Competition Choreographer, Ballet Mistress
Our Artistic Director, Keisha Gervais-Stewart has been a professional dance instructor for over 15 years and has vast experience and training in all our offered dance programs. She is an award-winning choreographer with multiple critically-acclaimed works, and engages in continuing dance education taking master classes and attending conventions with other dance instructors and industry legends from around the world.
She trained at Concepts in Motivation Inc. at an early age and attended James Hubert Blake, Fine Arts High School with a concentration in dance. She became a student choreographer and apprentice to the Director of the Dance Department. She also trained with the Dance Theater of Harlem in their DC Residency program.
Keisha is known for her gentle yet stern teaching methods that enlighten and encourage students through positive reinforcement. Keisha has designed a central curriculum that ensures all students progress and learn in a consistent environment.
She directs the Elite Company who travels to many Regional and National Dance Competitions. In addition to managing Barre None, Keisha is currently working on an International Acrobatic Arts Certification, and becoming a dance competition adjudicator. She feels very blessed to guide BNDC to its full potential and adores working with her amazing staff and students!
Alyssa "skye" tapp
Creative Movement, Company Technique, Jazz, Contemporary
Skye, a Raleigh native and Virginia new comer, has been dancing as long as she can remember. At age 10 she started to take dance very seriously after falling in love with musical theater.
Hard work paid off at the "FOD Conservatory" and at age 14 she got her first professional role in "Cats" the musical.
Working at every major professional theater in Raleigh, NC she has starred in Cats, Hairspray, A Christmas Carol, Oklahoma, The Wolf, The Crucible, Godspell and many more!
Having also danced in 2 professional companies in her career; "Poiema Artistry" a contemporary ballet company and "Black Irish" a contemporary hip hop company.
As well as training intensively with Teachers that have passed on the legacy of dance companies such as; Paul Taylor, Carolina Ballet, ABT, Rockettes, and Ballet Magnificant.
She now channels her knowledge of both the professional and technical aspects of dance to teach up and coming dancers. Firmly believing that strong technique and artistry are what make a truly inspiring performer.
Competition Choreographer, Hip Hop, Contemporary
Has been professionally training in various classical styles of dance for over 15 years. Specializing in hip-hop. She is excited to bring her creative talent to Barre None!
She Graduated form university of Richmond with a dance minor and has been a teacher in Richmond for 4 years and currently is teaching in Northern VA. She has been a competition dance team coach leading her team to win various top honors and titles throughout VA and NC.
She has performed as an ensemble dancer in university of Richmond's production of Rent and Also danced back up in the Nephew Tommy "What Now ?" Comedy tour. She has also partnered with Federal Dance Initiative teaching a Hip Hop workshops in Richmond.
Amanda Cinfio commenced her childhood ballet training in Cambridge, United Kingdom studying with Nina Hubbard, Russian émigré and former dancer with the Bolshoi. In 1976, she and her family moved to Mexico City where she studied ballet and modern dance with Sonia Castañeda former principal dancer with Ballet Nacional de Mexico and with Dagmar Barajas former principal dancer with Stuttgart Ballet, Germany. Amanda also performed with Grupo Sanctus, Sonia’s dance troupe, performing modern pieces in Mexico City and surrounding areas. At 16, Amanda was accepted to Ballet Rambert School in London with the intention of making ballet her career.
Amanda continued her professional training at Ballet Rambert School studying under Bridget Kelly, Frank Freeman, Clover Roope, Therese Cantine, Juan Sanchez, Shirley Graham – all who were former principal dancers with the Royal ballet or the Ballet Rambert and studied with Dame Marie Rambert in the art of classical ballet, including repertoire, pas de deux, contemporary dance (Martha Graham technique) character dance and jazz. An unfortunate injury enforced early retirement, and a break from dancing that lasted some years.
Amanda rediscovered dance in London during the late 1980’s as a member of Cygnet Players, Amateur Dramatics group in, performing in productions of Cabaret, Follies, Salad Days, Sweet Charity, and other musicals. In 2002 Amanda moved to San Francisco, where she found ballroom dancing and is a huge fan of Argentine Tango.
Between 2007 and 2010 Amanda taught at 2 local dance studios in the Richmond VA area, and returned to California for another three years before moving back to Richmond in 2013
While in California she spent time studying and performing with the Peninsula Ballet Theater, and served as Chairman of Board of Directors for Bay Pointe Ballet where she performed in Act 1 in The Nutcracker for 4 years. At Bay Pointe Ballet, Amanda was an ongoing student of advanced ballet technique, taking classes with Artistic Director Bruce Steivel and guest teachers from Ballet San Jose.
Since returning to Richmond in September 2013 Amanda has been teaching ballet at 4 local studios in Richmond, attending adult classes at Richmond ballet with Susan Massey, and is now thrilled to be returning to Barre None for the summer 2019 season.
Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary
Kathryn (Katy) Clay, new to the Richmond area, began her career as a professional dancer just last season with the Stavna Ballet. She has been a dance instructor for several years and spent six weeks last summer as a guest instructor at the Goh Ballet Academy Summer Intensive in Vancouver, Canada.
Raised in Missoula, Montana, Katy began dancing with the Rocky Mountain Ballet Theatre under the direction of ABT alumni, Charlene Campbell. Since the age of thirteen Katy has performed as a singer and dancer in several international tours, traveling Europe and China as both a Performer and Good Will Ambassador. At seventeen, she was selected as a principal dancer and featured singer with RMBT on an official USA State Department tour throughout the Guangxi and Henan Provinces and in Beijing presented by the National Ballet of China at the Tianquo Theatre.
After graduating from the Academy, Katy trained two years at a musical conservatory in Vienna, Austria and has performed as a musical theatre artist in and around Vienna, including productions in the 2017 Wiener Festwochen. She has placed first and second at the Vienna International Ballet Experience and Ballet Beyond Borders competitions 2016, 2017, and 2018. Her most recent performance tour took her back to China and included performances and collaborations in Beijing, Xi’an, and ChongQing in September of 2018. Katy is thrilled to be joining the faculty of Barre None Dance Company!
Contemporary, Jazz, Tap, Ballet
Born in Falls Church, VA and raised in Fairfax, Anna escaped to the mountains to obtain her B.S. in Health and Exercise Science from Bridgewater College, and has now followed her passion to Richmond to pursue a Doctorate in Occupational Therapy and is excited to join the dance community in her new home!
Anna grew up dancing in the performance company at Every Body Dance, originally owned by her grandmother. While she trained in jazz, tap, and contemporary alike, it is ballet and musical theater that most define her life.
She has performed in many musicals, acting as Dance Captain in Godspell, Working, Into the Woods, Bye Bye Birdie, and White Christmas. While living in the valley she trained in classical ballet at Ballet Extensions and was a performance artist with the Rockingham Ballet Theater, working with prolific choreographers in traditional and contemporary ballet.
Throughout all of these experiences, she has grown as a choreographer and teacher with dancers from 2-92 and has loved every moment of it.
Tap, Hip Hop
Christine Wyatt is a D(MV) artist who was born and raised in Baltimore, MD. She moved to Richmond, VA in 2014 to attend Virginia Commonwealth University. She began her dance journey at the age of 9. After attending a performing arts summer camp at Flair Dance Studio in Baltimore, she never stopped dancing. Christine studied dance, music, and theatre at Sudbrook Magnet Middle School, continued to train in ballet and modern at the Baltimore County Youth Ballet Summer intensive, and performed in many youth companies, youth theaters, and school musical productions throughout middle school and high school. Christine received her B.F.A. in Dance & Choreography from VCU in May of 2018. Thirteen years of a multitude of experiences in dance (and music/musical theatre) she has sought out opportunities and knowledge to develop a clear philosophy about dance. Christine is currently a freelance dance artist and teacher in VA, certified in Scott Putman’s Elemental Body Alignment Systems (EBAS 1), and justt recently finished her first year as a Teaching Artist for the Richmond Ballet’s Mind In Motion program.
She has worked with professional modern dance artists like Liz Lerman/Dance Exchange, Jawole Jo Zollar/Urban Bush Women, MK Abadoo, Maria Bauman, Melanie Richards, Ching-I Chang Bigelow, Autumn Proctor, Dr. Gaynell Sherrod, and Alicia Diaz/Agua Dulce Dance Theatre. Her experiences have inspired her passion for community based work in dance and fueled her desire to decolonize her dance practice. Inspired by africanist movement values and aesthetics in American dance forms (such as Jazz, Tap, and Modern), Christine explores movement as a means for liberation in the body and spirit. Her choreography is rooted in utilizing technical principles to find grounded-ness, suspension and rhythmic accuracy. These principles are explored through repetition, and dancers are invited to embrace risk as a means of evolution. Tap is her favorite style to explore these ideas, and she is excited to challenge and experiment rhythmically with the lovely dancers of Barre None!
Combo Classes, Hip Hop
Polly Sommers just finished her freshman year at North Carolina State University. In High School, she competitively danced for Barre None Dance Company and studied Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, and Hip Hop. Polly has been a winning soloist in Jazz, Contemporary, Hip Hop, & Heels. Winning regional champion her sophomore year, 1st place her junior year, and receiving a judge’s award her senior year, Polly thoroughly enjoyed and excelled. Polly has been a teachers assistant for several years under Ms. Keisha’s tutelage and captain of the competition team her Senior Year.
Additionally, in High School, Polly danced in her school’s company. She choreographed many dances that were chosen to be performed for the final spring production. She created all six dances as well as performed as “Mimi” in the school play, Guys and Dolls.
Now, you can find Polly continuing her love of dance as a Certified Zumba Instructor. Teaching at NC State’s gym this past year, many of her friends and faculty members attend her fun and upbeat classes!
She is sad that she can only teach for the summer but looks forward to encouraging her students to continue their love for dance just like her!
Combo Classes, Jazz, Contemporary
Brianna Starks is a rising college junior studying at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. Her love of dance began when she was merely eight years old and she has not left the stage since. In high school, Brianna was Captain and Choreographer of her school's dance team and also both acted and danced in many of her school's musicals. After numerous years of dancing competitively and for leisure at both the regional and national level, Brianna found that her true passion was for teaching and choreographing. Her main goal for teaching students is to help them find their personal light and happiness within dance as she did when she was growing up.
When Brianna is not doing homework she is either training and directing one of her two traveling dance teams or teaching numerous dance classes both on her school's campus and at surrounding studios specializing in technique, jazz, contemporary, and hip-hop.
Auriel van buren
Auriel Van Buren is a New York native, born to a US military family. She began taking dance and gymnastics classes at age two, and stayed consistent with her classes despite traveling the world. She began her most serious dance education in Misawa, Japan, where she also trained in rhythmic gymnastics, contortion, and acrobatics. Also an actor/singer, she also performed in various musical theatre productions with schools and community theatres. After she returned stateside, she trained with Richmond Ballet alum Jeanne Biggs, and with Debbie Diggs studio, as well as numerous other instructors. When she was 15, she joined the Concert Ballet of Virginia as an apprentice; Training and performing under the direction of Richmond Ballet alum and Concert Ballet founder Scott Boyer. She continued to climb ranks in the company, performing a variety of ensemble, principal, and soloist roles until an untimely injury forced her to put her career on hold. Auriel took this time to pursue other interests and became an emergency medical technician, as well as a certified nurse’s assistant. She continued to act as often as she could despite her demanding work schedule, and appeared in a few local films as well as a few voice acting gigs. Through this, she continued to teach dance and gymnastics at various studios around northern Virginia, and eventually returned to the Concert Ballet as a teacher and choreographer.
Auriel is a registered and certified member of USA Gymnastics, and holds a multitude of certificates in dance and gymnastics training as well as advanced CPR and First Aid. She is currently working toward a doctorate degree in psychology, but wishes to someday return to either New York as a performer on Broadway, or Texas to work for Roosterteeth Animation Company. In her spare time, Auriel enjoys Cosplay, Comic Cons, and Martial Arts.
Front Office Coordinator, Combo Classes
Erin has always loved to perform. At an early age, she began her training in dance and gymnastics. She began dancing when she was 3 years old but at the age of 7 she decided to leave dance to concentrate on gymnastics. Even while she was not in formal lessons at this time, her love of dance was always with her. She returned to dance when she began taking a lyrical class in middle school. She worked hard in ballet, lyrical, contemporary, tap and jazz, and eventually earned a spot on a competitive dance team at a local studio. Erin has also assisted several dance teachers since she was 14, including Miss Keisha when she arrived in Richmond. Outside of the local studios, she performed in “The Nutcracker” with the Concert Ballet of Virginia, and also performed with the Randolph Macon Yellow Jacket Dancers in her first semester of college. Erin is currently pursuing her liberal arts degree in college while sharing her love of dance with her students. Erin is an original BNDC Elite Company member; she is so excited to begin her career at BNDC, and bring her soon-to-be born baby girl into the BNDC family!