Stella Palumbo - "Miss Stella"
The owner and founder of Stella's Dancers' Studio, she began teaching dance at age 15 and has owned and operated her own studio since she was 19. Today, more than 300 students study Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Hip-Hop and Modern. Additionally, she founded and currently directs the nationally acclaimed Illusion Dance Company, which has won countless competition titles and performed at area hospitals, nursing homes and community events. Stella’s Dancers' Studio has celebrated their 31st Anniversary Recital.
While encouraging the members of the company to strive for success in competitions, Stella emphasizes having fun and learning proper technique to instill a positive self-esteem in all her students.
Trained by the prestigious Dance Educators of America she has continued her dance education by attending master classes, conventions and studying in New York at the Broadway Dance Center. Miss Stella’s students have been accepting into top higher dance education schools like New World School of Performing Arts High School and College, University of Buffalo and Fordum University. Her students are also going on to professional careers, including dancing in the new Broadway Show, Can Can, TV show Smash, Radio City Rockettes, MTV and Grammy music awards,Pit Bull, Enrique Inglesias, Gloria Estifan Miss Ellioit, Lou Bega, Deborah Cox, P.Ditty, Siegfried and Roy, Debbie Allen, performing in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Super Bowl XXIX, Disney Tokyo, Walt Disney World, Bush Gardens, cruise ships, nightclubs and local theater.
Judy Ann Bassing
Judy Ann Bassing is an international artist in great demand as a Choreographer/Director and teacher. She is the recipient of six Los Angeles Drama-Logue Awards for outstanding choreography and directing and a San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Award for the production of "Sugar" presented at the Lawrence Welk Theatre. France, Germany, Switzerland, Scotland, England, Yugoslavia, Spain, Portugal, Slovenia, Czech Republic are countries where she choreographs, directs and teaches. While in Essen, Germany choreographing "Company", Judy directed and choreographed Gala for the President of Germany, She recently choreographed "Me and My Girl” at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, starring Bruce Adler, Tony nominee for “Crazy for You”. Theater credits include: “Nunsnse”, “Funny Girl”, “Cabaret”, “Sweet Charity”, “Peter Pan”, “Man of La Mancha”, starring Doug Carfare, “She Loves Me”, "Panama Game", Singing in the Rain", “The Unsinkable Molly Brown", "Promises Promises", "Oklahoma", starring Tony nominee Alice Ripley, "Hello Dolly", "Guys and Dolls", "l do, I do" starring Richard Kline of the TV series "Three's Company" and Belle Calaway, "Bells are Ringing", "Dames at Sea", "Anything Goes". Industrial credits are: Merrill Lynch, 'Dance in America”, and M & M Mars. Television: BBC '”Special on Dance", Scotland. "Production Numbers" European International Sports Competition. Judy recently choreographed "Crazy for You" in Las Vegas and was the choreographer for the opening number for the "1999 World Ski Cup Championships". Judy just returned from Prague, she was one of the guest artists invited to participate in workshops and performances celebrating American National Tap Dance.
Katelynn Draper is an enthusiastic dancer who has dedicated her life to dance and teaching. She received an eclectic span of dance training from Stella’s Dancers studio. Currently Katelynn is studying at New World school of the Arts to obtain her BFA in dance. She has worked alongside and performed repertoire from world renowned choreographers such as Judith Jamison, Ariel Friedman, Tony Fabre, Kyle Abraham, Patricia Lent ( Merce Cunningham’s work), Peter London, Gerard Ebitz, Darshan Bhuller, Rennie Harris, Robert Battle, Frank Hatchett, and Shelia Barker . She has had the incredible honor to study at the school of Jacob’s Pillow in the contemporary program, under the direction of Milton Myers. Through her studies and exploration of art, Katelynn will continue to nourish the minds of young dancers through her educational and inspirational classes.
Miss Jill became a part of the Stellas Dancers Studio family 14 years ago when her daughters Kaylee and then Kendall began their dance careers as Baby Ballerinas. She joined the front desk staff a few years later. She has been teaching in the public school system for 13 years, the past 11 teaching 1st graders at the Pembroke Pines FSU Charter Elementary School. She is happily married to George Ezzell.
Krysten Herrera Fantagrassi
Miss Krysten is a native Floridian, where she received most of her dance training. Her background in dance consists of training in Classical Ballet, Jazz, Modern (Graham, Limon, Horton, and Cunningham), Caribbean, and African. She graduated from the University of Florida through New World School of the Arts with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. She has appeared in the following: Treasure Islands, Sirens of TI promo, Las Vegas Nevada-Travis Payne, Kenny Ortega-2003, Michael Uthoff Dance Theater-Sinfonia Danzante 2003, Media Luz-2003, Manso Dance-Original Works by Paulo Manzo de Souze, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Reunion, Gerard Ebitz, Dancing Inside/Out - Original West African Dances, Mohammed de Costa, La Corridor, Silent Voices Breath be Heard, Kristin O'Neil and many others.
She has experience teaching students from beginners to professionals and truly loves being in the classroom. She is also a personal trainer with a very strong background in anatomy, kinesiology, nutrition and physiology. She welcomes any and all questions that both students and parents have regarding ways to improve health and well being.
Debra Gonzalez discovered dancing at the age of 19. She received her minor in dance from Penn State University where she was a member of the Contemporary Dance Company. Studying dance, and performing throughout her college years and beyond, she was a member of the Pennsylvania Dance Theater, a sought after local professional modern dance company. After graduating, she worked as their booking/stage manager while continuing to teach, take class, and perform. Debbie has studied at Steps NYC, and with such acclaimed teachers as Anita and Frank Mastrocola, Elizabeth Limons Shea, and Carol Hatcher. Debbie has been teaching at Stella’s Dancers Studio for more than 5 years, always instilling her love of teaching with her love of children. She also works part-time as one of our front desk receptionists.
Jenn Jones is a Georgia born dancer who has had the opportunity to work professionally in the many facets of the dance community. She started dancing at age 3, and continued after moving to Daytona Beach at age 10. In high school Jenn attended the Ormond School of Ballet under the direction of Jane Bradshaw and performed with her High School Dance team, winning 1st place nationally each year. She continued to dance through college while in attendance at Columbia College in Chicago and at the University of South Florida in Tampa, earning an Associate of Arts degree in Secondary Education, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Dance Performance. While in Tampa, Ms Jones performed for shows at Busch Gardens and with professional companies including Bella Danza Collective, an eclectic modern dance company directed by Maria Capitano-Pardo, Enigma Dance Kru, directed by Mouse Vader, VYB Dance Company, directed by Demario Henry, and Event Show Productions.
Jenn has coached and choreographed for competitive dance teams at the high school and college level, in addition to choreographing for productions with Jobsite Theatre Company at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center. Further teaching experience has included various programs at the Patel Conservatory and for dance programs at Tampa Preparatory School and the Academy of Holy Names. Since moving to South Florida in 2011, Jenn has been dancing with the TOC Project, a contemporary ballet company directed by former Twyla Tharp company member, Lara Tinari, and recently joined Karen Peterson and Dancers, a modern dance company that features performers with and without disabilities. Local teaching experience has included workshops for local studios and setting floor routines for competitive gymnasts at Fort Lauderdale Stars and setting group gymnastics choreography for St. Thomas Aquinas High School.
In addition to dancing, Jenn has worked as a professional Disc Jockey and event planner since 2005.
Lisa Mark has taught dance professionally for over 40 years. She owned and operated her own dance school for the past 19 years. A dancer and featured acrobat at the University of Tampa, she taught Ballet and floor gymnastics for the Tampa Children's Home and performed an acrobatic exhibition for Florida's State Fair. Under renowned choreographer June Taylor, she performed in a special benefit for Hospice. Lisa has been a member of Dance Masters of America, Professional Dance Teacher's Association (P.D.T.A.) and Florida Dance Masters for the past 20 years.
Miss Kim is one of our friendly receptionists. She is also in charge of accounts receivable. You will find Miss Kim to be extremely detail oriented and most helpful to all you needs. Her daughter Jessie is a market operations manager living in Washington, DC and still dancing and teacing.
Miss Rebecca is from Lexington, KY where she grew up as a competitive dancer studying all dance forms with a special emphasis on Ballet. She won numerous local, regional and national awards including “Ohio’s Female Dancer of the Year” (American Dance Awards), “Miss Dance of Ohio” (Dance Masters of America), and was 3rd Runner-up in the Miss Kentucky Scholarship Pageant (a preliminary to the Miss America Scholarship Pageant) and performed in many local and regional theatre productions. She attended the University of Kentucky on a full academic scholarship and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication. After spending 2 years as a full-time dance instructor at her home studio in Lexington, she moved to New York City to pursue her dance dreams. She was hired by famed jazz instructor, Frank Hatchett, as a class and convention assistant. She met a lifetime goal when she had the honor of becoming a Radio City Rockette performing in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. She is now mom to daughter, Alexandra, and son, Spencer, and joins our staff as a Ballet technique specialist.
Monica Richardson started her training at the age of three. She is a Graduate of New World School of the Arts in Miami, where she trained heavily in Modern, Ballet, and Jazz. Monica has received dance scholarships to attend Bates Dance Festival and overall performer for the Pacific Coast Dance Festival. She has performed lead roles in both Debbie Allen’s “Pepito’s Story” and LaVerne Reed’s “The Chocolate Nutcracker”. She has worked and performed as a background dancer for Gloria Estfan, and has danced in music videos for rap artist Ja Rule as well as Missy Elliot.
She also took part as the choreographer and dancer for several performances for artist JackieO and group Take Note, with whom she did the opening number at the Reggae Festival in Miami featuring artists such as Sean Paul.
Monica has also worked abroad as lead dancer for Tokyo Disney Sea where she danced in the show “ShowBiz Iz.” She performed as a background dancer on the televised “Latin Pepsi Smash” with recording artist “Pitbull”. Monica has also worked with Cuban Actor Angel Salazar know for his performance in the Movie “Scarface”. She was a dancer in his comedy show “Sheck it out .” Monica continues her dream of performing, choreographing, and teaching master classes throughout the United States. She is currently assistant choreographer to Jimmy Locust and is head of the modern program at Locust Performing Arts Center of Stamford. She is also touring as head choreographer and assistant director for LaVerne Reed’s “The Chocolate Nutcracker” and new urban musical “Adventures of Pan” where she stars as “ Tinkaboo".
Krystal Rose has been studying under Stella Palumbo and her wonderful staff since the age of 7. She grew up competing with Illusion Dance Company where she learned the most important quality to becoming a successful teacher, leadership. Education shows equal significance to her. She recently received cum laude honors from Florida International University, double majoring in International Relations and Political Science.
Krystal has been teaching at Stella's for over 6 years. Although she's pursued education for the first half of her life, her main goal is to instill all the important life lessons dance provides within all her students.
Michael Taylor has been a master teacher for 28 years, giving seminars, setting original choreographic works and teaching dancers around the world in both the private and public sectors, in addition to college, university and fine arts programs. As a performer, some of his credits include: Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, serving as associate director and rehearsal choreographer for six years; River North Dance Company, AKASHA Dance Company, The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, serving as an assistant choreographer for five years, as well as several theater, fashion and industrial credits to his name, including Papermill Playhouse’s Funny Girl, and Disney’s Magical Moments in Chicago and Rome, Italy. Recently, Michael proudly served as a director and rehearsal choreographer for Royal Caribbean Entertainment, also providing service in the audition and casting departments. Mr. Taylor has also taught and adjudicated for numerous internationally recognized dance organizations and institutions including American Dance Awards, Dance Masters of America, and Dance Educator of America.
Kathleen O’Donnell Vega
Miss Kathleen, a native New Yorker, grew up a stones throw away from Manhattan, where she trained on scholarship at the Broadway Dance Center and Steps 74. Here she learned from many great teachers like Frank Hatchett, Chris Chadman, Henry Le Tang and Finis Jhung, to name a few. This is also where she began teaching at the age of 16, and started performing professionally at 17.
Since then she has worked in many aspects of the dance world such as: Performing, Casting, Choreographing, Commercials, Cruise Ships( Royal & Norwegian) , Dinner Theater (Grease, Guys & Dolls, Anything Goes, Sweet Charity & 42nd St.), Industrials, Video, National Tours (Dirty Dancing), Judging, and of course more teaching including master classes. Along the way, Kathleen has had the pleasure of working with the amazing Bob Fosse, Ben Vereen, Debbie Allen, Bill Medley and many others. Some of her past students have gone on the perform on Broadway, Radio City Music Hall, Macy's Day Parade's, Pro Bowls' dance & music videos, teaching, Las Vegas and more. Over the years, Kathleen has received numerous awards for her choreography and teaching.
She is currently celebrating over a decade of wonderful years at Stella's, while she also continues to judge competitions, cast & choreography for ADC Productions and raise her son Dylan.
Kamille has been dancing and attending Stella's Dancers Studio for 14 years. She has been trained in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Hip hop, Lyrical, and Contemporary. She has traveled to New York to take classes at Broadway Dance Center. This past year she choreographed multiple dances. Her choreography was awarded 2nd over all in the advance division. Two of her other pieces were performed at Cooper City High School's fund raising fashion show. One of the numbers choreographed was also asked to perform at two March of Dimes fundraising events: Preemies Can Fly and March For Babies.
She has choreographed Jazz, Contemporary, and Hip Hop routines. Also in the past year she auditioned for Somerset Arts Conservatory High School and was accepted. She was also one of Stella’s most popular camp teachers. Kamille is also available to choreograph for Quincerias and Birthday parties.
Gabrielle Velardi is the newest member of our front desk staff. Gabrielle trained at Stella’s Dancers’ studio for 15 years and was an active member of Illusion Dance Company. She will be receiving her Bachelor of Science degree in the field of Education in 2017.
Chris Lee is an exciting and widely sought-after dance teacher and choreographer who is currently enjoying his 23rd year in business. His skill and versatility in both tap and jazz/lyrical combined with a creative choreographic style have kept him both very busy and happy. He is a certified member of Dance Masters of America. His teaching credits include Steps on Broadway and Broadway Dance Center in N.Y.C. both at the professional and children levels. He has also served as dance department chairperson at Belvoir Terrace, an internationally reputable performing arts camp in Lenox, Massachusetts. Chris also teaches master classes and judges for major dance organizations, private organizations and schools nationwide and in Canada. His students have won numerous high score awards at competitions such as American Dance Awards, Dance Masters of America and Starquest, as well as 2 gold medals at the World Tap Dance Championships in Reisa Germany. Chris’s students have also gone on to appear in films, music videos, TV programs and on Broadway.
- Family Discounts
- Boys Scholarships Available
- Waiting Areas with Observation Windows
- Large Selection of Discounted Dancewear
- Ages 2 1/2 - Adult
- Beginners through Professional