Karen Smith is MBC’s Education and Community Engagement Director and a faculty member of the Academy. As a child, she began studying with Ann Bates here in Bozeman and saw the inception of the Montana Ballet Company. She has studied on scholarship at schools around the country including the Pacific Northwest Ballet School and the Milwaukee Ballet School and with teachers including Nicole Sowinska, Joy and Conrad Ludlow, Georges Golovine, and Lynda Yourth among others.
In 1995 she became a teacher at and manager of Montana Ballet School, under the direction of Ann Bates. In her five years with the school, she taught classes in classical ballet, pre-ballet, and conditioning for students age three to adult and choreographed and coordinated student performances and a summer dance camp for children. During this time she also danced with Montana Ballet Company and served as assistant choreographer and rehearsal assistant for the Company’s productions.
Karen has a B.A. in English from Montana State University and is a certified fitness instructor and massage therapist. In 2017 she attended the Boston Ballet’s Adaptive Dance teacher training program and is delighted to be a part of MBC’s Adaptive Dance Program now in its third year. Karen is also a licensed Progressing Ballet Technique teacher.