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MEET OUR STAFF

The heart of the 360. Our Mission: Make a Positive Impact. 
Our dedicated leaders embody the values of teamwork, dedication, growth, and trustworthiness. 
We look forward to sharing our passion for dance with your dancer! 

Rachel Petersen

Studio Director

Rachel Petersen

Miss Rachel shares her passion for dance, instilling technique, work ethic, and love for the arts. She started dancing at 5, competed since 9, fostering her passion through school. At her studio, she joined the competing company and Teacher's Assistant Program, nurturing her teaching love. Competing with Prairie Varsity Poms, she met Miss Tasha, assisting Hawk Allstars after high school. Now, she directs Studio 360 and All-Stars. She graduated from the University of Iowa with degrees in Dance, Educational Studies, and Human Relations. Also coaching Iowa City West High School Dance Team, she led them to the National Dance Team Championship finals in 2024.

Book Lesson or Meeting with Rachel

April Rieff

Marketing Assistant Director/Instructor

April Rieff

April has been a part of the 360 family for 4 years! She has loved seeing the dancers grow over the years and develop their love of dance! Miss April grew up dancing at a local studio where she trained in jazz, lyrical, tap, ballet, hip hop, pom, and more! She was then on the Prairie Varsity dance team in high school where she attended multiple competitions around the country, including UDA nationals in Orlando, Florida where her team won 10th in the nation! After high school, April attended Kirkwood Community College and earned her AA in Computer Web Development and a certificate in Software Development! When shes not at the studio, Miss April enjoys staying home with her cat, Sylvie, working out, and cooking!


Book a Lesson or Meeting with April

Johnette Wilhelmi

Marketing Director

Johnette Wilhelmi

Johnette has been a part of the Studio 360 family since 2019. Having witnessed firsthand how dance and our studio’s culture can positively impact dancers’ confidence, growth, and leadership, she brings a unique blend of enthusiasm and expertise to the team. Specializing in crafting strategic solutions for small businesses, Johnette offers invaluable insight and dedication to our studio's success. Her focus lies in aligning our studio's values with our digital marketing efforts, ensuring that our initiatives inform, connect, and inspire our current and future 360 families. By fostering connections, optimizing customer experiences, and building brand awareness, she propels our studio towards continued growth and success. johnettepearl.com.

Kaylee Knipper

Instructor

Kaylee Knipper

More info about Kaylee Coming Soon!

Addie Clark

Senior Assistant Teacher/Substitute

Addie Clark

Ms.Addie has been dancing in various styles at the studio for the last 6 years. Her favorites include contemporary and acro. She has been a teaching assistant since 2020 and has begun teaching independently this year. She is entering her senior year on Prairie Varsity Poms and has competed at the studio for the past 5 years. This past year, she was awarded Dancer of the Year, an unforgettable moment. One of her favorite dance memories is receiving first place with her solo, “Skinny Love,” and scoring the highest solo score of the competition. Her passion for teaching comes from seeing the joy on kids' faces while performing and seeing all their hard work pay off. Her favorite class to teach is acro, and this year, she is excited to choreograph parts of the acro production, which you can also find her performing in. When Ms.Addie isn’t dancing, you can find her hanging out with her 4-year-old sister or watching Love Island.

Maddie Tomash

Junior Assistant Teacher

Maddie Tomash

Maddie enjoys assisting in classes because she gets to share her love of dance with others and make genuine connections with kids. Maddie has been dancing for 13 years and at Studio 360 since it opened in 2017. Her favorite style is jazz, but trains in several different styles such as acro, ballet, pointe, contemporary, and more! Maddie is a member of the 360 Senior All Star team! She is currently a sophomore in high school through an online curriculum! On top of her position at Studio 360 she works as Administrative Support at Tomash Financial and enjoys babysitting! Maddie enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing with her dogs, doing crafts, and shopping!

Ellen Welch

Substitute

Ellen Welch

More info about Ellen Coming Soon!

Amy Tomash

360 Boutique/Operations Director

Amy Tomash

Amy loves her role at Studio 360, witnessing dance joy firsthand. Collaborating with remarkable women feels like family. She cherishes contributing to something greater. Amy's dance journey began at 3, leading her to Vinton Voyagers and Cedar Rapids Silver Bullets. As Director of Operations, she's thrilled to nurture the dance community. She now shares her dance passion with her daughter Maddie. When not at the studio she is with her husband Tony, daughter Madeline, son Tucker, and their dachshunds Kinnick, Bailey, and Frankie.

Dawn Neff

Student & Family Relations/Instructor

Dawn Neff

Dawn has always loved dance because it’s a way to express without having to worry about “finding the right words.” She loves sharing a space with kids as they experience this is a true blessing. Ms. Dawn began dancing at the age of six and has experience with various styles. Inside the studio, you will find her teaching Discover Classes and assisting in many other classes. Outside of the studio, Ms.Dawn is a wife, a mom to two girls, and a children's mental health therapist. She spends time at the dirtbike track and reading mystery novels. Her favorite part of teaching is learning about life from the kids.

Grace Arndt

Instructor

Grace Arndt

Ms. Grace delights in witnessing dancers' growth, celebrating their new skills and team bonds. Her dance journey began at 3 in Ames, Iowa, covering various styles including ballet, tap, jazz, and more. She danced with the Ames High Varsity Dance Team, later graduating from the University of Iowa with a degree in Human Physiology and Dance. Also a certified yoga instructor, she teaches at the University's Recreation Center while pursuing dental hygiene studies.

Madeline Cortez

Instructor

Madeline Cortez

More info about Madeline Coming Soon!

Taylor Stevens

Senior Assistant Instructor/Substitute

Taylor Stevens

Taylor has been dancing for 15 years, training in ballet, modern, jazz, contemporary, jazz funk, and tap! She is currently a senior at Iowa City West High School and co-captain of the dance team. She helped lead her team to become one of the top 20 teams in the nation! Fun fact: Ms. Rachel is her coach! She has competed in solos for 6 years and danced in her studio, Nutcracker, for 8 years. She plans to continue her dancing education after graduation in May!

Lexi Gaiffe

Junior Assistant Teacher

Lexi Gaiffe

Lexi teaches because she loves to share her love for dance with others. She loves seeing the kid's happy faces and walking into the studio. She has always had a passion for dance and wants to spread it to all of the students at 360! She loves to share her knowledge and create a home for dancers to express themselves through the movement of dance. Lexi has been dancing for 12 years and has been part of Studio 360 since it opened! She has danced in various styles, including tap, ballet, jazz, contemporary, lyrical, musical theater, pom, acro, and hip-hop. Lexi is a member of the Prairie Poms Team. Lexi enjoys babysitting and, in her free time, playing with her dog Bo, painting canvases, eating sushi, and spending time with friends and family!

Portia Wade

Interim Ballet Director

Portia Wade

More info about Portia Coming Soon!

Karli McClure

Assistant All Star Director/Instructor

Karli McClure

Karli's mission is to spread joy through dance, shaping good hearts and sharing her lifelong passion. Starting at age 3 in Davenport, Iowa, she competed for 8 years and helped her high school dance team reach 10th place nationally. A 2020 COVID graduate, Karli learned to cherish life's moments. Now pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of Iowa, she dreams of working in pediatrics. Since high school, Karli has been teaching at Studio 360, rising to lead teacher and Assistant All Star Director. With a commitment since Studio 360's inception in 2017, she's proud to have coached its first Summit Team. Head of the Acro Department, Karli teaches a variety of classes, blending her expertise in dance and gymnastics. 

Book a Lesson or Meeting with Karli

Jen Marks

Community Relations/Instructor

Jen Marks

Ms. Jen adores impacting dancers’ lives, witnessing their dance journey from Discover Dance to All Stars! She danced 3 years in high school, making ISDTA All-Iowa Dance Team senior year. At Central College, she danced 4 years. Post-college, she danced professionally for Cedar Rapids Titans Doll Team (4 years) & Cedar Rapids Roughriders (2 years), then coached Cedar Rapids River Kings (formerly Titans) for 2 years. Passionate about bringing dance to Cedar Rapids, she serves as Studio 360's Community Relations Director, coordinating events for 360 Performance and All Stars teams. She connects Studio 360 with charity causes like No Foot Too Small, American Heart Association, and University of Iowa Dance Marathon, loves seeing dancers recognized in the community! Outside dance, she's a dental assistant, wife, and mother to Ellie, Wren, and Mila.

Blake Kittrell

Instructor

Blake Kittrell

Blake Kittrell started coaching gymnastics because of the positive impact and lessons learned. He owned Kids First Gymnastics, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for 9 years before closing due to covid. He produced multiple state and regional champions in the Developmental and Optional program during that time. After closing, I went back to nursing with an RN, BSN and, consulting with dance and gymnastics gyms, running clinics, and working at camps around the country.

Book a Lesson with Blake

Alissa Stanton

Instructor

Alissa Stanton

When Ms. Alissa was little she told her family that she wanted to be a rockstar and perform on stage when she got older. While she isn't a famous rockstar, her passion for performance never faded. Alissa grew up in Cedar Rapids taking dance classes from a young age, competed as a Jefferson Pom, and devoted her energy to Westside Delegation Show Choir. She continued her love for dance at Luther College on the dance team, and enjoyed choreographing area middle school and high school show choirs. She graduated in 2009 with a Vocal Performance and Education BM with a minor in Spanish. and completed her Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction in 2017. Alissa (Senora Stanton) is in her 14th year in education and currently teach K-4 World Language at Prairie Ridge Elementary. She is a wife and a mom to 3 beautiful daughters ages 8, 5, and 6 months. Her favorite styles of dance include poms, tap, and jazz. "My goal is to plant the seed of excitement in my students and watch them bloom and grow! I am so eager to get back to my own dancing roots and share that passion and energy with others at Studio 360!"

Kyla Moyle

Senior Assistant Instructor/Substitute

Kyla Moyle

Kyla has been dancing at Studio 360 since the start in 2017! When she was three years old, Kyla started taking dance lessons. After 15 years of experience, Kyla is trained in Ballet, en Pointe, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, pom, musical theater, and more! Kyla has been a member of Studio 360’s Senior Regional dance team for three years. Kyla was also a member of Prairie Ambassadors show choir and a Prairie cheerleader for two years. Kyla also spends her time being involved with her high schools drama department and speech team. Kyla plans to graduate in spring of 2024 and attend Savannah College of Art and Design in Atlanta, Georgia this fall. In her down time, Kyla likes to watch movies, hang out with her friends, and take her dog Niena on a walk!

Brynlee Deflieger

Junior Assistant Teacher

Brynlee Deflieger

Brynlee loves seeing young children find their love for dance and gain friendships and confidence through dance. She loves teaching kids how to learn new skills and mental toughness. Dance is a great way for kids to express themselves while gaining long-term skills for their lives ahead of them! Brynlee has been dancing for 13 years and competing for 9 years. She has trained in several dance styles, including ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, tap, lyrical, acro, pom, and hip-hop. She was on Hawk All Stars with Ms. Natasha before Studio 360 opening! Her favorite styles of dance are tap and contemporary. Brynlee is a member of the Prairie Poms team at Prairie High School as well as a member of the FFA, Green Bandana, and Key Club. When she isn’t dancing, she volunteers at a local pet boarding and daycare center. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends, reaching out, and running.

Studio 360 Founder

Natasha Leas

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Ms. Natasha created Studio 360 to positively impact the community and create a studio that focuses on both physical and mental skills. Her philosophy is that dance mimics the necessary skills to live a fulfilled, successful life. Natasha credits dance for teaching her about resiliency, teamwork, commitment, and leadership. She began dancing at five years old in Vinton, Iowa, with Joan Cooling. She studied ballet, jazz, and modern techniques as a UNI Orchesis Dance Company member. After graduating from the University of Northern Iowa with a BA in Early Childhood Special Education, she started teaching kindergarten at the College Community School District. She became the head coach of the Prairie Poms Team in 2010. Prairie Poms became a top nationally-ranked team through her nine years of coaching. The team under her leadership placed 2nd at the ISDTA State Competition, with numerous top 5 finishes. Natasha led the team to their first-ever national appearance, where they made it to the finals at the UDA National Dance Team Championships and placed in the top 25 in the nation.

 

Natasha began the Hawk All Star program at Prairie to help facilitate the interest of dance in the community. The program quickly grew and led to the opening of Studio 360. The mission was to make a positive impact and provide the tools for dancers to dance in any arena they desired. Combining her passion for early education with dance, Natasha partnered with Andrea Trench with Discover Dance. She became one of the first studios in the United States to offer a researched developmental early childhood dance program. She became passionate about standing out and being unique, creating the first USASF All Star program in Eastern Iowa. Natasha led the 360 program to their first Varsity All-Star Summit appearance in 2022, placing 4th overall. In 2023, she helped lead the mini-team to semi-finalist. In 2024, the program was the Tiny Pom & Jazz and Junior Prep Jazz & Variety UDA NDTC National Champions, Mini Pom & Jazz Runner-Ups, and the Youth Pom & Contemporary Bronze Medal finalist.

 

More important than placements, she loves seeing the families become extended families and how the 360 mission connects the community. Natasha enjoys traveling and working with teams across the nation with Be That 1% on building and creating a positive team culture and how to reach their peak performances! She also works as a project manager for Bre Choreography Management, which connects hundreds of All Stars, High School and College Teams to high-level choreographers. Natasha is co-host of Beyond The Marley Dance Team Podcast, where she interviews top dance professionals in the dance industry.  Her goal is always to create a space for leaders to grow (leaders create leaders) and shine in their strengths. "I hope our students see how a team is always greater than one individual. They will take away the tools they need to be highly successful in their lives. We are creating leaders at 360 to continue the mission of making a positive impact.” 

APPLY TODAY

Want to be part of the 360 Team! Send us your resume today! 

319-777-1097

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