Staff

 

Amelia Pullen – Ballet, Pointe, Modern

Amelia has been teaching and choreographing for The Dance Center for the past 19 years. She has been training in the art of ballet, modern, jazz, hip hop, and pointe since a young child with The Dance Center. After graduating high school in 2004, Amelia went on to pursue a bachelors degree in dance at Belhaven University, in Jackson Mississippi. While attending college she taught and choreographed for many local studios in the Jackson are. Amelia also received excellent technique training under Elizabeth Hansen, Ravenna Tucker, a former principle dancer with The Royal Ballet, Laura Morton from the Houston Metropolitan Dance Company, Betsy Druary McMillian from Ballet Magnificat, Steven Wynne from Joffrey Ballet, and Britta Heerman-Wynne. She has enjoyed many performing opportunities throughout her dance career and loved working with numerous dance companies while at Belhaven. Since receiving her degree in 2008, she has enjoyed sharing her passion for technique and the artistry of dance in the great state of Maine, and looks forward to continuing her dance career as The Artist Director of The Dance Center. 

 Elizabeth Hansen – Nutcracker

Elizabeth received her training at Skidmore College with Melissa Hayden, Elizabeth Carroll, Juan Anduze, Paul Meija and many more. Elizabeth feels blessed to be able to teach, choreograph and dance with so many wonderful people in the Central Maine community for nearly 31 years. She founded The Dance Center in 1992 and continues her love for dance through teaching.

Rachel Gantaume Richard – Ballet, Pointe

Rachel was born in Trinidad, first studied the Royal Academy Dance Syllabus with Marcia Moze and Patricia Roe at The Caribbean School of Dance in Port of Spain. Her accomplishments there led her to being honored with a scholarship to the Joffrey School in New York City, and then further studied with Maggie Black and David Howard. She performed feature roles in Todd Bolendar’s The Still Point and Stuart Sebastian’s And Ever More in Joffery II Company before joining the Joffrey Ballet in 1975. In the Joffrey Ballet, she performed principal roles in Oscar Ariaz’s Romeo and Juliet, Gerald Arpino’s Sacred Grove on Mount Tamalpais, Sir Frederick Ashton’s Jazz Calendar, Jose Limon’s The Moor’s Pavane, and others by Michel Fokine, Vaslav Nijinsky, Agnes de Mille, Ruthanna Boris, Gerome Robbins, Twyla Tharp, Kurt Jooss, with roles also in Gerald Arpino’s Trinity and Vivaldi and Sir Frederick Ashton’s The Dream. Her television performances include Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, presented at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts at the request of the White House, marking the historic meeting of President Jimmy Carter and Deng Xiao Ping, then Vice Premier of the People’s Republic of China. Moreover, her national television broadcast history included “The Joffrey Company at Wolftrap”, and “Nureyev and The Joffrey Ballet on Broadway”. In 1982 she moved to Maine; joining the faculty of the Ram Island Dance Center and later The Portland Ballet where in 1996, she performed “Tituba” in Sam Kurkjian’s The Witches of Salem. Rachel has been at Bates College in Lewiston since 2003, and also teaches at The Dance Center in Auburn and at the Dance Studio of Maine in Gorham, Maine.

Lily Yarnevich – Director of Intro to Dance and Technique

Hip Hop, Ballet, Pointe, Modern, Jazz, Intro to Dance & Technique

Lily has her bachelors degree in dance and a concentration in studio management from Dean College. She received training in pedagogy, creative movement, ballet, modern, jazz and hip hop. While at Dean, Lily trained under Krisitna Berger from The Erick Hawkins Dance Company, Jill Silverman from Boston Ballet, Todd Shanks, Stephen Tracey-Ursprung, Roshni Pecora, Sheramy Keegan-Turcotte. She was also able to enjoy extensive training and performing experiences from many guest choreographers, and companies. Lily was also selected for the prestigious, “Choreographers Concert” to showcase her work and receive feedback from professional choreographers, such as Eloise Kropp, and Bill Hotaling. Before her time at Dean, she was a student with The Dance Center for five years, where she performed in the annual recitals. She has performed and choreographed for shows at Dean College. Lily is very excited to be back in Maine and sharing her love of dance technique with her numerous students.

Ella Caron – Hip Hop

Ella is very excited to be teaching for The Dance Center as a Hip Hop instructor. She received her training from The Dance Center and has been dancing since the age of three. Training in ballet, modern, hip hop, jazz, tap, pointe and partnering. Ella has participated in many performing opportunities through multiple nutcrackers, showcases, and student performances.

Sarah Pederson-Faria – Tap

Sarah is so happy to be part of the faculty at The Dance Center. She began her dance education at 5 years old, taking classes in a variety of dance styles. She trained and participated in dance competitions in the Boston area through the 80’s and 90’s. Sarah continued her dance education by completing the Dance Education Training Course offered by The Dance Teachers’ Club of Boston, Inc., in Boston, Massachusetts, where she trained in tap, jazz, and ballet. More recently, Sarah worked as a dance instructor with the Rising Sun Dance Center in Winthrop, Maine, where she taught tap, jazz and lyrical classes for more than 10 years. She continues to pursue professional development with The Rhee Gold Dance Retreat Center in Massachusetts, focusing on technique and classroom curriculum development.

Robin Vermilion – Pilates / Progressing Ballet Technique

Robin began her physical training with 6 years of USGF competitive gymnastics, igniting her love and passion for movement. She studied ballet, pointe, partnering, modern, and character dance at the Lynchburg Fine Arts Center, BalletMet, Briansky Saratoga Springs Ballet Center, The Houston Ballet, Virginia School of the Arts, Duke University, Randolf-Macon Women’s College, and studios in Germany and France. Highlights of Robin’s performing experience include the roles of “Sugar Plum Fairy” in The Nutcracker, “Swanhilda” in Coppelia, “Odette” in Swan Lake and the pas deus in Les Sylphides with the Lynchburg Regional Ballet Theatre in Virgina. Robin majored in Dance at the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (1986-1989), studying/performing with James Truitte, David Blackburn, Denise Warner-Limoli, and Oleg Sabline. She has enjoyed teaching/choreographing for over 25 years, most recently at  Bates College, The Dance Center,  and Mid-Coast Dance Studio. It has also been a joy for her to continue in her education/dance study at Bates Dance Festival for 20 seasons. Robin earned a BSW in Social Work at The University of Cincinnati (1991), a Physical Mind Institute certification in Pilates Mat Instruction (2002) and a certification to teach Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT)(2019). 

Director of Social Media and Marketing

Alex Hamby – Modern, Jazz, Ballet, Pointe, Hip Hop

Alex graduated from Belhaven University in April of 2022, where she received her Bachelor’s degree in Dance. She primarily concentrated on Modern Dance, Pedagogy, and Choreography for the Camera. During her time at Belhaven she received extensive training under dance professionals Laura Morton, Krista Bower, Ravenna Tucker-Wagon, Mia Whitehead, Arianna Marcell, Steve Rooks, Stella Almblade, and many more. She had the opportunity to perform with Belhaven’s Dance Ministry Ensemble, as well as produce works  for The Emerging Choreographer’s Concert and Collaborative Art Concert. Prior to her time at Belhaven, Alex trained for 15 years with The Dance Center. Participating in all the technique classes offered, performing in A Nutcracker Christmas, Student Choreography Showcase, and the annual Recital. She is looking forward to sharing her passion for dance with each of her students for years to come. 

Lacey Moyse – Ballet, Pointe

Lacey began her training at the age of 5. She has studied ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, modern, and ballroom. She received extensive training with Maine State Ballet performing as a company member with them for ten years. Lacey performed numerous classical and neoclassical pieces such as Balanchine’s Serenade and The Nutcracker, Symphony in C and Britten. She has also performed with Maine State Music Theater and Community Little Theater. She has choreographed for Community Little Theater and The Dance Center. Lacey directs and choreographs the CLT Youth Summer program as well as Geiger Elementary School’s DramaGators.

Phoebe Edwards –  Modern/Jazz

Phoebe Gouette started dancing at the Dance Center at 3 years old. She performed in the annual dance recitals with The Dance Center for 15 years, The Dance Center’s ‘A Nutcracker Christmas’, and in five seasons of Maine State Ballet’s ‘The Nutcracker’. She played the role of lead ballerina in “Oklahoma” at Monmouth Community Players, as well as performing in productions at the Community Little Theater. Phoebe also participated as a dancer and choreographer for two of the Student Choreography Showcases, and was the choreographer for Monmouth Community Players’ “The Addams Family” musical. She studied ballet for a summer at The Ballet School, taught by Elizabeth Drucker, and at the University of Southern Maine, taught by Maria Tzianabos. Phoebe’s childhood dream was always to teach dance, which only grew as she worked as an assistant teacher at The Dance Center for several years, and she looks forward to teaching for many years to come.
 
 

Heidi Warner –  Intro to Dance

Miss Heidi is excited to teach for The Dance Center, as an elementary school teacher, she has extensive experience teaching and working with kids of all ages. She has choreographed and danced for The Christmas Spectacular at East Auburn Baptist for many years. She is looking forward to starting with The Dance Center as an Intro to Dance Teacher and instilling the love of dance in the next generation. 

Tess Gregory – Tap

 

Tess began dancing at the age of 3 at Camire School of Dance. She has studied ballet, lyrical, tap, jazz, contemporary, acrobatics, and pointe. At the age of 10 she joined Camire’s Dance Team and participated in competitive dance for 8 years. She went to Albright College where she joined her college dance team and performed at competitions and sporting events. She is currently studying to become an Elementary Education teacher and is looking forward to using her new teaching skills in the school and dance classroom. She is very excited to join the Dance Center to teach tap!

Jaden Ouellette – Men’s Class

Jaden is excited to begin teaching at The Dance Center. He began dancing at the age of 14. Jaden studied ballet, modern, hip hop, and jazz at The Dance Center. Jaden also performed in The Dance Center’s annual recitals and The Nutcracker Christmas. Last season, Jaden studied in the Preprofessional Division at Portland School of Ballet while performing in multiple productions including A Victorian Nutcracker, Sylvia, Gisele, and Building Ballets: Coppelia. During the summers, Jaden participated in summer intensives at The Dance Center, Portland Ballet, and most recently, Boston Ballet. This fall Jaden begins his professional dance journey as a Trainee in the Portland Ballet Company.