Mendocino Ballet Company & School
Ms. McCreanor is Founder and past Artistic Director of Colorado West Ballet and Performing Arts Center. Trained in Pittsburgh with Charlotte Mady, she also studied with Barbara Weissberger of the Pennsylvania Ballet and Ballet Master, George Zoritch. She was awarded a full scholarship to the North Carolina School of the Arts at the age of 14 and went on to study dance and theatre arts at Stephens College, the University of Missouri and at Columbia College on full scholarship for artistic merit and academic achievement. She also studied with masters Luigi and Gus Giordano in Jazz technique, Finus Jhung and David Howard in Classical Ballet and Michael Kravitz in Modern Dance, among others.
She has performed with contemporary and classical ballet companies across the country in roles including “The Nutcracker”, “Romeo and Juliet”, “Don Quixote”, “Swan Lake”, “Rodeo”, “Napoli”, and “Obsessions”, (a ballet created especially for her). She has taught Classical Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Creative Dance, Ballet Floor Barre, and Gymnastics in New Jersey, Oregon, Missouri, Arizona and throughout Colorado and northern California. She traveled to southern France in 2004 as part of a cultural exchange project with over 30 dancers from schools north of Paris and in Valence d’Agen in southwest France. She was accompanied by nine dancers from the Mendocino Ballet who attended this workshop where Ms. McCreanor taught Classical Ballet, Pointe, Floor Barre and Broadway Dance and choreographed for the community performance. Dancers from France traveled to Ukiah in the summer of 2005 where they studied with Ms. McCreanor and Ms. Helene Darroman of AVICA Danse in France. We made two more trips to France in the summers of 2006 and 2008. In October of 2010, Ms. McCreanor set "The Nutcracker" with Ms. Darroman on 40+ dancers and actors from our Ukiah company and French dancers from Nerac and surrounding areas. The summer of 2013, 12 dancers from l'Ecole de Danse du Val d'Albret under the direction of Ms. Helene Darroman joined 12 dancers from Mendocino Ballet under the direction of Ms. McCreanor to study and perform Classical and Contemporary Ballet, Jazz and Modern Dance. In the summer of 2015, we again returned to France for another Summer Workshop.
In addition to teaching, Trudy has choreographed and directed several children’s ballets and original productions, restaged many classics from “Les Sylphides” and “Swan Lake” to “Pas de Quatre”, "Cinderella" and "Napoli", coordinated local children in “The Nutcracker” with the Colorado Ballet, Tulsa Ballet Theatre, David Taylor Dance Theatre, the Eugene Ballet and the Aspen/Santa Fe Ballet. She has provided choreography for special children’s productions with the Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra including “Peter and the Wolf”, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”, “Cinderella”, “La Boutique Fantasque”, “Alice in Wonderland”, and many more. She recently staged "Peter and the Wolf" for a joint production with the Ukiah Symphony and "Sylvia" and "Tubby the Tuba" with both the Ukiah Symphony and the Symphony of the Redwoods.
She has organized Outreach Programs for Arts in Education Programs and taught movement workshops and dance history throughout the community and school districts of western Colorado and northern California. She also taught Dance Movement and Dance History Workshops at Woodlands Charter School and Tree of Life Charter School in Ukiah and Classical Ballet and Performance classes at Mendocino College. She was a guest teacher and taught Arts Management, Ballet, and Dance History at Mesa State College in Colorado. She has produced and choreographed musical theater productions for the schools and community theater in western Colorado and northern California. She has also received grants to teach dance arts and perform in the schools at Blosser Lane Elementary School in Willits and Frank Zeek Elementary School in Ukiah. Ms. McCreanor has served ten plus years on the Board of Directors for the Arts Council of Mendocino County where she co-wrote a grant to the Mendocino County Office of Education to bring arts of all kinds back into the schools county-wide through the annual "Get Arts in the Schools Program". She has also made several presentations to county wide Educators and School Administrators on ways to use movement and dance in the classroom core curriculum.
Ms. McCreanor was hired in July 2001 to direct the Mendocino Ballet Company and create the Mendocino Ballet School where she has implemented a comprehensive, professional Classical Ballet training program for the serious dancer and a multi-discipline recreational dance program including ballet, tap, jazz, modern and contemporary dance, character dance, creative dance, and more for students of all ages from 3 through Adult.
Piper Sloan has always had a passion for dance. Early on she came to love all styles of dance including ballet, tap, modern, jazz and lyrical. She has trained in various studios across the country as well as abroad in England. She also competed at a young age in many styles of dance and won several awards. As a teenager, she was accepted to study with San Francisco Ballet School where her love and understanding of classical ballet technique grew. She had the opportunity to perform in The Nutcracker and Circus Polka with San Francisco Ballet Company and learn from professional dancers in the company. She continued to study dance as well as choreography while at Diablo Valley College. While there her interest in modern was sparked once again by the director Kimberly Valmore who trained with the Alvin Ailey Dance Company. During her time there she was invited to perform with and be a part of CODA Dance Company based out of Oakland. CODA’s style was focused on modern with a ballet foundation. Her studies continued at UC Davis with an emphasis on dance and choreography. Her teachers there had backgrounds in a wide range of modern dance styles from contact improvisation, to aerial silks, to Paul Taylor technique. The passion that Piper has for dance has only grown and evolved over time, she has continued to take master classes and learn from teachers in whatever style available to her. While continuing to learn and dance herself Piper has always worked with children and others to give back and share what she has learned. She has taught dance in a variety of settings from private lessons in home, to studios for children, to peer group classes. She has worked with children aged 3 years old to adults and will teach Ballet, Tap and Modern Dance. She is very excited to share her passion and knowledge with Mendocino Ballet!
Hannah Woolfenden has danced with Mendocino Ballet since age three. She is a student at Anderson Valley High School and has lived in Boonville her entire life. Since going on pointe at age eleven, Hannah has performed various main roles in Mendocino Ballet's productions such as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Clara in the "Nutcracker", the Scarecrow in "The Wizard of Oz", Lucille Grahn in "Pas de Quatre", and the Mad Hatter in "Alice in Wonderland". Hannah has also participated in Mendocino Ballet’s cultural exchange program with l'Ecole de Danse d’Albret in southern France. Over her summers, Hannah has attended Joffrey Ballet School’s summer intensive in San Francisco in both 2014 and 2016, and Joffrey Ballet School’s summer intensive in New York City in 2016. In the summer of 2017 she attended American Ballet Theatre’s Texas summer intensive. She has also participated in Alonzo King Lines Ballet’s Discovery Project and attended various master classes at both San Francisco Ballet and Lines Ballet. Hannah started teaching classes at Mendocino Ballet in the fall of 2016 and loves every minute of it.