Staff

SHANNON BANKSTON
Shannon began taking dance classes at the age of 3 at the Dothan School of Dance in Dothan, Alabama. At the age of 11 Shannon joined SEADAC (South East Alabama Dancing Arts Council) and enjoyed performing and competing in regional and national dance competitions. At the age of 16 she won the title of Miss Dance Masters of America (Tennessee Chapter). Through high school and one year of community college, she taught ballet, jazz, tap, and lyrical as well as managed a satellite studio in Headland, Alabama for the Oz Performing Arts Center. Shannon continued her interest in dance in college by performing in musical theatre at Auburn University. Shannon has been an elementary teacher for 11 years and is now employed at Daphne East Elementary School as their Reading Coach. She is very pleased to be able to share her love of dance with all her students and she has been with us for 6 years.

MEGAN BOSSARD
Megan grew up in Colorado and moved to the Gulf Coast to attend The University of Mobile and has stayed here since. In Colorado, she was a cheerleader in school and wants to share with the community the benefits of cheer for young girls.
“Coach Meg” has taught at Dance Arts South for three years.  She keeps extremely busy with four children, a full time job and her cheer/tumbling responsibilities.  In addition to the tumbling/cheer class she teaches at Dance Arts South, she also hosts various cheer camps at the studio and in the community during the summer and previously held the position of Cheer Director for the City of Fairhope Recreational Football League. Coach Meg has a passion for cheer and tumbling and loves to motivate and encourage young girls that may want to continue to cheer through middle, high school and beyond.

JEFF CAIN
Jeff Cain leads our ballet department and has danced for years throughout the United States and abroad.  He was a a soloist for Garden State Ballet in New Jersey, where he studied extensively with Fred and Steve Danielli. He has also trained with many other notable dance professionals. For many years, he judged for dance competitions, including “Showstoppers”. In addition to performing, he has also traveled the country teaching master classes.  Jeff also has many television, film and theatrical credits and is an award winning writer and producer. Jeff grew up in Fairhope and is happy to return 34 years later and share some of his experience and expertise with our young dancers.

TIFFANY CLARK
Tiffany Clark has been dancing with a severe hearing loss since the age of 4. She learned to feel the beat of the music since she struggled listening to it. As she grew older, she began to understand that she danced because dancing was a way to help her overcome her hearing loss and teach her to be the best she can be. She danced with Kimberleigh’s School of Dance for 16 years and spent a year with Robinson’s School of Dance. She took Ballet, Tap/Jazz, Lyrical, Hip-Hop and Dance Company. She was a teacher assistant for several years and a lyrical teacher for 2 years at Kimberleigh’s. Tiffany has competed in many dance competitions and won many awards including, Judges’ Choice Awards, First Place Awards, Top 3 Duet Award, Hip-Hop Diva Award, and Top Ten Soloist Award. She graduated from Baker High School with National Honor Society and Academic Lettering. She was also on the Baker Dance Team for 3 years where she participated in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2004. She is currently enrolled in the Special Education Master’s Program at the University of South Alabama and she teaches 3rd grade at Kate Shepard Elementary. She danced for Aleesha Palombo and assist with her classes at the USA Physical Education Department. Under Mrs. Palombo’s instruction, she learned Modern, Contemporary, and Ballroom. Tiffany also started a new dance club, USA Jazzin’ Jags with Mrs. Palombo’s advising. She has been teaching Hip-Hop at Southern Edge Dance Center since 2011. Her goal is to teach others how to believe in themselves, overcome obstacles, and take advantage of opportunities that life throws at them. Her motto is “Never let fear keep you from the light and always dance through life!!”

HEIDI LEMON
Heidi Lemon has been dancing since the age of two and competing since the age of six. She grew up dancing at various dance studios along the Gulf Coast and found her home at Southern Edge Dance Center in Fairhope, AL. She has studied ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, musical theater, and modern dance. She has won many overall awards and scholarships at multiple different dance competitions and conventions. In 2001 she performed in the opening act of the Sydney, Australia Olympics. Heidi graduated high school from Bayside Academy in 2010 being a member of the dance team for three years. Her senior year she was the captain of the dance team and choreographed many of the routines. She attended UDA dance camps at both Alabama and Auburn and was selected from her team as an all-star student and selected to audition to be a UDA instructor. She has choreographed talent routines for contestants in Distinguished Young Women in Mobile County. She has choreographed multiple solos and group routines that have won overall awards at many dance competitions. She attended the University of Alabama where she received a bachelor’s degree in Telecommunications and Film with a concentration in production management in May of 2014. She has been a featured background extra in current hit television series. Heidi incorporated her passion for dance into a short film titled “Insanity” she produced with dancers from the Alabama Dance Department in 2013. She continues to show her passion for dance every day and teaches all levels of dancers and all ages of dancers in ballet, jazz, tap, contemporary, and lyrical.

MARK POILLUCCI
Mark is a graduate of Jacksonville State University (JSU). While attending JSU, Mark earned a position on the cheerleading squad making him a scholarship athlete. Mark served the squad as a cheerleader, Captain, and Coach. As a Captain, Mark helped to lead the Gamecocks to the NCA Nationals and also participated in the NCA partner stunt competition. Mark, Alyson (his wife of 19 years) and their son Landon reside in Fairhope. He stays active in the community serving on the board for both Fairhope Fire and Fairhope Youth Baseball.

CHELSA SEITZ
Chelsea has been performing on stage since the age of 2. She has won numerous awards for her talent in competitions over the years including talent winner at Miss America Preliminaries, World’s Entertainer of the Year, and several other entertainment awards in pageantry. She had the opportunity to record several CD’s in famous record studios including Nashville, TN and the Eagle’s Nest in Denver, CO. Chelsea graduated this year from The University of Mobile in Music Education and is a Music Teacher at Government Street Baptist Church School.

JENNIFER SMITH
Jennifer has an extensive background in dance and is a certified aerial silks instructor. Jennifer has been formally trained in the areas of jazz, ballet, pointe, lyrical, hip-hop, and gymnastics. Upon completing school, she began to take interest in different styles of dance and fitness. She began to practice belly dancing, hula hooping, rock climbing and aerial arts. She enjoys sharing her passion and love for the aerial arts and she does so in a way that is contagious. Jennifer strives to instill confidence and passion in the hearts of her students not only in the air but in life as well.


Ashley Valentz

Ashley began dancing at the age of 3 years old at Birmingham Dance Theatre (BDT) in Birmingham, Alabama where she studied ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical & pointe. At the age of 7 Ashley was selected for BDT’s competition dance troupe and began competing at regional and national dance competitions. At the age of 12 she, along with other dancers from BDT, was selected to perform in an off-Broadway dance production in NYC. After 15 wonderful years at BDT, Ashley continued her love of dance at Auburn University where she was selected as a member of the AU Tiger Pause dance team. After graduating from Auburn University with a BS in Marketing, Ashley worked as a freelance dance choreographer and judge for Birmingham area dance and cheerleading squads. Ashley has been a faculty member of Dance Arts South (formerly Southern Edge Dance Center) for 6 years now. Mrs. Ashley has a true love for the art of dance and enjoys sharing her knowledge and passion with her students.