MARIA BAI
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR/TEACHER

MARIO LASTRADA
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

TRICIA ARENSON
NUTCRACKER DIRECTOR COMPANY CHOREOGRAPHER

BRITTANY BALISE
PRESCHOOL/HIP-HOP

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My name is Brittany Balise, and I am 24 years old. I graduated from Adelphi University in May 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in business management and a minor in psychology. Education has been a major priority in my life, but art has and will always be my passion. Ever since I was 2, I loved to draw, sing and dance, but I was very shy. At that time, I was introduced to Central Park Dance and my life was never the same. Maria and the Central Park Dance staff, have not only taught me everything I know about the dance world and what it takes to be an artist, but also helped me to find the light within myself to shine. They are more than just a dance studio to me, they are family. Even when I took a break from dance to study in college, I was always welcomed back with open arms. It is such an honor that I am able to teach my own classes in a place that has taught me the foundation of dance and is like my second home. Today, I am forever grateful that I am able to pay that forward. Dance will always be the light in my life, even when the world feels dull.

SUNNY BJAANES
PRESCHOOL

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Sunny Bjaanes began her dance training in her native country Norway. After graduating from performing arts high school she continued her studies in dance and musical theatre at Laine Theatre Arts in London, England. During her studies, Sunny realized that in addition to performing she also had a passion for teaching and decided to further her studies in this field. She graduated from the University of Stavanger (Norway) with a BA in dance and dance education in 2009. During her time in Norway, Sunny performed several lead roles as a guest dancer, tackling roles such as Clara in the Nutcracker and the stepmother in Cinderella as well as performing and choreographing for several events and independent productions.
After working as a teacher and performer in Norway she traveled to New York City in 2012 to further her own artistic development. She has since been performing and working with companies and choreographers such as The Next Stage Project, Amirov Dance Theater, Mishidance, Max Stone, Julia Ehrstrand and Un-jin Kim.
Sunny is based in Manhattan and continues to work as a dance instructor and performer as well as teaching flying trapeze and performing on aerial silks and hammock.

LAUREN CAMP
BALLET/POINTE/TAP

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Lauren Camp received her BFA in dance from SUNY Purchase College with an emphasis in Choreography. She is the co-founder and Director of Dance for MADArt Creative, a collaborative modern dance company. Lauren has also choreographed for NYU/Atlantic Theater’s Spring Awakening, Scandinavian American Theater Company’s Bastards of Strindberg, Lucy Moses’ Summer Musical Theater Workshop and Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater’s Seussical the Musical. She has been Associate Choreographer for Utah Festival Opera’s Rex, Oklahoma!, H2$, and Carousel.  She currently dances with Yoo and Dancers, The LM Project, and The Dreamland Follies. She teaches dance for the Vanderbilt YMCA, Central Park Dance Academy, Three Act Theatre and drama for the Lucy Moses School. 

NANCY CANNING
PRESCHOOL/BALLET/TEEN LYRICAL

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     Nancy Canning is a New York City based Dancer and Actress. She is a trained Dance teacher. As a high school student she was given several opportunities in Concert dance, performing with BalletMet and the Syracuse Contemporary Dance Company.  At 17 Nancy was accepted to the Pace University Commercial Dance Program and eagerly attended on an academic scholarship.

     While in college Nancy worked with the Greater Ocean City Theatre Company as a Principal dancer in “Swing!” She was also a member of the American Swiss Ballet Company. There she was given the opportunity to work as a rehearsal assistant, running rehearsals with herself and company members.  She worked as a Dance Captain to Larger than Life Productions’ 2015 summer touring revue. Shortly thereafter she originated the role of Vershinin in “When Johnny Comes Marching Home,” an original play, in Manhattan. Nancy was featured in music video by Lucio Fernandez titled “Lindo Arcoiri”s.

   Besides performing, Nancy is also passionate about teaching, and has received education in dance pedagogy. She apprenticed for 2 years with a Royal Academy of Dance and American Ballet Theatre certified teacher. Her degree in Commercial Dance also allowed opportunities to train in Jazz, Tap, and Musical Theatre pedagogy. She currently teaches all dance styles at multiple dance academies, private schools, and educational centers.

 She continues to train in dance herself as well as advance her education in pedagogy through workshops and classes; after being accepted to the American Ballet Theatre Teacher certificate program this year, Nancy will continue her education in dance pedagogy.

DINA CARBONE
PRESCHOOL/HIP-HOP

GEOFFREY DOIG-MARX
JAZZ

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Named one of “Nine Dancemakers Making History”

…Cover Story Dance Spirit Magazine

 Geoffrey Doig-Marx (GDM)- currently a member of the faculty at Marymount Manhattan College (18 yrs), Montclair State University (8 yrs) and Rider University/ARB’s Princeton Ballet School (18 yrs).

He is member of Actor’s Equity and an associate member of The Society of Directors and Choreographers, Geoffrey was the Founder/Artistic Director of The Mantis Project Dance Company (10 yrs) and he was Founder/Artistic Director/Director of The Elan Awards 1999-2006.

He holds a B.A. from SUNY Empire State University in Musical Theatre Dance.

Geoffrey’s Director credits include several New York Regional Productions, Off Broadway, Off Off Broadway, Children’s Theatre and New York Cabarets. Most notable The Fantasticks, It’s a Women’s World and the critically acclaimed “The Music of Andrea Green.”

 Geoffrey Doig-Marx was resident choreographer of Park Playhouse for 8 years. Choreography credits include Annie Get Your Gun, Fiddler on the Roof, Hands on a Hardbody, The Producers, Spamalot and Cabaret which was named one of the top 10 shows of 2012 by Bob Geopfert. Additional credits include The Drowsy Chaperoneat Westminster Choir College and Kiss of the Spiderwoman at Montclair State University with Director Clay James

 As a Producer, Artistic Director and Director, Geoffrey received a Certificate of Excellence in Cultural Achievement from the Manhattan Borough President office of The Mayor of New York City for his work with The Elan Awards. The Elan Awards have become a permanent part of the archives for The New York City Performing Arts Library.

As a performer, Mr. Doig-Marx appeared in the Equity National Tours and Regional Productions of West Side Story, A Chorus Line, Dames at Sea, Cabaret, La Cage aux Folles, Fiddler on the Roof, Jesus Christ Superstar and many others.

 GDM left home at age 15 and lived in runaway shelters and group homes in the Albany area. In the mid-1980s he moved to New York City and started his career in dance, musical theatre and choreography. In December of 2011, Doig-Marx moved to Harlem where he started painting, photographing, writing and hasn’t looked back.

Now with over 500 paintings and thousands of photographs, GDM is everywhere. “I don’t like a lot of art. I only like two pieces I have in my home. My GDM and my HIRSCHFELD”…Chita Rivera

 Presently, he is the resident Artist of POSH NYC (8 years) and The West End Lounge (4 years) and The Pecore in Harlem (4 years). He has had several solo showings of his work in several New York venues. His first New York Solo gallery showing was at The Lanyon 36 Gallery in 2015. His work currently hangs at Peridance, The Broadway Dance Center and in the halls of The Martha Graham Dance Company.

 Currently he is writing the Book and Lyrics along with his writing partner Bradley Parker for the original musical entitled “Zombie”, Directing and Choreographing a Music Video for the band Blacktop Daisy and is illustrating a children’s book entitled “Agnes and The Metroploitan”.

For more information, visit www.geoffreydoig-marx.comand www.gdmartist.com

You can read about his life growing up in his blog “A Day in the Life/Down the Rabbit Hole” which has been read by over 30,000 people. “A Day in the Life/Down the Rabbit Hole”http://adayinthelife-gdm.blogspot.com

Christina Donohue
PRESCHOOL/BALLET

TALIA DOOZ
JAZZ/CHOREOGRAPHER

TOBIN EASON
ADULT BALLET/POINTE

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Tobin has performed at many of the major opera houses around the world in all of the major classical ballets in American Ballet Theatre’s repertoire. In addition, Tobin has been privileged to work as a guest artist with companies around the U.S., such as in Delaware, Kentucky, Louisiana, South Carolina, Hawaii, New Jersey, and at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem, New York City. While pursuing his dance career, he has also choreographed two ballets, one for Abt 11 and Michele Wiles’s company Ballet Next. He has designed a set for Ballet Next, and shows his artwork around New York City. He currently dances with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet for their 2013-14 season.

DAVID FERNANDEZ
ADULT BALLET/POINTE

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David Fernandez is a choreographer, dancer, and ballet teacher based in New York.
His most acclaimed choreography, entitled “Five Variations on a Theme,” was created for New York City Ballet’s principal dancer Joaquin De Luz. The work was performed as part of the “Kings of the Dance” program, premiering in the Ukraine in November 2008. David’s other choreographies have been created for leading dancers from the American Ballet Theatre and the New York City Ballet. Other commissions include the Kings of the Dance Tour, Dance Theatre of Harlem Ensemble, Youth America Grand Prix, Opera North, Staten Island Ballet, and the Vassar Repertoire Dance Theatre.

In 2011, David directed and choreographed the short film “White Shirt, Black Tie, Black Pants XXS,” which premiered at the Dance on Camera Film Festival at Lincoln Center in 2012. His previous films include “Objects in Mirror are Closer Than They Appear” (2009) and “Icarus APR” (2009). 

In February 2012, David announced that his own Some Dance Company would work together with the Career Transition For Dancers Project in a festival collaboration.

During David’s dance career, he performed with Chicago’s Boitsov Classical Ballet, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Ballet Theatre of Chicago, and in Indiana University’s production of “Don Quixote,” directed by Susan Jones of the American Ballet Theatre. David also had the honor of performing alongside Mikhail Baryshnikov in “The Doctor and The Patient” at the 2004 Lincoln Center Festival.

When David isn’t choreographing or searching for new music and sources of inspiration, he teaches and experiments with new movements at the Central Park Dance studios in New York and at Westport’s Academy of Ballet in Connecticut. David spends his summers teaching intensives at several ballet and contemporary companies in both the United States and Mexico. 

On recent news David have been chosen to create a new choreography for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet ChoreoPlan 2013 and for the National Choreographers Initiative 2013 in Corona del Mar, California.

Roanne Flores
PRESCHOOL/BALLET

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Roanne Flores has performed professionally with The Chris Ramos Dance Company, Blue Wing Dance Company, and Nicholas Rodriguez’ Dance Compass. She has also worked with Sean Curran, Heidi Latsky, Lonne Morretton and Sandra Stratton-Gonzalez during her time with Battery Dance Repertory. Other companies include Eleanore Coleman Dance Company, Circle of Dance, and Dany Holdstein Dance Company. Roanne has also performed with Le Masquerade Entertainment. She has done industrial work for Revlon. She has taught modern, jazz, ballet and exercise classes for children, teen, and adults in dance studios in Queens. Roanne has a BA in dance from Queens College and an MS degree in Physical therapy from SUNY Downstate. In addition to teaching ballet to children, Roanne currently works as a pediatric physical therapist in a school based setting in the Bronx.

GARRICK FOOTMAN
HIP-HOP

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Garrick Footman is an international Hip-Hop dancer, choreographer and mentor. Born and raised in Queens, New York, his passion for Hip-Hop began at a very young age. He has been working in the industry for over 10 years. Garrick has choreographed and performed with various artists including Mariah Carey, Ariana Grande, Kendrick lamar, Faith Evans, Fat Joe, U2 and countless other stars.

Garrick’s passion to perform has led him to be on several TV and awards shows including 60th Annual Grammys, MTV’s Americas best dance crew, MTV’s TRL, BET’s 106 and Park Live, Showtime at the Apollo, Japan network NHK’s Chick Girls Reality Show etc.

Garrick Footman is also the co-founder of a successful all male Hip-Hop group called Stryke Force. Stryke Force performs all over the country while motivating and inspiring others about the culture of Hip-Hop and dance.

Throughout his success, Garrick remains humble and dedicated to training students who share the same love for Hip-Hop. He continues to teach classes and workshops everywhere; from New York City, China,  to Tokyo, Japan. The most important thing to Garrick Footman remains to spread love, confidence and knowledge to people with the power of Hip-Hop.

MARY ELLEN GASPARINI
FITNESS

ALEJANDRA GOMEZ
PRESCHOOL/BALLET

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Born in the city of Cali, Colombia at the age of 7 began her training at the professional school of ballet Incolballet under the direction of master Gloria Castro. For 8 years, she entered different disciplines such as classical dance, contemporary dance, Character dances and Colombian folk dances, participating in different works of the classical and contemporary repertoire.

Her love and passion for dance inspired her training as a teacher starting a teaching career in the city of Bogotá. In the year 2013 she joined the ballet school Ballarte, where she has worked with Preballet levels, early years and adults. Taking charge of the creation and planning of classes, qualification of student development, presentation of open classes to parents, creation of choreography and selection of musical pieces for recitals.

In the year 2015 she is certified in the first module of methodology of the classical teaching in method Vaganova with the Bolshói Academy of Moscow in the city of New York.

In 2016 she moved to New York City where she started working for the school Central Park Dance as assistant teacher and substitute teacher, currently teaching different groups in the same school.

The desire to transmit love to dance, discipline, perfectionism, are some of his qualities as a teacher. Taking it day by day to be better in their professional, personal and artistic development

Irina has been featured on television as a performer, and as a choreographer and producer for special events in Moscow and in Europe. She was a solo performer with “Alex’s Show” Dance Company, for the TV show “From a Women’s Life” in Europe, and as a choreographer and performer on The Television Awards Shows in Moscow and Brussels (Belgium). She taught at The School of Modern Choreography, The National College of Theatrical Arts, The Russian Imperial Ballet in Moscow, and “Show Company” in Brussels. Irina’s master classes are well known in Europe, Russia and the tri-state area. Irina has taught tap dance and improvisation for over 15 years. She currently resides in the New York City area, teaches, choreographs and develops new projects.

ALICIA HALL
DANCE FIT

RICHARD ISAAC
BALLET/POINTE/ADULT BALLET

IRINA KNUST
TAP

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Irina Knust got her B.A. at The University of Culture and Arts in Moscow. She has an international background in her dance education and performing history. It was her passion for tap dance that brought her to New York, where she continued her privet dance education with teachers such as Buster Brown, Jimmy Slyde, Savion Glover, Jason Samueles Smith and her idol, Gregory Hines. Meeting G. Hines and becoming his student was a high point in her early career. Irina became a performer of his style in tap dance and tap improvisation. She became a regular at The Swing 46 Tap Jam with Buster Brown, and performed with The Feraba African Rhythm Tap Company, as well as appearing with her own jazz trio at various NYC venues.

Irina has been featured on television as a performer, and as a choreographer and producer for special events in Moscow and in Europe. She was a solo performer with “Alex’s Show” Dance Company, for the TV show “From a Women’s Life” in Europe, and as a choreographer and performer on The Television Awards Shows in Moscow and Brussels (Belgium). She taught at The School of Modern Choreography, The National College of Theatrical Arts, The Russian Imperial Ballet in Moscow, and “Show Company” in Brussels. Irina’s master classes are well known in Europe, Russia and the tri-state area. Irina has taught tap dance and improvisation for over 15 years. She currently resides in the New York City area, teaches, choreographs and develops new projects.

ALORA MARTINEZ
HIP-HOP

KATHLEEN MCAREE
JAZZ/LATIN JAZZ

LUIS FERNANDO UBEDA RIVALDI
TAP

TANNER SCHWARTZ
BALLET/POINTE/ADULT BALLET

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Tanner began dancing at The Westside School of Ballet in Los Angeles, CA and with Marat Daukayev (Former Principal at the Kirov Ballet). At age 13 he moved to New York to study at The School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center. In 2002 he was the recipient of the D.A.N.C.E. (Danish American National Cultural Exchange) award, to dance as an apprentice with the Royal Danish Ballet. After this, Mr. Schwartz went on to dance with The Pennsylvania Ballet, Boston Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Milwaukee Ballet, The Metropolitan Opera, and as a guest artist with many companies and schools throughout the country.

Tanner has taught dance throughout his performing career. He began teaching company dancers roles as a coach, progressing to staging choreography, and finally to teaching classes for adults and children. His teaching methodology is based on sifting through the many different styles of ballet he has performed, and passing on to students the most useful, anatomically correct, and versatile technique possible. Technical elements, including proper rotation, isolation, alignment, coordination, flexibility, strength, stamina, and training of muscle memory from his foundation in the Vagonova Technique progress to the quick, precise footwork and graceful epaulement of the Bournonville School, and to dynamic and expressive transitions and musicality rooted in the work of George Balanchine, all while preserving the line, aesthetic, purity, and fullness of movement desired by classical ballet companies throughout the world.

DEVON SMITH
JAZZ/TAP/LYRICAL/CONTEMPORARY/ JUMPS & TURNS

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Devon Smith grew up in NH and received her training at Melissa Hoffman Dance Center. She continued her education at Alvin Ailey (NYC) and then traveled the world with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, first as a dance captain and later as a Rehearsal Director. She is now a NYC based choreographer who’s work has been presented at festivals and venues throughout the city such as Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater, MMAC, Dixon Place, Hudson Guild Theater, Dance Astoria, and NYC10. She has choreographed music videos and live performances for artists such as Britt Nicole, Cherie Lily, Lauren Mayhew and French Horn Rebellion. She is currently on staff at several studios in the NY/NJ area that provide competitive and pre-professional training programs.  Her choreography and students have been recognized on both the regional and national level at competitions such as Dance Educators of America, United States Tournament of Dance, Kids for Kids and Headliners for not only their technical excellence but also for their artistry and dedication to the movement. She has had the pleasure of teaching at Broadway Dance Center, Steps on Broadway and Peridance in Manhattan. Devon’s classes provide a fun and nurturing atmosphere while also enforcing safe and correct training.

SPEX
HIP-HOP

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Raymond “Spex” Abbiw’s career took off and he appeared in music videos with such artists as Mariah Carey, Joe, Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean and more.

Spex also toured internationally in Japan and France. He made his Off-Broadway debut in the 2002 Full Circle Productions’ production, Soular Power’d at the New Victory theater.  He continues as a member of the Full Circle Dance Company touring throughout the U.S. and abroad including the prestigious Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.

Spex is currently co-owner of the now defunct  House Dance Conference with  founder, Brian “Footwork” Green–a monthly event providing a platform for entertainment, dance and education.

Spex continues to teach and perform nationally and internatinnally and is most happy about having his dream come true.

MARIA BAI
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR/ TEACHER

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MARIO LASTRADA
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

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TRICIA ARENSON
NUTCRACKER DIRECTOR COMPANY CHOREOGRAPHER

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BRITTANY BALISE
PRESCHOOL/ HIP-HOP

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SUNNY BJAANES
PRESCHOOL

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LAUREN CAMP
BALLET/POINTE/ TAP

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NANCY CANNING
PRESCHOOL/ BALLET/TEEN LYRICAL

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DINA CARBONE
PRESCHOOL/ HIP HOP

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GEOFFREY DOIG-MARX
JAZZ

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CHRISTINA DONOHUE
PRESCHOOL/ BALLET

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TALIA DOOZ
JAZZ/ CHOREOGRAPHER

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TOBIN EASON
ADULT BALLET/POINTE

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DAVID FERNANDEZ
ADULT BALLET/POINTE

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ROANNE FLORES
PRESCHOOL/ BALLET

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GARRICK FOOTMAN
HIP HOP

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MARY ELLEN GASPARINI
FITNESS

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ALEJANDRA GOMEZ
PRESCHOOL/ BALLET

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ALICIA HALL
DANCE FIT

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RICHARD ISAAC
BALLET/POINTE/ ADULT BALLET

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IRINA KNUST
TAP

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ALORA MARTINEZ
HIP HOP

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KATHLEEN MCAREE
JAZZ/LATIN JAZZ

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LUIS FERNANDO UBEDA RIVALDI
TAP

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TANNER SCHWARTZ
BALLET/POINTE/ ADULT BALLET

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DEVON SMITH
JAZZ/TAP/ LYRICAL/ CONTEMPORARY/ JUMPS & TURNS

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SPEX
HIP HOP

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