Kerri Ann Ford-Burns: Owner and Artistic Director
Kerri Burns has been dancing since she was two years old. Her earliest areas of study included Ballet, Jazz and Tap. She later went on to further study Lyrical, Pointe, Modern and Hip Hop. Throughout her young career, Ms. Kerri choreographed for many competitions, cheerleading squads and musicals. Kerri has been recognized in the dance community for her fine tuned dancing and creative choreography. After high school, Ms. Kerri went on to persue her degree in Dance Education at New York University. During her time at NYU she took classes at Broadway Dance Center studying under Frank Hatchett, Mike Minery and Mia Michaels.
While at NYU, considered one of the most prestigious institutions for dance in the country, Ms. Kerri continued her passion and taught dance on the weekends while attending school. Her Dance Education curriculum focused primarily on, but was not limited to, the study of educational psychology, anatomy, kinesiology, and choreography--along with daily technique classes in Ballet, Modern and Jazz.
In the winter of 2002, Ms. Kerri went on to broaden her education and become a certified Stott Pilates Instructor to enhance her understanding of the relationship between fitness and technique in dance.
Lastly, Ms. Kerri has taught dance to all ages in many parts of the country including Florida, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey. After having over 18 years of teaching experience the dream of opening a studio became a reality thanks to her hard work, determination as well as the love and support of her family, friends and students.
Becki McQuade- Assistant Director
Miss Becki is a multi-talented teacher, choreographer with over 15 years experience in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical and childrens classes. She has had the privilege to study with Greg Russell, Mia Michaels, Frank Hatchett, Jo Rowan and Savion Glover. Becki has been dancing since the young age of three in all forms of dance. She studied locally at Sussex Dance Academy and THe Ballet Barre. Continuing her dance education she attends classes at Broadway Dance Center and yearly dance conventions. And in 2009 she was certified in Zumba. Becki's artistic and versatile choreography has won her students top honors at many dance competitions and conventions. As a teacher, she is committed to creating a positive environment for her students while building their self-esteem. Her students learn to take pride in themselves and in the art of performing. Miss Becki's energy, creativity and love for dance is a great contribution to performers of all ages. Becki resides in Frankford with her husband Tim and their two childern TJ and Joie.
Heather Stanley- Tap, Lyrical, Jazz and Adult Classes
Miss Heather has been dancing since the age of 5. She received her BA in Theatre/Dance with a concentration in acting/directing from East Stroudsburg University in PA. Upon graduating, Miss Heather remained in Pennsylvania to teach at a local studio and run the dance program at the YMCA. She went on to own and serve as artistic director of her own studio for 7 years. During that time, Miss Heather also was the choreographer for a high school color guard and taught K-12 dance education for a charter school. She has choreographed for many competitions, musicals, and served as a tap captain for Macy’s Tap-O-Mania for 3 years.
Miss Heather is happy to be back in NJ and proud to call Synergy her home! She loves teaching and the reward that it gives her. She continues to study dance in all forms through workshops and conventions.
Melissa Stewart - Instructor
Melissa Stewart began dancing at the early age of 5 where she quickly fell in love with the art of dance. Continuing her training through high school, she gained experience through intense classes and competitive dancing. She attended master classes from such notable institutions as the Alvin Ailey Dance Company.
From high school she continued her training in higher education. Melissa is a graduate of DeSales University where she received a Bachelor of the Arts in dance technique. Her studies include pre-dance, creative movement, modern, ballet, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, musical theatre, tap, composition, and improvisation. While at DeSales, Melissa served as the Assistant Director to the Conservatory of Dance where she designed the curriculum and syllabus for the programs. In addition for teaching for the Conservatory, she taught and choreographed for two summers at Hidden Valley Camp located in Hidden Valley, Maine. She also choreographed and performed in works for the Young Choreographers Series as well as other various independent showcases.
Melissa has studied under Vincent Brosseau , Trinette Singleton of the Joffrey Ballet, Marisa Cervesis of the New York City Ballet, Gretchen McLaine, Terry Creach, Lynne Mariani, and others. She has attended workshops and master classes such as Alvin Ailey Company, American College Dance Festival, Michael Snipes Jr., Darla Stanley, Jennifer Muller, Rebecca Herman, Cherie Noble, Jeffrey Dog-Marks, Germaine Salzberg, and with members of the Paul Taylor Dance Company. In addition to her technical background, Melissa has conducted extensive research on the development of children ages 5-13, and the benefits of dance to the growing child. She is a member of the National Dance Education Organization.
Melissa continues in her training as a dancer, instructor, and choreographer. She continues to attend classes when she can at Broadway dance center and also attended the Pulse Teacher Workshop in NYC where she studied under Wade Robson, Brian Friedman, Shake Sparks, Cris Judd, Dave Scott, and Gil Duldulao, and Laurieann Gibson of “So You Think You Can Dance.” She also studied under Broadway Dance Center faculty: Finis Jhung, Beth Goheen, Sally Mae Dunn for active isolation flexibility, Ovi Miller and Ofer Ben, Ginger Cox, Dawn Hillen, Deborah Wilson, Michele Barber, and pre-dance educator Toni Noblett.
Her philosophy of dance education is to provide classes based on technique, injury prevention, body awareness, creativity, and fun to create well-rounded dancers and artists.
Sam Lupo - Instructor
Sam Lupo has been involved with cheerleading, dance and gymnastics since the age of five. She studied jazz and acro as a young child and again in high school. Sam spent her high school career cheering and competing with Kittatinny Regional High School. During this time she was named as an NCA All-American and UCA All-Star. These awards allowed her to travel and perform at the Hula Bowl in Maui, Hawaii. After high school, Sam attended Kutztown University where she competed at the UCA College National Championships, placing in the top 10 every year. Currently, Sam teaches at Kittatinny Regional High School where she also in one of the cheerleading coaches of the 2013 NCA National High School Champions. Her experience in cheerleading, stunting and gymnastics will be a great addition to our Acro class. Sam resides in Stillwater, NJ with her husband Mike and daughters Giavanna and Sophia. Sam is extremely excited to be working with Miss Amy and the SDC staff and students