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Owners ~ Teachers

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Carrie Lowrey / Owner / Studio Director- Dance Extensions, Ballet, Lyrical, Contemporary,  Pointe, Tap, Dance Acrobatics
Carrie started dancing with Kohl Academy of Performing Arts at the age of 3.  During her 14 years she was a member of the Dance Extensions Dance Company where she competed in various competitions.  She attended the University of Alabama and graduated with a degree in Human Environmental Sciences. She started teaching at Kohl Academy in the Fall of 2011. She received her Dance Masters Teacher Certification in July of 2013 and her Acrobatic Arts Certification in July of 2021.
Shara Benefield/Owner/Studio Manager
Shara started with Kohl Academy as a parent in 2003. In 2007 she became The Dancewear Shop Manager.  In 2018 she became Office Manager.  She is looking forward to this new adventure as Owner/Office Manager.
Lauren Benefield-Rains - Ballet, Pointe, Tap, Jazz
Lauren began dance at the age of 4 and has continued dancing for the next 14 years.  She was a member of our Dance Extensions Dance Company for 7 years. During the years she was on the Dance Company she attended Master Classes taught by well known choreographers and instructors.  She started student demonstrating for Ms. Jane and Ms. Melissa at the age of 9.  And in 2011 she started the Dance Masters of America Teacher Training Program through Kohl Academy and has been continually assisting in classes of all age groups.  She also studies acting, guitar, and voice.  She has been very active in KAPA's Theatre program as well as productions at The Whole Backstage.  


Catie Wells - Ballet, Tap


 Catie's lifelong love of ballet began when she saw The Nutcracker at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. She began ballet at age 6 and has gone on to perform with several pre-professional ballet companies in Georgia (Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Peter Pan). She has been involved with numerous musical theatre productions in Georgia, Arizona and The Whole Backstage in Guntersville.  Catie featured supernumerary in Arizona Opera's production of "Rigoletto" in 2008 which incited a love of opera. Catie has continued to refine her ballet technique and artistry through attending Sun King adult ballet intensive in 2019 in Richmond, VA, Louisville Ballet's adult ballet intensive in 2021, and with Broche Ballet, an online ballet school for adults. 

She has also taken classes and performed with Huntsville Ballet (Nutcracker, Cinderella, Romeo & Juliet) from 2011 to 2020 and has served as a board member and currently serves on the scholarship committee. She has choreographed several musical theatre productions including  Once Upon a Mattress, The Fantasticks, and Little Women.


​"I am an advocate for adult ballet and endeavor, by example, to encourage more adults to express themselves and stay healthy through classical ballet."- Catie Wells



Alyson Graves - Ballet, Tap, Acro, Lyrical/Contemporary

Alyson Graves started student teaching dance in 2014 and became an instructor on 2020. She is currently pursuing a Dance Education degree from Wallace State Community College. Help us welcome Ms. Alyson to Kohl Academy!

Josiah Rains- Vocal and Beginner Piano
Josiah is a graduate of Guntersville High School and has a degree in music education at the University of North Alabama. His concentration is in choral and vocal studies as a classically trained tenor. Josiah has a vast performance experience including productions with Guntersville High School and The Whole Backstage Theatre. He has also performed in UNA's Chamber and Collegiate Choruses as well as the Vocal Jazz Ensemble and has been a member of Opera/ Musical Theatre. He has taught vocal, beginner piano, and choral at Kohl Academy since 2021. He is currently the Choir and Theater director at Guntersville City Schools. 
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