Who We Are
Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic is a Las Cruces-based, non-profit, community dance collective dedicated to creating performance and choreography opportunities for community members who might not otherwise get to perform and choreograph. Members’ dance backgrounds vary from new-comers to dance, to life-long dancers with college degrees in the art form.
The Eclectic’s members create and perform original choreography, and work collaboratively to showcase their work in two major shows each year—Dancing in the Desert Dance Festival, and an original show centered on telling a narrative through dance—as well as a number of community events (view our upcoming events).
Established in 2012 when founding member Jessica Trembly was approached to develop original choreography for a local music video, the Eclectic had just three members when it began. Today, the Eclectic has expanded both in size and programming, but has stayed true to the original vision set forth by Jessica at its founding, seeking to recruit dancers who might not otherwise have many opportunities to perform: teens and adults just starting out, full-time workers, and other dancers facing circumstances that might make it difficult for them to participate in more traditional dance companies. Also, those who are simply creative and want an outlet to dance and work collaboratively with others with similar passions. Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic is dedicated to creating a safe, collaborative space where all are welcome.
Member since 2014
Andrea Severson has been dancing since the age of 9, first at Southwest Fitness Center, then Michelle’s Dance Academy, and finally at Mesilla Valley Dance. Most recently, she played the role of the Red Queen in Mesilla Valley Dance’s production of “Through the Looking Glass” in December of 2015. She is also Vice President of Enchantment Historical Productions, a performance history group founded to entertain and educate the public with historical dramatizations. Off stage, she has a MA in history from NMSU, and is currently working on a PhD in history at UTEP where she also works as a lecturer.
Member since 2017
Janessa is originally from North Richland Hills, TX and is currently a 5th grade teacher at Tularosa Intermediate School. She has been dancing in some capacity for most of her life. In her youth she danced in the North Texas area with Rhythm Nation Dance Company, collaborating performances with Ballet Arlington and Six Flags over Texas. At Texas A&M University she was an officer for another collaborative dance organization, Dance Arts Society, and participated in much of the dance department’s programming. Most recently she directed McConnell Air Force Base’s Youth Dance Program from 2008-2014. She has coached middle school and high school cheer, and works to promote and incorporate the fine arts within the public school system. She has sponsored Tularosa Intermediate School’s theater program for the past three years. This is her first year with Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic.
Member since 2014
Leslie Simpkins began dancing at Kathy Busby’s School of Dance in Alamogordo, NM when she was 3 years old—where she learned the basics of tap, jazz, and ballet. When she was 7 years old she and her family moved to Las Cruces and she began dancing at Michelle’s Dance Studio. There she furthered her dance education with an emphasis on ballet and was involved in the semi-annual studio performances until her freshman year of high school. Unfortunately a recurring knee injury forced her to put her dancing life on hold and it was not until 2005 that she began dancing again through ballet classes at New Mexico State University, but again her knee forced her to stop dancing. After healing, and with a renewed love of dance she sought out the studio of Jessica Trembly, Mesilla Valley Dance in 2013. The next year she joined Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic and has performed, produced, choreographed, and artistically directed semi-annual performances in collaboration with the other talented members of MVD.
Member since 2018
Lisa decided to be a dancer at 2 and started dancing at age 5 in Socorro, NM. She continued dancing in El Paso, TX with Barbara Driscoll’s School of Ballet, and so far, hasn’t been able to stop. Until high school, she focused on ballet, but dancing at Franklin High School and with the FHS Fusion Dance Group, she expanded to modern, jazz, and lyrical. In college, she danced with Washington University Dance Theatre for four years and left with a BA in Elementary Education and Dance. When she’s not dancing (and sometimes while she is), she teaches second grade at Hillrise Elementary. Lisa could not be happier to have found a dance home with Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic.
Member since 2015
Miranda had brief flirtations with ballet in preschool and again in her junior year of high school. But it wasn’t until she was 25 that she started actively seeking out dance classes. After a year of attending classes under Jessica Trembly—who owned and operated Mesilla Valley Dance—she was invited to join the Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic as an understudy. She performed in four company pieces and one solo as the White Rabbit in the Eclectic’s 2015 performance: Through the Looking Glass (and she has been hooked ever since). When she isn’t dancing, Miranda works as a graphic designer in the employ of St. Clair Winery, and does freelance work for local clientele such as Badass Mountain Music Festival, Asombro Institute and the folk band Gleewood. She graduated from Texas Tech University in 2011 with a BFA in Communication Design.
Member since 2017
Morgan started dancing as a freshman in high school in Nashville, TN where she grew up. She was actively involved in her high school dance program as well as a dance studio. She was trained in ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary and modern. She moved to Las Cruces in 2017 to attend New Mexico State University. While she searched for studios to get involved with she found Mesilla Vallet Dance Eclectic. Morgan is currently studying education in college but plans on studying dance and one day dreams of owning her own studio. When Morgan isn’t dancing, working, or in class, she loves practicing yoga and DIYing everything (she lives on Pinterest).
Member since 2014
Morgan Rivera grew up in Roswell, NM where she started dancing at the age of 5. She danced at a local studio for 11 years and performed in yearly recitals. She was also on the Goddard High School Rockettes Dance Team for 2 years. She went to college at the University of New Mexico where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Dance. She also has a Masters’ in Education. Morgan is a third grade teacher at Highland Elementary in Las Cruces. Along with dancing, Morgan is a fitness instructor. She has been dancing with Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic since 2014 and has recently become the Creative Director.
Member since 2013
Rachel began her training in Houston, TX at Banbury School of Dance under Suzanne Banbury and Lori Borzilla. While in high school, she performed and competed in her high school dance company. Rachel received her minor in dance at Texas A&M University. While in college, she performed with Em Su Dance Company. She was also a member of the Nu Delta Alpha dance honor society. She trained under Christine Bergeron, and took master classes at many an American College Dance Festival. After graduation and moving to El Paso, Rachel performed with Cor Ignis Dance Company. Rachel is very excited to be dancing with Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic and enjoys the creative process with her fellow dancers.
Member since 2013
Tiana Potter is seventeen years old and has been dancing for four years. She loves dancing among other things like makeup, music, and art, and is always looking to explore new kinds of dance and improve on what she already knows. During her time dancing with Mesilla Valley Dance Eclectic she feels she has grown so much as not only a dancer, but a person. Art, overall, is what she loves the most, and dance is definitely a type of art. She is still in high school, but hopes to pursue some sort of career in art whether it be painting, makeup, drawing, or anything of that sort. She loves all of these things and they have helped her grow throughout life and will probably continue to do so.