DANJ’s tap classes are led by professional tappers including Jason Luks, Jenny LeProtto, and Katy Guth. In addition, guest faculty teach technique and combinations from their individual set of experiences, including Leo Manzari, Mary No, Mark Orsborn, Melinda Sullivan, Randy Skinner, Lisa LaTouche, Emily Shoemaker, Kelly Kaleta, Richard Yoder, and Ray Hesselink.
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Katy Guth began dancing at the age of three and competing at the age of eight. Her training focused on Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Contemporary and Musical Theatre. She continued her dance eduction at Broadway Dance Center in New York City and dance seminars hosted by Dance Masters of America and Dance Educators of America. Katy began her teaching career in 2001 while attending East Stroudsburg University of PA. In addition to her teaching experience, with expertise teaching young children and teens, Katy is an established choreographer and has received numerous awards recognizing her work. Katy manages the Sparta location for The Dance Academy of North Jersey.
Jason Luks is a performer, choreographer and teacher. He is currently on faculty at the Joffrey Ballet School teaching Musical Theater. He was recently a member of the Tony Award nominated Falsettos (Broadway) choreography team working with Director James Lapine. He worked with Josh Prince and Pulitzer Prize winner, Director James Lapine, on the choreography for "Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing." Jason's performance credits include “White Christmas” (Broadway), “On The Town" (Barrington Stage), “My One And Only” (Stages St. Louis), Tap Stars (international tour), Saturday Night Live, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, and MTV’s Video Music Awards. Jason performed at the Kennedy Center for Presidents Obama and Bush. He was the Adult World Tap Dance Solo Champion at the International Dance Organization’s World Tap Dance Championships (’03), and ADA’s national Young Choreographer of the Year (’05). Jason’s choreography has been presented on Broadway's Walter Kerr Theater (Falsettos), the Kennedy Center, and Symphony Space NYC. He is a guest teacher at many conventions including NYCDA, ASH, Syncopate, and Tap the Map. Jason graduated from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts with a BFA in Dance.
Melinda Sullivan is best known as the first tap dancer in the Top 10 of So You Think You Can Dance. She appeared as the first tap All-Star and was featured in Syncopated Ladies. Her stage credits include Disney’s High School Musical, Cats, and touring with Jason Samuels Smith. Melinda received the 2012 Capezio ACE Choreography Award, and was named among America’s “25 to Watch” by Dance Magazine. Her TV/ film credits include Glee, As the World Turns, 90210, The Goldbergs, Dancing with the Stars, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and LaLa Land. Melinda has also won the World Dance Award for Best Choreography of Television Episodic the past two years. Melinda continues to teach, perform, and choreograph worldwide at tap festivals, universities, and dance schools. She is on faculty at the Colburn School in LA and NYCDA.
Jenny LeProtto started dancing at age four at Kelly Allen’s renown For Dancers Only, including studying tap with Mike Minery (Tapaholics, Slide, JUMP) and performed works by Ray Leeper (So You Think You Can Dance Choreographer, NUVO Director). While she trained in all forms of dance, Jenny's current fortes are teaching tap, hip hop and jazz, as well as teaching all styles of dance for young children. Jenny is best known for her tap choreography - most recently recognized by American Dance Awards at their 2015 Nationals in Hollywood Florida for two of her tap pieces, “Five Guys Named Moe” and “Hiccups.” Her work has been described as “intricate, polished and exciting!” Jenny is a graduate of Seton Hall University with a major in Education.
Mary No began her training in New York City with teachers including Savion Glover, Jason Samuels Smith, Derick Grant, Michelle Dorrance, Mike Minery and Gil Stroming. Immediately following high school, she started teaching classes at Broadway Dance Center and Steps on Broadway as well at as several dance conventions. She is currently a faculty member and choreographer for Gil Stroming’s Break the Floor tap convention and off-Broadway show in New York City. Mary has been the company tap teacher at In The Spotlight since 2004 and has won countless awards for her choreography. Mary graduated from Montclair State University.
Randy Skinner is the director and choreographer of “Dames At Sea” on Broadway. He was choreographer for Broadway’s 2008 and 2009 Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, earning him his third Tony and second Drama Desk nominations. He received Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics and Astaire award nominations for his choreography of the 2001 revival of 42nd Street. He also earned Tony and Outer Critics nominations for Ain’t Broadway Grand, an Outer Critics nomination for State Fair, which he also co-directed, and a Lucille Lortel nomination for Off-Broadway's Lone Star Love. In 2001, Mr. Skinner choreographed the opening number for the Tony Awards. In Los Angeles, Mr. Skinner has choreographed Hello, Dolly!, Strike Up the Band, and Garry Marshall's Happy Days. He has received the L.A. Drama Critics, L.A. Drama-logue, Bay Area Critics, Connecticut Critics and Cleveland Times Theatre awards.
Leo Manzari and his brother John are Helen Hayes Award and Ovation Award nominated tap dancers/performers. The brothers have performed all over the United States at renowned venues such as Off-Broadway's New World Stages, The Kennedy Center, The Lincoln Theater, The Apollo Theater, Lincoln Center and Arena Stage. In addition to theatre, the tap dancing duo has made television appearances on PBS' special Michael Feinstein at the Rainbow Room, The Jerry Lewis Telethon, and FOX’s So You Think You Can Dance. Leo and John were awarded the Shirley Chisholm Trailblazer Award from the National Congress of Black Women in recognition of their work.
Mark Orsborn is a tap dancer, choreographer, and teacher. He was a soloist with the Tap America Project and featured in the Kennedy Center 25th Anniversary and Smithsonian 150th Anniversary shows. Mark is a former member of the touring company Tappers With Attitude. He was an original cast member in Debbie Allen’s production of Brothers of the Knight at the Kennedy Center. Mark choreographed and taught for numerous dance studios and companies before joining the faculty off several conventions and tap festivals including Kids Artistic Review, Starpower Power Pak, Dance Masters of America, Groove, and D.C. Tap Festival. Mark is the co-founder The JaM Project, and was recently recognized by Dance Spirit and The Washington Post for his choreography and concept video production.