Meet Our Instructors

Lavinia Reid


Lavinia Reid has taught both on faculty and as a guest teacher with the Ithaca Ballet, the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet (CPYB), The Allegheny Ballet, and Lake Erie Ballet Companies, and has choreographed on many companies, such as the Washington Ballet II, CPYB, Philadanco, Austin Ballet Theatre, and others. She founded the CBT School and the Chambersburg Ballet, (formerly entitled the Chambersburg BalletTheatre Youth Company), in 1999.

Her background is highly eclectic. She began studies in violin at age seven in violin and piano, and was allowed to study ballet at age eight at her mother's Cecchetti-based school, the Village School of Ballet, although she was not the ideal student at first.

Ms.Reid credits ballet with shaping her entire life, bringing what she terms "an effortless self-discipline". She studied ballet and music throughout high school, attending summer intensives in dance and performing in student orchestras and string quartets.

Ms. Reid graduated one year ahead of her class in order to play music professionally, and continued her studies in ballet (both Vaganova and Cecchetti methods), modern dance and jazz at the Boston Ballet School, the Joffrey School, The Boston Conservatory of Music, and the University of New Mexico, where she also played in the 1st Violin section of the UNM Symphony Orchestra.

Currently she plays electric violin in the gypsy jazz/dawg blues band, The Gypsy Ramblers, out of Shepherdstown, W. Va. She has created nine piano scores for ballet, many of which were orchestrated by composer and conductor, Dr. Dennis W. Ritz of Houston, Texas.

She continues to teach ballet, pointes, and character dance at the CBT School.

Emmy Cook

Guest Ballet Artist

Emaline Cook started her ballet training at Chambersburg Ballet Theatre and after 15 years of studying ballet, jazz, and contemporary, she went on to pursue her Bachelors of the Fine Arts in dance with a concentration in ballet at Point Park University. She studies jazz, modern, and ballet at one of the top 5 colleges for dance in the country along with an education minor.

Emaline has experience in teaching ballet, contemporary, and pointe to all age ranges and has been hired as a guest principal dancer and guest choreographer at Chambersburg Ballet Theatre while being in college. She was cast in Point Park's Swan Lake and was also cast in the school's Student Choreography Project.

Emaline is so grateful to be back teaching these beautiful dancers for the second summer in a row and cannot wait to see them grow along with the help of all the faculty! soon...

Amanda Chestnut 

Summer Faculty - Guest Jazz Instructor

Amanda Chestnut began dancing at the age of 7, and has been moving and grooving ever since! Trained in ballet, tap, jazz, modern, lyrical, contemporary, and acrobat, Miss Amanda has toured with the Continentals (a Christian performing arts company) around the US, has her B.A. in Dance from Randolph-Macon Woman's College, and was a member and guest artist for Equinox Dance Company.

She has received certifications from USA Gymnastics, Progressing Ballet Technique, and Rhythm Works Integrative Dance. She is also a member of the National Dance Education Organization.

Her dancers have gone on to receive their own college degrees in dance, been accepted to prestigious summer intensives and companies, and been leads in multiple professional theater productions.

She has also taken her dancers to perform half time at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Disney world, NYC, and has received numerous awards at competitions.

She has been a judge for national pageants, auditions, and competitions, and has received numerous awards for her own dancers at competitions.

Lester Gonzalez Ramos

Summer Faculty - Guest Ballet Artist

In 2011, Lester Gonzalez Ramos graduated from the National Ballet School of Cuba.  Later, he began his professional career with ProDanza under the direction of Laura Alonzo.  Since arriving  in the U.S., he is performing nationally with various dance organizations. 

His repertoire includes classical and contemporary works, such as, Septime Webre's, The Great Gatsby and Fluctuating Hemlines.  In 2016, he joined California Ballet as company member.  He was recently featured in San Diego Opera's production of Carmen in addition to his guest appearances at the gala of Yucatan Dance Stage in Mexico and with Ballet Fantastique.

Ellen Diehl 

Summer Faculty - Guest Ballet Artist

After training for 13 years with Chambersburg Ballet Theatre, Ellen Diehl continued to study dance at Messiah University. After three and a half years of undergrad, she will earn her B.A. in Theatre with an acting emphasis and minors in dance/English the Fall. At Messiah, Ellen studied jazz, tap, modern, and ballet, as well as creative dramatics and dance pedagogy. 

She will soon enter her second year as a staff member at Dance Revelation in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where she has taught ballet technique, pointe, and musical theatre. Previously, Ellen taught ballet at Dance Academy XIV in Shippensburg and was a theatre/dance instructor for the SEEDS camp at Wilson College. 

Ellen has also choreographed for Messiah University in addition to many Junior productions, for programs such as the Penguin Project at Gettysburg Community Theatre. Her goal as an instructor is to cultivate life-long learners who know the value of hard work and feel encouraged, loved, and confident. She is thrilled to be back at CBT!

Jacob Taylor

Summer Faculty - Guest Ballet Artist

Jacob Taylor received his formative training at Boulder Ballet School and in the summer programs of American Ballet Theater, the School of American Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Kaatsbaan, & Perry Mansfield. Mr. Taylor is a graduate of the Ballet Performance Program at Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music. At IU his repertoire included ballets by George Balanchine, August Bournonville, Martha Graham, Agnes de Mille, Bronislava Nijinska, Dwight Rohden, Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp and Antony Tudor. In addition to Ballet Performance Taylor studied dance pedagogy at IU & was commissioned to choreograph the Opera Cendrillon for the music department. His professional career includes working with such companies as Colorado Ballet, Indianapolis School of Ballet, Christopher Caines Dance, FJK Dance and Boulder Ballet.

Rachel Miller

Summer Faculty - Guest Ballet Artist

Rachel Miller is an alumna of CBT and recently graduated from Shippensburg University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration majoring in Accounting. In the fall, she hopes to continue her education to earn a master's degree. She has been teaching ballet classes at Mar-le-nie Dance Studio for seven years and at CBT when needed.

Michaela Magners

Summer Faculty - Guest Ballet Artist

Michaela Magners has been dancing for 15 years.  She began taking ballet class at 5 years old at Montgomery Ballet in Montgomery, Alabama. Michaela then became a student at Chambersburg Ballet Theater where she studied classical ballet under Ms. Lavinia for 11 years. She is a former student and teacher of Mar-Le-Nie dance studio and studied musical theater, jazz, and tap under Ms. Charlotte Hafer for 3 years. In college, Michaela danced in Acclamation Dance Ministry for a semester where she continued in classical ballet, tap, and musical theatre.