Toni Ricci

Toni has been studying dance for almost 30 years. She got her start in Maine where after her first recital, she fell in love with the world of dance. She attended an arts enriched high school, which allowed her to make dance the primary focus of her high school education. It was here that she began teaching, choreographing, and directing numerous dance shows and musicals. Toni also obtained her first dance certification at that time. She then went on to the University of New Hampshire to further enrich her training in dance.  Shortly after, she was given the opportunity to tour the United States as a dancer in a live musical production. This included performances on Broadway and at the Kodak Theater. After two years on tour Toni decided to move to Los Angeles and further her dance career. Once in California, Toni began studying ballet with the Anaheim Ballet and teaching at numerous dance schools in the area. At that time, she completed her dance certification with a B.A. in Dance from the University of California State Fullerton. She also made numerous television appearances and choreographed many events.   Throughout her life, she has been awarded numerous dance scholarships and awards. Toni is also a proud member of Dance Masters of America.  Last year she was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year for Southern California by the California Senate. Toni has taught and inspired hundreds of students in southern California in the past decade.  The Elite Dance Center is a testimony to her love dance.  “My job isn’t to just teach dance, it’s to teach students to love to dance.

Keli Adams

Assistant Director

Keli’s formal training began at the young age of three, studying under the direction of Stanley Holden + Kim Maselli at the Pacific Festival Ballet in Los Angeles. Keli has an eclectic background in classical ballet, jazz, hip hop, modern, contemporary + Improv (GAGA).  She started working professionally at a very young with some of the top pop and R&B artists as well as numerous prestige ballet companies. Keli has taken on the roll of Assistant Director at The Elite Dance Center, as well as running the competitive dance company.

Keli currently runs the Contemporary Department at EDC with a heavy entasis on improvisation. Influenced in the GAGA techniques Keli’s improv class offers a creative framework for students to connect their bodies and imaginations, increasing physical awareness in a welcoming atmosphere connecting mind, body + spirit. Keli’s contemporary choreography has won numerous awards in the competition circuit and her contemporary classwork can be seen in #keliadamschoreo on instagram. With a heavy base of improvisation, students will explore a yoga warm-up, improvisational exercises, and phrases set to music in Keli’s contemporary class.

Keli strives for a fast-fulled class that brings mind + body strength together, centralizing energetic moment transcending style + a few essential oils. Check out @keliadams on Instagram for the daily on Keli.






Marissa Kiser

Office Manager

Marissa Kiser grew up dancing in the San Fernando Valley at the Christian Perform Arts Center, where she trained in many different styles of dance from 7-18 years old. After high school, she continued to take classes in college at the College of The Canyons while she worked toward figuring out what she wants to be when she grows up.

Through the next 5-7 years of trying to figure out life course, she stumbled upon stage-managing through a friend who brought her on for a project, although she had no experience. This sparked her love of being apart of the production side of entertainment. In 2017 Marissa graduated with a BA in Business Entertainment from the Los Angeles Film School, where she has applied the business skills she has learned to help The Elite Dance Center grow in the last 2 years of coming aboard as Office Manager.





Kayla Borsari

Kayla Borsari, a native of Southbury Connecticut, entered the competitive world of dance at the young age of 5. She is well versed in all styles of dance as she grew up training in diverse creative atmospheres, including the Seven Star School of Performing Arts, the Woodbury Ballet Academy, and the Waterbury Arts Magnet School.  During her years as a competitive dancer, Kayla received over 40 1st place overall and National title recognitions. Her passion took her to focus on dance and choreography as she attended, on academic and talent scholarship, The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. After college graduation in 2013, Kayla made teaching and choreography her full-time job. She was awarded choreography awards at competitions such as National Dance Showcase. In 2014, Kayla relocated to Los Angeles.  Since then, she’s worked for two professional dance companies, performed in a play, in addition to other dance and acting commercial work.  Kayla appeared in numerous music videos including, “Champagne” by Charisse Mills feat. French Montana. Kayla’s had the privilege of dancing at venues such as the Staples Center and Madison Square Garden with headliners Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull. Kayla has been a dancer and choreographer for LA Unbound for 2 seasons and is also a member of Jason Janas’ new professional tap company Co.mmit. Kayla is thrilled to be able to do what she’s most passionate about and hopes to continue to share her artistry with the world.




Katie Jane Hagen

Originally from Minneapolis, MN, Katie has been dancing since the age of 4 and has been extensively trained in jazz, ballet, hip hop, modern, and contemporary/lyrical. In high school, she was a member of her school’s extremely competitive dance team. She has a B.A. in Dance from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN. In college she was a member of the student dance company, Companydance, and Captain of the St. Olaf Dance Team. Since moving to Los Angeles shortly after graduating college, Katie has been performing and choreographing for various music videos and pop artists, including Beyonce. Her choreography has been showcased at several dance concerts and festivals throughout LA including Dancescape LA and MixMatch Dance Festival, LA’s largest dance festival. Her greatest achievement in her dance career has been as a member of the world famous Los Angeles Laker Girls Dance Team. She is currently an ongoing choreographer and performer for LA Unbound Dance Company. Katie also teaches dance at elementary schools and has coached high school dance team in LA. She truly loves teaching because she gets to share her passion and knowledge of dance with children. She passionately believes that dance should be fun and make you happy!




Sara Kempa-Leon

Originally from a small town in Michigan, Sara has been a dancer and gymnast since she was 7 years old. She competed in various competitions throughout Michigan and won many top awards at the regional and national levels, including the title of Miss Teen Dance. Sara has also been blessed with the opportunity to travel all over the US with her dancing, as well as being chosen to travel to Australia to perform and take master classes from Australian teachers. After graduating high school, Sara moved to Los Angeles to pursue her passion for dance. In LA, she trained as an apprentice at the Performing Arts Center in Van Nuys. In 2003, Sara was given the opportunity to perform in a tribute to Sallie Whalen at the American Choreography Awards. After her leaving the apprenticeship, Sara decided to focus on teaching and working with children; she feels it is important to provide a positive environment for students to grow, achieve self-confidence and explore the art of dance. Although Sara loves teaching, she still has a passion for choreography and performance. She has performed in several benefit concerts as well as dance and choreographs in student and faculty shows at California State University Northridge; she is also a regular dancer and choreographer for the dance company LA Unbound.




Samantha Ketcherside

Samantha began her teaching career while still in college. After earning her Bachelors of Science in dance at the University of Oregon she created Project Bounce, a youth hip-hop dance company. She has taught at numerous studios in Eugene Oregon including Musical Feet, The Edge academy of Dance and Gymnastics and Ballet Fantastique. Aside from her college training Samantha has studied and performed with various dance schools including Lane Dance Co., Ballet Fantastique, Dance Northwest, The Foundation, Zapp, Musical Feet, Central Oregon School of Ballet, Eugene School of Ballet, and more. She has trained in both RAD and Vaganova methods for ballet. Since her move to Los Angeles, she has worked in film and music videos and currently dances with Sypher Elite Dance Company. Samantha has taught locally over the past year for Ballet Barre, Best Foot Forward, and Kids Music N Motion. Samantha enjoys her time sharing dance with many young students and looks forward to the years to come sharing her love of dance.






Flo Miniscloux

Born in France, Flo Miniscloux is professionally trained in many dance forms including ballet, jazz, tap and modern. She primarily studied Vaganova ballet technique under Kristina Kambalov and Russian-born Pasha Kambalov and Lev Assaouliak at the First State Ballet Theatre. There, she performed countless roles in ballets ranging from The Nutcracker and Coppélia to Swan Lake and Paquita. From 2003 to 2004, Flo toured the US playing the lead role of Emmy in the musical, Dragon Tales Live!. During summers, she participated in esteemed ballet programs at Kaatsbaan International Dance Center in New York and The Harid Conservatory in Florida. She has placed in the Top 12 in both solo and ensemble categories at the prestigious Youth America Grand Prix competition. Flo was also a recipient of numerous dance scholarships. Her lifelong passion for dance and strong technical ballet background make her a great asset to the Elite staff. Since graduating Magna Cum Laude from the University of Southern California with a B.A. in Cinematic Arts, Flo also pursues a career in corporate event producing.



Dominic Rayman

Has been dancing for 10 years and has been teaching for 6 years, he started training in South Ogden Utah with Elite Dance Force. Former owner Misty Robbins Utah Jazz dancer. He was on the highschool dance team at Cathedral City high school and was titled, dance captain. Dominic is apart of our acrobatic program! He teaches acrobatics, contemporary, jazz and technique classes. He has worked with Abby Lee Dance Company, Dance moms, Todrick Hall, Kendal Vertes, and more! He is going to continue his journey in the arts and wants to bring great assets to students who love the art and very passionate for what they Love! Dominic is very honored to be apart of Elite Dance PAC and looks forward to tremendous, amazing years!





Heidi Prendergast

Heidi Prendergast began her performing career at a young age traveling around Asia and Europe. She started her classical training at the age of fourteen studying at Cleo Parker Robinson, Lemon Spongecake and Longmont Dance Theater she continued her education receiving her BFA in dance and choreography from the University of Colorado. During that time she trained and performed with Gabriel Mason, Onye Ozuzu, Michelle Ellsworth, Robin Haig, Rennie Harris, Kevin Wynn and Susan Marshall. After graduating she moved to New York where she continued to perform, with various dance companies and her own work, at Dance New Amsterdam, Triskillieon Arts, The Kitchen, St. Marks and other venues. Heidi recently moved to Los Angeles and has been teaching dance throughout southern California and performing with Out of Habit, a multidisciplinary movement company. Heidi is also a certified yoga instructor through YogaWorks.






Charli Smith

Charli Smith has been dancing since the age of 4 as well as performing. She started teaching when she was 15 years old. In highschool, she was on the Varsity Dance team, and was also team captain for her Varsity Hip Hop team, where she began assisting with choreography and student competitions.  She attended the Debbie Allen Dance Academy and Releve Dance Studio.  She’s taught at 4 different dance studios, ranging in different styles – from Ballet to African!







Pavel Tabutov

Pavel fell in love with ballet upon his first demi plié and began training at the  Academy of Ballet and Arts in Chicago. Later, he received extensive jazz and contemporary training at Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Centerand Visceral Dance Center. As a choreographer, Pavel was awarded Best Choreography Award from Hall of Fame for several of his works. Later, he began to work with U.S.A. Olympic Rhythmic Gymnastics National team teaching them different styles of dance to advance their choreography and movement skills. Pavel, then, set out on a mission to inspire young dancers to see the brilliance in themselves by approaching discipline through positive reinforcement. Pavel loves to work with all ages and levels, as he believes in sharing the love for dance and rhythmic gymnastics.








Nikki Blakeslee

Has taught all over the United States and Internationally. She freely shares her passion for dance and the aerial arts with the intention to inspire and encourage our inner authentic artist. As an Artistic Director, she inspired and created a state of the art Aerial Dance Program with groundbreaking success. She is currently dancing, teaching, and choreographing in Los Angeles. Nikki has worked professionally with Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Lenny Kravitz, Jane’s Addiction and Debbie Allen on stage and in television. She has appeared on Dancing with the Stars, the Annual American Music Awards, Billboard Live Music Awards and Fame the reality series. She is also well versed in Hoop, Hammock, Tissue, Cube, and many innovative aerial apparatus.  Currently, Nikki can be seen performing with Terry Beeman’s, Mental Head Circus now playing at Tim Robbin’s theater, The Actors Gang and Hollywood’s King King Club.






Miriam Brienik Lipner

Miriam received her Pilates certification in 2007 with Core Pilates NYC, in New York City. From there, she worked at Alycea Ungaro’s Real Pilates until 2014 as a senior instructor. Throughout this time, she did extensive work in the off-off Broadway theatre world, as an actress, and sometime producer. In 2013 she gave birth to her beautiful twin boys, and decided to move to LA to be closer to family, in a land with much better weather. She then worked for the YMCA as a mat teacher and Zumba instructor, and subbed at classical studios in the LA area, as she balanced this with full-time mommy status. She currently teaches at Equinox in Hollywood as a senior instructor. She is very excited to join the Elite Dance Center family, to bring her passion for Pilates to the next generation.






Cassidey Mawhinney

Acro Assistant

Has been cheering for 7 years, she switched from dance to cheerleading in 7th grade after dancing for 11 years. Started All-Star Cheerleading in her freshman year of high school. She was on the varsity team as a freshman and competed in Regionals twice and won. Had the opportunity to go to D2 summit and placed third in the world. Cassidy helped coached multiple teams throughout high school and ran tumbling classes and private’s lessons with her teammate. In the last year of her high school career with another Regionals win and as a Class A State Champ as a captain, after graduation she has moved from Maine to California.  She started cheerleading at the Peirce College where she helps her new teammates with coaching, an assistant at Saint Mel’s school, and now at the Elite Dance Center on all things tumbling.





This season 2019-2020 is the first year we welcome our student teachers. Our newest teachers have been with The Elite Dance Center for multiple years on our Competitive Dance Team and Teacher Assistant Program. We have the pleasure to bring them on board as our newest staff members.

Bailey Hansen

Annie Cory