About Our Phoenix Dance Studio

Bender Performing Arts (BPA) began as Betty Johnson School of Dance, a Phoenix dance studio fixture since 1974. The modern 14,000 square foot facility of BPA became home in 2006. BPA offers Ballet, Tap, Jazz Fusion, Contemporary, Hip Hop, Musical Theater, Tumbling, Silks, Pom & Cheer, Voice, & Piano for all ages 2 1/2 years old through adult.


In 1974 Betty Johnson started a small dance studio out of her home. Her knowledge of and passion for dance allowed her studio to quickly grow and acquire many students building a well-known positive reputation in the north valley. In 1992 her previous student Meri Bender, and her husband Kevin, took over managing the studio. While they took great pride in the current curriculum, they wanted to offer the community they served even more.

By 2006, that dream had been realized with the opening of a brand-new performing arts center. The modern 14,000 square foot facility became home not only to the already renowned dance instruction, but also private and group music lessons as well as acting and musical theater. The state-of-the-art facility includes five large dance rooms, a sixth dance room for our smaller classes, two private music rooms, and one group lesson room for music and voice instruction. Parents may watch the classes through the large observation windows or parents may view classes on the monitors in the lobby. Every classroom has raised sprung floors and specialty dance Marley flooring for our dancers protection. All classrooms have new large flat screen TV’s to integrate technology into the dancer’s education.  Great care and thought has been put into ensuring the best environment for the dancers.

What sets Bender Performing Arts apart from its competitors is the culture. This is obvious from the moment you step inside the building. The front desk staff is caring, knowledgeable and ready to help with all your needs. The teachers genuinely care for each and every student. The studio focus is on creating wonderful humans and using dance as the tool. It is truly a legacy that is being created and this is evident by the generations that have attended Betty Johnson School of Dance/Bender Performing Arts. Many of the teachers were once students here themselves. This speaks volumes to the atmosphere at Bender. Contact us to find out how to become part of our Bender Performing Arts family.