Every Dance Instructor and Staff Member at Encore Dance Studio
is Certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED.
is Certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED.
Ashley Palmer- Founder, Executive Director, Company Choreographer and Instructor.
Ashley Palmer is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 5 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.
Head of Dance Department at Siena Heights University.
Dance Professor at Adrian College
Teacher Training and Certification:
American Ballet Theatre®, National Training Curriculum. (2017) (2019)
Vaganova Ballet Academy, St. Petersburg, Russia. Intensive Teacher Training.(2000)
Mat I & II Certification in Pilates through Balanced Body University.(2010)
Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. (2019)
Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration.
Siena Heights University, Graduated Cum Laude. (1999)
Company Member, Principal Dancer:
Ann Arbor Ballet Theatre (1990-93)
Additional Choreography includes:
The Croswell Opera House, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
Siena Heights University, Anything Goes.
Tecumseh Center for the Arts, The Nutcracker Ballet.
Additionally Instructs Ballet for:
Adrian College Bulldog Skating Camp
Adrian College Synchronized Skating Team
Adrian College Dance Team
Personal and Studio Awards:
2019 Woman & Youth Award presented by The Boys and Girls Club
2017 & 2018 Best of Lenawee (Best Dance Studio)
2018 Studio of Excellence Winner presented by the Association of Dance Conventions and Competitions
2017 Choreography Award presented by On Point National Dance Competition
Tanya Smith - Founder, Artistic Director, Company Choreographer and Instructor.
Mandy Harman - Artistic Director, Company Choreographer and Instructor.
Mandy began dancing at the age of three. Beginning with tap and jazz lessons, she received her first studio scholarship at the age of 8, and began entering competitions at the age of 9. Being an ambitious student, Mandy auditioned for and was accepted into a traveling competition and performing group at the age of 11. From here she studied tap, jazz, hip-hop and ballet. Also during this time she traveled to many different cities for competitions where she won several high awards and scholarships to attend Broadway Dance Center and an invitation to the Dance Caravan, Caravan Kid Program. Mandy was also a member of a dance trio making it to the final auditions for Star Search- a nationally televised program showcasing the top talent from around the world. It was around this time that Mandy began teaching dance as well. At the age of 19, Mandy was involved with the dance department and was a member of the cheerleading squad at Bowling Green State University, but was given the opportunity to come back to her hometown of Toledo and become a full time dance instructor and choreographer. Six months later, Mandy took over as owner of the studio and feels very lucky to have been given the opportunity. During the years she owned her own studio, Mandy created a traveling competition team where she did all of the choreography and instruction, taught more than 20 classes a week from the beginner to the advanced levels in tap, jazz, hip hop and lyrical, coached a Varsity gymnastics team for 5 years taking gymnasts to the State level of Competition and choreographed and coached for many high school and college dance teams. Many of Mandy's students have gone on to dance professionally in Disney World, Chicago, New York, and other areas as well. Currently, Mandy teaches many beginning, intermediate and advanced recreational classes at Encore. Mandy is the choreographer and coach of the Elite Hip Hop Team, Junior Performance Hip Hop Team, Senior Elite Lyrical Team, Junior Elite Lyrical Team and Elite Tap Team. Her teams have received many high awards, special judges choice awards, showmanship awards and have qualified and placed well at Tremaine National Competitions. In 2016 Mandy was awarded the “Top Choreographer” Award at On Point Dance Competition for her choreography of the lyrical routine, “99 Red Balloons”. Most recently, Mandy completed her Fitness Trainer Certification through the International Sports Science Association. She is a personal trainer at Go M.A.D. Fitness in Toledo where she teaches classes and does one on one training. She is American Red Cross Certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. Mandy trains and works with the University of Toledo Rockettes Dance Team twice a week; working on their endurance, strength and technical training. She also teaches dance class to special needs children at iDance Adaptive Dance Center in Toledo. She has been married to her husband Matt for 15 years and they have 2 children.
Brook Manchester - Instructor
After watching her very first dance recital as a young girl, Brook just knew she wanted to Dance! Brook began dancing with Gail Wildfong School of Dance in Gladwin, MI and studied with Gail all through High School. While attending dance classes, Brook studied and completed Cecchetti Council of Ballet grades I & II. Brook also attended Danny Hoctor’s Dance Caravan convention in Cincinnati, Ohio where she competed and attended summer workshops for 5 years—she has loved continuing to attend conventions and workshops with Encore Dance Studio. After graduating from High School, Brook attended Western Michigan University where she studied dance as a minor. She competed her BA in Arts in April 1996. After graduating WMU, Brook began teaching dance, primarily younger children, tap, ballet, and jazz in Kalamazoo and then in Davenport, IA. Brook has been teaching combo classes at Encore Dance studio for 6 years where her youngest daughter is a student and her oldest daughter is also teaching! In August 2019, Brook became certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. Brook currently works at Lumen Christi Catholic School in Jackson as the Advancement and Enrollment coordinator.
Cassidy Williams - Instructor, Company Choreographer
Riley Carrier - Company Choreographer, Instructor
Emily Carrier - Instructor
Anna Manchester - Instructor
Isabella Luppo - Instructor
Izzy is thrilled to be an Instructor at Encore. She has been assisting, subbing and co-teaching at Encore for many years. She is also certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. Izzy is a member of Encore’s Elite Dance Company. She also is a member of Tecumseh High School Dance Team. She has trained on scholarship at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York and Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. She has also trained at Interlochen and American Ballet Theatre. This summer will be her second year attending ABT. Izzy is proud to be chosen as an Ambassador for Ballet in the City and Barres n Blades. Through her work with Ballet in the City she has had opportunities to study with Sascha Radetsky (ABT Studio Company Directer) Emily Kikta and Peter Walker (New York City Ballet Company Members). In 2017, she was honored to have Dusty Button choreograph a solo piece for her. Izzy also travels to LA and NYC to train extensively in ballet as well as hip hop, contemporary, tap, lyrical and jazz. In 2017, She danced the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker Ballet at the Tecumseh Center for the Arts. In 2018, she was asked to give a speech on “Opportunities” at the Annual Ballet in the City Gala. For the past two years, Izzy has attended YAGP, a global pre professional ballet competition. In 2018, Izzy was awarded three Platinum Awards in Pointe, Contemporary and Lyrical at On Point Dance Competition. In 2019, she was awarded a scholarship at Revel Dance Convention. Izzy is excited to announce that she has been selected by Zippora Karz (former New York City Ballet Soloist and Balanchine Trust Repetiteur) to perform choreography for Ballet in the City’s presentation of the Ashley Bouder Project on October 18, 2019. Ashley Bouder is a Principal Dancer with New York City Ballet. Ms. Bouder helms her own small company, The Ashley Bouder Project, that has mounted several innovative ballet productions in New York over the years, primarily centered on commissioning new works by women choreographers and composers, including her own.
Megan Killop - Company Choreographer and Instructor
Megan has been dancing since she was 4 years old. She started at Karen’s Academy of Dance and switched to Glenn’s School of Dance when she was 8 in Howell, MI. In 7th grade, she decided to try out for Glenn’s company team called Performing Arts Dance Theater. She made the team and continued dancing with this team until she graduated high school. The company attended competitions such as New York City Dance Alliance (NYCDA), West Coast Dance Explosion (WCDE), Encore Dance Competition, and Onstage. Through competing, the team earned several high honors and was selected to go to nationals through NYCDA every single year. At this studio, she passed up to level IV in Cecchetti Ballet. Megan has extensively studied ballet, lyrical, contemporary, and jazz with tap, musical theater, hip-hop, and some ballroom experience. She has worked with choreographers such as Lauren Adams, Jason Parsons, Andy Pellick, Brandon Cournay, and Suzi Taylor. Megan has been a member of the Adrian College Dance Team for two years, and has been selected captain of the team for the 2019-2020 year. One of Megan’s greatest achievements was during the 2018 dance year, the Adrian College Dance Team placed first in their division at Canam Nationals in Myrtle Beach, NC. In August 2019, Megan became certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/ CPR/AED. Megan will be a senior this fall with a major in Biochemistry. She has loved subbing and working with some of the girls from Encore, and she can’t wait to learn and grow more with this studio!
Kristina Dennis- Office Manager
Kristina is a teacher at Onsted Elementary School and the mother of three beautiful daughters. She lives in Tecumseh with her husband of 23 years, Michael, and their daughters; Megan a junior at the University of Toledo Pharmacy School, Kylee a freshman at the University of Toledo in Nursing, and Emily a sophomore at Tecumseh High School and a member of the Senior Elite Company Team. Kristina graduated from Hillsdale College and then received her Master Degree from Siena Heights University in Elementary Education. She began her teaching career right out of college at Onsted Schools and then took a period of time off to be a stay at home mom, returning to teaching in 2010 back in Onsted. Prior to returning to the classroom, Kristina taught several college classes at the undergraduate and graduate levels at Siena and Lourdes University, as well as classes for adults and children which provided her with valuable people skills and managerial skills. Kristina was also the PTO Treasurer for Tecumseh Acres for 8 years. She is currently a co-leader of the leadership team at her school and was recently certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED with the rest of Encore’s staff. She brings a smiling face and positive attitude to the studio and looks forward to sharing her family’s love of Encore and its teachers with all of you. Please visit the office for help with any of your dance needs. The Encore Dance Studio faculty is here to make this an experience of a lifetime. Welcome to our family!!