyn Ward

Competitive & Recreational Programs
Acro | Tumbling

Jordyn Ward

I have been a part of the cheer and dance world since the day I was born as my older sister was dancing and cheering competitively in both sports.  I basically attended every competition, cheering and dancing on the sidelines to all the routines of my older sister.

When I was finally old enough to try dance on my own, I started dancing at MDC. After a couple of years of dance, however, I found my true passion in cheer.  I spent the next 13 years at Dakota Spirit and become a part of the first cheerleading team from South Dakota to make it to Worlds. I eventually made it back into dance when I joined the Roosevelt High School dance team as well as competing on their cheer team for four years. And if that wasn’t enough, I also did sideline cheer for three years for the varsity football team.

In my free time, I love to spend time with my 10 nieces and nephews along with my four siblings!  I also love to hike, swim, and spend a day or two or five at the river! On the rare occasion when I actually have some free time, you will find me in the kitchen trying out new recipes and cooking for my family.

You will not find anyone more passionate about life or helping others achieve their goals than me!  Let’s do it!


Angela Bjorklund

Recreational & Competitive Programs
Range of Motion | Fitness

Julie Dziedzic

Hi! I am Angela and I will be leading the Range of Motion and fitness classes at MDC!

I am a mom of four strong healthy young adults. My oldest daughter has danced at MDC and was on the competitive Senior Hip Hop team so I know the intricacies of being a dance family.

Two of my favorite things to do is to kayak and ride motorcycle with my husband. Most mornings before the sun rises, you will find me at a CrossFit gym. I believe a strong core is the key to do the movements needed for all performances!

I currently hold a CF Level 1 trainer certification. The functional movements I will incorporate into my classes will be geared towards body weight exercises along with adding in resistance bands for strengthening.   We will focus on core, upper body and lower body isolation movements to strengthen and elongate those muscles!

I am excited to meet you all and look forward to getting stronger together!! 


Kolbi Solberg

Recreational Program
Hip Hop | Lyrical | Jazz | Tap | Combo Classes

Kolbi Solberg

Hi everyone, I am Kolbi Solberg. I was born and raised in Pierre, SD, and now call Sioux Falls my home. I first started dancing at 4 year olds at Sunny’s Dance Studio. After five years, I switched to Sarah's Dance Studio where I danced until I graduated from High School. If you didn’t already know, growing up in a rural area doesn’t offer a lot of things to do but dance became one of my passions. Besides dancing at the studio, I also competed in dance at the varsity level with Pierre High School. When I was a Junior and Senior, I also did competitive cheer and sideline cheer. As a team captain for both cheer and dance, I learned many valuable lessons on being a leader that I use even today.

After graduating high school, I started pursuing a career in nursing at USD and hope to graduate in 2024 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. Of the 22 years I’ve been on this planet, nearly 15 of them were devoted to dancing competitively. As long as I can remember, the dance studio has been my second home. Through all of the competitions, shows, costumes, hairspray, injuries and friendships, my experiences on and off the stage have taught me many things about myself and about life in general.

One of those life lessons was that I knew I wasn’t going to pursue dance forever and to cherish all that it had given me. But another lesson was that life has a way of surprising you and I soon found purpose in something new — teaching dance at MDC!

Dancing proves how we can go beyond our limits, be self taught in discipline, how it is okay to humiliate ourselves, the importance of teamwork, and being a part of a family is not limited to just the people you are related to.


Jeffrey & Carla Haper

Owners
Recreational & Competitive Dance
Biggest Supporters

Jeffrey Carla Haper

Keep Calm and Fundraise On.  To borrow a couple of words from The Chive, we are that fundraising couple.  But, our story begins much earlier when our daughter, Rylee, was three years old.  Interesting enough our son’s first T-Ball coach, Becky Jankowski, also taught cheerleading for Midwest Dance Center.  She said Rylee would have to wait a year to start cheerleading but she could definitely start dance in the meantime.

Becky’s husband, Tony, played in a band back then with a “boyfriend” of one of the owners of Midwest Dance Center.  She invited us out to listen to them and that is the night we first met Jen Garry.  Jen said Rylee would be perfect for dance and invited us to stop by the studio on Minnesota Avenue.

Jeffrey: I remember stopping by the studio for the first time.  I thought it was pure chaos!  Dancers were all over the place running from one classroom to the next.  Parents and other people in the lobby waiting for their dancer to finish for the night.

It wasn’t until I went to my first recital that it all made sense to me.  It was so rewarding to see my little girl up on stage doing her first routines.  It was then that I fell in love with dance.

Something else happened that night.  I was watching some of the other routines from the older competitive dancers and started wondering…would my daughter grow into a talented dancer like these girls?  The answer is yes!

I have had so many dance “moments” over the years that I have lost count.  I can’t imagine how it has been for Tonia and Jen.  One thing that I do know is that I want every three or four year old that dreams of dancing to be able to discover their passion.  In fact, I want everyone that wants to dance to just dance.  For me, MDC is that opportunity!

Carla: As Jeffrey mentioned, Rylee was only three years old when she entered her very first dance classroom.  As a mom you are scared to death to let them go.  So many things run through your mind like will she listen to the teacher, will she understand, will she have fun?

It only took a  few moments for my fears to subside as I saw a great big smile when the door opened to the classroom and she came bouncing out.  I could tell she had fallen in love with dance and it was then that I fell in love with it too.

I have worn several different hats with MDC over the years.  I have been and still am your basic dance mom.  Scrambling to make sure Rylee has all her costumes and accessories, especially the shoes!  I have been a team mom too scrambling to fix someone’s costume or find another set of earrings.  I have held different positions with the Booster Club making sure there was opportunity for everyone to dance.  And now, I am an owner making sure the studio continues with its great traditions.

It has been several years since Rylee’s first smile but MDC has not just been a place I have watched her grow into a beautiful dancer but has also become our family.  It means so much to me to see young dancers with dreams in their eyes and being a little afraid of what dance holds for them only to see them mature into independent and confident young adults.  Midwest Dance Center is our second home and I hope your dancer’s as well!


Tonia Pierce

RED
(Retired; Extremely Dangerous : )

Tonia Pierce

Tonia hates talking about herself but she embodies dance. She started dancing at the age of 3 and has made dance a part of her life since. She loves dance but everyone knows her true passion is Tap. She loves everything about it…the kids…the noise…the simple sounds it creates. Tap definitely is the rhythm of her soul.

Tonia put her heart and hard work and tears into making Midwest Dance Center a place where everyone could find a home. A place where you could grow and find your passion. She may have retired her tap shoes. She may have retired from MDC. But, she has not retired her love, passion, and enthusiasm for the world of dance.

From the MDC Family…thank you for the legacy ❤