Meet your instructors. All classes at the Pointe Academy are taught by these adult professional dance educators.
Albert “Hank” Adams:
Co-director, is a Des Moines native who was awarded a full scholarship to the prestigious Stone-Camryn School of Ballet in Chicago after High School. In addition to a ballet career with the Colorado Concert Ballet, David Taylor Dance Theater, the Eglevsky Ballet in New York City, and the Neuman Dance Project, Hank has also performed in over 30 musicals and operas. Since returning home to Iowa in 1991 he has worked with practically every local dance organization there is. A short list includes: Des Moines Metro Opera, Simpson College Opera, Iowa Dance Theatre, The Neuman Project, StageWest, Des Moines Playhouse, Dance Co’motion, and Shakespeare on the lawn at Salisbury House.
Elizabeth “Beth” Harano Adams
Co-director, came to Des Moines in 1990 as Principal Ballerina for Ballet Iowa where she remained for 4 years. Her ballet training includes scholarships in New York at the School of American Ballet and the Joffrey Ballet School, the San Francisco Ballet School as well as the Frankfurt Musik Hochshule in Germany. She danced professionally for 10 years and has graced national and international stages with companies from all over the U.S. including Ballet Met in Columbus, Ohio, Ballet West in Salt Lake City, Utah, Ballet Oklahoma, Princeton Ballet, Chamber Ballet USA, in New York City, Colorado Ballet, Ballet Iowa, and in Des Moines: The Neuman Dance Project and Iowa Dance Theater. She teaches all levels of Ballet, Pointe and Modern Dance and has been honing this skill for over 10 years. Mrs. Adams is also ballet mistress for the Pointe Academy Dance Ensemble, and restages classical works and provides original choreography for the company.
An “Honors” graduate of Mankato State University in Minnesota, Vicki has shared her love of dance with students of all ages for the past 25 years. She danced for the Mankato Orchestra Group, Mankato Ballet Company and North Dakota Ballet Company. She has taught and developed curriculum for Mankato State University, Mankato Conservatory and Company, and for 7 years at the School of Ballet Iowa. Vicki joined the Pointe Academy faculty in 1997 and teaches all levels of ballet. Mrs. Kolbinger was director of our FOLK DANCE PERFORMING GROUP, and is also repetiteur of Pointe Academy Dance Ensemble repertory.
Ben joined the staff of the Pointe Academy in 2002, having gotten his early ballet training with us before moving on to the Milwaukee Ballet School. He returned to Des Moines and now heads up the jazz and tap programs at the “Pointe.” Ben is also a fine modern and ballet teacher. Mr. Ben as we like to call him has been with us for twelve years.
An exceptionally gifted dancer Ben has performed lead roles in Iowa Dance Theatre’s “The Nutcracker” and “Dracula” and has performed many times with the Des Moines Metro Opera, Valerie Williams’ Dance Co-Motion, and the Pointe Academy Dance Ensemble.
Ben is a cherished member of the greater Des Moines dance community and we are proud and happy to have Ben on our faculty.
Cynthia is our new Jazz and Tap instructor received a Bachelor of Arts degree in dance from the University of Iowa in 1990. After teaching in the Iowa City area following graduation she moved to Las Vegas, Nevada and worked for 3 years as a dancer and principle understudy at Bally’s in the show “Jubilee.” Her career then took her to Europe to work as a dancer for two years at the LIDO in Paris, France and a similar production in the principality of Monte Carlo. Upon her return to the states Cynthia taught ballet for 2 years at a “Balanchine” school in Longmont, Colorado before moving back to Iowa. Originally from Indianola, Cynthia’s currently living in Pella with her husband Rheinhard and son Johan.