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FACULTY

Meet Our Faculty at California DanceArts

The Instructors at California DanceArts are Dance Education Specialists, with each having established a successful professional career and many being awarded degrees in dance by Colleges and Universities and with many years of teaching experience.  By encouraging our staff to read, attend workshops, continue their own dance education, collaborate and communicate with other specialists, our Academy constantly strives to develop the most current and effective training methods for use in our classrooms.

 

We are constantly sharpening our instructional skills so that students can benefit from the large arsenal of knowledge and techniques designed to work with dance students of all ages. We also offer instructional training programs to our advanced students who wish to gain valuable experience as student intern teachers while assisting our instructors in a variety of our programs in our classrooms.

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Aerin Holt is the Founder and Artistic Director of California DanceArts. Since 1987, her passion for dance has been marked by the development of her school’s progressive programs that proudly features the advancement of her students, many of whom have gone onto professional careers.   Ms. Holt is the visionary choreographer and the Artistic Director of California Contemporary Ballet, one of Southern California’s burgeoning dance companies that features Holt’s unique choreographic blend of classical, contemporary and modern ballet. She leads her Company with the creation of several innovative, original works and full-length original ballets presented each season.

 

Aerin has been fortunate to study and perform with a variety of companies and has worked with choreographers from the Martha Graham Dance Company, Joffrey Ballet, Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, Utah Repertory Company and Momentum Dance Company, to name a few. She has been seen in broadcasts for commercial and educational television, and is an award-winning choreographer of theatrical events, stage productions, competitions and ballets.

Aerin Holt is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.

 

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Artistic Director, Choreographer, Dance Educator, Founder

(Classical & Contemporary Ballet, Modern Dance & Motion Alignment Therapy)

AERIN HOLT

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Ms. Pittenger was the recipient of two Ford Foundation Scholarships, one to study with San Francisco Ballet Company and the other personally awarded by Mr. George Balanchine to attend the School of American Ballet in New York City. It was while attending the New York school that Maria Tallchief selected her to perform in lecture demonstrations throughout New York and eastern colleges.

After two years of study at the School of American Ballet, Lynn was invited by

Mr. Balanchine to join the company of New York City Ballet where her professional career began.

In addition to a successful performing career, Ms. Pittenger directed a very extensive program for over 250 children in the course of 23 years and ran her own school of ballet for over seven years, making Ms. Pittenger uniquely and exceptionally qualified to prepare our students at California DanceArts for the world of dance.

Ballet Instructor

(Classical Ballet Tech, Pointe & Variations for Student & Career Divisions)

LYNN BRYSON PITTENGER

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Anh Dillon started with an academic education in classical ballet at the Conservatoire Niedermeyer in Paris, France, and later expanded her training to modern and jazz. She went on to perform worldwide with contemporary ballet and contemporary jazz companies. Her versatility enabled her to venture into various types of work, from music videos (Usher) to industrials (Redken, Aveda) and commercials (PBS), working with LA (Los Angeles) industry choreographers such as Michael Rooney, Travis Payne, Shanda Sawyer, John Carrafa, and Kevin Wilson. Anh is the recipient of a Lester Horton Award for best performance in “Duet” choreographed by Terri Best. As a choreographer, one of the highlights of her career was the amazing opportunity to work with the one and only Prince.


Her experience and career also led her to co-create and co-direct the online dance hub DancePlug.com.

 

Anh teaches ballet, contemporary, jazz, traveling the US and overseas, and has been a part of the Joffrey Ballet School faculty since 2013. Anh is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through to Level 5 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.

Ballet Instructor

(Classical Ballet & Pointe for Student & Career Divisions)

ANH DILLON

Alexis Ash has been a dedicated and loyal student of California Dance Arts for the past 12 years.  As a valued member of the California Contemporary Ballet Company, she has performed in numerous Company productions. In 2017 she performed the starring role, as Gerda, in the Company’s signature ballet, The Snow Queen.  She has also gained experience as a valued show Dance Captain assisting in the teaching of the show’s choreography. For the last several years, Alexis has dedicated herself to teacher training under the direct supervision of Ms. Holt and achieved Apprentice status and then Teacher for the Children's Division (Pre-Ballet through Primary C). Just recently, Alexis returned from New York City where she successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive and is now a Certified Teacher for Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum. 

 

Alexis is also a very talented Aerialist, Gymnast and Modern Dancer. She is currently completing a degree at the Woodbury University’s School of Business. A favorite teacher at California DanceArts, she is a gifted, encouraging instructor that connects with young children.

Ballet Instructor

(Classical Ballet for Children's Division)

ALEXIS ASH

Malinda Farrington began her dance education with the Montgomery Civic Ballet where she danced the role of Cinderella in Cinderella. She then received a dance scholarship to Southern Methodist University where she danced with the company for 2 years. Her next move was to NYC where she received a full scholarship to Alvin Ailey School of Dance and at that time danced with The Richard Levi Dance Company.

Here Malinda began her Musical Theater career. Malinda has performed in 5 Broadway Shows, the last of which was Chita Rivera, The Dancer’s Life. It was an honor to dance with a living legend. She has also understudied greats like Bebe Newirth and studied with Fosse right hand men like Chet Walker and even learned Steam Heat from the infamous Gwen Verdon!

Dance Instructor

(Broadway Jazz for Adult Division)

MALINDA FARRINGTON

Ana Markova was born in Seattle, Washington. A natural performer, Ana began dancing and figure skating at the age of 6 and competed as an ice dancer at state and national competitions. At the age of 12 she decided to strictly focus on ballet and received a scholarship to the prestigious Kirov Ballet Academy in Washington D.C. She performed at venues such as The Kennedy Center and The Warner Theater with various ballet companies. At 15, Ana moved to Moscow, Russia, to study at the renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy for a year. Upon her return to the U.S., she was granted a company position at the Washington Ballet Company. Within a couple years, however, her professional ballet career was derailed because of a knee injury. At that point Ana decided to focus her attention solely on acting and found love in teaching young students. In 2016, she decided to move to the Los Angeles area to pursue acting and teaching ballet full time. 

Ballet Instructor

(Classical Ballet for Children's Division)

ANASTASIA MARKOVA

Cindy is a trained stunt woman and aerialist. She has been featured in many of the live shows at Universal Studios including the role of "Helen" in the #1 show, Waterworld for 10 years as well as "Sarah Conner" in The Terminator Stunt Show. She has stunt-doubled for many movies and commercials in her career. She is trained in many forms of Aerial arts, Circus Arts, Stage Fighting and Stunt maneuvers. She is thrilled to share her passion for this new and growing art form with the students at California DanceArts where she is providing instruction for Aerial Tissue, Aerial Hammock and Lyra (hoop).

Aerial Instructor

(Aerial Arts for Cirque Division)

CINDY THOMPSON

Ms. Thompson has received her primary training at CDA where she is currently a principal member of California Contemporary Ballet. She has attended summers with American Ballet Theatre, Salzburg International Ballet in Austria and with Ostrava Ballet. She is a professional ballet and contemporary dancer and Aerialist. She is thrilled to share her passion for Aerial Arts with the students at California DanceArts where she is providing instruction for Aerial Tissue and Lyra (hoop).

Aerial Instructor

(Aerial Arts for Cirque Division)

ALYSSA THOMPSON

Now Enrolling 2019/2020 Classes

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