A Tradition of Dance in Muscatine for over 40 years!
"Dance allows your spirit to soar beyond your imagination"
Miss Louise School of Dance Mission
To inspire students of all ages
To teach and guide students in a nurturing and positive way
To have each dance experience be exciting and rewarding
To provide a place where students grow and develop with their talent
To help them find themselves and grow from the dance experience
Director of Miss Louise School of Dance
Miss Louise is a second generation dancer to her mother, Evelyn M. Rickey, who was trained in Chicago. Mrs. Rickey danced and taught students in both Iowa and Minnesota for over 50 years. Following in her Mother’s dance career, Miss Louise started dance at the age of three in her Mother’s dance school. Because of her mother’s connections with other professional dancers, Miss Louise was able to travel throughout the country and study with some of the most incredible teachers of the time studying in ballet, tap, jazz, pointe and ballroom.
After graduation, Miss Louise studied at the University of Iowa in piano, dance, and French. During that time she was contacted by the director of the Women’s YWCA to come to Muscatine and start a dance school.During these many years she had the opportunity to study and work with various professional teachers around the country.One of those was the tap great Al Gilbert. She attended his school in Los Angeles and multiple other of Mr. Gilbert’s conventions and seminars available to students and teachers.Her involvement with DEA was also through Mr. Gilbert. Al Gilbert came to the Studio in Muscatine on several occasions to work with Miss Louise students, working multiple classes at a time and with individual students, holding many dance sessions.
The studio has had many visiting artists over the years. Gus Giordano, who was the Author of the book Anthology of American Jazz Dance. Mr. Giordano and the Giordano Dance Company from Chicago came to Muscatine, not only as an all-day dance seminar, but in a city-wide free invitation to take class with Mr. Giordano and his Daughter Nan Giordano and the Company. The Company performed a free concert for the community.Miss Louise was able to raise funding from several Muscatine businesses to pay for a concert to be free for the city of Muscatine. This was a huge opportunity for the community.
Another visiting artist was Darryl Retter of Retter’s Academy of Dance from Augoura Hills, California. Mr. Retter was also was a student of Mr. Gilbert, and this is where Miss Louise first was introduced to Darryl. Mr. Retter gave instruction in jazz and tap for an attire day dance workshop at the studio.
Janice Barringer, a professional Ballerina from New York, is author with Sarah Schlesinger of “The Pointe Book.” Miss Janice taught at the studio and conducted not only a Ballet workshop, but Pointe as well.
During Miss Louise’s early years with the studio she met Joe Tremaine when he was guest teaching for many of the teacher associations.Shortly after that he started Tremaine Dance from California.Miss Louise and Joe Tremaine have stayed connected through bringing her students to his yearly Dance Conventions. Miss Louise feels that these many opportunities to study with other professional teachers advances their dance training.She has also taken her students to Dance Olympus and has worked with the many teachers with Art Stone of New York.Being involved with Professional Dance Teacher Association she was able to have a Company student audition and receive a scholarship to the Joffery School of Ballet in New York City.
Miss Louise has also been involved with the University of Iowa, Hancher Outreach Programs for over 30 years. Working closely with Charles Swanson, director of Hancher, she has brought different types of dance to the studio and the Muscatine community for workshops and performances. Not only has she brought visits to the studio, but she has brought dance through the through the Muscatine Community School District by having Dancers in Company from the University of Iowa’s Dance Company give school workshops as well as performances for the schools and the community.Miss Louise School of Dance has had many visiting artist come into the studio for workshops through the Universities visiting artist programs.The one of the more recent performances was the Joffery 2 Ballet Company giving a performance for the City of Muscatine in Weed Park.Miss Louise worked closely with the Company and the University of Iowa during their visit here.
Earlier in the studio’s beginning, the Joffery Ballet Company came to Muscatine for a performance as well.Muscatine foundation also brought to Muscatine the Utah City Ballet, Ballet West II Company a few years ago, giving the city a free concert at the River Front.
Miss Louise has had so many opportunities to work with these companies over the years and plans to continue this tradition of bringing dance to all students of dance and the community.The Muscatine Chanter is one of the many groups to which Miss Louise has given her time and worked with throughout their many years of shows.
Miss Louise also has Volunteer her time for 37 years in the Muscatine School District.She has worked with the elementary schools on career day, working with both middle schools and the Muscatine High School doing staging and choreography for their shows.She worked with the Cheer Squad in the earlier years in the community and also the HS marching band, Flags and swing dance program.Miss Louise has working with the Choral groups bringing three first place trophies in the year she worked with them.
Miss Louise Dancers have performed with the Muscatine Symphony and are traditionally one of the community’s yearly performers at the Annual Holiday Stroll in December.Miss Louise Dance Company was one of the first to participate in the inception of the Holiday Stroll and continues that tradition during the Holidays and performs at the many assisted living and nursing homes in Muscatine.
“I am proud to continue in Muscatine for over 40 years and hope you become a part this family studio,” Miss Louise