Miss Cali ~ Ballet
Christy Cannistra ~ Ballet, Jazz
Samantha DiPietro ~ Lyrical
Alyssa Dibrango ~ Modern, Lyrical, Tap
Kara Foote ~ Ballet, Contemporary, Modern
Robyn Gaffney ~ Preschool-Primary
Leyla Jackson ~ Ballet
Trevor Jones ~ Contemporary
Alexandra Lomato ~ Ballet
Sophia Putrello ~ Tap, Jazz
Caitlyn Schrader ~ Modern
Sarah Yacco ~ Tap
Carrie Putrello ~ Director

Laura Evans ~ Tap, Jazz, Ballet
Hannah Goerner ~ Ballet
Amanda Thomas ~ Ballet

Miss Cali, Ballet

Cali is a senior at Proctor High School and has been dancing for thirteen years. Cali has been in multiple ballets such as The Nutcracker, Coppelia, Les Slyphides and others. She has been a part of Dancenter's competition theme for five years and her last year at the Dancenter also started teaching. Cali will be attending The College of Saint Rose in the fall as a biology major and will be joining the dance team.

Christy Cannistra, Modern, Hip Hop, Ballet

Christy grew up in central New York and completed her ballet studies under The Royal Academy of Dance Syllabus. She has performed roles in The Nutcracker, which include: Spanish, Doll, Snow Queen and Sugar Plum Fairy; also, performed in the ballets Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella. Christy attended the Boston Conservatory where she earned a BFA in Dance. At the Conservatory she danced in Ballet, Modern, Jazz, African and Musical Theater productions. Christy danced professionally in Boston with Triiiplethreat Hip-Hop group and opened up for artists including "Fabolous" from Def Jam recording Artists. After dancing professionally she went back to school and received a Masters Degree in Education from the University of Massachusetts Boston. Christy lived in Boston teaching dance and drama for the Boston Public Schools, local dance studios and after-school programming. Christy has also taught for the Utica City School for Watson Willams Magnet Elementary School.

Check the link out of my students dancing!
video from the news

Check out the Utica OD, they made the front local page and there are more photos online!

Samantha DiPietro, Lyrical

Samantha DiPietro grew up in New Hartford, NY and began dancing at the age of 3. Samantha danced with the Dance Academy and the Leatherstocking Ballet Company, under the direction of Ms. Jamie Sitera. At the Dance Academy she studied the Royal Academy of Dance Syllabuses. She was a member of the Leatherstocking Ballet Company for five seasons, performing in numerous Nutcrackers and Spring Ballets. Samantha continued her dance training at SUNY Potsdam where she majored in Childhood/Early Childhood Education and Dance. She is a NYS certified dance education teacher. At Potsdam she taught children pre-primary and beginning ballet and tap classes. While studying at SUNY Potsdam she performed and choreographed works for the student and senior choreographers' concerts. In March of 2014, her piece "Where Have All the Children Gone?" was performed at the American Colleges Dance Festival in Boston, MA. Samantha is presently a first grade teacher at Clinton Elementary School.

Alyssa Dibrango, Modern, Jazz, Tap

Alyssa began dancing at a young age and has had opportunities to take classes in ballet, modern, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop and improv. She has participated in numerous competitions, conventions and workshops including New York City Dance Alliance, Co Dance, Tremaine, Starpower, Hall of Fame Dance Challenge and many others. Alyssa graduated from SUNY Oneonta in 2012 with a Bachelor's degree in Mass Communications and a minor in Dance. While at SUNY Oneonta, she choreographed and performed with the Terpsichorean Dance Company and was also on the Oneonta State Dance Team. Alyssa was a part of the AHL's Utica Comets Dance Team, the Utica Comettes, for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons. As a proud Dancenter alumna, she has choreographed high scoring, award winning routines for Dancenter of Utica's Competition Company and is also happy to be a part of Living Arts Movement. Alyssa feels she has a special connection with each and every one of her students and loves to live by the quote "when words fail Dance speaks."

Kara Foote ~ Ballet, Contemporary, Modern

Kara Foote, born and raised in Rome, NY, began her studies in dance at age 7 at the John Hayes O'neill Studio of Dance. Throughout her time with JHO Dance, she studied intensive ballet/pointe technique and contemporary under the direction of Canan and Stephen Jackson, Matthew Pitcher, and Nicole Cotton-Shantel. Kara decided to further her education and artistic development at SUNY The College at Brockport for her undergraduate degree. During her time at Brockport, she was able to investigate modern dance technique for the first time, as well as continue to strengthen her ballet training. Under the direction of faculty such as Bill Evans, Mariah Maloney, Vanessa VanWormer, Karl Rogers, and Stephanie Oakes, she received her BFA in Dance in the Spring of 2014. Kara has spent the last year and a half performing with Boston based company Urbanity Dance, as well as teaching for their Trainee program. In addition to performing with Urbanity, she has also worked with companies including Turning Key Dance, Syracuse City Ballet, Mariah Maloney Dance, and Vanessa VanWormer Dance.

Robyn Gaffney ~ Preschool-Primary

Robyn graduated from Mohawk Valley Community College with and Associate's degree in Lib-Arts & Sci- Psychology. She currently works in the Human Services field as a Family Specialist. She is also a model part - time. Robyn has been dancing all her life. She has worked along the side of Christopher Knight, Adrianne Cury, The Cake Boss, Mike Tyson, Huey Louis, and opened up for Jesse James. Robyn also works for Farrington Productions out of Las Vegas. Robyn is the model coordinator for Syracuse Fashion Week which raises money for the Syracuse Food Bank. She is also on the Syracuse Silver Knights Dance Team. Robyn is a huge supporter of our veterans, and servicemen and women. She loves to spend time with her daughter, dance, shop, and spend time with her family and friends. Robyn's goal in life is to live happy and enjoy the time that she has. She believe that there should be no time wasted since time is so precious!

Leyla Jackson, Ballet

Leyla Jackson was born in Rome, New York and began her dance training at the age of three at the John Hayes O'Neill Studio of Dance. Jackson studied at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre from 2008 to 2010 under the tutelage of Franco DeVita and Raymond Lukens. In 2011 she furthered her training and performing at the Joffrey Ballet's Concert Group and began working with renowned faculty members Davis Robertson, Stacy Cadell and Francesca Corkle. She most recently began dancing with The Istanbul National Ballet.

Trevor Jones, Contemporary

Trevor Jones, a Utica native, began his early dance training at Dancenter and Utica Dance(formally MWPAI). His training also took him to to train with one of the top studios in the Southern California area, JPD as well as the Joffrey Ballet School in NYC for their Contemporary Jazz program. His professional performance experience includes "Oklahoma" at the Venice Theater in Venice, Florida and production cast dancer for Norwegian Cruise Line. Trevor is currently in demand locally as a choreographer for musical productions and contemporary dance.

Alexandra Lomato, Ballet

Alexandra grew up in Central New York and began her dance studies under the direction of Delia Foley at the age of 4. While dancing under Ms. Foley, she studied intensely the Royal Academy of Dance Syllabus and performed numerous lead roles, which include: The Sugar Plum Fairy, Snow Queen, Ariel, The Fairy Godmother, and various others. Her dance education extends into intensives for the Royal Academy of Dance in Long Beach, California, the NYS Summer School of the Performing Arts in Saratoga, and also the Pre-Professional Summer Intensive Program at STEPS on Broadway. Alexandra has passed her Advanced 2 examination with Royal Academy of Dance examination with High Honors, and is now a full member of the RAD. Currently, Alexandra is in the process of becoming a certified RAD instructor and projects to be complete by fall of 2015. Along with her love of ballet, Alexandra is also a second year member of the Utica's Comets AHL Dance Team.

Sophia Putrello, Tap, Jazz

Sophia has been dancing her entire life, and has attended multiple dance schools. She has received scholarships to The Royal academy of dance's program in Long Beach California, and The American Academy of Ballet intensive, which was directed by Mingon Furman. She has attended Maine State Ballets summer program and danced with company members there. Sophia has also danced on competitions teams, and has took multiple solos, and received multiple awards. She has been invited to nationals and got an intensive scholarship from the prestigious NUVO convention. She has also choreographed for the Living Arts Movement, and pieces for the Dancenter.

Caitlyn Schrader, Modern

Caitlyn is a freelance dancer and educator originally from New Hartford, New York. Most recently hailing from Melbourne, Australia, where she spent a yearlong independent study learning Countertechnique, and previously Boston, Massachusetts (USA), she received a BA from Hobart and William Smith Colleges and a MS from the University of Rochester. Before relocating to the Boston area, Caitlyn was a member of professional dance company, BIODANCE, in Rochester, New York; she then danced for Boston-based, dance company EgoArt, Inc. She has performed in works by Nathan Andary, William (Bill) Evans, Lane Gifford/LaneCo Arts (NYC), Heidi Henderson, Annie Kloppenberg, Jody Weber, and Reggie Wilson/Fist and Heel Performance Group (NYC). In addition to performance, she is also a choreographer and her work has been presented at Green Street Studios, The Dance Complex, Somerville's ArtBeat Festival and the Atlantic Wharf (all Boston, USA). Caitlyn has taught extensively within private and public institutions, providing classes in ballet, modern, and creative movement in New York, Massachusetts, and Southern France for dancers and non-dancers alike. When not dancing, Caitlyn is a French teacher and private tutor. As a former Dancenter student herself, she is excited to be returning to her roots for the 2017-2018 school year!

Sarah Yacco, Tap

Sarah Yacco has spent the 18 years of her life dancing. She has studied jazz, tap, lyrical, ballet, modern, hip-hop, and contemporary, tap being her favorite. In her senior year of dance she was voted Elite team dance captain by her teammates. After graduating from the studio in 2014, she began college at SUNY Polytechnic Institute where she will be graduating with my BA in Psychology in December. Her plan is to continue on with my education in Child Life.

Carrie Putrello, Director: Jazz & Ballet

Carrie has earned scholarships from prestigious schools including North Carolina School for the Arts, San Francisco Ballet School, and Ballet Aspen in Colorado. She danced professionally with the Santa Monica Dance Company for many years and was a showgirl in Osaka and Nagoya under the direction of Ben Lokey. Ms. Putrello received her education through the School of Creative and Performing Arts in Cincinnati, Ohio and the University of Cincinnati. Ms. Putrello has been a guest teacher at Hamilton College, Munsun Williams Arts in Utica, NY and Absolute Dance in Auburn, NY. Carrie opened the DANCENTER in 1998 and has since created a quality dance school where students have fun and learn to become better dancers. Carrie has brought advanced jazz, lyrical and ballet. pieces to national competitions. Winning special awards in choreography, technique, intensity, precision and entertainment. Carrie is Marrone Photography's Annual Fashion Show's Director to benefit Ride for Missing Children and the original dance choreographer for the Comettes opening season for AHL's The Comets team.

Laura Evans, GUEST TEACHER Tap, Jazz, Ballet

Laura started dancing at the age of 3. She has competed in tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, and pointe. She attended SUNY Oneonta, and graduated in 2012 with a bachelor's degree in biology. During college, she was a member and elected Vice President of the Terpsichorean Dance Company. Laura was also a member and captain of the Oneonta State Dance Team for three years. She choreographed numerous competition pieces, performances, and half-time routines throughout her time at SUNY Oneonta. She is also a member of the AHL'S Utica Comettes Dance Team.

Hannah Goerner, GUEST TEACHER Ballet

Hannah Goerner has been a part of Dancenter Studio for thirteen years, focusing mainly on classical ballet, and also studying lyrical, contemporary ballet, and tap. She has studied Advanced levels of the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus, and has completed up to Intermediate level exams. Hannah also performed with the Leatherstocking Ballet for six years, where she danced various roles, including Tinkerbell in Peter Pan, Cinderella in Cinderella, Snow White in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, and the Snow Queen and the Sugarplum fairy in The Nutcracker. Last summer she was awarded a partial scholarship to attend the American Academy of Ballet's summer intensive, where she had the opportunity to learn from prestigious teachers. In her most recent local dance competition she received platinum and first place overall.

Amanda Thomas, GUEST TEACHER Ballet

Amanda attended Binghamton University, where she obtained a Bachelor's of Art degree in Dance, receiving the Albert Nocciolino Excellence in Theatre Award for her work. For three summers, beginning with its inaugural year, Amanda attended the Saratoga Summer Dance Intensive, a ballet program directed and taught by current and former members of the New York City Ballet, including Melinda Roy, Roberto Munoz, Ashley Bouder, and Daniel Ulbricht. Locally, Amanda has performed with and assisted in choreography for Hartford Players Theatre, Utica College, and the Outcast Theatre Company. Amanda has worked as choreographer for both Waterville and Mount Markham Schools in their middle/high school musicals for the past two years. She has taught at Kathy Hansen School of Dance in Apalachin NY, the Clinton Academy, and currently teaches at Dance from the Heart in Sherrill.

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