VDP Staff

Victoria McNamara

Owner & Director

Victoria has over 38 years of dance and teaching experience. As a performer, Mrs. McNamara has appeared with stars suchas Gloria Estefan and Savion Glover. Her choreography has received top honors throughout the nation winning awards such as Showbiz Talent Competitions' National Choreography Winner, Star Power Top Choreographer and Teacher of the Year. Many of Victoria’s students have gone on to professional careers on Broadway including Laura Osnes who is currently starring in the new hit musical "Bandstand"! Additionally, her dancers perform with the New York City Rockettes, Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Timberwolves, national touring shows, off broadway and dance companies from coast to coast. Many of VDP's recent graduates are representing their colleges on the fields and courts with their Division 1 dance teams!

Victoria continues to keep her fingers on the pulse of the dance world as a judge for some of the top national talent competitions. She, along with her staff, strongly encourages academic achievement and challenges each dancer to reach their highest potential.

Holly Winje

Director of Division A & Costume Coordinator

Holly is the Director of our Division A program. Mrs. Winje has a BFA in Dance Education from the University for the Arts in Philadelphia where she also taught and performed for over 10 years before settling to Minnesota in the fall of 2000.

Holly’s career at Victoria Dance Productions has spanned many years teaching all levels of dance. She continues her dance training in NY and LA each year. Teachers she has studied with are Judith Jamieson, Milton Myers, LaVaugh Robinson, Roni Koresh, and Mia Micheals.

Highlights of her career include dancing for Will Smith, with Grace Jones, and appearing in the movie Mannequin on the Move 2, teaching at Cab Calloway Middle School for the Arts and running dance camps for at Risk Kids.

Holly’s dedication to dance education is illustrated through her development of a creative movement program being taught in studios across the country. We are delighted to have Holly leading the way for Division A!!!

Lauren Hutchison

Director of Competition

Lauren is a VDP alumni after starting with us in 1994 in our Opals class. Ms. Hutchison joined our competition teams two years later and went on to become a Regional and National Champion in tap, jazz, lyrical and ballet!

Since joining our staff in the fall of 2007, Lauren has choreographed solo, duet/trio and group routines winning top choreography awards at Star Systems ('09), Applause Talent ('13,'14), Spotlight ('08,'10,'12,), Bravo ('08,'10,'11,'12,'13,'14), and Showbiz Nationals ('08,'12). Additionally, in the 2011 competition season one of Lauren's junior small groups was invited to attend the FDC World Dance Competition Series in Dallas, TX.

Lauren was the Head JV Coach and Varsity Assistant Kick Coach for Edina Dance Team from 2011-2015. She has also worked with Class AA high schools in the Twin Cities area as a guest instructor for Just for Kix. She was a member of the Exisdanz All-Star International Open Jazz and Pom teams in the 2012-13 season and continues to train by taking classes and workshops in Los Angeles and New York each summer and fall.

Lauren's youth and enthusiasm mixed with her technical expertise and creative imagination make Lauren a fabulous addition to our staff. She is a 2011 graduate of the University of Minnesota with a degree in Communication Studies.

Kathleen Baffert

Dance Instructor

Kathleen Baffert has been teaching dance for 25 years to children and adults and is inspired by watching others find their love for dance. Kathleen received her dance training in Chicago, Illinois, and performed in the Judith Svalander Ballet Company for 6 years. Kathleen was educated at Columbia College, Hubbard Street Dance and the Joffrey Ballet. Kathleen spent 15 years teaching and studying dance in Southern California. Kathleen has performed in numerous shows including West Side Story, Exodus, Gate' Parisian, Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, Swan Lake, and Rhapsody in Blue. Kathleen is the lucky Mom of two wonderful daughters.

Amy Shadis

Dance Instructor

Amy joined the VDP teaching staff in 2011. She grew up studying ballet, jazz and tap and later went on to receive a B.A. in Musical Theatre from Bethel University. She also studied dance and theatre abroad at Wesley Institute in Australia and was a part of National and International Touring companies to the East Coast, Philippines and Belize while at Bethel.

Amy has since trained in many dance styles throughout the Twin Cities area including: jazz, tap, ballet, lyrical and hip hop. She has been teaching dance and choreographing for local studios, schools and organizations since 2007. Amy has found a passion for teaching her love of dance to others and is excited to be working with VDP dancers.

Emily Heinen

Dance Instructor

Emily, a VDP alumni, began dancing with us in 1995 at the age of three. Emily was a National Champion with both her competition teams and her solos, winning titles in jazz, tap, and lyrical. In high school, she was a member of the Eastview High School Dance Team for 3 years, winning the State Kick Championship in 2009. She was also a member of the Exisdanz All-Star International Open jazz team for the 2012-13 season. She's currently the Head JV Coach and Varsity Assistant Kick Coach for Edina Dance Team.

Besides dance, Emily also brings her gymnastics and tumbling background to her students. Emily loves working with the dancers and brings her enthusiasm and talent to every child she works with! She is a 2014 graduate of the University of Minnesota with a degree in Early Childhood Education.

Katie Stoltman

Dance Instructor

Katie is a Bloomington native that received her Bachelor of Arts in Dance Degree from Rutgers University, and is currently finishing her Master of Arts in Education (Secondary Mathematics) at Augsburg University. Katie has been working for the National Dance Alliance since 2003 and teaching locally since 2008. She was the coach for Exisdanz Senior All Stars for 4 years and was a member of the 2011 Hip Hop World Championship team. Katie has also been coaching for the Hopkins Fall Dance team since 2009.

Katie has a strong jazz, dance team, and hip hop background blending well with our VDP staff. Additionally, Katie is a Certified NASM Personal Trainer and will share her expertise to help develop a core strengthening program for each VDP dancer.

Mette Brink

Dance Instructor

Mette is a Minneapolis native graduating from the University of St. Thomas. After growing up competing in the Twin Cities, Mette has danced on the UST Dance Club, coached the Holy Family Dance Team, and competed on the Exisdanz All Star Dance Team as a two time World Champion in hip hop. Ms. Brink has been teaching competition dance and choreographing for local studios since 2009, as well as been on faculty for WOW Factor Sports. We are excited to welcome Mette's lyrical style, and jazz, hip hop, and dance team techniques to VDP.

Paige Anderson

Dance Instructor

Samantha McNamara

Teaching Apprentice

Samantha is not only a VDP alumni, as Victoria's daughter, she literally grew up in the studio. Sam started dance at age three and competition one year later.

While at VDP, Samantha was a regional and national champion, both as a soloist and with her competition teams, including being the 2012 Virginia Beach Showbiz Senior Division National Champion and the 2014 Showbiz National Dancer of Excellence.

Sam competed with the Edina Dance Team, where she was a Captain her senior year, before going on to perform with the Iowa State Dance Team for 4 years, dancing at football and basketball games, including the Big 12 and NCAA Tournaments. Samantha was honored to be the Captain of the ISUDT her Junior and Senior years.

Sam started assistant teaching as a 10 year old and has been developing dancers' technique and training the next generation of dancers ever since, both in Minnesota and Iowa. As a recent graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in Kinesiology, Sam is excited to be back in Minneapolis, working with our VDP dancers to strengthen their technical excellence.

Taylor Shupe

Teaching Apprentice

Taylor, a VDP alumni, grew up competing in all dance styles for Victoria Dance Productions, graduating in 2014. As a freshman, Taylor danced for the University of Kentucky, where she competed with pom and hip hop. That year, she had the opportunity to represent the United State at the ICU World Championship for both pom and hip hop, as a part of the US Nationals team.

Taylor is currently a student at the University of St. Thomas, where she is a member of the University of St Thomas Dance Team that competes nationally in both jazz and hip hop. In addition to college dance, she works for the Universal Dance Association (UDA) - as a camp instructor during the summer and on staff for their regional and national championships during the school year. Taylor was chosen as the 2017 UDA Rookie of the Year, as well as chosen to part of their UDA College Camp staff, the most elite camps that the company offers.

We are excited to have Taylor on staff this fall sharing her unique style, fun loving spirit and award winning choreography with our VDP dancers.

Lex McNamara

Teaching Apprentice

Alexa, Victoria's oldest daughter, is a graduate of Edina High School, where she was very active in the Edina Theater Program, as well as a VDP Alumni. After attending the University of North Dakota, Alexa came home to Minneapolis, where she worked as a teaching assistant at Nativity of Mary Catholic School in Bloomington, while assisting with various classes at VDP.

Dance holds a huge place in Lex's heart. She continues to assist the teachers in preparing our competition dancers for their performances as needed throughout the year

Jenn Heinen

Business Manager

Jenn Heinen joined the VDP family in 1995, when her daughter Emily, now a VDP instructor, started dancing. Jenn, an Iowa State graduate, began working as our Accountant in 1996. Through the years, Jenn has taken on more and more responsibilities and tasks bringing her to her current position of VDP Business Manager.

Mrs. Heinen is the proud mother of 5 beautiful children. We thank them for sharing their mom with us!

Lou Hutchison

Office Manager

Lou began working at VDP one night a week while her daughter Lauren, now a VDP instructor, took class. Now Lou keeps the studio organized. Mrs. Hutchison, in addition to being the smiling face that greets you behind the administrative desk Monday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, she is in charge of the day to day operations of VDP.

Lisa Plowman

Billing

Lisa is in charge of the student billing, website management and many other detail-oriented needs of the dance studio. If you have questions about your Parent Portal, billing questions or general studio questions, she's the one to ask!

Michael Hlavac

Administrative Assistant and Rhythm Works Instructor

Michael (pronounced "Michelle") is an Administrative Assistant, Prop Artist and a Certified Rhythm Works Integrated Dance Instructor! For the past six years, she has worked as an Educational Assistant in a local elementary school center-based program serving students with special needs including Autism Spectrum Disorders, Downs Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Sensory Processing Disorders and other learning differences. She is now working with the staff at VDP to launch a new program for dancers of all learning styles using hip hop to help reach their individual learning goals and improve their activities of daily living!