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Lisa Holland - Studio Co-Director

Lisa has been teaching dance for more than 20 years.  She founded Ann Arbor Dance Classics in 1996 with the objective of creating an environment for dance education which included various styles of dance, but remained centered on a foundation of classical ballet training.  

In 2000, Lisa Holland was reunited with Deena Fournier, a friend with whom she had trained in ballet for many years.  They became business partners, and in 2004 established the AADC Youth Dance Ensemble (YDE), an in-house performance company for dancers between the ages of 8 and 18.  With Deena directing the ballet program, Lisa was able to turn her attention to her passion for musical theater and tap.  Having enjoyed performing in numerous shows including A Chorus Line, Pippin, and Jesus Christ Superstar, Lisa enjoys creating production numbers for YDE which focus on the theatrical elements of dance.  When she has time, Lisa enjoys working with groups outside AADC, most recently choreographing Hello Dolly for Saline High School.                                                            

Lisa continues to work as a Survey Director at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan where she attended graduate school.  She lives in Saline with her husband Steve, and her daughters Analise and Hannah.


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Deena Fournier - Studio Co-Director

Deena began dancing at the age of 10 after completing a book report on Maria Tallchief’s autobiography and has loved dance ever since.  She studied with the Milwaukee Ballet School and School of Chicago City Ballet under such notable teachers as Francoise Martinet, Paul Sutherland, Basil Thompson, Melissa Hayden, Maria Tallchief, Diana Adams, Homer Bryant, Edward Villella, Allegra Kent and Joel Hall.  Upon returning home, Deena enrolled in college and continued to perform for two civic ballet companies, Plymouth-Canton Ballet Company and Livonia Civic Ballet Company.  She performed leading and soloist roles in The Nutcracker, Coppelia, Cinderella, Flying Colors, Paquita, Les Sylphides, Swan Lake and Dracula.  She also began studying her Cecchetti Teacher’s Certification.  She currently holds her Professional Advanced VII certificate with the Cecchetti Council of America to which she has been a member since 1992.  

Deena has been teaching for twenty two years and is co-owner of Ann Arbor Dance Classics with Lisa Holland since 2000.  In that time, she has had several dancers compete regionally and nationally.  She has had students win scholarships as well as competitive awards.  Many of her students have gone on to study dance in colleges across the country and have also gone on to perform professionally as well.  Her love and knowledge of dance has also inspired many of her former students to become dance teachers.  She continues to teach her love of dance to as many young people as she can. 

Deena currently resides in Westland, Michigan with her husband Jason and her two dancing daughters, Evi and Saila.  She also enjoys camping, hiking and cooking.

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Emily Pezon - Instructor

Emily has been a student of dance (training under Deena Fournier and others) since the age of seven and a teacher for more than 19 of those years. She currently holds a Professional Elementary V teaching certificate in the Cecchetti Method. She was the choreographer for the Miss Oakland County Teen Pageant and was a member of the Livonia Civic Ballet Company. Her training also includes many summers studying dance at the EDGE Performing Arts Center in LA under such teachers as Mia Michaels, Wade Robson, Dee Caspary, Bill Prudich and many others, as well as studying in NYC at Broadway Dance Center and STEPS On Broadway.

During her time as a student, Emily focused heavily on competitions and conventions, where she was awarded a scholarship from the Urban Jamm Dance Convention. This is what enables her to share her passion for that aspect of dance, while preparing her students for competition. “I love pushing my students to the limit to bring out their very best”.

Emily spends her days as a hair stylist at MarioMax Salon in West Bloomfield. She teaches hair cutting classes for the assistants at the salon and is an educator for the product line TIGI. She considers her self lucky to have two passions that allow for creativity and individuality.

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Emma Grabarczyk - Instructor

Emma Grabarczyk began dancing at the age of seven. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Eastern Michigan University in 2011 with a degree in Dance Studio Management. While at EMU, she performed in numerous faculty and guest artist pieces, multiple full length ballets, and many student choreography pieces. She also served as secretary for EMU Dance Forum. She has been teaching ballet, jazz and modern for several years and continues her own training any chance she can with classes and workshops. She has taken class at Chicago's Lou Conte Dance Studio and the Joffrey Ballet School as well as attending the Jazz Dance World Congress in Pittsburgh. She is also a trained and enthusiastic Zumba instructor. 

Emma will be dancing with local Ann Arbor dance company, Action Dance. The company was started by Emma's college friend, Bailey Ahles, and she is very excited to be working with her again. 

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Stephanie Rondy - Instructor

Stephanie is a native of the Detroit-Metro area, having received her early training at Noretta Dunworth School of Dance (NDSD) in Dearborn, Michigan. Seeking further education in the art form, she attended Eastern Michigan University (EMU) where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Dance, focused in Studio Management. Throughout her college career, Stephanie had the opportunity to perform in multiple works at the American College Dance Festival (ACDF) and claimed starring roles in the ballets Cinderella and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  It was during this time that she also gained professional performing experience with RusticGroove Dance—a modern concert dance company based in Jackson, Michigan.

Stephanie has recently returned to Michigan after receiving her Master of Arts at New York University with a full certification in the American Ballet Theatre® (ABT) National Training Curriculum (NTC)—a breakthrough eight level program that combines high quality artistic training with the basics of dancer health and child development. While in New York, Stephanie worked in Development at ABT and was a substitute instructor at several area dance academies, including the Joffrey Ballet School.  In her spare time, Stephanie fed her love of performance by dancing with theater dance company Aries in Flight, founded by her NYU cohort, Catherine Baggs.

Stephanie continues to work in Development, now with the Detroit Institute of Arts, and lives in Plymouth with her husband Ray.


Melanie Troha - Instructor

Melanie has been dancing for 22 years and competing since the age of eight. She is trained in ballet, pointe, jazz, gymnastics, tap, musical theatre, hip hop, modern and precision pom. She is a Livonia Churchill High School graduate where she participated in the Creative And Performing Arts program. While in CAPA, she danced in choreographed group and solo numbers for her fellow dancers. It was during her time at Churchill that she discovered her passion for choreography and teaching. She was also a member of the award winning Churchill Chargers Pom Pon team. 

After high school Melanie attended Eastern Michigan University majoring in Dance Performance. She has had the pleasure of studying under many master teachers including Glenn Packard (from the television show "Brooke Knows Best”), Addison O’Day (formerly of the Alabama Ballet), Keith Clifton, Rhonda Miller, and Jamie Trepanier. Melanie was also selected by audition for a small part in the movie “Youth In Revolt”. 

Recently she has been teaching and choreographing for several local dance studios. Her engaging and engertic choreography has helped her students to achieve numerous regional and national awards. Melanie is looking forward to sharing her dedication, energy, and creative choreography with her students this year.

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Patricia Sholtis - Instructor

Patricia began her training at the age of four at Ann Arbor Dance Classics and continued through her senior year in the Youth Dance Ensemble. During her summers she had opportunities to train with companies such as LINES Ballet, the Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet, and Royal Winnipeg Ballet. A former member of the YDE competition team, she is returning to Ann Arbor Dance Classics as a choreographer for competition solos and duets as well as a ballet teacher for young dancers. 

A student at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business studying Finance/Pre-Law, but still continues to dance. Patricia takes weekly ballet classes through the U of M Department of Dance and is the treasurer and an active member of Salto Dance Company, a ballet and contemporary student dance group at the university. 

Patricia is so thankful to be returning to Ann Arbor Dance Classics where she will have the opportunity to teach and inspire upcoming dancers.

Elli Fackelman - Instructor

Elli began dancing at age 6, and has trained in ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, and lyrical. She participated in competition teams for six years and studied Cecchetti, taking examinations through Grade VII. She was in local productions of the Nutcracker with the Livonia Civic Ballet Company and Plymouth Canton Ballet Company, where she performed various roles including Solider, Clara, Doll, and Snow Queen. During the summers, Elli attended the Cecchetti Summer Intensive in Holland, Michigan, American Ballet Theatre Summer Intensive in Detroit, and BalletMet Summer Intensive in Columbus, Ohio.

After graduating from Walled Lake Central High School in 2008, Elli attended the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, and she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry in 2012. While there, Elli was a four year member of the University of Michigan Dance Team, where she performed at football and basketball games. She also traveled with the team and competed at the Universal Dance Association College Dance Team Nationals in Orlando from her sophomore through senior years. Elli has three years of teaching experience, working with competition teams in ballet, pointe, jazz, lyrical and contemporary. She has also been certified to teach Cecchetti Grades I and II.

Elli currently works at Cayman Chemical in Ann Arbor in a Biochemistry Manufacturing Laboratory. She is also a part-time graduate student at Eastern Michigan University, and she will graduate with a Master of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology in the Spring of 2016.

Kelly Schmidt - Instructor

Kelly has been dancing for over 12 years. Her training includes tap, jazz, modern, contemporary, musical theater, and ballroom. She graduated from Bowling Green State University in 2014 earning a Bachelor's degree in Dance Education. During her time at BGSU, Kelly danced and choreographed for the University Dance Alliance which held showcases every semester. She also danced for the University's performance company, Dance Repertory Ensemble, and performed each year in their January Concert. Kelly has previously taught at Julie's Dance Studio in Bowling Green, OH, Viva Dance Company Sylvania location and recently choreographed The Sound of Music for Lake High School. Kelly loves teaching young kids and sharing her love of dance!