Lou Moulder

Photo by Paul Neevel

“I took my first ballet class in Germany at age three,” says Lou Moulder, whose father was serving in the Army. She also took classes in Alabama and Tennessee before her family settled in Dallas, Texas, when she was eight. “In high school, I taught young children at the Whistle Stop Dance Studio,” she says, “but after high school, I worked at retail and office jobs. Later on, I began to teach yoga and ballet. I assumed that I wouldn’t make a career in dance, but I figured out that teaching dance could work for me.” In 2006, at age 30, Moulder flew to Eugene for a weekend visit. ”As a little kid I wrote a paper,” she recalls, “I thought I’d end up in Oregon.” Six months later, she headed north with a full car, including her cat. Once in Eugene, she worked from home for a year as an administrator for an air conditioning company. She began teaching adult ballet and tap at Ballet Northwest Academy in 2008, and she graduated magna cum laude from the University of Oregon with a degree in dance in 2013. When the academy closed in 2016, Moulder brought her classes and a core group of students to the well-established Dance Factory studio. “Some of the students are very serious,” she says. “Others are just there to have fun.” Moulder also teaches dance and Pilates to small groups (five or less) and individual clients at Bodies by Pilates in the Tamarack Wellness Center. “For individual sessions, I usually work with people recovering from an injury or looking to improve their posture or balance,” she says. “I put together a sequence of exercises, personally crafted for each client. I focus on getting people to move correctly.”