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Our Story

La Petite Dance was created in 1999 by Shannon Mansfield.  After being a second grade teacher in the public schools of New Hanover County and teaching a few dance classes at local studios, Shannon decided it was time to focus on her first love... Dance.  The desire to teach young children during their most influential and formative years, Shannon felt there was a strong need to provide dance instruction on site at preschools in the Wilmington area.  She designed a program that would develop motor skills, coordination, confidence, self-esteem, and creative expression.  So "La Petite Dance" was born.  Shannon began taking her traveling dance business to various preschools and childcare centers in and around Wilmington.  She wanted to teach children during the mornings while attending their individual centers so that the directors of each school did not have to transport them on a van to a local dance school and so parents would not have to take their children to a dance studio in the evenings after a long days work.  This idea seemed to benefit all involved and soon, many of Wilmington's preschool and child care facilities were filled with the sounds of Classical Ballet music and Rhythmic Tapping Toes.  But the person who has probably benefited by far the most from this new and growing program is Miss Shannon herself, as she is known to the children.  For someone once told her "if she chose a career that she loved, she would never have to work a day in her life."


Shannon Mansfield


Shannon Mansfield is the Owner and Artistic Director of La Petite Dance.  Shannon holds a B.A. in Elementary Education from UNC-Wilmington as well as a Dance Certification, K-12, from UNC-Charlotte.

Shannon's dance education began as a young child under the direction of Ray and Cindy Hollingsworth.  She was a "Hollingsworth Dancer," performing in local and state television productions throughout Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.  She has performed and served as Dance Captain with several Opera House Theatre Company productions.  Shannon extends her dance education by attending numerous seminars and Master classes each year.

Shannon is involved with several aspects of her church as well as other community outreach programs.  Her proudest accomplishment is her family.  Shannon lives in Wilmington with her husband Phil and daughters, Caroline and Claire, her own little dancers.

Our Team


Angela Detamore

Preschool Age Groups

Tap | Ballet

Angela has been an instructor with La Petite Dance for 6 years.  She graduated with a business degree and worked in that field until she had children.  She then taught preschool for a number of years before finding Dance.  Angela lives in Wilmington with her husband and high school son and has a daughter who graduated from UNCW and a son who attends University of South Carolina.  Her love for children and desire to watch them grow in confidence through dance makes her job even more rewarding. 


Christy Hicks

Elementary Age Groups

Tap | Ballet | Jazz

Christy has been an instructor with La Petite Dance for 8 years.  She has been involved in the dance community since she was a young child and absolutely loves everything about La Petite!  Christy was born and raised in Wilmington and now lives with her husband and three children.  Seeing the sweet smiles on the dancers faces week to week, their laughter and love of dance is a feeling she can't describe and a true blessing!


Maddie Schiffman

Elementary Age Groups

Tap | Ballet | Jazz

Maddie has been an instructor with La Petite Dance for 3 years.  She graduated from Santa Clara University with a B.A. in Dance and Chemistry.  At SCU, she was involved in the National Honor Society of Dance Arts and served as an undergraduate intern for the California Dance Education Association.  Maddie's true passion is teaching and using dance to instill confidence, resiliency, and poise in her students.


Clara Hicks

Elementary Age Groups

Tap | Ballet | Jazz

Clara is beginning her third year as an instructor with La Petite Dance and is the daughter of Miss. Christy.  She is 18 years old and just graduated from Laney High School.  She will be attending UNCW in the Fall and is Seahawk Cheerleader!  Her favorite part of the week is spending her day with her Wednesday students!

Our Team


Cadence Academy Preschool

Children's Cottage

Classy Bears

First Baptist Christian Preschool

First Presbyterian Preschool

Harbor United Methodist Preschool

Ivybrook Academy

Milestones Learning Center

Noah's Ark Preschool

St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Preschool

St. Andrew's On The Sound Preschool

St. James Day School

St. John's Episcopal Preschool

The Learning Tree

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