Our Instructors

-A teacher takes a hand, opens a mind, & touches a heart!

Tiffany Mayer
Owner/Director/Instructor

Tiffany’s dance experience started at the age of 3 where she danced at Pat Haggerty School of Dance.  She studied dance through high school and into college. Disciplines of focus were ballet, jazz, contemporary, and tap.   Competitively she travelled to some of the top competitions and conventions in the country, including intensives with Rafael Grigorian.  In college she ran the IUP Dance Company and took it from a small group to one that attracted the top dancers in western PA.   During her time at IUP the focus for Tiffany was teaching and working with children to help them realize their own potential.  Having been mentored by two amazing dance teachers she saw her true passion for dance.  After teaching and creating choreography at mulitiple studios throughout Pennsylvania and New York she was finally able to start her own studio.  Gazella Dance Studio was started in the summer of 2010 and it's a dream that has become realized.  Working with students of all ages and helping them not only to become a better dancer but to nurture and develop self-confidence in ones self is the true reward.    

 

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Diana Torba
Instructor

Diana Torba is a magna cum laude graduate of Barnard College, Columbia University, with majors in both dance and political science. With her first company, Bronx-based St. Michael's Warriors, Diana produced dance in every venue imaginable across New York City, throughout the NorthEast, and on two international and one West Coast tours. She is the creator of more than 50 original danceworks.

Ms. Torba's current project, SpeakDanceCNY, is the recipient of two NYState Decentralization Grants(2021 and 2022), and one Coronavirus Relief (2022) grant. Ms. Torba brings to Tiffany's School of Dance her endless enthusiasm for classical modern dance techniques and history, ancient West African dance, and all new frontiers of Contemporary dance.

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Emma Pinker
Instructor

Emma has been dancing since she was 2 years old and started competing both regionally and nationally in dance when she was 7 years old. As a dancer, Emma trained in a wide range of styles from Tap and Hip Hop to Ballet and Modern, but eventually found her passion lied with Contemporary, Lyrical and Jazz. Emma has danced for three dance companies. Artistic Designs Dance Company was where she spent her final competitive years. After High School, Emma attended college at Hobart and William Smith Colleges where she double majored in Dance Performance/Choreography and Marketing. She explored her passion for choreography at the Colleges, developing numerous solo and group pieces. Emma is excited to share her passion of dance with the TSDPAC dancers.

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Sarah Cox
Instructor

Coming Soon! 

Alex Korzeniowski
Instructor

Coming Soon!

Corinne Price-Schmidt
Assistant Director/Instructor

Corinne began dancing at the Munson Williams Proctor Dance Institute. In high school she applied her dance background to cheerleading and high school musicals. After graduating, she went on to the State University of New York at Cortland College where she co-founded Danceworks. By her sophmore year at SUNY Cortland she had quickly asserted herself as a game changer in the program, her hunger and commitment catapulted Danceworks from a club that met occassionally to SUNY Cortland's highly acclaimed and energetic dance team that performs at athletic and university events, as well as regional and national competitions. Corinne served as the Danceworks Club Sport President as well as choreographed and performed for Danceworks for 4 years. Since graduating, Corinne has attended numerous NY Knicks City Dancers and NY Jet Flight Crew choreography camps to advance her passion for Hip Hop and Jazz Funk. With Bachelor and Master degrees in Health Education and Wellness Promotion she is a Health Educator at Baldwinsville H.S. who enjoys making time to teach dance to her high school students during Wellness Days and Physical Education classes. Seasonally, Corinne loves continuing to dance and explore street styles in NYC studios.  Since joining the team at Gazella Dance Studio, Corinne has immersed herself into the brilliant lives of her students as their Hip Hop teacher. Corinne thrives for opportunities to introduce the many exploratory avenues of Hip Hop to her students and more importantly to ignite a passionate flame within them. With a drive to help provide a rich multi-faceted program at TSDPAC, both recreationally and competitively, Corinne is thrilled to work aside Tiffany as her Assistant Director.

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Carlin MacBlane
Instructor

Carlin began her dance journey at Tawn Maries Dance Centre at the age of two. Her main styles of dance are tap, jazz, contemporary and musical theater. For eleven years, she got to experience the competitive world of dance at many well known competitions and conventions, as well as inspiring younger dancers through assistant teaching. She has had the honor of performing in Walt Disney World, attending master classes with famous performers, and receiving an award along side her teammates at the Industry Dance Awards. She is currently pursuing a psychology degree, and enjoys photography and spending time with her dogs. Carlin aims to create a motivating workspace of endless creativity for all her students.

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Cara Connolly
Instructor

Cara Connolly grew up on Long Island, New York, where she received the majority of her training from Maggie Black. In addition to Black's coaching, Ms. Connolly attended Studio Maestro under Deborah Wingert and François Perron, Huntington Ballet Theatre under Karen Lynch and Tony Jones, and the School at Steps under Leslie Browne.  She also trained with some of the country's most prestigious summer programs, including Boston Ballet, The Washington School of Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and New York State Summer School of the Arts.  

Ms. Connolly is joining Syracuse City Ballet as both a company dancer, and as assistant ballet mistress. She has also danced professionally with numerous companies such as Hudson Valley Ballet, Neglia Ballet Artists, American Swiss Ballet Company, Connecticut Ballet, and Ballet New England. She has also worked with renowned contemporary choreographers David Fernandez, Ada Cacciatore, and Sergei Vanaev, among others.

In addition to performing, Ms. Connolly has been choreographing, and teaching ballet to all ages and levels for over ten years. Her students have been accepted to many notable ballet programs including University of the Arts, Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet, The Rock School of Ballet, NYSSSA, American Academy of Ballet, and Joffrey Ballet School.  At TSDPAC, she aims to train the next generation of dancers to have strong technique, musicality, and above all, a love for classical ballet. 

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Kayla Ahrem
Instructor

Kayla grew up dancing on Long Island, New York where she trained her favorite styles, jazz, hip-hop, and musical theater among some others. She started assisting classes at just 10 years old from everything from acro to lyrical and found her love for choreography and instruction in high school when she began teaching independently. She is currently a student at Syracuse University where she is studying Environmental Policy and Policy Studies. At TSDPAC she is so excited to share her passion for dance with young dancers while making them feel welcomed and confident!

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Taylor Fraser
Instructor

Taylor grew up in Cicero where she started dance and gymnastics at the age of 4. Taylor trained at CNY gymnastics until she was 16 where she had the honor of competing in the New York Empire Games for the Central Region as well as representing New York State at a Region 6 Level 8 meet at Kennebunkport, ME. She also danced competitively at Tawn Marie's Dance Center and performed at Walt Disney World. Taylor attended SUNY Fredonia where she minored in dance and was a member of their dance team. She later transferred to LeMoyne College, receiving her Bachelors in Psychology. Taylor has coached gymnastics over 20 years most recently at GC2 Gymnastics. She has worked with children as young as 18 months, coached multiple state champion compulsory level gymnasts as well as optional level gymnasts. Taylor is excited to bring her love of tumbling and dance to TSDPAC.

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Cierra Murphy
Instructor

Ciera Murphy's love of sports started when she was 4 years old when she fell in love with soccer. In High School Ciera competed in Varsity soccer, as well as club soccer, Varsity basketball as well as ran track and played lacrosse. Speed is her best asset! After High School Ciera went on to a two year school and graduated with her Criminal Justice Degree as well as playing and being the captain of the OCC women’s soccer team! She plans to continue her school journey next fall! She enjoys teaching children and helping them learn the fundamentals to being a great athlete all around! She is excited to teach Ninja!

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Dan Williams
Voice/Piano Instructor

Dan Williams has been teaching private voice and piano for over a dozen years in the Central New York area. With music degrees from SUNY Oswego and Onondaga Community College, he has strong training in vocal technique and piano pedagogy. Also an active performer and music director, Dan has graced both the operatic and musical theatre stages as well as concerts. Musical directorships include Syracuse Summer Theatre at the OnCenter, Syracuse Area High School Theatre Awards, Cazenovia College, and Jordan-Elbridge High School. Awards include twice-winner for Musical Director of the Year for 2018 and 2019 SALT (Syracuse Area Live Theatre) awards and also 2019 Leading Actor in a musical for William Barfee in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Dan has also worked with virtually every community theatre in the greater Syracuse area. As an arts educator Dan has taught week long or program intensives at The Rev (formerly Merry-Go-Round Playhouse), Redhouse Arts Center, SUNY Oswego's SummerFame, Miss Lisa's Center for Dance Artistry (LCODA), Peacefuls Schools' School of the Arts, the CNY Community Arts Center, and the CNY Performing Arts Studio.

Dan is well-versed in many musical styles including musical theatre, classical, opera, jazz, and pop. For piano he can cater to whatever style wants to be learned whether by chords or by full music reading.

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Brittany Manuel
Instructor

Brittany began dancing at the age of 5 at Armstrong School of Dance in Ithaca, NY. Throughout her years of dancing, she trained in the disciplines of ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, precision and hiphop and was on the studio’s competition dance team for 5 years. Brittany began teaching dance classes at this studio while in high school and would continue to do so throughout college. She attended SUNY Cortland where she spent 4 years as a member of the Danceworks club dance team and was a captain and choreographer in her senior year. Teaching dance is where Brittany fell in love with working with children and teens and inspired her to continue into a career in the education field. She is excited to share her passion for dance and teaching children with the TSDPAC family!

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Ella Berryment
Instructor

Ella started dance at the age of 3. Her favorite styles of dance are ballet, musical theatre and contemporary but she also trained in jazz, lyrical, modern, and pointe. She attended Le Moyne College majoring in Nursing and graduated in 2021. At Le Moyne she was apart of the Le Moyne Student Dance Company. She performed, choreographed and was part of the Executive Board her final year. Ella also currently works as a Registered Nurse and Holistic Health Coach through her brand Ella Troy Health.

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Meghan Fisher
Instructor

Meghan is from New Paltz, New York, and began her dance journey at Take The Leap Dance Studio, at the age of 4. She started off expressing passions in ballet, and then progressed to other styles such as pointe, hip-hip, jazz, lyrical, modern, and her favorite, contemporary! Once Meghan started her BFA Graphic Design education at SUNY Oswego, her life with dance grew even more. She became a choreographer for SUNY Oswego’s Del Sarte Dance Club, and taught genres of jazz, hip-hop and contemporary to all college ages, and levels.  She now resides in Syracuse, NY, working as a Design and Production Coordinator. She is thrilled to start her journey at TSDPAC, and make an impact on her new students, with a main goal of spreading creativity, confidence, and personal growth for all.