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 Rochester, MN, 5/18/21

After 32 years working devotedly as the founder and owner of Allegro School of Dance and Music, Janet M. Johnson is retiring in June 2021.

Ms. Johnson established the Allegro School of Dance in 1989, after receiving her B.F.A. in dance performance, with an emphasis in ballet, from the College of St. Teresa in Winona, MN.    As Allegro grew, she acquired the Rochester Ballet School in 1999, merging the two organizations.  In 2003, she built the current 9,600 square foot location on Superior Drive NW, expanding her offerings to include four state-of-the-art dance studios and private music instruction.

Over her three decade career as Allegro’s owner, Ms. Johnson and her faculty have taught thousands of students, many of whom trained with nationally and internationally recognized dance companies, achieved university degrees in dance, or pursued professional careers in the arts.  Several of her original students have returned to SE MN, where some have joined Allegro’s teaching faculty, and others’ children have become 2nd generation Allegro dancers. Ms. Johnson provided meaningful employment to over one hundred faculty and staff members at Allegro, some of whose teaching careers at Allegro spanned over twenty years.

In addition to Allegro, Ms. Johnson is one of the fifteen founding members of the More Than Just Great Dancing (MTJGD) organization, receiving the MTJGD Positive Action Award in 2018.  Her affiliations also include Beverly Spell, creator of the Leap N’ Learn curriculum; Lisa Howell, creator of Perfect Form physiotherapy and author of the Ballet Blog; and Youth Protection Advocates in Dance (YPAD).  Locally, Ms. Johnson was recognized as one of Rochester’s Most Beautiful Women by Rochester Women’s Magazine in 2014.

In her retirement, Ms. Johnson looks forward to volunteering, traveling and spending time with her husband, Lance, and her daughters Josie (Jordan) Hargarten of Minnesota and Melanie Johnson of Montana.  She will continue to honor the memory of her son, Axel, beginning with an ultimate hike on the Superior Hiking Trail in August to benefit Cure Search, an organization dedicated to help end childhood cancer.  Axel earned his angel wings on September 11th, 2009, after his own battle with cancer.

Congratulatory messages can be sent to 2342 Superior Drive NW, Rochester, MN 55901.  Thank you, Janet, for instilling a lifelong love of music and dance in our community. Best wishes!


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