The Dance Lab offers dance instruction to children and adults alike in ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, modern, creative and adult fitness. While our emphasis is on correct technique and form, we also stress the importance of creativity, personal expression, dance history and arts appreciation in attempt to mould the student into a well-rounded artist regardless of their level of involvement. We understand that, though dance is a strictly disciplined art form, it is essential to enjoy our time learning it as well.
About the owner
Joan Mix Lande (Joanie) is a dancer, choreographer and performer who's professional career spans from Rochester to the Twin Cities, and various places in between. Joanie has been an avid dance enthusiast since age 5, growing up at the Janet Lang Dance Studio in Rochester, MN, fluently studying every form of dance offered at the time including ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, pointe, clogging, swing and danceline. As a 7th-grade student at Dover-Eyota High School, Joanie organized DE's first ever Dance Team that still exists today. In 2006, Joanie graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. During that time, she performed in five University Dance Theater Productions, including National ACDFA at the Kennedy Center, Washington D.C. Immediately after that, she performed as an apprentice with Carl Flink's Black Label Movement, Joanie Smith and Daniel Shapiro's Shapiro and Smith Dance, and Paula Mann and Steve Paul's Time Track Productions. In 2009 Joanie founded Rainy Day Cabaret and since then has produced five evening-length productions with that company, all based in Minneapolis. In 2010, Joanie directed, co-created and co-wrote RISE; an original production produced and performed by the Rochester Dance Company, held at the Mayo Civic Center, in Rochester. Since then she has worked with the Rochester Dance Company as the Assistant Director, Ballet Mistress and Stage Manager. Prior to founding The Dance Lab in 2016, Joanie taught dance at the Janet Lang Dance Studio for 18 years and Zumbrota Dance Studio for 10 years in all disciplines, including jazz, modern, lyrical, tap, ballet, pointe, competition and creative dance.
Lelia began her dance training at age five at the Janette McDonald Dance Studio in suburban Pennsylvania. She then continued her studies with the Pennsylvania Ballet, performing many principal roles. As the director of the Forsythe Studio of the Arts, she taught pointe, ballet, jazz and tap. She also traveled the U.S choreographing for the James Waters Production Company (a commercial production company) and staging may commercials for companies such as Scott Paper Co., Campbell's Soup, and Architectural and Engineering News. With more than 3o years of teaching experience, Lelia has also worked with Ron Luddington, top world and Olympic skating coach, teaching ballet and jazz technique to skaters, and choreographing their skating routines. After moving to Rochester in 1996, Lelia taught pointe, ballet and lyrical to students of all ages at Janet Lang Dance Studio, until 2017 when she began teaching at The Dance Lab where she teaches ballet, pre-pointe and pointe and choreographs for the Dance Lab Performance Team.
Born and raised in Rochester, MN, Daniel began his dance training at the age of 7 and has been dancing ever since. Daniel's movement training began with Gymnastics, Tae Kwon Do, and Diving before he started taking Jazz dance classes. Shortly after, he began taking Ballet, and eventually Ballroom, Hip-Hop, and Modern dance.
While attending the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, he studied under Maggie Bergeron, Ananya Chatterjea, Carl Flink, Toni Pierce-Sands, Uri Sands, Joanie Smith, and Erin Thompson, and performed works created by Gregory Dolbashian, Larry Keigwin, Scott Rink, and Uri Sands. In the spring of 2016, he graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance.
Throughout his time spent at the University doing movement and personal research, Daniel fell in love with not only the incredible community of dancers, but also with all of the incredible artists in the Twin Cities Metro area. His deep appreciation of all forms of art has allowed him to work collaboratively with dancers and non-dancers alike.
Lisa Button is a life-long dance enthusiast who began her dance education at the age of 2 1/2 years old and eventually went on to take classes including ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, musical theater/Broadway and hip-hop. She was previously a dance teacher/choreographer at the Dawn Dott Dance Studio in Marquette, MI. She earned a Gold at Dance Olympus for a large-group jazz dance and a Platinum-high scoring award for a tap dance at Dance Olympus a few years later. Currently, Lisa is raising two sons with her husband Kyle while balancing her career as a Quality Specialist in Transfusion Medicine with her love of CrossFit, golf, traveling, musical theater, and dance. She draws choreography inspiration from Michael and Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake, Kenny Ortega, Brian Freidman, and Mandy Moore.
Hanwen Wong grew up in Shoreview, Minnesota. At two, she started dancing with CAAM Chinese Dance Theater in St. Paul were she learned traditional Chinese folk dance, ballet and acrobatics. In high school, Hanwen was a member of Mounds View Viewettes Varsity Dance Team and became captain her senior year. Hanwen's passion for dance grew as she juggled her competitive high school dance team and her Chinese dance studio.
In 2018, Hanwen graduated from Villanova University, in Philadelphia, with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. While in college, she was the Co-President of the Villanova Dance Company. She performed and trained in jazz, ballet, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary and modern dance styles. She performed at basketball games, school events and the bi-annual showcase ran by the company. Hanwen became known for her emotional storytelling and unique choreography. Outside of campus, Hanwen also substitute taught jazz, contemporary, lyrical and hip-hop classes for Daine Dance Academy in Pennsylvania.
Hanwen is currently studying in the Physical Therapy Doctoral Program at Mayo Clinic and hopes to become a physical therapist specializing in dance rehab.
Courtney began dancing at the age of 3, and developed a love for ballet, pointe, lyrical, and jazz. Growing up in Rochester, she danced at Janet Lang Dance Studio, and with the Children’s Dance Theater. Once in high school, Courtney was captain and choreographer for the inaugural Century High School Competition Dance Team, and was awarded MN State High School League All-Conference. In college, Courtney danced in numerous productions at Winona State University and the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, her favorite, Swan Lake. Courtney enjoys consulting for local high school dance teams, and has 14 years of dance instructor experience with all age groups and skill levels. When not dancing, you’ll find Courtney at St. Mary’s Hospital where she is the Medial Thoracic Clinical Nurse Specialist. She is the mother of 2 energetic kiddos, ages 5 & 2.