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LESLEY NEELEY-SMITH                            OWNER - DIRECTOR

Lesley has successfully owned and directed Elite Dance Studio since 1989. She began dancing at an early age and trained at various studios. She was a member of the Salt Lake Stars and the award winning La Nichee drill team. She later became the advisor of the drill team for 3 years and taught dance and cheer at a private school in Utah. She continues to refresh and update her Jazz techniques throughout the state with Jazz masters and current choreographers. Lesley spent many years as a judge for dance competitions. After dancing at the U of U for 2 years, Lesley has a B.S. in Exercise and Sports Science with an emphasis on the kinesiological aspects of the dancer's body. Lesley was an aerobics teacher at the University of Utah while getting her degree. Lesley's students have placed in many National and International competitions, and her students and choreography have received prestigious awards and scholarships around the country.

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MOLLY POORE -                       COMPANY DIRECTOR

Molly Poore began dancing in 1984, under the direction of Taunia Wheeler, in ballet, tap and clogging. At the age of 8 she joined Uintah Basin Ballet Company. She spent 10 years with Uintah Basin Ballet, and loved the classical ballet training. During that time, she performed solo roles in many of the most well known ballets, including: Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and A Salute to Broadway. At the age of 10, she was chosen to perform with Ballet West in Romeo and Juliet. As a member of Uintah Basin Ballet, she began classes in jazz and lyrical techniques. Molly was a 14 year member of the Outlaw Trail Cloggers. She competed at a National level and won many individual, duet and team awards. She was selected as an All-America National Team member for 6 years, and in 1998 she won the title of A cappella MVP. In 1994 she began teaching and choreographing. Her choreography received many National overall awards, including 5 years of Triple Crown winning teams. Molly began teaching at Elite Dance Studio in 2001. She teaches ballet and clogging, in all age levels, and loves it! Her choreography has been recognized with many overall and high point awards. She loves seeing her students have fun, while learning and progressing as dancers.

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JORIE NIEMAN -                       COMPANY DIRECTOR

Jorie started dancing around her living room at 2 years old, making sure to copy all the dances from her favorite musicals.  Her formal training started at the age of 7 with Jazz and Tap. Soon after she branched out to train in Ballet, Modern, and Hip Hop.  She grew up as a member of Mt.West Ballet Company performing lead roles in ballets such as the Nutcracker, Coppelia, and Frog Prince.  She was accepted into summer intensive programs at The Virginia School of the Arts and Long Beach Arts Academy. Jorie continued her training at Center Stage Dance Studio and as a graduate of Honors from Brighton High School, she also served as Dance Company President her senior year.After High School Jorie was rewarded a scholarship to Odyssey Dance Theater’s summer program.  She then became a member of Odyessey’s Jr. Program, Odyessy 2, and then a full company member thereafter. As a member of Odyssey Dance Theater, Jorie worked with such choreographers as Dee Caspary, Mandy Moore, Mia Michaels, Bonnie Story, Eldon Johnson, and Darryl Yeager. She had the opportunity to perform at the World Jazz Congress in Chicago when Odyssey was named one of the top Jazz/Contemporary companies in the world. She has traveled the world performing and training.  She loves to gather all her experience and teach it to young dancers. She feels very honored to be able to share the things that she has learned and continues to learn in order to help young dancers grow not only in the art of dance, but in confidence that they can take with them throughout life.

 JUSTIN SORENSON -                     COMPANY DIRECTOR  Justin D. Sorenson has danced since the age of 6, 28 years total. He has been instructing 18 of those years. His accomplishments include; 3 year contract with Legends in Concert on the Las Vegas strip, 1 year contract with Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, VA, 4 contracts with a Las Vegas production company performing in a Michael Jackson Tribute Show back East in New Hampshire and Boston, a Western U.S. tour with Dracula 2000, completed full scholarship with Odyssey 2 as well as many performances with Odyssey Dance Theatre. He has also performed in and choreographed for many local shows in the Salt Lake Valley. While his performing career is not as vibrant it used to be, he takes much pride in his career in Hotel Management, and has even more pride in his continued teaching to young dancers in the Salt Lake Valley. His many experiences have left him with a need to instill in his dancers the strength, ambition, confidence and courage he has learned throughout his life and career in dance. His emphasis is on power and meaning behind all movement, and the understanding that anything is possible if you just believe and make it happen.

JUSTIN SORENSON -                     COMPANY DIRECTOR

Justin D. Sorenson has danced since the age of 6, 28 years total. He has been instructing 18 of those years. His accomplishments include; 3 year contract with Legends in Concert on the Las Vegas strip, 1 year contract with Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, VA, 4 contracts with a Las Vegas production company performing in a Michael Jackson Tribute Show back East in New Hampshire and Boston, a Western U.S. tour with Dracula 2000, completed full scholarship with Odyssey 2 as well as many performances with Odyssey Dance Theatre. He has also performed in and choreographed for many local shows in the Salt Lake Valley. While his performing career is not as vibrant it used to be, he takes much pride in his career in Hotel Management, and has even more pride in his continued teaching to young dancers in the Salt Lake Valley. His many experiences have left him with a need to instill in his dancers the strength, ambition, confidence and courage he has learned throughout his life and career in dance. His emphasis is on power and meaning behind all movement, and the understanding that anything is possible if you just believe and make it happen.

 ALISA FOX                                               TUMBLING, CHEER, CHILDREN'S COMBO  Alisa started dancing at the age of 3. She joined Elite Dance Studio the year they opened in 1988 and has been here ever since. Alisa attended Highland High School where she was a cheerleader and dance company member for 2 years. She was a member of SLCC's cheer squad for 2 years, serving as a captain. Alisa was a dance specialist for the Salt Lake City School District. She has choreographed many solos and routines for schools including, Olympus High School, Highland High School, Wasatch Jr. High, Salt Lake Community. She has also choreographed for events such as Miss Teen Utah USA. Alisa is also a judge for high school and college cheerleading tryouts. Alisa loves teaching dance, but says her real enjoyment comes from seeing her students gain confidence. Alisa and her husband Jason are the proud parents of their sons, Alexander and Jaxon.

ALISA FOX                                               TUMBLING, CHEER, CHILDREN'S COMBO

Alisa started dancing at the age of 3. She joined Elite Dance Studio the year they opened in 1988 and has been here ever since. Alisa attended Highland High School where she was a cheerleader and dance company member for 2 years. She was a member of SLCC's cheer squad for 2 years, serving as a captain. Alisa was a dance specialist for the Salt Lake City School District. She has choreographed many solos and routines for schools including, Olympus High School, Highland High School, Wasatch Jr. High, Salt Lake Community. She has also choreographed for events such as Miss Teen Utah USA. Alisa is also a judge for high school and college cheerleading tryouts. Alisa loves teaching dance, but says her real enjoyment comes from seeing her students gain confidence. Alisa and her husband Jason are the proud parents of their sons, Alexander and Jaxon.

LIZ ROBINSON DOXEY                  BALLET and CHILDREN'S COMBO

Liz has danced since she was very young. She studied ballet from the William Christiansen Academy of Ballet West for 8 years with Mr. Christiansen as her instructor. She has danced in many different ballets including 6 times with Ballet West's 'The Nutcracker'. She also performed with Ballet West's 'The Firebird' and the Utah Opera Company's 'Aida'. She attended Highland High School where she was a member of the dance club for 4 years and the president her senior year. She has choreographed dances for 'Saturday's Warrior' and 'The Sleeping Beauty'. In college she studied Jazz at the U of U for 4 years and danced in several college dance competitions.' Liz has been teaching on and off for 10 years with an emphasis in ballet for the last 3 years. She is also currently teaching Kick Boxing and Step aerobics classes. She is a wife and mother of 5 children. She loves teaching young girls to be graceful and feel that they are beautiful and strong. She especially loves teaching the girls about classical ballets, and to appreciate the music.

 AMBERLI FALK                                     BALLET  Amberli began dancing when she was 3 years old and has been passionate about it ever since. Amberli danced and performed with Elite Dance Studio for 8 years, as a member of Senior Company for 5 consecutive years. She has been trained in ballet, jazz, clogging, lyrical, and contemporary. In 2008-2009, Amberli was an officer in Olympus High School’s Dance Company, where she choreographed recital and competition pieces. This will be Amberli’s 6th year as a dedicated instructor with Elite Dance Studio. She has a love for ballet and appreciates how it allows dancers to have an excellent technical basis for all other styles of dance. Amberli provides a positive environment in class, where she develops strong relationships with individual students, helps them gain confidence and body awareness, grasp ballet technique and terminology, and develop a love and passion for dance! 

AMBERLI FALK                                     BALLET

Amberli began dancing when she was 3 years old and has been passionate about it ever since. Amberli danced and performed with Elite Dance Studio for 8 years, as a member of Senior Company for 5 consecutive years. She has been trained in ballet, jazz, clogging, lyrical, and contemporary. In 2008-2009, Amberli was an officer in Olympus High School’s Dance Company, where she choreographed recital and competition pieces. This will be Amberli’s 6th year as a dedicated instructor with Elite Dance Studio. She has a love for ballet and appreciates how it allows dancers to have an excellent technical basis for all other styles of dance. Amberli provides a positive environment in class, where she develops strong relationships with individual students, helps them gain confidence and body awareness, grasp ballet technique and terminology, and develop a love and passion for dance! 

 SHANNON O'CONNOR                            HIP HOP  Dance for me is the best way for me to express my emotions! I've been dancing since I was 10 and fell in love! I grew up in California and trained in jazz, contemporary, and hip hop. All styles of dance are amazing but hip hop is my jaaaaaam! While in California I did the macys passport fashion show and featured as a dancer, and I did a show called macys passport. While in utah I've been in the spectrum show at uvu and have taught for a couple years!

SHANNON O'CONNOR                            HIP HOP

Dance for me is the best way for me to express my emotions! I've been dancing since I was 10 and fell in love! I grew up in California and trained in jazz, contemporary, and hip hop. All styles of dance are amazing but hip hop is my jaaaaaam! While in California I did the macys passport fashion show and featured as a dancer, and I did a show called macys passport. While in utah I've been in the spectrum show at uvu and have taught for a couple years!

 RON YATES                                                    TUMBLING/GYMNASTICS  Ron began tumbling as an adult to help his children tryout for the high school cheerleading squad. Tumbling quickly turned into a passion.  Ron was tumbling so often and had picked it up so well that soon he was teaching the class and then the Gym asked him to start teaching. He progressed into coaching the competitive level gymnastics classes. He just loves kids and people! That is what makes Ron a great coach because he believes in them and wants them to succeed.  Ron worked with the Olympus Cheer as a weight training specialist for several years. He recently coached West High’s cheer squad in tumbling and stunting where they placed 2nd in national’s their first year of competing. Ron works with the Olympus High School Football and Basketball teams. He works part time with severely handicapped students at a local Junior High and has even coached kids with disabilities. Ron currently coaches highland high cheer and for the first time they made it to state and placed. Ron is also the 5A cheer coach of the year. Ron is excited to offer his teaching skills to Elite Tumbling.

RON YATES                                                    TUMBLING/GYMNASTICS

Ron began tumbling as an adult to help his children tryout for the high school cheerleading squad. Tumbling quickly turned into a passion.  Ron was tumbling so often and had picked it up so well that soon he was teaching the class and then the Gym asked him to start teaching. He progressed into coaching the competitive level gymnastics classes. He just loves kids and people! That is what makes Ron a great coach because he believes in them and wants them to succeed.  Ron worked with the Olympus Cheer as a weight training specialist for several years. He recently coached West High’s cheer squad in tumbling and stunting where they placed 2nd in national’s their first year of competing. Ron works with the Olympus High School Football and Basketball teams. He works part time with severely handicapped students at a local Junior High and has even coached kids with disabilities. Ron currently coaches highland high cheer and for the first time they made it to state and placed. Ron is also the 5A cheer coach of the year.
Ron is excited to offer his teaching skills to Elite Tumbling.

MEGGAN FELTS                                  JAZZ

Meggan has been dancing since she was just a toddler. She loves all kinds of music and loves to dance.  She has danced and performed all over the world such as, California, Hawaii, Washington D.C., London and the former Czech Republic.  She was a cheerleader at Brighton High School.  After High School she danced with various groups and went to Chicago as a Health Rider Dancer.  She was the co-owner of a dance studio for 5 years then decided to take a hiatus to start her family.  After putting the exclamation point at the end of her family (with five beautiful kids!!!), she’s so excited to get back into teaching.  It blends two things that she loves – Children and Dancing!!

 WHITNEY KIANA WILSON                       HIP HOP, JAZZ  Whitney is new to the studio this year, and so excited to join our team! She currently is a member of Odyssey Dance Company. 

WHITNEY KIANA WILSON                       HIP HOP, JAZZ

Whitney is new to the studio this year, and so excited to join our team! She currently is a member of Odyssey Dance Company. 

 MELISSA MAGLEBY HENDERSHOT  Melissa Magleby Hendershot began her formal dance training at the age of four years old under the direction of Penny Broussand at The Winner School in Salt Lake City, Utah. There, she trained extensively in ballet, pointe, jazz, contemporary, lyrical, tap and hip hop. After dancing with Odyssey II for one year, Melissa joined Odyssey Dance Theatre in 2007 and enjoyed dancing with the company nationally and internationally for ten years. She has performed choreography from Mandy Moore, Mia Michaels, Dee Caspary, Justin Giles, Roni Koresh, Derryl Yeager, Bonnie Story, Eldon Johnson and many others. Melissa was involved as a featured dancer in Walt Disney’s “High School Musical 1,” “High School Musical 2,”, “High School Musical 3,” MTV’s “American Mall” and Intermountain Health Care’s “LIVE” campaign. She has taught and choreographed all styles of dance to top level dancers across Utah and Houston, TX, as well as being a professor of dance at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho in 2013. Also, Melissa was one of four lead actors featured in the documentary “Duck Beach to Eternity” in 2011. She was featured in XANGO’s 2012 Health and Wellness campaign as a fitness model. Melissa was also one of six out of 600 educators chosen by lululemon athletica to attend their annual leadership conference in 2014. Recently, Melissa danced in the Super Bowl LI events, SXSW 2017 events in Austin, TX and was a featured actress and dancer in Scott DW’s YouTube video, “High School Dance Battle 3.”

MELISSA MAGLEBY HENDERSHOT

Melissa Magleby Hendershot began her formal dance training at the age of four years old under the direction of Penny Broussand at The Winner School in Salt Lake City, Utah. There, she trained extensively in ballet, pointe, jazz, contemporary, lyrical, tap and hip hop. After dancing
with Odyssey II for one year, Melissa joined Odyssey Dance Theatre in 2007 and enjoyed dancing with the company nationally and internationally for ten years. She has performed choreography from Mandy Moore, Mia Michaels, Dee Caspary, Justin Giles, Roni Koresh, Derryl Yeager, Bonnie Story, Eldon Johnson and many others. Melissa was involved as a featured dancer in Walt Disney’s “High School Musical 1,” “High School Musical 2,”, “High
School Musical 3,” MTV’s “American Mall” and Intermountain Health Care’s “LIVE” campaign. She has taught and choreographed all styles of dance to top level dancers across Utah
and Houston, TX, as well as being a professor of dance at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho in 2013. Also, Melissa was one of four lead actors featured in the documentary “Duck
Beach to Eternity” in 2011. She was featured in XANGO’s 2012 Health and Wellness campaign as a fitness model. Melissa was also one of six out of 600 educators chosen by lululemon athletica to attend their annual leadership conference in 2014. Recently, Melissa danced in the
Super Bowl LI events, SXSW 2017 events in Austin, TX and was a featured actress and dancer in Scott DW’s YouTube video, “High School Dance Battle 3.”

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MEGAN BRITTON                                        SILKS

Meg has been training in Aerial silks with Defying Gravity under the instruction of Ramsi Stoker for over 5 years. She is such a great asset to our Silks program!  She loves teaching even more than training. Meg started teaching for Elite and says the girls are so amazing! If only we all had that kind of energy again. Meg is really looking forward to getting to know the girls better and pushing them to progress and grow stronger every day.

 LINDSEY BROWN                                  BODY ALIGNMENT As a teacher, Ms. Brown has trained under the tutelage of Finis Jhung, Maria Vegh, Beverly Spells, and American Ballet Theatre where she holds a Level 1 teaching certification. She brings a unique perspective to the studio, seeking to develop the whole individual and create artists from the inside out. Her students know that anyone, regardless of their body type, can achieve their goals in dance with vision, hard work, and accountability. Ms. Brown has over 14 years of teaching ballet, pointe, pas de deux, and strength training. She has developed a body alignment workshop designed to help students of all ages develop a deeper understanding of their own bodies, thereby creating a solid foundation of technique. Her workshop is in demand throughout the Mountain West by students, teachers, and professionals alike.  Ms. Brown, as a ballet director, was responsible for developing a growing Nutcracker production from a cast of 150 dancers to 3 casts of 300 dancers. Her expertise shaped a sound ballet pointe program at a jazz based studio and created two pointe performing companies. Ms. Brown has also directed, staged, and choreographed productions such as La Bayadere, Le Corsaire Pas de Trois Des Odalisques, Swan Lake, Paquita, Cinderella, and Snow White. Ms. Brown spends her summers teaching at summer intensive. This past summer teaching for Ballet West Academy and Salt Lake Performing Arts Academy were a few of her favorites.

LINDSEY BROWN                                  BODY ALIGNMENT
As a teacher, Ms. Brown has trained under the tutelage of Finis Jhung, Maria Vegh, Beverly Spells, and
American Ballet Theatre where she holds a Level 1 teaching certification. She brings a unique
perspective to the studio, seeking to develop the whole individual and create artists from the inside out.
Her students know that anyone, regardless of their body type, can achieve their goals in dance with
vision, hard work, and accountability.
Ms. Brown has over 14 years of teaching ballet, pointe, pas de deux, and strength training. She has
developed a body alignment workshop designed to help students of all ages develop a deeper
understanding of their own bodies, thereby creating a solid foundation of technique. Her workshop is in
demand throughout the Mountain West by students, teachers, and professionals alike. 
Ms. Brown, as a ballet director, was responsible for developing a growing Nutcracker production from a
cast of 150 dancers to 3 casts of 300 dancers. Her expertise shaped a sound ballet pointe program at a
jazz based studio and created two pointe performing companies. Ms. Brown has also directed, staged,
and choreographed productions such as La Bayadere, Le Corsaire Pas de Trois Des Odalisques, Swan
Lake, Paquita, Cinderella, and Snow White.
Ms. Brown spends her summers teaching at summer intensive. This past summer teaching for Ballet
West Academy and Salt Lake Performing Arts Academy were a few of her favorites.

 MARIA HUERTA DE LA VEGA                JAZZ, HIP HOP  Maria Huerta De La Vega is a recent graduate from Utah State University where she got the opportunity to dance for the USU Dance Company for two years. She's been dancing since she was three and has trained with Utah dance Artists,and Millennium. She says that her favorite styles are hip-hop and jazz! 

MARIA HUERTA DE LA VEGA                JAZZ, HIP HOP

Maria Huerta De La Vega is a recent graduate from Utah State University where she got the opportunity to dance for the USU Dance Company for two years. She's been dancing since she was three and has trained with Utah dance Artists,and Millennium. She says that her favorite styles are hip-hop and jazz! 

 HUNTER ROWE                                            CONTEMPORARY, IMPROV, LYRICAL  Hunter grew up in Draper, Utah, and spent his early days developing a love for showmanship through music and dance as a performer in various choral groups and show choirs. At age 17 Hunter discovered a deeper desire for knowledge of dance technique and enrolled in Pioneer High School for the Performing Arts with an emphasis in dance. After graduating in 2013 he continued his studies in Utah Valley University’s modern dance program and began teaching at two local studios. Summer of 2015 Hunter was offered a job with Hannah Kahn Dance Company which lead him to relocate to Denver Colorado where he also danced for Mercury Dance Company and Reverb Movement Exchange. Having recently returned to his home in Draper, Hunter looks forward to continuing his studies at the University of Utah and is ecstatic to be teaching dance again in the Salt Lake Valley.   

HUNTER ROWE                                            CONTEMPORARY, IMPROV, LYRICAL

Hunter grew up in Draper, Utah, and spent his early days developing a love for showmanship through music and dance as a performer in various choral groups and show choirs. At age 17 Hunter discovered a deeper desire for knowledge of dance technique and enrolled in Pioneer High School for the Performing Arts with an emphasis in dance. After graduating in 2013 he continued his studies in Utah Valley University’s modern dance program and began teaching at two local studios. Summer of 2015 Hunter was offered a job with Hannah Kahn Dance Company which lead him to relocate to Denver Colorado where he also danced for Mercury Dance Company and Reverb Movement Exchange. Having recently returned to his home in Draper, Hunter looks forward to continuing his studies at the University of Utah and is ecstatic to be teaching dance again in the Salt Lake Valley.

 

 KODIE OSTERBERG  Kodie has been dancing for 17 years. She has training in Jazz, Ballet/Pointe, Contemporary, Lyrical, Hip-hop, Tap, Improvisation, Modern, and Musical Theatre. Throughout her training she has received many dance scholarships through many different dance conventions/competitions. She is currently attending the University of Utah as a Modern Dance and Business Management major. Her next step after schooling is to audition for different companies around Utah. Throughout her dance career she has been in performances, commercials, photoshoots, and intensives around the nation. Although dance was her first passion she has also found a passion for strength and nutrition. Throughout her dance career she has found the importance of how to take care of your body outside of dancing. Teaching is a way for her to spread her knowledge of both dance and strength and nutrition to young people. One of her favorite things as a dance instructor is seeing the growth of young dancers from the beginning of the year to the end of the dance year.

KODIE OSTERBERG

Kodie has been dancing for 17 years. She has training in Jazz, Ballet/Pointe,
Contemporary, Lyrical, Hip-hop, Tap, Improvisation, Modern, and Musical Theatre. Throughout her training she has received many dance scholarships through many different dance
conventions/competitions. She is currently attending the University of Utah as a Modern Dance and Business Management major. Her next step after schooling is to audition for different companies around Utah. Throughout her dance career she has been in performances, commercials, photoshoots, and intensives around the nation. Although dance was her first passion she has also found a passion for strength and nutrition. Throughout her dance career she has found the importance of how to take care of your body outside of dancing. Teaching is a way for her to spread her knowledge of both dance and
strength and nutrition to young people. One of her favorite things as a dance instructor is seeing the growth of young dancers from the beginning of the year to the end of the dance year.