Abie started dancing at the age of 3 at Forest Hills Dance Company and began competition at the age of 10. She competed and performed all over the country from Las Vega to Indiana. She has had experience in jazz, hip hop, ballet, lyrical, and contemporary. During high school, Abie was a part of the Auburn High School Creative and Performing Arts Program, and has taught at Forest Hills Dance Academy, Lewis Dance Progressions, and has choreographed routines for Flinn Middle School's dance team in Rockford. She joined the DFX teaching staff in 2013 working with a variety of ages. Abie also works with Precision Sports Training and is a certified sports specific trainer which she loves to apply and use here at Dance FX to help strengthen and teach proper form to prevent injuries in our students. She is also a student at Rockford University majoring in Physical Education where she hopes to be able to incorporate more dance in the physical education programs in schools.
Meghan began dancing at the age of 4 locally at Expressions Dance Studio. There she learned the basics in ballet, tap, and tumbling while training for pageants and modeling. From ages 9-12, she took some time off to explore ice skating and gymnastics. When Meghan was 12 she went back to studio dance for 2 years until beginning the dance team at Guilford High School all the while furthering her tumbling skills at Gymnastics Academy of Rockford. During high school, she spent a year working for Spotlight performance in Belvidere teaching dance, cheer and tumbling. Meghan coached the Guilford JV competition Dance Team for a year as well as Eisenhower Middle Schools spirit squad while continuing her own training in ballet, lyrical/contemporary, jazz, tap and hip-hop with Forest Hills Dance Company. Meghan competed with Forest Hills Dance for 3 years and worked as an assistant teacher for 4 until she joined us at Dance FX in 2012. Meghan continues to take classes at conventions, at Northern Illinois University and she attends dance teacher conferences throughout the year. Meghan teaches with the foundation that anything is possible, "go after your dreams and do what you love, don't let anyone tell you that you can't".
Rockton, IL 61072
Chris D. - Administration
Chris Draves has been part of the Dance FX family since the beginning in 2009 with her daughter Sarah and joined the desk staff team in 2015. She enjoys helping the studio with special events, parties and any other function that Dance FX is a part of. Chris considers Dance FX as her second family and watching the love of dance develop in our dancers is her favorite part of the day!
Miss Alex started dancing at age 3 at Kathy Nelson Dance Studio in Rockford. She danced there until their shut down in 2006. She competed there for a couple of years. Then Miss Alex took a couple years at a studio off to dance on the school dance team. After being out of the studio for two years, she started dancing full time at Evolve Dance Co where she focused on Jazz and lyrical dancing. After graduating high school, she started dancing at Forest Hills Dance. She danced there for a small amount of time before moving to Davenport, Iowa. During her college years, Miss Alex continued her dance education from St. Ambrose University and Rockford University until graduation. Miss Alex is very excited to continue her journey with dance and teaching. Miss Alex is currently working for her Master's in Counseling and a concentration on therapy and dance therapy. Miss Alex is excited to be teaching at Dance FX for another year!
Alex S. - Administration
Connie O'Reel - Owner/Director
Miss Connie O’Reel, the owner and director of Dance FX, has 30 years of extensive dance training in jazz, hip hop, ballet, lyrical, and drill team technique. Her mission is to develop the natural creativity, expression, and confidence in youth today through the art of dance. Under the instruction of her mentor, Denise Gurley, she began her dance training at Susan’s School of Dance where her fierce determination, skill, and leadership propelled her from student to assistant instructor at the age of twelve. She continued her passion as a student at Lockport High School where she led her dance team to four years of excellence ending with a state title. At nineteen, Miss Connie became a principle instructor at Southwest School of Dance in Orland Hills and helped transition the studio into the competitive world of dance. Beginning in 2007, she has used her experience and talents to choreograph competition pieces for the Orland Hills Wolves, Carl Sandburg High School and Providence Catholic High School.
In 2006, Miss Connie took on the role of Director and has since transitioned a studio, now known as Southwest Synergy Dance, to neighboring Tinley Park. Mrs. O’Reel credits her success to her amazingly supportive family, her loving husband Todd, her three children, Deegan, Micaela and Everleigh, and to her mentor, Miss Denny. She also attributes her success to her students and staff who give her the strength and confidence to keep going every day. Mrs. O’Reel strives to provide an experience that will inspire each and every student to love and appreciate dance and music. She enjoys the opportunity to impact the lives of youth through her passion for excellence through dance.
Meghan L. - Assistant Director
Abie B. - Instructor
Mentorship Program and Service Society Program Coordinator