Began her early years of training at Ballet Arts Olympia until her dedication for dance moved her to Redmond, WA at the age of 15 to pursue her training at the Washington Academy of Performing Arts under the direction of Deborah Hadley; former principal ballerina for the Pacific Northwest Ballet. During Ms. Wood-Ennett’s years of professional training she attended prestigious summer programs such as Exploring Ballet with Suzanne Farrell, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Additionally, she studied on scholarship with Pacific Northwest Ballet School, Oregon Ballet Theatre School and the San Francisco Ballet School. Following a summer with the San Francisco Ballet School, Ms. Wood- Ennett was invited to move to San Francisco to further her training and perform with the company. In 1998 Ms. Wood- Ennett joined Ballet Memphis and danced professionally for six years. During this time she performed soloist roles and worked with innovative choreographers. In the midst of Ms. Wood- Ennett ‘s performing career she discovered a love and talent for teaching and choreography that has continued to grow over the past twenty years.
Otherwise known as MC, has been dancing almost her entire life and has performed many lead roles. Her first formal training began with Bridgette D’Calle, at Ballet School of Olympia. MC has been awarded numerous scholarships to prestigious dance schools including the Joffrey Ballet and Marin Ballet. During her college years she danced with both Ballet Omaha’s School of Dance and Creighton University’s Dance Division. MC’s dancing did take a brief intermission while she worked as a mental health counselor and became a mother of two beautiful daughters. She realized her passion for teaching in 2004 when she began instructing at Ballet Arts of Olympia. MC’s long time goal of owning her own professional dance school has now become a reality, in Studio West Dance Academy. “Dancing with children and watching them grow in self-confidence, poise, coordination, and the love of dance fills my heart with joy.”
Bio coming soon!
Born and raised in University Place, WA, Angel has spent most of her life immersed in the local dance community, and now building a career in the arts. She has been a dancer for 15 years, and currently teaches and directs at the Image Studio of Dance, where she grew up dancing. Angel also teaches hip hop at The School of the Arts in downtown Tacoma as an adjunct artist. Although hip hop is her style of choice, she has also trained and competed in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, and contemporary. Groups that she has danced and trained alongside with include Seahawks Dancers, Breed, Cruz Control (Daniel Cruz), Westsiders (Hannah Wintrode), and Team ISOD. Trying to balance teaching and taking class is something that is very important to her, as her growing knowledge allows her to provide her students with the best learning experience. Angel is extremely grateful for all of the opportunities the dance world has provided her and loves that she has found a passion that supports her.
Anna Roberts started with Studio West Dance Academy at age five, studying tap and ballet. During her last six years as a student, Anna switched her focus to hip hop where she eventually would find her passion for not only performing but teaching as well. She has been a member of Studio West’s Performance Division groups, Beat Box Jrs. and EDGE, for four years, and has recently been dancing with a Lakewood-based group, ICON. Anna has enjoyed dancing with local choreographers so she can stay connected with the community and participate in opportunities that give her inspiration to bring to her students.
Anna has also enjoyed being a teacher’s assistant for the last several years, as she loves to see other students develop a passion for dance. Her work with local inclusion organizations has taught her to respect each student’s unique abilities, and build on those for a positive dance experience.
Autumn George began training at Silverton Ballet and Performing Arts and continued her training at Oregon Ballet Theater, Northwest Academy, Pacific Northwest Ballet, North Carolina School of the Arts, and with David Parsons in New York City. She earned her Bachelors of Science in Dance at Western Oregon University with a minor in Business. As a Veteran and Army spouse, Autumn travelled around the U.S. teaching in Oregon, Arizona, Texas, Kentucky and Georgia before relocating to Washington.
Caleb Lightle has been dancing, training, competing, and performing in hip hop for over 10 years. His extensive training took place in an all-hip hop studio in Charleston, South Carolina. Caleb has competed and traveled with Showstoppers, a traveling convention, as well as winning Encore Nationals 2020 with his company Peace Love Hip Hop. These experiences have grown his ability to work within the dance community and become a strong and personable leader. Caleb has experience teaching and traveling around the East Coast (Florida. North Carolina, Ohio, etc.), developing his teaching style, and growing his passion for dance. He is looking forward to bringing new techniques to The Beat Box this year and continuing to share his love of hip hop.
Camryn Gibeau started dancing at Studio West at the age of five and is now entering her thirteenth year of training. She has studied most styles of dance including ballet, jazz, contemporary, and hip hop. She’s appeared in every one of Studio West Dance Theatre’s Nutcrackers since she was able to participate, as well as most of Studio West’s full-length spring ballets. This will be her fifth year performing with SWDT’s Performance Division at local festivals and the studio’s annual recital. Teaching has always been of great interest to her and she is so excited to share her love of dance with her students!
Cole started his training at Studio West Dance Academy when he was seven, continuing to study and perform there for 11 years. He participated in every Nutcracker until his graduation, as well as all spring ballets, recitals, and dance festivals. While at Studio West he attended summer programs across the country, including on merit scholarship at Boston Ballet School, San Francisco Ballet School, Oregon Ballet Theatre School, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Following his graduation from Studio West, Cole was accepted into Pacific Northwest Ballet’s distinguished Professional Division program, which offers a unique opportunity to perform alongside the company in full-length ballets performed at McCaw Hall. Cole is currently in his first year as a professional company member of Ballet Tuscon in Arizona.
Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, Elena attended the School for the Creative and Performing Arts for nine years as a dance major where she studied under the instruction of Daryl Bjoza, Patricia Rozow, Meridith Benson, and Cynthia Riesterer. At SCPA, Elena received training in ballet and modern, and had many performance opportunities in classical ballets, as well as contemporary and modern works. In 2008, she moved to Jackson, Mississippi, to train with Ballet Magnificat! under the instruction of Cassandra and Jiri Voborsky, Sol Nazario, and Jennifer Tyndall. In her three years there, Elena had the opportunity to tour both in the States and abroad. Elena began her teaching experience when she was invited to pioneer an international branch of Ballet Magnificat!, which sent her to live in Honduras, Central America, to teach and perform. In 2012, Elena headed west to dance with Paradosi Ballet Company in Tacoma where she continued to teach and tour nationally and internationally. Upon her recent retirement from Paradosi Ballet, Elena is continuing to share her love for dance and movement through teaching the next generation of young dancers.
Elizabeth Piper, PT, DPT, began her training at age nine at Ballet Arts Olympia under the direction of Suzanne Ferko. It was there that she met Stephanie Wood-Ennett, who remained her instructor for many years. At age 15, Elizabeth began training on scholarship at The School of Oregon Ballet Theatre with school director, Damara Bennett, and company director, Christopher Stowell. During her years of training, Elizabeth attended summer programs with Pacific Northwest Ballet, Boston Ballet, Oregon Ballet Theatre and The Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Elizabeth joined City Ballet of San Diego in 2009 and completed her professional dance career with them in 2013 when she then decided to pursue a career in Physical Therapy.
During her dance education and career, she was honored to dance in such distinguished works as Balanchine’s Serenade, The Nutcracker, Valse Fantaisie, and Donizetti. She also performed in ballets such as Romeo and Juliet, Giselle, Carmen, Swan Lake, Firebird, Paquita and Lew Christensen’s Il Distratto. Elizabeth graduated from Saint Martin’s University, Summa Cum Laude, in May of 2017 with a B.S. in Biology, and from the University of Puget Sound with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy in 2021. She currently works with Providence Medical Group as a Physical Therapist both in outpatient Orthopedics and Pelvic Health. She enjoys sharing her skills gained as a professional dancer with our students and is excited to bring her skills as a Physical Therapist to SWDA.
Emily Coello, a native of Rock Island, IL, trained at the Alabama School of Fine Arts under Dame Sonia Arova before joining Alabama Ballet as an apprentice. She holds a BFA with honors from the New School University/Joffrey Ballet program in New York City where she trained with David Howard, Eleanor D’Antuono, John Magnus, Trinette Singleton, and Rebecca Wright. While in New York Emily was chosen by David Howard to be a demonstrator in his “World Tour” class video. For over twelve years she was first a dancer and then ballet mistress at City Ballet of San Diego. While with City Ballet, she was featured in many ballets including: Don Quixote, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Giselle, The Firebird, and in many ballets of George Balanchine’s including: Valse Fantasie, Walpurgisnacht, Who Cares?, Serenade, Donizetti Variations, and La Source.
Erin is a Seattle native who began her ballet training with Ms. Irene Larsson – formerly a dancer with New York City Ballet. Erin danced in many summer programs including Joffrey School of Ballet in New York City. She danced for one year with Redwood Concert Ballet in Eureka, California. Her teaching career began with Kay Englert at Washington Contemporary Ballet, where she served for fifteen years as ballet mistress, instructor and choreographer. Erin also taught ballet at Ballet Arts of Olympia with Suzie Ferko. Erin has been an instructor and choreographer at Studio West since the studio’s inception. She is married, has one son, three daughters, and three adorable grandchildren.
Hallie Keel is a dance instructor from Tacoma, Washington. She has spent many years training under some of the most influential names in the dance community, including Brian Friedman, Tricia Miranda, and Tessandra Chavez. During her time as a student she traveled across the nation with The Pulse on Tour as an Elite Protege and with Velocity Dance Convention as their 2016 National Junior MVA Winner. Although traveling for dance was an amazing experience, Hallie found her passion when she started teaching four years ago. With this being her fifth year teaching Hip Hop, she has found many ways to implement the rich history of Hip Hop into her teachings. Most people think of Hip Hop as being “just a style” of dance, but Hallie’s goal is to help students understand that it is a culture and a lifestyle that goes beyond the combos learned in class. Her favorite color is lavender, or any pastel version of a color.
Hannah Punimata was born and raised in East Los Angeles, CA, and has been dancing since she was four years old. Hannah trained in all styles of dance at Dellos Dance studio in Diamond Bar, CA, until college, where she stayed active in jazz and ballet, discovered her passion was hip hop, and began coaching and teaching. Throughout her career she has trained at studios like The EDGE Performing Arts Center, Debbie Reynolds, Culture Shock SD, and Boogie Zone, which quickly turned her focus to commercial hip hop.
Hannah participated in dance competitions throughout grade school and well into college. She danced with the Mt. San Antonio College dance team and pep squad in competitions like Showstoppers, USA, UDA, and UCA in Florida and Las Vegas. She also coached the Pomona High School dance and cheer squads in 2005/2006. After she left Mt. SAC, she began dancing for CSULA’s dance team, as well as an all-girl dance crew called X-Factor. In 2007 she moved to New York and trained at Broadway Dance Center, where she discovered another passion, Broadway. She comes from a family of singers and musicians, so naturally, fell in love with theater. It was in New York where Hannah began to audition for jobs in the industry and was able to work with various up-and-coming pop and hip hop artists. In 2008, she moved home to be with her family when her brother was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. She was able to continue coaching at Pomona High School, and compete with Barkada Modern, an elite adult dance crew in Southern California, in competitions such as World of Dance Pomona, World of Dance Los Angeles, Fusion (San Diego), Urban Street Jam, Bridge, Prelude SoCal, Vibe and Ultimate Brawl. After dancing with Barkada Modern for three seasons Hannah was invited to join another elite adult dance crew called “People Say I Move Funny” under the direction of Brian “BK” Kim (who happened to be her favorite choreographer), that consisted of dancers from Super Galactic Beat Manipulators, Kabba Modern, Common Ground and other teams in the San Diego area. After only one season with PSIMF, Hannah was invited to join a non-competing (expedition) dance crew called Hall of Fame that consisted of dancers from various dance crews around Southern California.
After teaching, choreographing, and performing for local R&B artists and competing with different dance crews, Hannah was married in 2012 and moved to San Diego where her husband played rugby for the U.S. Olympic team. While there, she taught for The Box Dance Studio in Chula Vista. After a short time, her husband became a member of the service and in 2013 they moved to Washington where she taught at Surrendered School of Dance and Studio West Dance Academy. After subsequent orders to move to other duty stations, she taught at schools in Utah and North Carolina, but also began a new career working in law enforcement. In 2018, Hannah was able to move back to the Pacific Northwest and is ecstatic to call Studio West her home once again. She has always loved teaching and giving kids and young adults the tools they need to use and express their passion for dance, whether for performance, competition, auditions, or just the fun of D-A-N-C-I-N-G!
Hannah Smith danced with Studio West Dance Academy from the year after the studio’s opening in 2008, when she was just six years old. She’s performed in every Nutcracker, spring ballet, Spring Showcase, and festival, and has performed many lead roles including Sugar Plum, Dew Drop, Snow Queen, Spanish, and Mirliton Lead in the Nutcracker, as well as Alice in Alice in Wonderland. One of her favorite experiences from her time performing with Studio West was being cast in Josh Grant’s pieces that the Performance Division dancers brought to festivals, and being able to perform such demanding, yet rewarding choreography. Hannah has attended Ballet Austin’s summer intensive and has also participated in Studio West’s summer intensive for many years.
Hannah is currently in her first year as a professional company member of Ballet Tuscon in Arizona.
Ian was inspired to start tap dancing at age five when he watched Savion Glover perform on Sesame Street. He started training at a small studio in Woodinville, later moving to what would become his dance home for almost 18 years, Backstage Dance Studio owned by Marty Roberts. While at Backstage, Ian competed regionally and nationally on their competitive dance team. While competing he was able to take classes from greats like Frank Hatchet, Joe Tremaine and Joe Lantieri, just to name a few. In 2004, Ian took the incredible opportunity to travel and perform all over the world as a dancer and singer on Holland America Line, where he remained for almost eight years. Returning to both land (and his roots) in 2011, Ian started teaching again at Backstage, throwing himself into the hip-hop world and choreographing award-winning numbers for four years.
Ian became Owner + Artistic Director of Pacific West Performing Arts, serving two locations in both Snohomish & Lake Stevens in 2018. He continues to teach at various studios around the Seattle area while also traveling around the US setting competitive choreography, running intensives and getting to meet some new and wonderfully inspiring dance teachers and students.
Ian performed regularly with 3rd Shift Dance under the direction of Xaviera Vandermay and he was also Associate Director for the 3rd Shift Dance Youth Ensemble. With 3SD, Ian has had a plethora of performances, including live collaborative performances with musicians Caela Bailey, The Bad Tenants, Naomi Wachira, and Whitney Mongé, back up dancing for Fly Moon Royalty and Mike Illvester, music videos with Vespera, Naomi Wachira & Whitney Mongé, getting Gooed with photographer Meagan Hall of Blue Cone Studios, became community partners with the Lupus Foundation of America, performing on stage across the Pacific Northwest and Los Angeles.
Ian has choreographed numerous musicals, he works with Platinum National Dance Competition, Platinum Performance Plus Competition & Convention as Judge, Emcee & Teacher. Ian is also on teaching staff with Rise: The Dance Convention on the East Coast. Ian & Karyn Tobin started “Apropos Motus” in 2021, their new dance company set to unveil new works in the Summer of 2021. He’s worked with artists Lauren Edson, Eva Stone and he has many projects coming down the line! Ian enjoys teaching all over and he hopes to continue to “Motivate & Inspire through Dance” wherever he goes.
Jerrilynn “Jeri” Globe first started her dance training at age 11 in ballet, lyrical, jazz, tap, musical theatre and tumbling. One year later, at the age of 12, she started competing and attending classes and conventions around the country where she received multiple awards for solos, duets, trios and corps work. At age 13, Jeri began assisting in dance classes for children ages three through 16. After assisting for three years she started teaching her own classes as well as choreographing for competitions and dancing full-time. To her amazement, her students, with the supplement of her training and choreography, received multiple awards and achievements. From this point on, Jeri decided that teaching was her calling and dove in head-first. At age 19 she was asked to be assistant director of her studio and went on to take over the business and make it her own, later adding a retail store – Dance Fashions Unlimited. She wore multiple hats; managing the business, making costumes, teaching and choreographing. Her business rose in success. In an effort to slow down, Jeri decided to sell her studio and focus on dance instruction. Since 2010, her experience, values, and enthusiasm for dance have contributed to Studio West’s vision – we are pleased to have Jeri as an instructor and office staff member.
Joshua Grant is from Niceville, Florida. He trained at Northwest Florida Ballet, Harid Conservatory, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School, and he attended summer courses at Virginia School of the Arts, the Rock School, Harid Conservatory, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Mr. Grant joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2001 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2002. In 2004, he joined National Ballet of Canada, and in 2006, he joined Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. He performed as a principal dancer with Trockadero until 2011, when he rejoined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet and was promoted to Soloist in 2015.
Mr. Grant has performed many lead roles in classical full length ballets and contemporary pieces by noted choreographers, including an originated lead role in Christopher Wheeldon’s Tide Harmonic. He performed the Dying Swan as a guest artist on the Titus Command Gala in Dallas and for Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Laugh Out Loud! Festival. In 2008, he performed on the Royal Variety Show at London’s Palladium Theatre in the presence of HRH Prince Charles.
Photo credit: Angela Sterling
Kennedy Griffin, often referred to as “Ken,” starting dancing at the age of three. She trained locally in Lacey, WA, at Center Stage Dance Academy focusing on Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical, Tap, Contemporary, Acro and Hip Hop. She was a member of the studio’s Ultimate Dance Force for nine years, competing locally as well as nationally. When her studio closed she transitioned to Allegro Performing Arts Academy in Kent, WA. She was a member of their Precision Performing Group and PURE Hip Hop team for two years and is still currently training there.
Some of her accomplishments include: Hollywood Connection’s National ICON of the year dancer in 2012, 2013 and 2015; member of Jovon Miller’s company in 2015 and 2016 and performed in Jovon Miller’s piece, “Elemental War,” featured at Seattle International Dance Festival in 2015; Seattle Storm Dance Troupe member in 2015 and 2016, dancing at half time and sideline at Key Arena in Seattle, WA, for the WNBA Seattle Storm games; performing dancer at the SYTYCD Choreographer Submission for Mitchel Federan in 2016 in Hollywood, CA; Rainbow Dance Competition Seattle 2017 Regional Teen Dancer of the Year.
In 2017 she was selected to be a member of Velocity Dance Convention MVA+ program under the direction of Kyle Hanagami and toured with the convention that season. She was cast as a Disney Y2K Dancer in Sofia Wylie’s Mama Mia YouTube video directed by Bonnie Story in 2018. She was awarded Hollywood Vibe’s National Teen Dancer of the year in 2018 and toured with their convention for the season as a part of their Vibe Company.
She has attended Ballet Boot Camp at Studio West as well as multiple master classes here locally as well as in Los Angeles, CA, at Edge PAC and Millennium Dance Complex. She was recently invited to the Beat Box at Studio West as a community instructor. She is looking forward to the upcoming season and sharing her love of dance.
Kristina began her career at Studio West in the summer of 2012 working part time at the front desk. Her role has evolved over the years, as she took on more extensive responsibilities as the Assistant Studio Manager. After the birth of her third child in the winter of 2015, Studio West gave her the opportunity to continue working the hours she could manage; she now works mainly in the back office on bookkeeping and other administrative duties. Kristina does not have a dance background, but grew up with Ms. Stephanie and truly loves being a part of the Studio West community. She graduated from St. Martin’s University with her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Finance. She currently resides in Olympia with her husband and four beautiful children.
Kristine Anderson started dancing at an early age in Colorado, continuing through high school in Idaho. She has performed in the Nutcracker with Ballet Idaho, and was part of a national championship dance team. Upon completing her BA in Dance with high honors from San Francisco State University, she continued her formal education and completed an MFA in Dance at Mills College with highest honors, May 2011. She has since been making and performing dance works and teaching. She has company experience with Tere Mathern Dance, Rachel Slater and Dancers, and apprenticed with ODC/Dance Company. She has had the honor of learning “Trio A” from Yvonne Rainer, herself, as well as Linda K. Johnson. Johnson and Anderson performed “Trio A” at the Berkeley Art Museum, Fall 2011. She also has had the honor of working with and performing works by esteemed artists such as Brenda Way, KT Nelson, Molissa Fenley, Robert Moses, Alex Ketley, and Tere Mathern. Her choreographic works have been performed in various locations, from intimate art galleries to studios and larger theaters in San Francisco and Portland. Beside self-produced shows, her choreographic works have been featured at the 1 Festival, the Polish Festival, The Garage (SF), and Dance Plus.
Ms. Cohen-Hafford is a sought-after coach and guest teacher, currently specializing in ballet coaching with professionals and students worldwide. Her diverse professional repertoire included contemporary ballet, the classics, Balanchine works and modern dance, providing her with a comprehensive background and understanding of the essential requirements for ballet professionals. She is excited to work with Studio West dancers as their Resident Guest Teacher.
In 2019, Ms. Cohen-Hafford was invited to observe classes, rehearsals and an array of performances at top European ballet companies and schools including the Stuttgart Ballet, Dresden SemperOper Ballet, and the John Cranko Ballet School. This experience enhanced her insight into the current trends and versatility demands in modern, contemporary, and classical ballet techniques, choreography, and training.
Ms.Cohen-Hafford was Artistic Director of Conservatory Ballet of Washington and Director of the Ballet Department of Washington Academy of Performing Arts. She served as a dance faculty member at Oakland University, MI. She was Rehearsal Director and faculty member at Cornish College of the Arts Preparatory Dance Program for 18 years, teaching, staging, and choreographing. In 2021 she was honored to be invited by Regional Dance America NE to adjudicate, select, and program for the three performances of the multi-region festival.
During her extensive performing career, Ms. Cohen-Hafford toured nationally and internationally. She danced principal roles in multiple classical ballets as well as in works by some of the most eminent contemporary choreographers. These included Ashton, Balanchine, Butler, Cranko, Forsythe, and Tetley. She had the privilege of working personally with many of these choreographers as well as with distinguished ballet directors and teachers. She danced with Ballet British Columbia, Ballet Jorgen, Metropolitan Ballet Theater, and was a guest artist for numerous schools and companies including Pennsylvania Ballet. Ms. Cohen-Hafford was honored to be chosen for the lead role in the Canadian première of William Forsythe’s “In the middle, somewhat elevated.”
Ms.Cohen-Hafford’s choreography includes works for Ballet British Columbia’s Choreographic Workshop and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet’s Choreoplan. Several works have been presented by Regional Dance America (RDA) companies, including Gala Night performances in 1994 and 1999, as well as by Cornish College Preparatory Dance Company amongst others. In 1996 she was awarded an RDA Craft of Choreography Award. Ms. Cohen-Hafford has choreographed for and coached finalists for the prestigious Youth America Grand Prix including several New York award winners.
Ms. Cohen-Hafford earned a diploma in Dance Training from George Brown College, Canada. She was awarded an Advanced Diploma in Spanish Dance by the South African Spanish Dance Society.
Malia Campbell trained at Studio West Dance Academy for 14 years. She participated, and has now graduated, from the studio’s student-teacher training program to become a Discover Dance and Tiny Hoppers instructor this year. Her training included ballet, tap, and jazz, but she found her passion in hip hop. Through her years of training and performing in our Performance Division team, EDGE, she gained extensive performance experience. She has participated in countless showcases in the Olympia, Tacoma, and the Seattle area. She aspires to return the same education and experience she received through the years to other young students wanting to pursue dance. This will be her first season as an instructor at Studio West and she is looking forward to being a bigger part of her community.
Ms. Marianna started her Ballet training at the age of five at Keyla Ermecheo’s Ballet School in Caracas, Venezuela; where she graduated as a classical Ballet Dancer. She joined Metropolitan Ballet of Caracas under the artistic direction of Keyla Ermecheo. During that time she performed many classical and neo-classical repertoire including: Giselle act II, Sleeping Beauty, Le Corsaire (pas de deux), Bayaderka Trio, Nutcracker, Apollo (Balanchine), Paquita, and was able to be a part of the World Festival and perform at Pace University in New York. Four years later she joined National Ballet Caracas under the artistic direction of Vicente Nebreda where she toured to other countries and all around the United States performing predominantly Nebreda’s and Balanchine’s work. After guest performing in Tulsa Ballet’s Nutcracker and Romeo and Juliet, she joined Ballet Memphis in August, 2001 under the artistic direction of Dorothy Gunther Pugh. With the company, she was able to perform in numerous ballets by renowned choreographer’s such as Trey McIntyre, Mark Godden (Carmina Burana), Lila York, George Balanchine, Garret Ammon, Julia Adams and Joseph Jeffries. She trained under: Carmen Estela Fernández, Nela Lanz, Johana Fernández, Rafael Portillo, Irina Ivanova, Marina del Elmo, Vladimir Issaev, Vladimir lopoukhov, Eric Volodin, Maya Samokhalova, Ruta Butviliene, Rumen Rachev, Rubén Echeverría and Keyla Ermecheo. Ms. Marianna has taken the mat and reformer courses in Stott Pilates under the direction of Tamara Hoffmann and dedicates full time to teaching the art of Ballet.
Monica Sieling began her early years of dance training at Ballet Arts Olympia. At the age of 10 she transferred to Studio West Dance Academy and began pursuing all styles of dance including ballet, jazz, hip hop and contemporary. Performing in Studio West Dance Theatre productions and participating in Performance Division pieces has brought her great joy and has been an integral part of Ms. Sieling’s dance education. Her favorite roles include: Chinese in Nutcracker, the Cook in Alice in Wonderland, the Jester in Cinderella and Michael in Peter Pan. Ms. Monica is also one of the original members of Studio West’s Hip Hop dance crew, EDGE. EDGE has danced in numerous Hip Hop shows and workshops throughout the area including, Krunk, No Flex Zone and Monsters of Hip Hop.
Ms. Monica has a patient, yet exuberant style when instructing young children. She began as a teacher’s assistant in 2012 and displayed such natural abilities when working with dancers, that in 2014 was offered her own class. Since then her talent and instruction skills have earned her additional teaching positions.
“Having the chance to work with young dancers gives me a new perspective and love for this art form [dance] that I never experienced before. Watching my students connect with themselves and others through dance, and then leave class with a smile on their face is what inspires me as a dance instructor.” – Monica Sieling
Bio coming soon!
Rachel Zeigler began her ballet training and singing at the age of 11 while living in Ellensburg, Washington. She continued her performance education throughout high school and college, receiving a bachelor’s degree in Theatre Performance from Central Washington University in 1999, with an emphasis on music and dance. Since then, Rachel has had the opportunity to perform in such shows as, Peter Pan, Angry Housewives, The Crucible, Once Upon a Mattress, Beauty and the Beast, Alice in Wonderland, My Fair Lady, and Seussical, the Musical. Some of her favorite roles have included Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance. In addition to performing, Rachel has also held numerous offstage positions; she served as House Manager for Laughing Horse Summer Theater, Box Office Manager for Spokane Interplayers Ensemble, Stage Manager and Assistant Stage Manager for Studio West Dance Theatre, and as of August 2015, Studio Manager for Studio West Dance Academy. She thanks her dear husband and sweet son for making life so much fun and full of love, and her studio family for making her work hours so entertaining!
Bio coming soon!
Sarah was born in Whiterock, British Columbia, Canada, and started dancing at a very young age. After moving to the United States a few years later, she decided to take a break from dance and explore others activities, including gymnastics, piano, and a few sports. She soon realized how much she missed dance and enrolled at Studio West Dance Academy in hopes of developing her skills. During this time, she performed many roles in Studio West Dance Theatre productions: Dew Drop, Snow Queen, and Lead Arabian in The Nutcracker; Myrtha in Giselle; Cinderella in Cinderella; and Tinkerbelle in Peter Pan.
She has participated and performed in several summer intensives including the programs at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and The Rock School for Dance Education. Through the years, she has substitute taught and assisted in numerous ballet and jazz classes, including Studio West’s young dancer summer camps. After graduating from high school, she continued her training in dance education at Pacific Lutheran University, taking ballet, jazz/contemporary, and hip hop classes, and participating in the spring dance ensemble Choreography Showcase. Sarah’s kindness and attention to detail have been very beneficial for many of our students who are continuing on in their dance journey.
Sarah Jane Bracy began her dance journey through her middle and high school dance teams. She started competitive dancing in high school where she participated all 4 years on dance team. There she won multiple awards, going to state-wide competitions. Quickly showing leadership skills and strong artistic choreography she was made captain 3 of the 4 years attending and returning both years after graduation to continue to help with choreography and competition work. She has trained in jazz, contemporary, and hip hop, finding her passion and skill in hip hop. After high school she continued to study dance and train in studios such as Studio West Dance Academy, Center Stage, and Westlake. She was part of an elite adult dance crew, Audacity Cru from 2010 to 2017. Through Audacity she felt she gained the most experience and skill. Audacity Cru competed and performed all over Washington state with a heavy presence in the Seattle area. They were constantly involved in the dance community through performances, events, volunteer work, and outreach projects. Some of her biggest accomplishments are competing in World Of Dance Seattle 2011-15. Within that time, they achieved 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place. They were then invited to perform and compete in WOD nationals in LA. Sarah Jane has contributed choreography in most competitive pieces including the LA set.
Currently, Sarah Jane is the Hip Hop Program Director and an instructor at Studio West. She was there from the start in 2014, and has seen the program grow exponentially. While at Studio West, she has been busy choreographing for SWDA’s Spring Showcase, Olympia’s fall and spring Arts Walk, EDGE (Studio West’s hip hop performance group), the annual SWDG Charity Gala, and more. She plans to continue working, teaching, and training to ensure she provides artistic and inspiring movement for young dancers.
Patricia (Trish) Hall was born and raised in Olympia and is a graduate of Central Washington University. Trish came to Studio West in 2009 with an already extensive background working with children, and in no time at all, became an invaluable asset in the day-to-day workings of the studio. Over the years, she’s shared her expertise across multiple positions: studio manager, costume manager, administrative assistant, and front desk aficionado! She currently resides in Olympia with her husband and two beautiful children. Trish keeps the studio staff and dancers on their toes, is always ready to lend a hand, and is the friendly face most families see when they first step in the door. We are honored that Trish has been with Studio West from the beginning.
Zennie Shiflett is a 17-year old performer, choreographer, and full time Running Start student growing up in Olympia, Washington. She started dancing when she was three years old. She trained in ballet at Mid-Columbia Ballet and Inland Pacific Ballet. She joined Studio West Dance Academy five years ago to enroll in ballet classes. Despite having a busy schedule, she found ways to incorporate jazz and tap into her routine. She participated in the Nutcracker and Spring Showcase for two years as a ballerina before deciding to take a break and explore school sports.
During the pandemic, she found herself constantly learning new hip hop choreography from online videos. As her passion for hip hop grew, she decided to enroll in multiple classes at The Beat Box. She ended up performing in hip hop for Spring Showcase and choreographed for the student-led piece. The following year, she auditioned and was accepted to be a part of Studio West’s Performance Division, EDGE. Zennie’s passion and persistence allowed her to not only be able to perform on EDGE, but to start teaching hip hop as well. Zennie’s goal is to continue to train and perform as much as she can before leaving for college in August of 2022.