Baran Dance Company

Baran Dance is a professional contemporary dance company based in Charlotte, NC. Founded by Audrey Baran in 2012, Baran Dance believes that dance should be inspiring and accessible, not just for avid dance patrons, but for anyone seeking a visually awing experience. We create dances to make you feel, think, possibly cry, and maybe even laugh. Baran Dance seamlessly blends physicality and artistry, creating work that is available and appealing for​ wide audiences, regardless of cultural, educational, or socioeconomic background. We move to move you!

In addition to our professional company we also have an apprentice company​,​ BD2, which is comprised of dancers age 12-18 who are selected by audition. ​BD2 ​focuses on contemporary technique, improvisation, and composition​ under the direction of Audrey Baran​, creating a holistic physical, intellectual, and creative training experience​​. These talented artists​ take​​ class with Baran Dance ​and perform​s​ in ​informal and main stage productions throughout the year​.


Company Dancers

Audrey Baran

- founder, director, choreographer, dancer -


Hometown: Born in Jersey, raised in Monroe, NC

Education: BA in Dance, UNC Charlotte (2003) + MFA in Dance, Hollins University (2017)

When I'm not dancing I like to: practice yoga, walk my dogs, cook good food, and drink cheap wine

Lauren Bickerstaff

- dancer -


Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA

Education: Communication Studies and Spanish, UNC Wilmington

When I'm not dancing I like to: cook for a crowd, travel, play piano, and make ludicrously specific playlists

Melissa Jesse

- dancer -


Hometown: Born in Queens, NY, grew up in Sarasota FL

Education: BSN University of Florida (2001) Master of Science in Nursing University of Florida (2004)

When I'm not dancing I like to: do yoga, read, and spend time with friends, my husband, and two children

Carey French

- Dancer -


Hometown: Elon, NC

Education: Spanish and Education, Wake Forest University

When I'm not dancing I like to: teach, travel, and hang out on the lake

Paige Keller

- dancer -


Hometown: Born in New Orleans, grew up in Charlotte

Education: Finance with a Spanish minor from the University of South Carolina + Charlotte School of Law

When I'm not dancing I like to: spend time with my friends & family and enjoy a good bottle of wine

Kate Micham

- dancer + choreographer -


Hometown: Columbus, GA

Education: BA in Psychology, Berry College

When I'm not dancing I like to: see movies, eat sushi, hang with friends, go to shows, and play in the sun

Faith Mottershead

- dancer -


Hometown: Laurenburg, NC

Education: BS Dance Education, UNC Greensboro (2009)

When I'm not dancing I like to: watch Woody Allen movies and eat dark chocolate with hazelnuts, usually at the same time

Megan Payne

- dancer + choreographer -


Hometown: Kitts Hill, Ohio

Education: BFA in Dance, Ohio University (2009) + MFA in Dance, Hollins University (2012)

When I'm not dancing I like to: read, watch movies, spend time with friends & family, search for records to add to my vinyl collection, and go on long country drives

Morgan Shields

- dancer -


Hometown: Charlotte, NC

Education: Psychology, UNC Charlotte (2008)

When I'm not dancing I like to: read, volunteer, work out, eat lots of guacamole, and watch NFL

Kenzie Smith

- dancer + choreographer -


Hometown: Indianapolis, IN

Education: Applied Mathematics, Appalachian State University + UNC Charlotte

When I'm not dancing I like to: read, paint, and stare off into space

Brittany Skala

- dancer -


Hometown: Downers Grove, IL

Education: BA in Dance, UNC Charlotte

When I'm not dancing I like to: watch Netflix with my dog and spend time with family and friends

Loz Gibbs

- Dancer -


Hometown: Mooresville, NC

Education: BFA in Dance, UNC Greensboro (2013) + Certificate IV in Business, Sydney TAFE (2015)

When I'm not dancing I like to: enjoy the sunshine, make delicious food, and travel the world

Kylie Hester

- Dancer -


Hometown: Chester, VA

Education: Dance and Business Administration, University of Richmond (2017)

When I'm not dancing I like to: spend time with my husband and puppy, travel, hike, and eat ice cream

Kimberly Parks

- Dancer -


Hometown: Clearwater, FL

Education: BFA in Dance, Florida State University (2005) + AAS- Physical Therapist Assistant, CPCC (2013)

When I'm not dancing I like to: seek out more dance opportunities, play with my young daughters, teach babies how to crawl and walk, and drink coffee

Rebecca Kendall

- Dancer -


Hometown: Atlanta, GA

Education: High Honors, Bridgeway Academy

When I'm not dancing I like to: Read, go shopping, explore restaurants in Uptown, and rewatch my favorite tv shows

Faith Carder

- Dancer -


Lydia Heidt

- Dancer -