Owner Bios

Laurie Papovich 

Laurie has danced professionally with the Detroit City Ballet Company, Detroit Express Soccer Team’s Cheerleader/Dancers, and the Maui Maidens Hawaiian danceline. In 1990, Laurie traveled with the International Auto Show as a narrator for Jeep/Chrysler.

Laurie has been teaching over thirty years.  Ms. Papovich is certified by examination from Cecchetti Council of America and Dance Masters of Michigan/Dance Masters of America. Ms. Papovich holds the honor of achieving the Diploma teaching certificate of Maestro Cecchetti’s Method of Ballet and is a Executive Board member as well as an Examiner for the method.

Her guest teaching experience includes Oakland University; the University of Texas; Missouri, Arkansas, and Texas for the Cecchetti Council of America, Southwest Chapter; Summer Dance Performing Arts Camp, and various other local seminars.

Laurie has trained many local dance instructors and her students have gone on to dance with Austin Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Oklahoma University, Ballet Memphis, Charleston Ballet Theatre, and many other community dance productions.  The fact that so many of her students have continued their love of dance has made Laurie extremely proud as a teacher.

Regina Ihns

Regina is a passionate teacher and hopes to inspire each and everyone of her students to be their best in all aspects of their life.  She wants her students to leave her class and inspire every person they meet to be better and pay it forward.

Regina was a member of the Michigan Ballet Theatre and performed in the Nutcracker in 1990. In 1994, Regina began her teaching career and in 2001 co-founded Main Stage Center for the Arts. She has received her Grade I, II and III teacher’s certificates from the Cecchetti Council of America. Regina is the founder and director of the studio’s taplines and  the studio’s Competition groups.

After graduating from High School, Regina received a scholarship to Mary Mount Manhattan College in New York City. While attending college in New York for theatre, Regina was able to study dance with today’s top dancers and instructors. Such names as Kat Wildish, Mia Michaels, Michael Minery, Brian Thomas and numerous other nationally renown choreographers and teachers. Regina has shared a piece of New York with her students by passing along the knowledge and learning experiences she acquired.

Regina has been  a guest teacher at the Cecchetti Council of America Ballet Day, Summer Dance Performing Arts Camp, and studios in Michigan and Canada.  Miss Ihns has been sought after to choreograph for other studios and her choreography has been recognized at many competitions.  

Staff Bios

Elena Smith

Elena was a member of the Polish Women’s Alliance Council #20.  During that time Elena performed at various ethnic festivals, benefits and competitions.

In 1972, Elena performed with the Warren Dance Ensemble for four years and competed both state-wide and nationally.  She was also awarded a tap and ballet scholarship.  Elena’s teaching career began in 1976 with Kathleen Tenniswood. In 1988, Mrs. Smith joined the Laurie Krasnicki School of Dance teaching staff.  She has earned her Grade I, II and III teaching certificate under the tutelage of Laurie Papovich and is a member of the Cecchetti Council of America.  Elena performed four years professionally with the Coral Islanders and Maui Maidens.

 

Melissa Penn Graebert

Melissa was awarded a Cecchetti Summer Dance scholarship and attended Cleveland Ballet and Boston Ballet Summer programs. Melissa  performed for 6 years in regional Nutcrackers, and regional productions of  Peter and the Wolf, Sleeping Beauty and Coppelia. After graduating high school, with honors, in just three years, she furthered her pre-professional training at Ballet Met in Columbus, Ohio, studying with world renowned teachers Yoko Ichino, David Nixon, April Berry and Susan Hadley.

Melissa made her professional debut in 1997, with Ballet Memphis, under the direction of Karl Condon, performing in The Nutcracker and appearing in The Power of One, choreographed by Chuck Davis and Dennis Wayne, and in the Ballet Memphis production of Coppelia. She joined the Nashville Ballet dancing and touring with The Nutcracker and Swan Lake under the direction of Paul Vasterling. Melissa received a contract with the Charleston Ballet Theatre, where she performed in Jill Eathorne Bahr’s Seven Deadly Sins, The Nutcracker and excerpts of Fosse.

Melissa joined the Main Stage Center for the Arts artistic staff in 2000 and is the assistant director of the studio’s ballet companies. In addition to her devotion to ballet, she is also a fully certified Stott Pilates instructor, working at Equilibrium in Bloomfield Hills as a senior instructor.

 

Sara Plegue

Miss Plegue continued her dance training at Oakland University from 2001-2006. She obtained a bachelors degree in elementary education from Oakland University in December of 2006. Miss Plegue has experience teaching dance in both the private studio and public school settings. She is a member of the National Dance Education organization through which she keeps informed of current dance and education strategies, practices and developments. Currently, Miss Pleague is working towards a master of arts in teaching from Saginaw Valley State University, with a major in special education.

As a teacher, Miss Plegue’s goals are to supplement every student in the development of their creativity, individuality and self-expression