Carrie Darnell


Carrie began her teaching career in 2004 after completing a three year ballet instructor apprenticeship under Wendy Wickman, of San Francisco Ballet Co. and Carla Smallwood, owner of Studio 84 in Santa Clarita, Ca.

Carrie’s approach to teaching all ages and levels is that strong technique and injury prevention practices are key. After years of watching dancers push their bodies and minds to extreme limits, and suffering from a ballet related hip injury herself, Carrie is dedicated to teaching and guiding her students with their whole physical and mental health as the priority. She also knows that Ballet is hard - so you might as well have fun with it!

During her time as an instructor, Carrie developed a resistance training pre-pointe program focusing on all the tiny intricacies needed for strengthening the feet, ankles, hips and core. She has also provided her dancers with recovery stretch and foam rolling classes, self-massage / reflexology tips and injury rehabilitation exercises. Outside of the studio, Carrie has produced photoshoots showcasing her dancers individuality, and loves costume, prop and set making.

The Nutcracker was Carrie’s favorite ballet to perform and she had the opportunity to dance as Clara, Snow Queen, Chocolate soloist, Mirliton soloist and Mother Ginger. She trained in all types of dance, but was always most drawn to the precision, focus and grace that ballet required.

She had the honor of being trained by Christine Kellogg ( Lisa K. Lock ( Michele Bachar, Shannon McNey and Connie Russo.

When Carrie is not at the dance studio, you can usually find her gardening in her yard, practicing the drums, loving on her senior dog and cats, or making hair magic at her salon.

Photo by Ara Lani Photography