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Alyssa Chirch

Creative Movement, 2-3 yrs. & Pre-Ballet, 4-5 yrs.

Alyssa Chirch began teaching praise dance in an after school program at Victory Christian Academy in 2003 and teaches praise dance classes for all ages. She also creatively instructs the praise dance camps each summer along with volunteers. Alyssa has a BA in Bible and Ministry with a Counseling emphasis from Bethel College in Mishawaka, IN.  She has had speaking engagements at worship seminars and taught many sessions of praise dance over the past 10 years. She has a 5 year background in classical ballet.  She currently holds a part-time position at Victory Christian Academy as Chapel Coordinator, Grant Writer and Physical Education Teacher for Preschool-3rd grades. She loves working with children and people with disabilities. She has worked as a case manager for individuals with disabilities through Indiana Professional Management Group to coordinate services/budgets for individuals such as music therapy, behavior therapy, day services, residential and respite services.  She feels time in this field has helped qualify her to also teach dance to people with autism, down syndrome, development disabilities and physical disabilties, etc.  Her background also includes being a Certified Personal Fitness Trainer, as well as, teaching Cardio Kickboxing and Pilates. She has many fitness loves, such as swimming, hiking, biking, weight training and ballet.  She is married to Derek Chirch and they have a daughter who is a freshman in college and two teenage boys. They also have a heart for adoption and are currently trying to adopt through the state of IN. 

Lauren Griffith
Jazz/Ballet Instructor for 6 yrs and up

Lauren Griffith is a Master's Degree student from Valparaiso University currently studying to be a counselor. She has a BA from VU in Psychology with a minor in Dance and Sociology. She has worked as a dancer teaching in Green Bay, WI and at a local dance school. She is looking forward to growing with us at MDA and helping us further the mission of a faith-based dance academy. She was on the VU dance ensemble and the dance team for 4 years and recently choreographed a tap routine for a dance ensemble show. Lauren has been dancing since the age of 3 years and has competed nationally.  She has experience in jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary, modern and character types of dance.  She grew up in a faith-filled family and would like to continue to grow in Christ. She loves helping people grow not only as dancers but also as individuals.  

Heidi Maidl

Intermediate Ballet

Heidi Finman-Maidl grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan in Marquette.  Along the beautiful shores of Lake Superior is where she spent countless hours on, in, and around the lake enjoying downhill and cross-country skiing, long distance running, swimming, and dancing!  Heidi studied dance at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan and took classes under the direction of Jane Baas and Sharon Garber. She went on to teach at Third Street Dance Company in Marquette, Michigan for several years and taught ballet in Girdwood, Alaska with Nina VanImhof.  She has taken master classes with companies such as Wellspring Dance Company of Kalamazoo;  world-renowned Pilobolus Dance Theatre of Washington, Connecticut; Wellspring Dance Company of Kalamazoo, Michigan; and Zenon Dance Company and James Sewell Ballet, both of Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Heidi toured nationally with Minneapolis's premiere traveling theatre company, Troupe America as "Mary the Dancing Doll" in their classic version of "Babes In Toyland."  She received a B.S. in Psychology and a minor in Health Education from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.  Heidi now resides in Valparaiso with her husband, Kurt, and their three children- Ethan, 12, Carter, 10, and Sofia, 8.  Sofia is also a dancer at Master’s Dance Academy!

Through family circumstances, Heidi met the Lord and His amazing grace and mercy for her and her family.  Since that time, she worked for another dance studio and was as convicted there had to be a better way to raise our young girls in dance, there had to be more purity in the dress and the dance in order to glorify God.  So now she is so happy to have met Alyssa and work alongside her to raise a generation of dancers to glorify God and bring His message of hope to many.