Staff

Whitney Teyf - Artistic Director/Owner/Founder

Whitney Teyf, originally from Northern Virginia, has been pursuing her passion for dance since the age of three. Whitney has extensive experience in teaching, choreographing, and performance. She received her BFA in Dance Education from East Carolina University in 2006. During her time at ECU she was a member of the Pure Gold Dance Team and the ECU Jazz Performing Group. She was both a principle dancer in the outdoor drama Horn in the West and choreographer / performer at the Powderhorn Black Box Theatre in Boone, NC. She was a company member with Atlanta Dance Project. She has performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., with Atlanta Ballet's Fusion Project,and most recently with Atlanta Dance Project at the Alliance Theatre. She founded the dance program at Vanderlyn Elementary in 2006 and taught dance there full time for eight years. She has been featured in Tucker's Up Close and Personal magazine , Dance Studio Life magazine, VOYAGEATL online magazine and most recently on All Business Media FM.


Emily Peay - Director of operations/ Dance Instructor

Emily Peay is a native of Kennesaw, Ga where she received her BA in Dance at Kennesaw State University. Her early years were spent training in ballet, tap, jazz, modern, and hip-hop at Great Gig Dance Company. She also participated in several summer intensives and workshops including the Joffrey School of Ballet in NYC (2008), Atlanta Rhythm Tap Ensemble in ATL (2010), and Staibdance’s Summer Intensive in Italy (2014). Her first time working with Emily Cargill and Dancers was for the MAD Festival in Atlanta (2014) and she has been dancing her heart out with ECD every since. A few other ECD performances include the Detroit Dance City Festival (2014), the New Grounds Dance Festival in Tampa, FL (2015), Art on the ATL Beltline (2015), Dance Canvas (2016), and SLIT (2016), ECD’s evening length work.  Although dance has always been Emily’s first love, she also finds music inspiring and believes all forms of art help her grow as a creative mover. 







Jessica Tyson - Dance Instructor
Jessica began dancing at the young age of two. She participated in competitive dance for 15 years. Her passion includes tap, jazz, ballet, and hip-hop. She later became a dance instructor for West Georgia Dance Company where she trained young, aspiring dancers until leaving to attend school. She now has a B.S. in Psychology from The University of Georgia. Jessica is a dedicated individual, excited to share her love of dance with others!




Q Harper - Dance Instructor

Q
 Harper is a professional dancer from Atlanta Ga. He started off as a b-boy and street hip hop dancer. After years of training and joining a team of dedicated dancers, he proved himself as more than just a street dancer, but a presence in the dance world. Q has been featured along with his team in music videos, working with artist such as T-Pain and Roscoe Dash. He has also appeared in shows and films being filmed in Atlanta Ga and was also a finalist along with his team Royal Flush, on Mtv's Americas Best Dance Crew. He is an active choreographer/dancer and instructor, performing and teaching all over the country.








Aaron Davidson - Dance instructor

Aaron represents a new generation of recording artists. Real name, Aaron Davidson, the young performer adds the title of acclaimed producer and songwriter to an already impressive repertoire. 
Aaron began studying the movement of great performers like Michael Jackson and Usher early on. He was captivated by their talent and in awe of their generosity. At that moment he vowed his life to his passion for music and performance. He studied at various different dance and competition academies on scholarship, becoming technically trained in all dance styles including hip hop, ballet, jazz, contemporary, tap, African, lyrical, and modern. Finding a love for the stage, Aaron began to perform in talent shows & showcases spanning the South East. Age 20, Aaron initially draws in all his audiences with his husky tone and charms them with his honest lyrics. Strapped with a composition book and pen, Aaron began to write. His poetry turned into thought provoking lyrics, and his melodies evolved into beats. Currently writing for EMI, Aaron is busy working on his debut EP & attending Georgia State University in Atlanta. He is on his way to simultaneously achieving a BA and MA is media production, and is already on track for graduating with honors and academic recognition. Stay tuned. There’s more to come from this rising talent!




Lezette Jordan - Dance instructor

LeZette Jordan is a native of Chicago,lL where she was raised with Arts in Education via The Joseph Holmes Dance Company and the Chicago Public School System .LeZette  has traveled and performed throughout the United States and Abroad. One of her goals is to continue to introduce dance to as many children as possible helping to promote a love for the art form as well as build character in their lives.She has been teaching in the Atlanta Metropolitan area for over fifteen years. LeZette teaches her students the discipline and the fun of dance. Trained in Jazz,Ballet and ethnic techniques, she brings a wealth of experience and versatility to students.





Devon Szklanka - Dance Instructor

Devon Szklanka, originally from a small town in northern Pennsylvania, has been dancing since the age of 5 has 18 years of training in ballet, jazz, tap, theatre, contemporary, and hip hop. After completing a great bulk of her training at her home studio under the instruction of Duane and Kellie Gordner, Devon was accepted into the Dance program at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. There she trained under the instruction of Donna Fay Burchfield and many prestigious staff where she earned her Certificate in Dance. From there Devon continued to pursue her love for dance in Los Angeles, California. Over time there she trained under some of the top working teachers in Los Angeles at studios including Millenium Dance Complex, EDGE Performing Arts Center, and Debbie Reynolds Dance Studio. She has been apart of numerous concept videos with other professional dancers, and had the pleasure of working with artist Ian Erix in his new music video. Devon had the privilege of being on the set of many shows including Glee, 2 Broke Girls, Nike, and AT&T. After 2 years in Los Angeles, Devon joined the Sesame Street Live: Make a New Friend cast as a performer, she toured for 10 months performing shows all over the United States. Devon has experience in choreography and teaching and couldn’t be more excited to share her love and gift with others as she begins her journey in Atlanta.



Lydia Patselas - Dance instructor

Lydia Patselas began her training at Dance Theatre of Jacksonville and then continued her dance training at Step Ahead Dance Company throughout high school. Lydia has completed summer training programs at the American Dance Festival in Durham NC, Broadway Dance Center summer intensive in New York City, and the New Dialect summer intensive in Nashville, TN. She recently graduated from East Carolina University’s School of Theatre and Dance program with a degree in Dance Performance and Choreography, Magna Cum Laude. She also received a Communication Studies minor. She studied under the instruction of David Ingram, Teal Darkenwald, John Dixon, Tommi Galaska and Galina Panova. Lydia has performed in works choreographed by Tommi Galaska, Teal Darkenwald, Danielle Sheather, David Ingram, John Dixon, Marissa Nesbit, Micah Geyer, and Joe Cotler. She also choreographed several works throughout her college career. Lydia had the opportunity to preform at the 2016 American College Dance Association in West Virginia. Lydia is currently a member of the Atlanta Dance Collective and is also teaching at RISPA School of Performing Arts

Niki Badua - Dance instructor

Niki Badua fell in love with dance when she was eight years old. She grew up in Hawaii, dancing at Applause Performance Academy where she eventually rose to instructor. Her passion brought her to New York City where she furthered her training in Ballet, Jazz, Hip-Hop, and musical theatre. Niki is a presently working actress, singer, and dancer; One of her favorite gigs was a touring children's theatre troupe, performing Beauty and The Beast as well as Babes In Toyland. She later traveled and performed in the Broadway National Tour of Mamma Mia while teaching dance workshops across the country. One year ago she made her home in Atlanta, and since then you may have seen her perform and star in Serenbe Playhouse's Little Mermaid as Ariel or in Titanic as Kate McGowan. Niki has always had an interest in nurturing future artists and helping anyone she can discover the joy of dance.





Khadira Beech - Dance Instructor

Khadira has been a hip hop dancer for 4 years and has choreographed for college dance teams and competitions. She was apart of the 12th annual Virginia Step and Dance Competition where her team placed 2nd place. Khadira also has co- taught hip hop classes in Virginia for students ranging from 6- 18. In addition to dancing on Georgia State's Pantherette team ,Khadira is a full time student at Georgia State pursuing a bachelor's degree in business management , projected to graduate in May of 2020. 







Joi Riley-Dance Instructor
Joi Riley,  Atlanta, Georgia native has been  dancing for 12 years, and sharing her passion teaching within her community for the last 5 years. Since Fall of 2003 at the age 7 when enrolled in Jazz and Hip Hop dance classes at Iris Academy of Music & Movement with Iris Goode and Lashawn Cook.  She developed the skills to become a competitive dancer, exploring many different genres. During Middle and High school, she was on the majorette team; her  drive and passion for the arts granted her the opportunity to pursue leadership roles. As she grew older her focus shifted more on teaching and choreographing.  She became a demonstrator and from there progressed to teaching and choreographing dances at her home studio. In 2015, graduating from high school her home studio closed down. That Summer she started a summer camp for kids and that was the start of  "Dance for Joi Dance Company”. Her company has competed and performed throughout Georgia. Winning many prestigious awards and titles! As a new studio owner she enjoys sharing her love of dance and seeing her vision come to life. Dance for Joi is not only teaching dance but also teaching discipline, responsibility and the importance of building true friendships that will carry them through all stages of life. Joi will continue to take opportunities to grow, define  personal dance skills and her teaching methods. 

Sarah Stokes - Dance Instructor

Sarah Stokes is an Atlanta-based choreographer, dancer,  and dance educator.  She studied contemporary dance performance and composition at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, where she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. Afterwards, Sarah relocated to Atlanta to perform, choreograph, and teach. She has had the great pleasure to perform in works by choreographers such as Shapiro & Smith, Helen Tamiris, Carl Flink, Larry Keigwin, HIJACK, Nadya Zeitlin, Mallory Baxley, and Morgan Carlisle. In 2015, Sarah joined with Britt Whitmoyer Fishel in order to establish Atlanta Dance Collective, a collaborative company of dance artists. Sarah's choreography, described as "ambitious-and effective" by the Twin Cities Daily Planet, has been produced in Minneapolis, New York City, and at various venues in and around Atlanta. Currently, Sarah is Dance Director at Bridgepoint Arts, lead Acro Dance instructor at Dance Theatre, and teaches at Expressions in Motion Dance, while also performing and choreographing in and around Atlanta!







Olivia Gelfand - Dance Instructor
Olivia Gelfand, a North Georgia native, has been dancing since the age of 4. She is classically trained in ballet, but has also received extensive training in modern, tap, jazz, hip-hop, musical theatre, and contemporary styles. Throughout high school, she was a senior company member at R.I.S.P.A. in Milton, GA, where she performed and competed. In 2018, Olivia completed her Bachelors degree (BA) in Dance, with a minor in Food & Nutrition from the University of Alabama. During her time at UA, she focused her studies on modern dance, and developed an interest in youth dance education. She was an active member of RipTide (the University Hip-Hop team), the Dance Honors Society of Alabama, and performed with Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre. In 2017, Olivia continued her formal training across the pond, when she spent a semester at the University of Roehampton in London, UK. Olivia is excited to be joining the EIM Dance family!






Mary Evelyn Hunt - Dance Instructor

Mary-Evelyn Hunt (Atlanta, GA) began her dance training at The Georgia Ballet and Powerhouse Dance Company where she extensively studied ballet, jazz, and contemporary. She graduated with a BA in Mass Communication and a Dance Minor from Georgia College and State University. She danced principle roles including Giselle and the Sugarplum Fairy with the Georgia College Community Dance Program. She obtained her MFA in Choreography from the University of North Carolina Greensboro where she received the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award for the College of Visual and Performing Arts. She was a 2018-2019 ImmerseATL Artist and has danced for many independent choreographers in Atlanta. 





Olivia White - Dance Instructor
Olivia White, a Miami native, found her passion for dance at early age. She received her BFA in Dance from Valdosta Georgia in December of 2017. She was mentored and performed in works by Sarah Arnett, Melissa Pihos, Olin Davidson, Eric Nielsen, and Geoff Reynolds. 
Olivia attended the American College Dance Association Conference, performing in student and faculty work, and has taken Master Classes with greats such as Freddie Moore. She has danced with Gotta Dance Contemporary Apprentice Company, as well as the SWAD Collective, performing the Modern Dance Atlanta Festival. She has also co-created and performed works at 7 Stages and the Inman Park Festival. Olivia has had the pleasure of teaching beginner pointe at A Time to Dance Performing Arts Studio in Valdosta, Ga, as well as contemporary, ballet, jazz funk, and creative movement at Dance 4 U! Performing Arts Studio in Atlanta, Ga. She is dedicated to inspiring others to develop and explore their relationship with dance.



Olivia Rowe - Dance Instructor

Olivia Rowe is the founder and artistic director of The Esthete Collective. She is a professional dancer, choreographer, teacher, and stage manager in the Atlanta area. In May 2018, she graduated from the Kennesaw State University dance program with a Bachelor of Arts in dance. Her recent performance endeavors include companies Fuerta Dance Company, City Gate Dance Theater, Ballet Southeast, and Gotta Dance Contemporary where she has performed both classical and contemporary works. In high school, Olivia trained at Atlanta Academy of Ballet as a professional trainee, as well as Balletmet Columbus and Nashville Ballet. She received her early dance education at Impact Dance of Atlanta. In college, she was privileged to study Gaga dance technique at the Batsheva Dance Company in Tel Aviv, Israel. Olivia was chosen as a 2019 Palette Project emerging choreographer, and worked in association with Dance Canvas to produce a new work, entitled "Is time passing, or is it just me?" She was also commissioned to set her work "Matutine" on professional company Ballet Southeast in their inaugural mixed repertory showcase in 2018. Her senior capstone project, a choreographic work entitled "Dichotomic," was one of six works selected out of twenty KSU dance student works to be professionally produced at the Spring Dance Concert in 2018. In addition to her artistic endeavors, Olivia is passionate about bringing the joy of dance into her community. She is the Director at projectENCORE, a local charitable organization that collects and redistributes gently used dance costumes and attire.

As an educator, Olivia has fostered a love of dance in students of all ages. She incorporates pedagogical and kinesiological principals learned in her collegiate studies into all classes, encouraging safe and healthy practice while cultivating creativity. Olivia has taught for schools such as Atlanta Academy of Ballet & Dance, Spirit of Dance Company, Westchester Elementary, Little Forest Preschool, The Neighborhood Ballet, Once Upon a Ballet, Impact Dance of Atlanta, Academy of Ballet, and many more.


Hope Burt - Dance Instructor

Hope Burt was born in Detroit Michigan but raised in Southern California. She began dancing at the age of 10 and immediately discovered her passion! Hope quickly developed a love for all dance styles but through intensive training and hard work, reached a high level of accomplishment in Hip Hop, Ballet, Jazz and Lyrical. She later added contemporary, Heels and ballroom to her repertoire. Hope has won numerous awards and scholarships including a full scholarship to Dance Educators of America’s Ballet Seminar where she trained under nationally renowned ballet instructors. Her achievements include; winning the Leap Contest and being featured on the front page of the competition website. Hope has performed annually as one of the featured “soloist” in the Nutcracker Ballet. The Nutcracker is performed at the Maxwell C. King Center in front of an audience of more than 1000 people! In addition to performance, Hope is an up and coming choreographer known throughout Brevard County, Florida and Atlanta, Georgia for creating innovative and unique choreography. With Hope's passion for entertainment it was only the natural step for her to also pursue it commercially and is represented by Legacy Talent Group Inc & 411 South. She's quickly become the one to watch with her strong desire to become one of the most powerful women entrepreneurs in America