© 2008 by Studio 61

 

MEET THE TEAM

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Gina Francis

OWNER

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KAYLA

WEISMAN

STUDIO MANAGER

DIRECTOR OF PART TIME COMPANY

HIP HOP INSTRUCTOR

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TARYN SHULAK

DIRECTOR OF FULL TIME COMPANY

JAZZ INSTRUCTOR

COMBO INSTRUCTOR

Starting her dance education at the age of 3, she studied intensively in Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Acro, Tap and competed nationwide. She then studied at FSU where she was the Golden Girls Dance Team Captain and helped lead the team to the schools first top 5 ranking in the nation at UDA Nationals. After graduating, she took her dance career to the court and became a Miami Heat Dancer from 2009-2013. Being one of the team leaders for two of years, she traveled and performed in the Philippines, China, and Paris. Aside from her dance career, Ms. Taryn has spent several years working as a preschool teacher in South Florida. This is her 8th year with us and she is one of the Studio 61 Competition Company instructors who's dances have won choreography awards, 1st overall, highest scoring routine of the competition. You can also find Ms. Taryn teaching the Combo and Jazz classes during the season!

SHERINA

KING

OFFICE PERSONAL

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ELENA

ESPINOZA

STUDIO INTERN

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MEGAN

DUNN

BALLET INSTRUCTOR

Ms. Megan’s training started at a young age at Miami City Ballet and Ballet Florida. She spent her summers training with Fernando Bujones at Orlando Ballet, Miami City Ballet and The Joffrey School in New York where she later joined their pre- professional company. Her professional career started at age 20 dancing for Ballet Palm Beach for 6 years. Megan has performed classical ballets and contemporary works all over the world. She has performed in Russia, Cuba, Croatia, Hungary, France and Bosnia. Her favorite roles include Cupid from Don Quixote, Sugar Plum Fairy from The Nutcracker and Myrtha from Giselle. This will be Ms. Megan’s third year with Studio 61 and she is the head coordinator of our ballet curriculum.

BEN

SLAYEN

BALLET INSTRUCTOR

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CHRISTINE LLYOD

DANCE CONDITIONING

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KATHY

VOURTSIS

CONTEMPORARY INSTRUCTOR

Born and raised in Miami FL, Katherine, has been dancing since the age of 10. First trained in ballet and modern and then specializing in contemporary, Katherine is also certified in Progressing Ballet Technique. She has also danced in a few international commercials and a movie directed by Kenny Ortega. With much experience in the competitive world, Katherine has coached several high school dance teams and taught in dance studios all across south florida. Going into her 5th year at Studio 61, she teaches contemporary and works with the Performance Company.

DANA

BONILLA

MUSICAL THEATRE INSTRUCTOR

Born in Lima, Peru moved to the US at the age of 9, and Miami at the age of 12. Although there was a lot of moving around dancing has always been a part of Ms. Dana’s life. At the age of 4 she began her Ballet training as well as some Italian and Peruvian Folk Lore. Once she moved to the US she began to explore Hip Hop, Jazz and Musical Theatre, and at the age of 12 she also discovered the art of gymnastics and became a competitive gymnast for 4 years, still continuing her dance training. At the age of 14 she became a competitive dancer and got the chance to also train in contemporary and ballroom styles as well. This is Ms. Dana's first year with Studio 61 and we are very excited to add her to the team teaching Musical Theatre! 

CHRISTIAN

CASTILLO

HIP HOP INSTRUCTOR

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JP

CAJINA

HIP HOP INSTRUCTOR

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MARIO TOLEDO

BREAKING INSTRUCTOR

Born in Queens, NY and raised in Miami, Florida, he was introduced to breaking in 1996. Since winning his first title in 2001, he has competed, showcased, and traveled across seas to France, Spain, the Virgin Islands, as well as competed and showcased all around the U.S. He placed 1st at Proam Dance Expo 3 times, was the 2013 silver medalist at Hip Hop International U.S.A., and in 2014 placed 11th in the world of out of 77 world country dance crews. He has worked with Sean Kingston, PitBull, KRS One and many more! He is the founder and one of the main choreographers of Illmatik Phlow Crew since 2009. Aside from his personal dance career, Mr. Mario has organized and thrown successful hip hop dance events since 2006 in Miami. He has been teaching breaking since 2005 and is a full time dancer ready to get better and inspire the whole world. Mr. Mario has ran our breaking program at Studio 61 for 7 years. Along with building the newest generation of bboys and bgirls, his ultimate goal is to bring out the character and confidence from his students!

Natalie Hernandez

JAZZ INSTRUCTOR

Natalie Hernandez started dancing at the age of five years old. She is highly trained in multiple dance styles including jazz, jazz funk, ballet, contemporary, lyrical, heels, modern and hip hop. She has attended multiple dance conventions to advance her skills, earning scholarships from Jump, Nuvo and The Dance Awards. She was Co-Captain of her high school varsity dance team her senior year, has placed 1st overall with her dance team continuously and has placed top 10 in most of the dance competitions she has attended. She was granted a college scholarship at New World School of the Arts that helped further her knowledge of dance. After auditioning and training, Natalie was selected to join the Miami Dolphins Cheer Team for 2019-2020. 

CHRISTIAN

CASTILLO

HIP HOP INSTRUCTOR

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JP

CAJINA

HIP HOP INSTRUCTOR

At the age of 14, JP eagerly sought out to learn how to translate music into movement. JP began his training at Catalyst Hip Hop as well as investing his time learning the art of BBoying. He continued his training into adulthood and has has multiple opportunities to perform for stations like Univision, Telemundo, Nickelodeon and The Dolphins Cheerleaders. JP has performed on various award shows, television programs, NFL, MLB, NSL Half-Time shows and so much more! Most recently JP was a member of the Marlins Energy Team. Filling the room with energy and style, this is Mr. JP's 2nd year teaching hip hop on Fridays!

ASHLEY

GROB

BALLROOM INSTRUCTOR

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ASHLEE

FOWLER

COMBO INSTRUCTOR

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ISABEL

ACOSTA

ACRO INSTRUCTOR

She was born & raised in South Florida and started learning gymnastics at the age of 5. Training on tricks and skills, she strives to build her students in her Acro classes! She has taught Pre-School gymnastics, competitive gymnastics, cheerleading, and acrobatics for over 15 years and recently got certified as an official Acrobatic Arts Teacher. This is our 4th year having Ms. Isabel as our Acro teacher!

CHRISTINE

THOMAS

BALLET INSTRUCTOR

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