Meet The Instructors

Janet Kruse

Janet always wanted to dance, and finally started in the late 1990’s. After years spent in country dance halls & classes, she joined Dance Encounter in 2006. She studied Ballroom & Latin dances, and was trained how to teach. After realizing a preference for Country & Swing music over Ballroom and Latin, she settled into teaching Country Couples & Line Dancing. Once class locations in Park Districts were added in 2008, Dance With Janet was officially born.

Betsy Maaks

Betsy has been dancing long before she and Janet met in 2005 (ish). Due to her strong ballet base, she learns dances easily and follows any leader flawlessly. She made 2020 her year to begin instructing and now teaches Beginner 1 line dance classes in Darien.

Bonnie Marr

Bonnie hit the dance floor with Janet hard in 2014 and never looked back!  She mastered all the dances in record time.  People naturally followed her, so she pursued teaching, which was the next logical step.  Bonnie is a regular substitute instructor for Dance With Janet classes.

Carol Hentschel

Carol took the DWJ instructor training course in 2020. She lives in the Dallas, TX area and since she has been dancing for a while, she is busy teaching already. If you would like to learn country dancing in Texas, email Carol at carolh135@yahoo.com to schedule a private or small group class.

Cathie Friedel

Cathie started dancing with Janet in 2012.  Her infectious laugh and positive outlook have contributed to her nickname, “Bubbles” which she certainly lives up to. She takes great delight in sharing her hobby with new dancers and it’s very evident to see!  Cathie is currently on hiatus from teaching Beginner 1 line dance classes.

Cathy Dugan

Cathy began dancing with Janet in 2013.  Though a bit on the quiet side, she is a natural leader, and people instinctively listen when she speaks.  Her dedication and passion for dancing is obvious and inspiring. Cathy teaches Beginner 1 line dance classes in Bloomingdale and Hoffman Estates and Beginner 2 classes in Wheaton.

Courtney Blum

Courtney walked into Janet’s bar in May of 2010 and was instantly mesmerized by country dancing. She remembers every dance she ever learned, and now handles the DWJ website and everything Janet can’t (or won’t) do. We would be lost without her. Additionally, Courtney is a substitute instructor for Dance With Janet classes.

Julie Schroeder

Julie has been dancing with Janet since 2016.  She quickly realized this was the hobby for which she’d been searching, so she started dancing as often as she could.  She is so friendly and outgoing that she fits right in with any group.  Julie teaches Beginner 1 line dance classes in Wheaton.

Karen Moutvic

Karen started dancing with Janet in 2013.  Once she discovered how much fun dancing was, she made sure to hit the floor 2 – 3 nights a week, without fail.  She’ll dance whenever she hears a song that moves her, no matter where she is!  Karen teaches Beginner 2 line dance classes at Butterfield Park District and in Wheaton.

Kim Spath

Kim and Janet met on the dance floor in 2015. Their paths didn’t cross too often in person, but Kim’s passion for dancing kept her in the Dance With Janet community. She put her positive outlook on life to good use and wasted no time starting a dance group in her community in the northern Chicago suburbs.

Margaret Madary

Margaret attended a DWJ dance in 2016 and instantly connected with line dancing. She started taking lessons and realized her singles group would love it too. A piano teacher by trade, she decided to pursue instructing. Margaret teaches Beginner 1 line dance classes in Itasca and Wheaton.

Ray Muller

Ray and Janet were introduced in 2018 and immediately started dancing together.  After all, that spinning cowboy is impossible to miss on the floor!  His lifelong dance experience is put to good use filming couples lessons with Janet.  Ray keeps busy teaching both line & couples dancing in Delaware as well as in any other state he visits. 

Rob Ryan

Rob first met Janet in classes in 2012. His not-to-be missed home line dance parties have made him semi-famous in the Chicagoland dance community. This man wants everyone to see just how much fun dancing is! Rob teaches Beginner 1 line dances classes in Glendale Heights, West Chicago, and Wheaton.

Sherry Martinez

Sherry was trained in the Dance With Janet method of teaching in 2017.  She is busy establishing a line dance community near her home in western Texas, near San Antonio.  Email her at sherry@dustyheelsdanceco.com for information on classes in that area.

Meet DJ Jeff Kruse

Jeff alternates DJ’ing with Janet at dances. He has been DJ’ing since 2010, and his strength is in Country music. He is also well-versed in other music styles, especially Jazz, Latin, and Big Band, and has DJ’ed weddings and countless other events. Contact Jeff if you would like him to DJ your event.

What People Have Said About DJ Jeff:

“Just wanted you to know what a great job you do as a DJ. You have become so relaxed and comfortable managing the sound system lights and video. It is always a great time when you are running the show.” -Terry J. & Debbie A.

“Jeff did an amazing job at our wedding. He was so responsive and prepared for our day. I did not have to worry about one thing. He took care of it all! Jeff made our wedding flow perfectly from the music before the ceremony, to the ceremony, cocktail hour and the reception. We received so many compliments on Jeff, I think he got every single one of our guests on the dance floor. I cannot say enough good things about this DJ. I would highly recommend.” -Emily