Dana Bates-Sparks started dancing at the age of six and hasn’t stopped since. She took classes, conventions, workshops and competed as much as she could. She has studied ballet, tap and jazz extensively throughout her career as well as Hip Hop, Lyrical and Musical Theater. Dana was also a competitive gymnast , cheerleader and president of thespians in high school. Throughout her years in school and early years of college she won numerous awards and performed throughout the US and Europe including The North Sea Jazz Festival, and in various shows such as "42nd St.", "George M.", "Pippin", "Working" and "Noises Off", among others. At the age of 19 Dana acquired her childhood studio and owned and operated Dance Center of Deer Park for 18 years before she began teaching for TUTS/River. Dana teaches all over Houston and surrounding areas and has judged numerous dance competitions such as I Love Dance, KARR, Showstoppers and Champion Dance, which she continues to judge every year. Dana choreographs shows for local schools and theaters ( The Wiz, Oklahoma, Godspell, Adams Family, Beauty and the Beast). She also choreographed a group of dancers to perform a 30 minute show on Carnival Cruise Line. Currently she teaches at The River and the Humphrey School of Musical Theater as well as Classes in the Community and various other projects. Dana loves to share her passion for dance and musical theater with students of all ages and abilities and enjoys serving as Assistant Director and Choreographer at Wildfish Theater. She is an especially proud mom of two children.