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Meet Ms. Julie 

Julie Matolo (She/Her) is an accomplished dancer, acrobat, aerialist, stunt performer, actor, choreographer, and teaching artist. She is based out of California and Chicago. Her artistic goals have led her to travel, tour and perform in the majority of our fifty states, in addition to Canada, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and throughout Europe. Julie toured with the largest touring stunt show, “MARVEL Universe Live”, where she played Agent Maria Hill and Black Cat, in addition to multiple other tracks in the show. This world traveler has also performed on Royal Caribbean as a

dancer and as a featured aerialist. She considers The Joel Hall Dancers her longtime home dance company. Favorite Joel pieces Julie has performed in include “El Gato Negro” and “Y2 Day”.

Additional concert dance companies Julie has performed with are, Andrea Kelly Dance Theater, Aerial Dance Chicago, Dance Avondale Collective, The Willingham Project, Corpo Dance, The Kirby Reed Project, Duwane Pendarvis and Company, Dereque Withurs, and Innervation Dance Cooperative.

As a Teaching Artist, Julie has taught a diverse range of students and has worked with many children in Chicago and surrounding areas, California, Tennessee, and Iowa. Inspiring artistic growth, imagination, self-confidence, community and discipline, are class staples. Julie enjoys being inspired by all the youth she has instructed over the years! 

A few notable companies she has worked with include Dhar Mann Studios, FELD Entertainment, On the Fly Productions, Royal Caribbean, Jockey, Sutter Health, 20th Century Fox, The Black Dance Legacy Project, The Actor’s Gymnasium, BIPOC Circus Alliance and more. Julie can be seen performing in film, television, music videos, large arenas, theaters, stages, corporate venues, festivals and beyond!

Julie looks to continue to grow everyday as an artist, a performer, a teaching artist, and a mentor!


Gianna Curless is a professional dancer, choreographer, and dance educator. She was adopted from Hunan, China and has moved over twenty times with her family across the U.S. and internationally. During her travels she has had the privilege of training in all styles with

instructors from the Royal Danish Ballet, Idaho Ballet, Tap Dogs, Turkish National Ballet Company, Ballet West, Bloc Talent Agency, Hedwig Dances, and many more. She has been teaching for ten plus years for ages two years to adult. Gianna has completed ballet exams for the

Cecchetti Council of America and has choreographed for dance productions including an original ballet called Variations on Spring. In 2016, Gianna co-founded Bravura Dansu, a dance production company offering performance opportunities and private lessons for dancers who need coaching for dance competitions, auditions, and personal training. She has performed as a freelance dancer for The Dance Project-Austin, Alamo City Dance Company, Bartlesville Civic

Ballet, Dancing with the Stars-Bartlesville, ConocoPhillips, Bravura Dansu, Dance Company of St. Charles, OKM Music Festival, and The Muny.


Gianna is currently attending the Ruth Page Professional Dance Training Program while working towards a Bachelor's of Science in Theology and a Certification in Photography and Pilates Mat. In addition to dancing, Gianna enjoys writing, painting, reading, and learning languages.

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Meet Ms. Layne

Chicago native, Layne Yancey Patchett has always been a performer. She started her journey as a competitive gymnast at age 4, and continued for 11 years. There she learned discipline, hard work, and most of all she learned of her love to perform. In high school she started theatre and voice training. Along with theatre, she also took dance classes and performed in dance recitals. She went on to Belhaven University where she majored in theatre and continued with voice training and dance classes. She began her study of jazz dance at the Joel Hall Dancers & Center in 2014. She continued her dance training and career with Noumenon Dance Ensemble under Artistic Director, Alia Simon Montijo. She has taught at Dance Avondale since its inception in 2017 and continues at the school as its primary substitute teacher. Layne is also a certified Doula and the founder of Birth Moves, gentle dance and movement to guide and assist the birthing process. 

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