savannah en pointe was created to unite and celebrate the thriving dance education community in savannah. sponsored by the garrison school for the arts department of dance, we aim to provide an opportunity for all dance students in our community to gain knowledge from the outstanding teachers and choreographers of our area. we strive to create an environment for all savannah area students to celebrate their strengths and the beautiful work being done within these studio walls. we are so excited to celebrate our third year, and look forward to dancing with you! 

meet our directors

lashaundra osborne

LaShaundra Osborne was first introduced to dance in 1993 as a student of the Savannah High School Performing Arts Program. Although her concentration began in Theater, LaShaundra studied Ballet, Modern, Jazz, and Afro-Caribbean from Gayla Lehotay, Judy Jones, LaJune Wise-Wilkerson and Paula Baumgartner. She took classes under Patdro Harris in Atlanta, Ga.            

LaShaundra went to Armstrong Atlantic State University and received a B.A. in Music  Education. After graduation, she moved to Americus, Ga. where she served as the Director of Bands at Staley Middle School winning several awards and recognitions. She completed her  Master’s of Science in Music Education from Troy University in Troy, Al. While residing in Americus, she opened her first dance school, So-Lo Dance Theater. After two years, she decided to close the dance school to work as a contracted dance artist, choreographing for numerous competitive dance studios and high school marching band auxiliaries throughout Georgia and South Carolina including: Albany High School, Americus-Sumter County High School, Dance Etcetera Competition Ensembles, etc. Along with having a BA and Master’s Degree in Music Education, she also has certification in Early Childhood Education and Gifted Endorsement.

In 2006, LaShaundra returned to Savannah to give back to the community that helped raise her. While working as a band director in the Chatham County School System, LaShaundra volunteers as Assistant Director and Choreographer of One Spirit Dance Academy and Company. In 2009, LaShaundra was invited to apply for the position as the Dance Director at Gadsden Performing Arts Elementary School. She served Gadsden for two and a half years. LaShaundra is excited to serve as a member of Esther F. Garrison Performing Arts staff. In addition to serving as a dance teacher, she is associate band director to Mr. Michael Hutchinson, Director of the Garrison Band Department. At Garrison, LaShaundra is delighted to work in the two areas that she loves most.

lauren mckowen

A native of Gray, Georgia, Lauren has been dancing for 25 years, and began her formal dance training at the age of seven under Amelia Pelton at Georgia College in Milledgeville, Georgia. She has trained additionally with the Atlanta Ballet, Ballet Magnificat!, and the Joffrey Ballet. 

Lauren is a 2014 graduate of Kennesaw State University, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance, with a concentration in Ballet. During her time at KSU, she was a member of the KSU Dance Company for five seasons, during which she performed works by Ivan Pulinakla,

Reiko Kimura, Lauri Stallings and numerous student works. While at KSU, she was a member of Nu Delta Alpha Dance Honor Society, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, and also traveled to Taipei, Taiwan to study dance at National Taiwan University of Art in the summer of 2013.

After graduating, Lauren discovered her passion for dance education, particularly in public education. She served as the Director of Dance at Lindley Middle School in Cobb County for one year, while also teaching ballet at Newton Cheerstarz in Covington, Georgia and at The Madison Studio for Dance Education in Macon, Georgia. 

 In 2015, Lauren joined the faculty of Esther F. Garrison School for the Arts as Associate Director of Dance in Savannah, Georgia. She serves as faculty sponsor for Garrison's National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA) chapter. In addition to her role at Garrison, she has served as a faculty member at The Studio-Savannah and A Class Act Dance Center for two years, and still returns to guest teach. In 2017, Lauren was invited by the Georgia Department of Education to serve on the revision and conversion committee for the Georgia Standards of Excellence in Dance. 

Lauren continues to develop her love of teaching and choreography. Her choreography has been showcased at BalletFest, Jazz on Tap, Kennesaw State University, Distinguished Young Women of Georgia, and YAGP. Lauren was recently elected to serve as the Southeast Georgia Director on the Board of Directors for DEGAS (Dance Educators of Georgia Society), Georgia Chapter of the National Dance Education Organization. 

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