DANCE INSTRUCTOR & CHOREOGRAPHER
At a very young age Melanie knew that dance was her passion. She began dancing and tumbling at the age of three at local dance studios in the Merrimack Valley, as well as Broadway Dance Center (NYC), Steps on Broadway (NYC), EDGE performing Arts (LA), Millennium Dance Complex (LA), Debbie Reynolds Studio (LA), and many local and national dance conventions. She has taken master classes with, but not limited to, Mia Michaels, Brian Friedman, Wade Robson, Savion Glover and tWitch. Melanie was a local/national award winning competitive soloist and group dancer from age 9 through 29! Upon graduating High School, Melanie's passion for dance and her dream of becoming a professional dancer and instructor was still as strong as ever! She decided to study Dance Performance and Pedagogy at Dean College, located in Franklin, MA, where she received her degree with high honors. At Dean, Melanie was accepted into The Ailey School (Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater) in New York City, received the Gregory Hines Tap Dance Scholarship and was a member of the Dean Dance Company. After Dean, she studied music and dance at the Hartford Conservatory for Music and Dance in Hartford, CT. Melanie went on to share her love of dance by becoming a dance studio owner and instructor. Her students have been awarded with many medals and high overall awards at various dance competitions. Melanie herself has received awards for top choreography, highest overall score, and specialty awards.With over 25 years of many genres of dance instruction, Melanie decided it was time for MORE than just dance. She has always had a love for many types of MOVEMENT whether it be dance, gymnastics, pilates or simply jumping the ocean waves in the summertime! Over the last few years Melanie has opened new doors into the fitness world. She found that adding these new styles of movement into her regular routine was not only helping her physical health, but also her mental health. She began to realize just how important it is to stay physically, as well as mentally, active and keep moving, especially as we get older! We often forget the importance of and take for granted the simple daily movements of a quality life, like riding a bicycle, walking to the mailbox to get the mail, or just getting out of bed in the morning, as well as "mental movements" like thinking, feeling, talking or breathing. Without movement, we can not possibly live a fulfilling life. Melanie is certified in Zumba, PiYO by BeachBody, and Ballet Barre Fitness. Melanie continues her dance education by taking master classes and instructor trainings throughout the year. Her goal is to offer many styles of movement to get everyone, young and old, MOVING and living the best quality of life possible! In addition to dance and fitness, Melanie has a background in gymnastics, cheerleading, and pageantry. Melanie is not only a multifaceted dance/fitness instructor, but also multifaceted in her own life! She is always eager to learn more and bring that education to her students. Melanie looks forward to continuing to educate, train and create fun and innovative movement classes for all in a positive and friendly environment!
"Without movement there is stillness.
The ocean waves must move for the water to flow.
To move is to breathe; to breathe is to live.
MOVEMENT IS LIFE..."
Dance & Yoga Instructor
Reiki I & II Certified
Hi, my name is Meg! I am 22 and eager to live a joyful and adventurous life without any regrets. I’m such an old soul. I love me some good music; Chicago, Elton John, Sinatra, Hall and Oates, you name it I listen to it. (yes, a little Cracklin’ Rosie does make me smile). I have a strong passion for learning new things. I love spreading the knowledge I pick up, which is why I am so drawn to teaching. I have a strong life desire to teach and learn valuable lessons and to serve those around me. I’m a firm believer in the power of positivity and compassion. I danced competitively and recreationally for most of my life so I’m always looking for ways to bring that expression into my classes. I’m certified through the Yoga Teacher Alliance with my 200-hr training, with many more hours to come. I am Reiki I & II certified. Currently, I am studying mediumship and spiritual connection under the amazing Maureen Hancock “The Medium Next Door”.
I love exploring the unknown and tapping into every ounce of potential. I have an associate degree from Northern Essex Community College and also hold a certificate as an EMT for the state of Massachusetts; basic life support & CPR certified through the American Heart Association and National EMS Institute. I deeply enjoy yoga retreats and I am always looking for new teacher trainings to go to. I bring not only the physical practice of yoga into my classes, but the mind and soul as well. Connecting with nature really grounds me as an individual. No matter the weather, I’ll be outdoors geocaching, hanging out by the ocean, hiking, doing yoga, and playing with my dogs. I honor the light, the love, and the teacher in each and every one of you… Namaste.
Mariah Dalmer began dancing when she was 2 years old. She danced competitively for many years, continuing up through college. She has studied ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, musical theater, and hip-hop. She began performance testing for the National Dance Council of America at age 8 successfully and continued until age 18. Mariah also participated in yearly American Academy of Ballet medal testing and studied under many talented teachers including Mignon Furmon during summer camp at the American Academy of Ballet. She has also taken on several roles in the Nutcracker while touring with Dance Prism. She has participated in several master classes including, but not limited to, a hip hop master class with Stephen “tWitch” Boss from So You Think You Can Dance and with a choreographer from the show Americas Best Dance Crew, Geo Hubela. Mariah began assistant teaching as a teen and soon after took on her own classes teaching and choreographing ballet, jazz, tap, hip-hop, and lyrical for a variety of ages from pre-K through teen. Mariah loves sharing dance with students of all ages and is super excited for this new opportunity!
Dance & Acro Instructor
Toni Schena is a recent graduate from The University of New Hampshire. She received her B.A. in Dance with a minor in Deaf Studies. While at UNH Toni was a member of the UNH Dance Company as well as a Captain of the dance group Sisters In Step. Toni began dancing at the age of 5 and has had a lot of experience competing and dancing for joy. She is well versed with most styles of dance including: jazz, acro, contemporary, hip hop, ballet, tap and aerial. Toni was also a TA for aerial at UNH and really enjoyed that teaching experience. She recently went to NECCA in Vermont to become a certified aerial teacher and has previously taught acro classes at The Tara Little Dance School in Laconia,NH. She is looking forward to teaching and sharing her passion of dance and acro with the students at RISE Movement Studio!!!
Dance Teacher's Assistant
Hi! I’m Mackenzie! I’ve been dancing since I was 5 and began dancing competitively at the age of 8. Over the years I have found that my favorite styles of dance are contemporary, jazz, and ballet. I’ve competed at as many as 5 dance competitions a year and have performed a solo in each one since the age of 9. I’ve won many special judges awards and received high scores for my solos. As a soloist, I won the title of Teen Miss Dance Ovations for Seakonk, Ma in 2017. As well as competing at multiple competitions a year, I’ve been in a number of different shows and ballets like A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, and many more. Each winter I perform in Dance Prism's production of the NUTCRACKER. I am an apprentice with and perform in ballets with the Dance Prism ballet company. In addition to training at various local dance studios, I have attended many dance intensives throughout the year. Not only have I trained with my awesome teachers at home, but I’ve also had the opportunity to train with many teachers from all over the world! I have been to the Bolshoi Ballet summer intensive, the American Academy of Ballet summer intensive and various other dance intensives that are closer to home. I attended the American Academy of Ballet four summers in a row and received the onsite Mingon Furman Award Scholarship at each audition. I really enjoy dance because it’s a way to express yourself and release all of your emotions, like pain or happiness, into movement. Every time I take a dance class it’s like a cleanse and I immediately feel so much better. My goals for dance are to train with more teachers, learn more styles and more about myself as a dancer in the future. I look forward to the opportunity to share my knowledge, passion and love for dance with the students at RISE Movement Studio! <3
Sarah is originally from Haverhill, MA, where she began dancing at age 3. In her earlier years, she danced tap, ballet, modern, jazz and hip-hop. During college Sarah was introduced to a variety of Latin dance styles and fell in love with the dances and the culture. Her love and passion for dance has led her to become part of the dance community in Cambridge, MA, where she dances Bachata, Kizomba, Zouk and Samba. Sarah has been a part of multiple performance teams in Cambridge and traveled to various dance festivals in the US and Canada.
Reiki I Certified
Erika Halaby has been practicing yoga for three and a half years and just received her 200 hour certification this past winter. She dove into her personal practice shortly after her father passed away in 2016 and has been sincerely immersed into the practice ever since. To her, practicing yoga is the most fulfilling and passionate gateway to the soul that exists. Over time, something that began as a physical practice has gradually transformed into a deep, spiritual and mindful life purpose. Over the years she has developed a mindful meditation practice, received Rieki training, worked with energy medicine and is currently finishing her degree in Outdoor Education. Her mission in life is to share the beauty of being human in coexistence with the magnificence powers of the natural world, while healing herself and guiding others to heal themselves along the way. Her teaching style is rooted within her passion for nature and her admiration for self transformation and growth. For her students, her dream is to ground them when they need it most, and even when they don’t, while uplifting them all at the same time. This balance of grounding down while opening the heart and mind in connection with the breath is how she has found peace in her practice and soul, which is exactly what has inspired her to share the sacred practice of yoga. Erika is originally from Methuen, Massachusetts, but is currently living in Plymouth as a senior at PSU. She loves to be outside, building her connection to Mother Earth and her favorite outdoor activities are backpacking and kayaking.
Vanessa is currently a 200 hour RYT after obtaining her certification through Gypsea Yoga School located in Uvita, Costa Rica on June 14, 2019. Yoga couldn't have come into her life at a better point. She chose to take this path because she knew she enjoyed helping others. As the journey began, she also noticed that she was feeling drained and tired, as well as mentally and emotionally blocked. After finding herself drawn back to the practice and ways of meditation, Vanessa soon realized that she needed to fulfill herself the same way she felt she was doing for others. Yoga was that fulfillment in her case. From postures to the internal focus, she began to find out more about herself, little by little. At such a young age this was a bit scary and amazing all at once! She started this journey sporadically from the time she was 15, about 6 years ago, and she couldn’t imagine her life without it. Where would her life have taken her if she never went to that yoga class or skipped that meditation workshop? Vanessa hopes that everyone finds that niche within themselves; something that lights that fire within them; something that makes each person unique and true to who they are.She holds this practice near & dear to her heart & soul and couldn’t imagine her life any other way. Vanessa hopes to see you in the studio - Namaste💛