Monarch Contemporary Dance Company

Monarch Contemporary Dance Company is a non-profit professional dance company that combines dance with healing. We perform for treatment facilities, outreach programs, as well as various other programs. Our purpose is to spread hope through our passion of dancing.

Ella Byrd Dancer

Ella Byrd


Ella Byrd began dancing at young age with Metamorphosis Dance Academy. From there, she moved on to Shining Stars Dance, a competitive dance team. Ella also took years of technique classes at Round Rock Repertory Dance Centre where she was a member of Emerge Dance Company. She currently trains at The Dance Spot under the direction of Quinton Weathers. She enjoys many genres of dance such as ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, contemporary, hip hop, and lyrical. Ella has attended summer intensives with the Kilgore College Rangerettes, Texas A&M University Dance Program, and plans on continuing to dance throughout high school and college. While not in the dance studio, Ella enjoys volunteering with her National Charity League Round Rock Chapter, watching movies, singing, and creating art work. Being selected as a member of Monarch Contemporary Dance Company was an honor for Ella. She looks forward to many learning opportunities and challenging adventures to come!


Laura Evans Dancer

Laura Evans


Laura Evans discovered her passion for movement at the age of 21 and switched her majors to learn as much as she could. She received her B.F.A. from Arizona State University in 2008. She studied dance with an emphasis in choreography. Her first love is traditional modern and post modern movement, but will gladly take any dance class with a friend. Her husband is a great supporter of the arts and her daughter loves movement, especially improvisation and partner work.

Erin McDonough Director/Choreographer/Dancer

Erin McDonough


Erin McDonough grew up in North Adams, Massachusetts where she received formal training at Berkshire Dance Theater and Canterella School of Dance. During these early years, Erin completed the Cechetti Ballet Exams and attended NADAA (National Alliance of Dance and the Affiliated Arts). Soon after, Erin attended Plymouth State University and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Education and Dance. Erin has had the opportunity to perform under the direction of Prometheus Dance Company (Boston), Amy Marshall Dance Company (NYC), and Pamela Pietro (NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts). After graduating, Erin danced for IMPACT Dance Company (Boston), and Tributary Dance Company (New England). With a big move to Texas, Erin has taught dance at various locations as well as performed with Austin Allegro Dance Company. She also performed and served on the board for The Dance Project for the 2016-2017 year.  She is beyond excited to start Monarch Contemporary Dance Company and can’t wait to see where this adventure takes her.

Marissa Wiseman Director/Choreographer/Dancer

Marissa Wiseman


Marissa is an Austin area Instructor and Choreographer where she has taught at Dance Xplosion in South Austin and Akins High School. Marissa grew up in Tyler, TX studying jazz and ballet, performing in yearly Nutcracker productions and performing pieces from many ballets such as Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, La Fille Mal Gardee, and Pas de Quatre. After receiving her B.F.A in Dance with an emphasis in Choreography from Arizona State University, she and her husband moved to NYC where she served as the head Dance Instructor at Bishop Ford Central Catholic High School. She also served as the Artistic Director for the high school dance performance group where she choreographed and produced shows from a variety of musicals, including Fosse, Chicago, A Chorus Line, Sweet Charity and The Pajama Game. She spent time in NY performing with various choreographers at various performance venues around the city and had the opportunity to perform her own work at Artery Dance Festival. Since moving to Austin, Marissa has enjoyed performing with the Kathy Dunn Hamrick Dance Company and serving as a dancer, choreographer and board member for The Dance Project. She has also had the pleasure to choreograph for the UT Longhorn Singers choir. Marissa is excited to start Monarch Contemporary Dance Company and share her passion for dance with others.