Michele Hulsart is living her dream and currently in her 27th season as director and owner of Standing Ovation School of Dance. Michele been dancing ever since she was 3-years-old. After attending Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, and achieving a Bachelors Degree in Fine Arts she went on to perform world-wide. However, her real love for dance was in teaching so she has dedicated her life to teaching her students the art of dance and encouraging them to reach for their dreams. Michele has over 25 years of teaching experience and continues training to further her knowledge of dance by taking classes at dance conventions and attending business seminars. Michele's studio was proudly featured in Dance Spirit Magazine in 2007 as being one of the top 50 upcoming studios in the country. Michele was honored at Tremaine Dance Convention in New York City for all of the fundraising work the studio has done for Dancers Responding for AIDS. She also won the Co. Dance Educator award in NYC in 2011 and then her entire staff won it again in NYC in 2013. She is also the proud mother of five wonderful children who have all been a part of the dancing family through the years.
Brittaney has been dancing at Standing Ovation since the age of three and was in Miss Michele`s first three year old class. From age 9 all the way to age 19 she was a part of the Competitive Edge Competition Team winning many prestigious titles and scholarships and was even named Studio Dancer of the Year in 2000. In 2010 she was picked to internship with Dancers Inc Dance Convention and has been in the circuit with them ever since traveling all over the US. She has gone on to teach Master Classes for both Dancers Inc and On Tour and has choreographed for various dance teams throughout NJ. Brittaney is a graduate of Georgian Court University where she received her BA in Dance and studied under the direction of Silvana Cardell. She was able to perform at Philly Pard in Philadelphia and at ACDFA (American College Dance Festival of the Arts) two years in a row were her group scored in the top 5 and was invited to participate in the Gala performance. As well as teaching under the direction of Michele Hulsart for over 10 years she also choreographs and substitutes at various studios around NJ. Miss Britt is very excited for the upcoming year and to be able to share her passion for dance with her students.
Dana Ingram graduated from Point Park University with a BFA in Dance with a jazz concentration as well as a minor in Art History in 2005. Prior to college Dana studied with such notable educators as Mike Minery, Shelia Barker, Wade Robson and Frank Hatchett. Dana had the opportunity to perform works by famous choreographers including Robert Battle, Bill T. Jones and Doug Bentz. For the past six years, Dana has been teaching and choreographing at numerous studios and colleges. She has worked with a number of children and adolescents ranging in age from 3 to 18, teaching the fundamentals of dance and creative movement expression. Recently, Dana was the Assistant Choreographer for the Broadway cast of "The Lion King" in a piece for Defying Inequality, a Broadway Benefit. Dana continues to dance, choreograph and educate the youth of the dance community.
Since a young age, Allye Amorino has always loved the art of dance and the thrill of a performance. Allye grew up dancing at Movement Dance Academy and continues her dance education at Broadway Dance Center along with attending teacher workshops. She now teaches at Standing Ovation School of Dance and Dancin' on the Edge. She is very passionate about instilling the love, art, and commitment of dance into her students. Allye recently danced alongside the major league football team, the Somerset Bears! She has also performed in numerous musicals and on stage with the charity organization Cabaret for life. One of her proudest moments was her television debut on TLC's show "Four Weddings" where she preformed to the hit song and dance "Thriller." She has modeled for dance catalogs, and now works as an entertainer for booked events, along with training to compete in festivals. Allye is so thankful and blessed to share this amazing journey of dance with her students and she cannot wait to see where it will lead them in the future!
Helen Centrella has been dancing at Standing Ovation for eighteen years. She danced competitively with the SOCT for eight years attending competitions such as Tremaine, Dancers Inc and Company Dance. Helen has a natural love for dance and enjoys teaching and inspiring young children through her passion. This will be Helen’s fourth year teaching at Standing Ovation. Helen attends Kean University and in the spring will be receiving her bachelors degree in Psychology with a minor in recreation. Helen will continue on in education to earn her certification in Dance Therapy.
Lisa was three years old when she started dancing at Standing Ovation School of Dance, where she excelled in multiple forms of dance and was a team member of Standing Ovation’s Competitive Edge for many years. Lisa continued to study dance at Montclair State University where she graduated with a minor in dance. While attending college, Lisa was a member of a hip-hop dance crew and the Montclair State Dance Company. Lisa became an assistant teacher at Standing Ovation when she was in high school and then returned as a teacher in 2014 after graduating college. She currently teaches hip-hop, jazz, lyrical, ballet, and tap. Lisa is excited to be back with her Standing Ovation family that instilled her love and passion for dance, as she hopes to do for her own students.
Emily Rose is a native of South Jersey and began her dance training at the age of five with Ovations Performing Arts Academy. While training with Ovations, Emily became skilled in many styles of dance such as ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, contemporary and modern. She competed on their competition team winning many high scores, titles and scholarships. In 2012 she was named Regional Miss Onstage New York. Emily went on to further her dance education in college where she was accepted to the University of the Arts on both academic and performance scholarships from 2012-2014. In 2016, she graduated with program distinction from Stockton University with a BA in dance performance. Emily has been able to study with artists such as Dance Now! Miami, Rain Ross, Beau Hancock and many others. She has performed at ACDA (with acceptance to their performance gala), Philadelphia Museum of Art, Dante Hall, Koresh Dance Showcase and with the Atlantic City Ballet and Andrea Mychaels Dance Company. Currently you can find Emily continuing her training by attending workshops in NYC and Philadelphia, touring with Dancers Inc. and teaching at local dance studios. Her choreography has gained high scoring placements, special awards and technique awards. Emily is excited to continue to teach young dancers and join the Standing Ovation School of Dance staff.
Erin is originally from Hardyston, New Jersey and has been dancing since she was two years old. She graduated from Stockton University in May of 2018 with a bachelors degree in Dance Pre-Movement Sciences. During her time at Stockton, Erin worked with professional companies and artists such as Andrea Miller/Gallim Dance, Beau Hancock, and Rain Ross Dance. Erin has attended and performed in the American College Dance Association festival which supports dance in the higher education through regional conferences, the adjudication process, and national festivals. Erin will be continuing her education with Temple University in a Masters program for Recreational Therapy. Erin hopes to use her knowledge and experience in dance to help as an emotional and physical outlet for children of all abilities!
Darika has been studying ballet dance her whole life. She began her ballet career attending the Moscow Academy of Ballet to study classical ballet. Darika has also attended the National Academy of Ballet in Kyrgyzstan where she was a student and an Instructor. Darika has performed as a professional ballerina and was awarded the "Prima Ballerina" award in 1998. Her performing resume includes Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Carmen, Chopiniana, Paquita and The Nutcracker. Darika has taught ballet at numerous dance studios in New Jersey as well as teaching private lessons.
Chrissy started dancing at the age of 2, as one of the original "La Gratta Studio" dancers in Mrs. LaGratta's basement. At the age of 9, she became a member of the competition team and won various awards for solos, duos, trios and group numbers while traveling for competitions in the tristate area. During college, Chrissy was a featured dancer at Six Flags Great Adventure and was a performer for Macy's annual tap dancing event in New York City. In 1992, she was also a tap finalist in the State of New Jersey Teen Talent Expo at Monmouth University. During her dancing years she trained under AC Ciulla and Frank Hatchett in NYC at Broadway Dance Center. After graduating from Brick High School in 1992, she continued her education at Georgian Court University and graduated with a BS in mathematics and a minor in psychology. Chrissy is a certified high school math teacher. Miss Chrissy taught here at Standing Ovation from 2014-2016 and is overjoyed and excited to be back teaching for her third year.
Ashley Konopada has been dancing at Standing Ovation for 12 years. She has studied Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Pointe, and Hip Hop. Ashley has been dancing on Standing Ovation's Competitive Edge team for nine years. She has participated in many competitions and conventions including, Tremaine, ASH dance convention, and Co. Dance. Her team was Dancers Inc.'s national Jr. showcase champions. Ashley has also traveled to Walt Disney World with her team where she preformed in the Dance the World event in the Magic Kingdom. She has recently received a scholarship to be a part of the Heart and Soul dance company. She has also preformed in the Ashley Lauren Foundation's performance of Sussical as a dancer. Ashley is currently a freshman at the Performing Arts Academy . This is Ashley's second year of student teaching and she is excited to share her passion with the younger dancers at Standing Ovation.
Hailie Steiner is 15 years old and a sophomore at the Performing Arts Academy. She has been dancing for 6 years competitively at Standing Ovation. She has competed at national competitions and has also danced in Disney World. She has attended conventions each year and has taken classes with the Rockettes and other industry professionals. She has taken classes in ballet, tap, lyrical, hip hop, jazz, modern, African dance and pointe. This year will be her third year being an assistant teacher at Standing Ovation and she says she really enjoys teaching kids a new way to express themselves.
Valerie Hine has been dancing at Standing Ovation for 12 years. She has studied several styles such as Jazz, Ballet, Tap, Lyrical, and Hip Hop. Valerie is currently entering her eighth year on Standing Ovation’s Competitive Edge Dance Team. She has traveled to numerous dance competitions and conventions learning from some of the top names in the dance industry. During this time she received several high score and platinum awards with her team as well as being crowned Teen Titlist for Cathy Roe, Throwdown, and Beyond the Stars competitions. Valerie also was a member of Groove Competition's G-Rock Performance Company the year of 2014-2015. In addition she has been a principal dancer in Howell Middle School South’s productions of Legally Blonde and Mary Poppins along with Howell PALS production of Grease where she played Cha Cha DiGregorio. Valerie is honored to have the opportunity to share her love of dance with the younger dancers!
Samantha O'Gara is looking forward to working with the children as a student teacher this year! Sam has been dancing at Standing Ovation for 12 years, and has been on the Competitive Edge team for 8 years. Sam attends the Performing Arts Academy (PAA) where she studies dance history and performs many different genres of dance. She is an Honors student and takes her academic courses very seriously. Not only does she perform on stage, she also has stage managing experience from PAA dance performances. Sam has an enduring passion for the art of dance, and looks forward to sharing that passion with younger dancers. She hopes to help these young dancers grow just as her teachers helped her grow into the dancer she is today.
Sarah Kalp has been dancing since the age of three and just celebrated her tenth year dancing at Standing Ovation. She has also been a member of the Competitive Edge Dance Team for the past eight years. Sarah is an active member of the Kidz 4 Kidz/Ashley Lauren Theatre Ensemble and the Lake Riviera Middle School Drama Club. She has performed in several plays and musicals including Beauty & The Beast, Broadway Dreams, Suessical, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan and Pinocchio. Sarah is also a talented artist and singer and is interested in developing her skills further. Sarah has been a member of the National Junior Honor Society for the past three years at Lake Riviera Middle School. She will be entering Brick Township High School in the fall of 2017 as an honor student. She is looking forward to working as a student teacher at Standing Ovation School of Dance!