Barbara Craig holds a BA degree in English from Webster University with a lifetime teaching certificate from the state of Missouri for grades K-12. Barbara has a lifelong passion for increasing the awareness, inclusion, and value of children in arts education.
Her early training in dance was with Alexandra Zaharius. At Webster, she continued her dance studies with the master teacher, Michael Simms and performed extensively during her time in college. She opened her school of dance upon graduating from Webster University in 1969.
Her beloved legacy of students have performed all over the world in professional companies, international theater venues, cruise ships, national festivals, and universities. Over 40 of her students have received college scholarships for dance and have been accepted into internationally respected programs such as the Joffrey School, American Ballet Theater, and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center.
Locally, her students have performed her conceptually integrative artwork in iconic venues such as: The St. Louis Art Museum. The Foundry Arts Center, The City Museum, The City of St. Louis Mayor's Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony, the St. Louis Dance Festival, and Judevine Center's Festival of Trees. In 1997, her youth performing company performed a full-length concert on the newly commissioned ship, Ecstasy, for Carnival Cruise Lines, and in 2001 they held a benefit for Comfort Zone Camp’s September 11th fund.
Barbara is passionate about traditional training for dancers. As such, she believes that there are other modes of performance practice that students can participate in (outside of the competition dance paradigm) to create wonderful experiences not just for the performers, but for their supportive family members as well. Nationally, Dance Project (now SkyStone) student dance companies have performed and developed relationships with professional theaters, outdoor venues, etc in other parts of the United States. Barbara's dancers have performed at the historic Arneson Theater on the famous Riverwalk in San Antonio, The Island and Country Tonight Theater in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee at the base of the Smokey Mountains, the Muny Preshow, the Darren Romeo Show, the Tony Orlando and Lennon Sisters Christmas Show, The Haygood's, and Dixie Stampede in Branson.
For the past several years, Barbara has coordinated and hosted the local children’s cast rehearsals for Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker" at the Fox Theater. She also conceptualized, designed, and created a signature new treatment of the traditional Nutcracker " The Endless Forest Nutcracker" which is inspired by her love of the Smokey Mountains. Endless Forest Nutcracker will be in its 5th year this season and premiering at the Edison Theater (for the first time) in December 2017.