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 & 2019 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
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, Senior Elie Jazz 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 the Fitness Director, a personal trainer, and group fitness instructor at Go M.A.D. Fitness in Toledo. She is American Red Cross Certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. She has been married to her husband Matt for 17 years and they have 2 children.
Brook Manchester - Instructor
Brook is just starting her 7th year here at Encore and is excited for another year with her combo classes! 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. Brooks youngest daughter, Morgan is a student at Encore in her senior year and her oldest daughter, Anna also teaches at Encore. In August 2019, Brook became certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. Brook and her husband Scott live in Jackson where they run their Chiropractic Office and are both Certified Health Coaches.
Cassidy Williams - Instructor, Company Choreographer
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.
Olivia Torres - Instructor
Olivia is honored to be an Instructor at Encore. Olivia has been dancing at Encore Dance Studio for the past 14 years. Olivia is a member of Encore’s Elite Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Tap and Hip Hop Team. She also is a member of Tecumseh High School Dance Team. She has trained at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York and Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. She has also trained at American Ballet Theatre and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. This summer Olivia attended Toledo Ballet Summer Intensives. Olivia is proud to have been selected for the second year as a Ballet in the City Ambassador. In 2019, She danced the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker Ballet at the Tecumseh Center for the Arts. Olivia has attended YAGP, a global pre professional ballet competition for the past three years. Olivia is certified in Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. She is so excited to teach and share her love for dance.
Elizabeth Halfmann - Instructor, Company Choreographer
Miss Liz will be teaching at Encore Dance Studio this fall. She began her love of dance at the age of four, taking several ballet, jazz, contemporary, pointe, tap, and hip hop classes. Liz has competed in numerous competitions and conventions with Encore Dance Company including: On Pointe, Tremaine, Groove, and Starbound. She has earned many awards including: golds, high golds, platinum, scholarships, and judge's awards. Liz has also attended Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and auditioned with Tremaine Dance Convention in Los Angeles, California. She traveled to Orlando, Florida to take part in Tremaine's National Convention. Miss Liz also performed in the Tecumseh Center for the Arts' productions of The Nutcracker with roles including the Snow Queen and Clara. Liz graduated from Adrian High School’s International Baccalaureate Program as fourth in her class. At Adrian High School, she was involved in ‘Grease’ the Musical and National Honors Society. She now is in the process of getting her nursing degree from Siena Heights University where she will be joining the Siena Heights Dance Team. Liz is excited to be able to share her passion for dance with our Encore family.
Kylee Dennis - Instructor, Company Choreographer
Miss Kylee was a dancer at Encore for 16 years and was a member of the Elite Dance Company Team where she got to compete in various competitions while receiving several awards acknowledging her love of dance. She also had the privilege of competing in Orlando, FL at Tremaine Nationals which is her favorite memory of her dance career. She is very passionate about dance and is so excited to get the opportunity to teach this year so she can share her love of dance with her students. After graduating as Salutatorian of her class of 2019 at Tecumseh High School, she moved down to Toledo, OH where she attends the University of Toledo and majors in Nursing. While down in Toledo, she had the opportunity to also help teach dance class alongside Miss Mandy at a studio called iDance Adaptive Dance Center for special needs students. Kylee loved getting to teach hip hop to her students once a week but is thrilled to be back at her home studio teaching classes. In addition to teaching dance class, Kylee also works at the Inverness Club in Toledo as a golf shop attendant which she really enjoys. Kylee also played competitive softball since the age of 8 and plays on the club team at UT. Softball has also shaped her into the hardworking and passionate athlete that she has become. Kylee has two sisters who also danced competitively and currently dance at Encore. Her older sister, Megan, will be a senior this year at Toledo, and her younger sister, Emily, will be a junior in high school and will be on the Elite Dance Company Team again this year. She has been very blessed to have been able to experience sharing the love of dance with both of her sisters and it is something she will always cherish. Kylee is one of the most positive people out there, and she always has a smile on her face! She cannot wait to begin teaching her students!
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!!