Levi & Kati Hime, Owners & Directors
As long time residents of Laramie, Levi and Kati are passionate about seeing the Laramie Dance & Arts Center continue to provide affordable, top notch dance instruction. Kati began with Robyn Guice Dance Studio of Laramie in 1984, studying tap & jazz and teaching, serving on LHS Plainsman Cheer throughout high school. Levi was a Plainsman swimmer and proficient gymnast. The Himes are long-time Laramie residents and Class of 1997 LHS Alums and UW graduates (Kati Health Sciences 2001, Levi Geology & Geophysics 2002); Kati received her degree in Sonography from LCCC in 2003 and was a student rep to the LCCC Board. Levi & Kati were University of Wyoming cheerleaders and coached the Laramie Plainsman cheer squad from 1998-2000. They chaired the Wyoming Junior Miss (now Distinguished Young Women) program from 2004-2006; Levi served as Worshipful Master of Masons, Laramie Lodge #3 (2006-7) and Indian Pantbrush Elementary PTA President (2012-15); Kati served as President of UW Women’s Club (2011-13), a Board Member of the Children’s Museum (2003), Laramie Coop Preschool Board Member (2004-5), and Indian Paintbrush PTA Teacher Appreciation Week Coordinator (2014-16). Levi and Kati both served as Grand Guardian/Associate Grand Guardian and Grand Bethel Guardian/Associate Grand Bethel Guardian for Wyoming Job’s Daughters, Shrine Bowl Cheer Coaches, and Bethel #2 Laramie Guardian/Associate Guardian, serving together between the years of 2001-2016. During this time they coordinated with statewide volunteers and teenage Job’s Daughters, orchestrated trips cross-country, summer camps, competitions and conferences. In Summer 2015, Levi was appointed by Governor Matt Mead to the Wyoming Board of Professional Geologists (presently serving). In 2016, Levi was named a 20 Under 40 by the Laramie Young Professionals Organization & Laramie Boomerang; in 2014, Kati was named a 20 Under 40 by the Wyoming Business Report. Levi and Kati are the founders & owners of Wyoming Weddings Magazine (est. 2009) and Wyoming Lifestyle Magazine (est. 2010) and Wyoming Woman & Family Magazine (est. 2017), giving them many opportunities to connect with the arts in Wyoming. They organize bridal expos in Laramie, Cheyenne, Casper and Rock Springs year round as part of their publishng company. The Himes also operate House of Pounce bounce houses out of the Laramie Dance & Arts Center. Seeing a need in Laramie and Wyoming as a whole, Levi & Kati opened LKH&Company Retail in Spring 2016, selling dance wear & gear, gymnastics and figure skating gear. Levi is trained as a Pointe Fitter, traveling the state working with Wyoming’s dance communities, and recently completed a Gaynor Minden fitting workshop as well as being trained through professionals in the business. Kati enjoys working with all ages fitting apparel and shoes, especially endorsing her lifelong love of tap. The Himes continue to pursue their professional careers — Levi is a Senior Geologist and GIS Specialist at Weston Groundwater Engineering in Laramie; Kati is an Obstetrical Sonographer at Laramie Physicians for Women, and a Vascular Sonographer at Vein Treatment Center in Cheyenne with Dr. Lawrence O’Holleran and Laramie Med Spa & Vein Center with Dr. Tom Nachtigal.
Laramie Dance & Arts Center has evolved and grown as the Himes see needs in the community, and as individuals approach the Himes with fun & unique ideas that incorporate well into the community. Kati and their son are part of the Irish Academy at LD&A, and their daughter enjoys pointe & ballet, belly dance, tap, jazz, contemporary and hip hop at LD&A, as well as participating in all Laramie Valley Dancer activities. Their son also enjoys Snowy Range Taekwondo, is a natural tapper and is digging hip hop with Miss Stephanie! As an active Music Together family with small children, the Himes appreciate the love of music and movement that those early family sessions inspired in their children. Having the opportunity to open Snowy Range Music Together in 2014 was just a natural fit. Levi and Kati nurture a long-term passion for the arts and their hometown of Laramie, and are very proud of the community that has been building at LD&A since 2014!
Ali received early training at Jordan College Academy of Dance at Butler University, then graduated from the University of Arizona with a BFA and has danced professionally. Her training has included Bill T. Jones, Elliot Feld, Merrill Ashley, Gus Giordano, Frank Hatchett, and Jacques D’Amboise. A video producer by day, Ali continues to hone her dance skills as she travels internationally, most recently in Puerto Vallarta and Vienna. She teaches ballet and jazz , and is our Intermediate/Advanced Ballet and Advanced Jazz instructor.
Stephanie has been dancing for over thirteen years and has been teaching students for eight years. Stephanie has studied Hip Hop, Improvisation, Modern, Contemporary, Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Creative Movement and Belly Dance. She is currently pursuing dual degrees in Dance & Business Management at the University of Wyoming, and before moving from Oregon took dance classes at the University of Oregon. Stephanie’s main goal when teaching students of all ages is to apply life skills they can use in the studio and out in the world, from gaining better self-confidence to having an enhanced understanding of their body when moving through space. Stephanie just completed a role as Head Intern at the Snowy Range Summer Dance Festival 2017 (and in the Himes’ opinion was a rock star!), and is a wonderful mentor with LD&A’s Laramie Valley Dancers, volunteering her time every year and creating unique & thoughtful choreography while mentoring our dancers.
Erin trained as an Irish step dancer in Buffalo, NY for 12 years at the Woodgate School of Traditional Irish Dance. She competed at all levels in local, regional and national dance competitions, while expanding her love for all aspects of Irish step dancing. She continued on to teach Irish step for eight years at the Rochez Academy of Irish Dance. After relocating to Laramie several years ago, she has been excited to be given the opportunity to share her love for Irish step dancing with the students of the Laramie Dance & Arts Center’s Irish Dance Academy since 2014. She and Karagh Murphy donate much time organizing and assisting in the Irish Academy’s many performances during the year throughout Laramie. Erin is a certified secondary education instructor, and is currently teaching science at Laramie High School. We’re all jealously drooling over her world travels!
Laura hails from the Boulder, Colorado dance community; formerly in the dance troupe of Gunbarrel Naval Gazers. While in the dance troupe, Laura performed at street fairs, the Boulder Outdoor Theater, and the astrological temple. Laura began her dance career when trying to find a fun way to lose baby weight and get back in shape. She studied Middle Eastern Dance under Taya Matoy for several years and then was asked to teach at ESC for the Arts in Boulder. While belly dance is not Laura’s day job, she often wishes it could be. She finds the creative outlet wonderful and often says when teaching ‘…Belly Dance is great because you get cool dress up costumes, giggle a lot, and get great abs to boot.’ Come join Laura’s class and learn to shimmy and giggle at the same time. Perfect for young and old. Middle Eastern Dance is designed for the woman’s form. We greatly appreciate Laura’s time & dedication to helping with choreography & preparations for the annual Mountain Women Belly Dance Hafla and other performance opportunities throughout the year in Laramie!
Beginning Ballet, Pointe 1, Pointe 3/4, Lyrical + Contemporary Ballet, Modern (and much more …)
Jordyn is a Laramie native, growing up in Laramie Dance Center and studying with the University of Wyoming’s dance program. She has participated in
the Snowy Range Summer Dance Festival as well as many productions of UW and LDC through the year, and works tirelessly year-round, volunteering her time with LD&A’s Laramie Valley Dancers program. Jordyn is preparing her third original, full length ballet to be performed by the Laramie Valley Dancers at LD&A Center. Her tasks including story line, character and plot development, audition orchestration & selections, original choreography, and the instructing and rehearsal time designed to compile the production. It’s an impressive, multi-month process. Her mother, Beth Brummond, is an incredible costume creator & seamstress, and together the two donate hundreds of hours creating beautiful, original costumes our dancers are blessed to wear. Her original ballet production resume includes The Wood Fairy Ballet (2015) and The Stone Flower Ballet (2016). Jordyn is also one of our teachers who takes time to mentor our dancers, reaching many on a level that combines personal growth + dance. We appreciate Jordyn’s leadership and talent so much, and joke about her growing ‘cult following’ that she has among dancers at LD&A!
Shea Ruggier, Ballet/Jazz 2, Ballet/Jazz 3, Upper Ballet 1, Conditioning, Jazz, Modern, Beginning Tap (and much more…)
Shea has been dancing since she was 13 in ballet, jazz, lyrical, tap and improv. She is currently a Senior at UW, pursuing dual degrees in Dance and Biology. At the Colorado School of Dance and UW Shea has performed roles in the Nutcracker, Alice in Wonderland, Don Quixote, Sleeping Beauty, and a variety of showcases. Shea donates her time and energy to our Laramie Valley Dancers every year, creating beautiful choreography and inspiring our dancers. As a dance teacher, Shea wants to empower her students in their abilities and strengthen their worries into triumphs.
A recent graduate, Danye Carter holds over 18 dance titles as well as a Spotlight Dance Cup National Triple Crown. As a competitive dancer, Danye has placed first overall every year since age 10. She is the recipient of three full scholarships from Black Hills Dance Theater and two full tuition scholarships for the Idaho DanceFest. Danye has trained four years in New York at Kaatsbaan Extreme Ballet under ABT Principle Martine VonHamel and current ABT Director Kevin McKenzie, Martha Graham Company member, Oliver Tobin, JKO School director, Franco DiVita, Stella Abrera, Sascha Radetsky, Margo Sappington and Gregory Carey. She has attended Kirov Academy of Ballet Washington D.C. Summer Intensive and Reperatory Dance Theater’s summer workshop intensive. In 2017, she attended Snowy Range Summer Dance Festival on a full scholarship. Danye is the coach and main choreographer for Independent Dancers Anonymous and so far, all of her choreography has placed top 10 in competition with several pieces landing #1. Danye choreographed the Homestake Opera House production of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas in 2015. She organized and taught dance class for the Lead Boys and Girls Club youth and is a ballet and tumbling instructor and choreographer for On Your Toes School of Dance.
Killian Ramey, Beginning, Intermediate & Advanced Tap
Originally from Denver, Killian began her training in Golden, Colorado and moved to Laramie to study on scholarship at the University of Wyoming for a BFA in Dance Performance and a BS in Business Management with an emphasis on Entrepreneurship. While at UW, she has performed works by Jennifer Deckert, Marsha Knight, Maurice Watson, Margaret Wilson, Aaron Wood, as well as works brought to the American College Dance Association. In 2016, she furthered her studies abroad in London with talented choreographers from renowned institutions including The Place, Pineapple, DanceWorks, and Studio 68. In addition, Killian has worked with choreographers Jarek Cemerek, Robert Sher-Machherndl, General McArthur Hambrick, Jacob Mora, Pablo Ruvalcaba, Thayne Jasperson, and countless others. In the fall of 2016, Killian had the honor of touring Wyoming and South Dakota with Jennifer Deckert’s Dracula—The Legend in Motion performing the principal role of Countess Dracula. In the summer of 2017, Killian became a Certified Pilates Instructor and served as a Unit Counselor at Michigan’s Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in order to further her dance training, teaching abilities, and business administration expertise. Killian is excited to teach beginning, intermediate, and advanced tap classes at Laramie Dance and Arts Center. She hopes to continually use dance to improve the lives of those around her. She strives to challenge and inspire her audiences, instill confidence and dedication in her students, provide opportunities for expression, and keep dance relevant and accessible to all who wish to benefit from the life it offers.
Bailey Thompson, Cheer & Dance Team
Bailey is a Laramie native and a UW Cheerleader who also has grown up with jazz, ballet & contemporary dance + dance team! She has donated much time & energy in addition to classes, preparing routines, prepping performances for Company Night 2017, A Night at the Museum Recital 2017, Freedom Has a Birthday performance 2017 and Jubilee Days Parade 2017 … leading our studio float at the Laramie Jubilee Days Parade 2017, organizing squad bonding sleepovers and themed spirit weeks, and organizing & running her own, week-long cheer clinic in summer 2017. She is a bright spot of energy and love of cheer!
Katherine is a senior BFA in Dance Science and Human Food Nutrition at the University of Wyoming. Upon graduation she plans to become a registered dietitian and work with athletes, including dancers to develop healthy lifestyle which optimize performance. Meanwhile, she has participated in many shows and projects both at UW and Casper College, where she received her AA in Dance Performance. Most recently, Katherine performed at the American College Dance Festival Gala in Eugene, Oregon. Katherine also participates in dance outreach and is currently a member of Dance in Unlikely Places, a small touring company based out of Laramie, whose mission is to take concert dance to rural and outdoor areas in Wyoming. Katherine has been a dance educator for eight years and embraces a student-oriented class which honors both the small stories of the student and the larger story of dance tradition. “To teach is more than showing movement; it is about responding and reciprocating a passion for dance with a community,” Katherine says.
Meghan earned her BFA in Dance Science from the University of Wyoming and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Kinesiology & Health at UW. Meghan has performed in The Nutcracker, Inside/Out, Variegations as well as other UW performances, and has worked with UW professors Marsha Knight, Jennifer Deckert, Margaret Wilson, Aaron Wood and others. She has trained in ballet, modern, jazz, Irish step dance, hip hop and vertical dance. She is a popular PreDance and Ballet 1 teacher at LD&A!
Karagh Murphy (Karagh Brummond after August 12!), Irish 1&2&3
Karagh has been Irish step dancing for a total of 22 years. She began Irish dancing with the Fitzpatrick School of Irish Dance located in her hometown just outside of Philadelphia, PA. When she moved to Denver to pursue her undergraduate degree, she began competing with the Bennett School of Irish Dance in Aurora, CO. Karagh has competed at the local, regional and national levels both in solo competitions and group dance competitions. Since moving to Laramie six years ago, Karagh has stopped competing and instead has enjoyed teaching and spreading her love of Irish Dance at the Laramie Dance & Arts Center. Karagh also helps trains another student at LD&A, Rebecca Lyford, as she begins to compete at local and regional Irish dancing competitions. Karagh has just recently been awarded her PhD in Neuroscience and is looking forward to continuing her research and passion for Irish dance in Laramie!