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Meet our talented team of instructors at Elevation Academy of Dance. Focused on teaching a high standard of technique and creating unforgettable experiences, we are committed to the success of our dancers not only in DANCE, but in LIFE as well!



Owner, Director, Instructor

Kaleigh Hinkson grew up dancing on the Western Slope and has been deeply immersed in the world of dance since age 10. She holds a BA in Dance and has performed and trained extensively in all styles of dance as well as musical theatre. Hinkson has performed with companies such as Aspen Dance Connection, Mind and Body Dance Theatre and did commercial work for several brands including Shock Top Ale. Hinkson continues to foster her love of performing through involvement with local dance companies.

For 16 years Kaleigh has been serving dancers of all skill levels at studios and companies all over Colorado. Aside from her regular teaching career, Kaleigh has taught master classes for several popular Denver area studios, has been brought in to coach the CMU Mavettes and also held the position of resident instructor and choreographer for Rocky Mountain Theatre for Kids in 2013. Her teaching approach focuses on technique, performance, style and artistic development creating technically strong, versatile dancers. She is honored to be in the position to serve dancers in the Montrose community and is exited to offer opportunities beyond the typical reaches of the Western Slope.



Mrs. Chanen is a Colorado native who has spent most of her life with her nose in a book, choreographing original music videos with her sisters and friends, or caring for kids. Her first successful ballet audition at two and a half (for a class exclusive to mature three year olds) began her sixteen year career of dance classes and performances. Her favorite genres were ballet and lyrical, but her practices included: jazz, pointe, hip hop, tap, competition, and company.

As a high school graduate, she left the dance class life for some college classes, summer-camp counselor experiences, and eventually marrying and starting a family with her best friend. Through all these experiences, the love of dance has never left her. She’s constantly choreographing in her head to songs on the radio, dragging her husband to teach couples swing dance moves, line dancing at weddings, and even getting a REFIT instructor certification— though pregnancy and nursing babies haven’t allowed any classes to start (YET!).

Chanen is so excited to introduce her kids to the dance class life (although, they may only be in it for the tutu’s) and create a class culture that instills love for dance and music like her first class did for her those years ago. Chanen is honored to have the opportunity to care for, teach, and share her love of dance with kids.




Mrs. Daphne is a grandma and former dance mom of about 18 years. Her dance career started at age 3 in Denver, CO and continued through high school. She studied tap, ballet, jazz, and lyrical; her favorite being tap! She was also a baton twirler for 8 years and taught baton for 12 years. She has been a childcare provider and preschool teacher for almost 30 years, as well as a Kindermusik instructor. 

As a mom, she supported her daughters in their dance endeavors, always enjoying seeing them on stage!

Recently, she has returned to dance by way of her daughter’s (Mrs. Chanen) maternity leave. She feels so blessed by this opportunity to work with these young dancers!



Coming Soon




Miss Melissa started her dance career at the age of 3 in a small studio in Denver, Colorado. She began her career as a tiny Tap/Ballet dancer and from that point forward knew her dream was to continue developing her passion for dance. Melissa moved to Montrose when she was almost 7, where she flourished into her passion through several different styles of dance including Jazz, Lyrical and Ballet. Towards her senior year of high school, Melissa made the hard decision of focusing more on work and had to put her dance career on pause. She was still extremely passionate about dance and would always dance anywhere and everywhere. Even in the goofiest of fashions. Dance was still, and would always be in her soul.

Today, Melissa dances with her two year old son any chance they get. Together, they share a bond of dance and music. Some of their favorite music to dance to, although unconventional, is rock, edm, and swing jazz. 

The love Melissa has for dance and music is just as strong as her love for inspiring others in the community. She is excited to be inspire the dancers in our community through teaching and sharing her passion for dance.



Grace DeJulio began dancing at 6 years old here in Montrose, Colorado participating in hip hop, ballet, jazz, lyrical, and even pom. Grace began her competitive dance career with Mrs. Kaleigh at the age of 11, dancing and performing every chance she got, competing in regional competitions all throughout Colorado, Utah, and even got the opportunity to compete in Las Vegas. Grace currently trains as a level VI dancer at EAD, and is a part of the EAD Elite Student Company/CompetitiveTeam. 

After graduating from Montrose High School later this year, Grace hopes to attend college to pursue a degree in nursing and further her dance career through a college dance team.

Grace is excited to share her love and passion for dance with younger kids through teaching. She is even more excited to get to share the stage with her students this year in her last recital as a student.

Instructors: Dance Instructors
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