top of page

EDe Staff


Enid Smith

Co-Artistic Director

is a graduate of the contemporary dance program at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. In New York City she performed with Ivy Baldwin Dance, The Merce Cunningham Repertory Understudy Group, Anita Cheng Dance, and MAC Cosmetics among others. Since moving to the Chicago area in 2007, she has performed with Khecari, Same Planet Performance Project, Lucky Plush Productions, Chicago Fringe Opera, North Shore Choral Society, the Evanston Dance Ensemble and has presented her own work under the name enidsmithdance. Enid currently teaches advanced modern at Dovetail Studios and Dance Center Evanston.

_PMG2293 copy.jpg

Allison Kurtz Volkers

Co-Artistic Director

is the founding Artistic Director of ede2, a company she led from 2011-2021. She is the former Director of Programming and Community Engagement for Dance Center Evanston where she trained young dancers since 2003. She has worked as a teaching artist across District 65, CPS, and beyond, both independently and as a founding member of Striding Lion Performance Group, where she also served as Education Director. The Cecchetti Council of America has certified Ms. Volkers as a Grade IV teacher of classical ballet dancing, and she has led workshops for Chicago National Association of Dance Masters, Albany Park Theater Project, and others. She is a Resident Teacher for Chicago Public Schools and will receive her Masters in Education from Loyola University this spring. Among her many hats, she is a Northwestern alum, a Girl Scout troop leader, and a Mom. Ms. Volkers extends enormous gratitude to the Evanston Dance Ensemble for inviting her on this journey.


Rachel Molinaro

ede2 Artistic Director

has been active in the Chicago arts community as a performer, choreographer, administrator and educator for nearly 10 years. After receiving her dual degrees in dance and international studies from Northwestern University, Rachel has danced professionally with companies such as Striding Lion and The Leopold Group and currently creates her own work as an independent artist. Rachel recently joined the Senn Arts High School staff as their Fine & Performing Arts Program Coordinator and she sits on the board of directors for Project Bound Dance. 


Rachel has led a variety of arts schools in program development and outreach, including acting as Dance Program Director at Music House School of the Performing Arts and was the founding manager of Dovetail Studios, where she also led dance and fitness classes. 

Paula Headshot.jpg

Paula Sjogerman

Company Manager

has been working in the nonprofit world for 40 years. She was the Executive Director of Gaia Theater, a touring children’s theater, for ten years and the Managing Director of CircEsteem, Chicago’s Youth Circus. She has worked as a freelance grant writer and nonprofit consultant for

many organizations including Little City Foundation, ArtsConnect, and Health Connect One. Most recently, she created a new arts organization, Vaudeville Chicago, which serves medical institutions with entertainment. In addition, Paula is an actor, director, and acting teacher and

co-founded Thin Ice Theater, a theater company for homeschooled youth.


Olivia Lemmenes

ede2 Assistant Director

is a professional choreographer, dancer, and educator currently located in Chicago, IL. She trained at Dance Center Evanston for 15 years, then continued her training at Western Michigan University, graduating with a BFA in Dance. Olivia taught at Ann Arbor Dance Classics for two years, where she choreographed for their Youth Dance Ensemble, competition team, and taught numerous dance styles. She has also been commissioned to choreograph for youth, pre-professional, and professional dance companies, such as ede2, MSU’s Orchesis Dance Company, and Dance Uprising. She is a dance artist with the AAPI performance collaborative, IS/LAND, and has had the chance to perform with them in Ann Arbor, San Francisco, and Chicago. Olivia is also now teaching at DCE is excited to be back reaching the next generation of dance artists. 

Béa Rashid


graduated from Northwestern University majoring in theater with a concentration in dance. She has choreographed for numerous professional companies, including the Goodman, Steppenwolf, Chicago

Opera Theatre, and Light Opera Works. In 1994, Béa opened Dance Center Evanston, and in 1997 started the Ensemble. Béa has collaborated with composer and husband, Steve Rashid, on numerous projects, including The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and “Leonardo” from Body of Work. Béa and Steve recently opened Studio5, Evanston’s newest performing arts venue. Béa is the recipient of the 1999 Evanston Mayor’s Award for the Arts, and the 2017 Nonprofit/Public Service Person of the Year Award from the Evanston Chamber of Commerce. Béa is the Co-Chairman of the Midwest Committee of the Cecchetti Council of America and holds the highest level Diploma certificate.

Evanston Dance Ensemble | Bea Rashid.jpg
bottom of page