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Elizabeth Dawson - Principal
A.R.A.D. (Distinction) Tas Ballet Company, Fully Qualified Cert. IV Make-Up Artist for Film, Television, Theatre
With over 40 years of professional dance and teaching experience, Elizabeth was one of the original full-time students & Scholarship recipients at McDonald College, studying with the school’s visionary founding director, Margaret Markham. Starting dance at 14 years of age, Elizabeth gained her Advanced A.R.A.D. and became a member of the Tasmanian Ballet Company touring interstate and New Zealand in the early ‘80’s.
Awarded the Royal Academy of Dance Teaching qualifications with Distinction, Elizabeth became Principal of the Kenthurst School of Dancing from 1988-2000 and continued teaching at highly respected dance institutions such as Capital Dance Studios and Ecole Ballet and Dance Theatre throughout the following decades. Many students of “Ms Dawson” - with her guidance and mentorship – now enjoy professional careers in the dance/theatre industries.
Elizabeth has also enjoyed working as Head Make-Up Artist on the television and movie sets of 'Crime Investigation' and 'Mortal Fools', alongside work at The Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS) and various Tropfest projects.
The talented, dedicated teaching team at Elevate Dance Centre endeavour to elevate the mind, body and spirit of students through the astounding magic of dance in 2019
From the immensely respected and reknowned Australian entertainment family - The Kermonds, Zan is an outstanding performer and entertainer in his own right. With his special brand of Tap, Hip Hop, Jazz and Contemporary, Zan brings his vast experience and incredible talents to inspire Elevate students in 2019. Zan has shone in such classic shows as Candyman, Tap Dogs, Hot Shoe Shuffle and has toured Australia and Asia with “Singing in The Rain”. Elevate Dance Centre is thrilled to have Zan bring his “star” qualities to "light the way" in classes charged with great energy and excitement.
Originally from the Gold Coast, QLD Max started dancing at the age of 3 under the direction of Peta Norton before achieving his Diploma in Performing Arts at ED5 International. Max has worked alongside Choreographers such as Dein Perry, Jason Coleman, Matt Lee and The Squared Division. Credits include The Helpmann Awards, The Dally M Awards and numerous corporate performances and international live stage shows throughout Asia & the Middle East. In 2013, Max was privileged to play the highly prized role of “Tap” in David Atkins internationally celebrated ‘Hot Shoe Shuffle’.
Max returned from touring Singapore and Europe and in 2019 Elevate is absolutely delighted to have him as a resident staff member. Everyone at EDC continues to look forward to enjoying his fantastic classes - to the “MAX”!
In 2019 Xander Ellis will once again bring his outstanding professional dance and performance skills to our senior Contemporary, Jazz & Tap classes. Xander’s achievements in the performance industry is impressive beyond measure; as a Finalist in the last season of So You Think you can Dance, a featured Tapper in Dein Perry’s Tap Dogs and Wicked the musical. Alongside dancing with various Opera Australia productions and Australian Idol, Xander is a sought after “triple threat” in the industry – a shining example of his talents was his role as Joey Primo in the musical - Rock of Ages.
Xander has performed in "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" at the Lyric Theatre in 2013, which received rave reviews and in 2014 he performed in "Grease" and "Guys and Dolls" - both Box Office smash hits. In 2015 Xander once again shone in "Anything Goes" at the Sydney Opera House and was on stage with the fabulous "We Will Rock You" & "Ghost" in 2016.
We are truly excited to have Xander at Elevate where our students are inspired in classes by his charismatic energy, experience & example.
A graduate with a Bachelor of Performance, Theory and Practice (Dance Studies) and a Bachelor of Education (Secondary) from the University of Western Sydney, Nadine has over ten years of professional experience in the entertainment and education industries.
Trained in a variety of styles with some of the most respected teachers both in Australia and overseas, Nadine has worked in various secondary schools in Sydney – staging musical productions and shows teaching Dance, Drama, PDHPE and Music.
Leighton Sharpe is one of Australia's leading commercial dancers. His skills as an actor dancer and acrobat have cemented him as a regular in various corporate, film and television productions such as Happy Feet, Tap Dogs, Royal Caribbean Productions, Sydney Showboat, Australian Idol, and the X Factor.
Born in south Sydney, Leighton began dancing and acrobatics at the age of 7. He has studied all genres of dance including tap, jazz, and ballet and has represented Australia in Sports acrobatics.
A jack-of-all-trades, Leighton has recently completed his Bachelor of Commerce and Masters in Media and Communications at the University of Sydney (in his spare time!) and has performed alongside many Australian artists including Guy Sebastian, Marcia Hines, the Rogue Traders and TV Rock, as well as appearing in over 50 TV commercials worldwide. Presently performing in movies, musicals and television in London & Europe, Leighton will once again share his spectacular talents and experience with Elevate's senior students in 2019.
Clare has recently graduated with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise & Sport) and Masters of Exercise & Sport Science - University of Sydney, and currently works as an Accredited Sport Scientist and Exercise Physiologist. Her expertise ensures students receive the best care when learning how the body benefits through correct dance technique.
With over 20 years of dance training in Ballet, Contemporary, and the F.A.T.D. Gold Star for Tap and Modern with qualifications in First Aid and CPR, Clare is renowned for her outstanding teaching and rapport with junior students.
Alongside achieving a Masters of Teaching Degree from the University of Western Sydney, Lara is especially passionate about Classical Ballet, Tap and Musical Theatre, and has been dancing and performing for over 18 years. As a respected High School teacher, specializing in HSC English, Lara's love and expertise in the Arts inspires both her dance and secondary students.
Awarded the R.A.D. Vocational Intermediate and F.A.T.D Gold Star for both Tap and Modern, Lara brings her innovative teaching skills and performance experience in dancing and singing - both locally and overseas - to Elevate.
Rhiannan and Roechelle Jansen
Rhiannan was crowned 2013 NRL Cheerleader of the Year and was feted in the media - more on our news page with video & news links!
Sisters Rhiannan and Roechelle are an especially dynamic teaching and dancing duo at EDC. Rhiannan is a graduate in Bachelor of Health Science (PDHPE) at the University of Western Sydney aswell as her Masters of Teaching (Secondary). Roechelle has a Diploma in Children’s Services and is presently studying for her Bachelor of Education (Primary) at the Australian Catholic University.
This pair have enjoyed many successful performances with various Hip Hop crews, including the 2015 & 2019 International Hip Hop Finals with achieving a world rating in the top 10. Both bring a uniquely vibrant 'street' energy to EDC Hip Hop, Contemporary and Jazz classes .
Hayley is currently an Instructor for Dance Fever Australia teaching Hip Hop, Ballroom, Latin, Sport and Gymnastics in schools across Australia, encouraging boys and girls of all ages to experience energetic fun through Dance & Sport.
Qualified with a Bachelor of Dance Degree and PDHPE Education from ACPE, Hayley has many years of experience in a wide spectrum of dance styles including Jazz, Tap, Contemporary and Royal Academy of Dance Classical Ballet. As a performer, Hayley has attained awards and recognition in Hip Hop Battlegrounds, Eisteddfods and ACPE Annual Performances. Awarded the R.A.D. Higher Grades, Hayley also completed her F.A.T.D exams with High Distinctions in Tap and Jazz. Hayley has also enjoyed performing as a member Australian College of Physical Education Dance Company.
Tyler has just completed her university studies, graduating with distinction from the University of Wollongong with a Bachelor of Creative Arts (Theatre and Technical Production). During her time at university she worked a number of productions as a stage manager and production manager, lighting designer and collaborator. This has led to working as a theatre technician at Sydney Festival 2019 in venues such as The Sydney Opera House, Belvoir St Theatre and Carriageworks.
Tyler's uses her theatre and design experience as inspiration for the dances she choreographs; experimenting with space, story and meaning. With over 15 years dance experience in Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary and R.A.D Ballet, Tyler has been with EDC since 2006 and has travelled from Wollongong to teach and assist with classes.
Tyler is greatly loved and respected by our students and together, all enjoy being part of the creative and supportive EDC dance family.
In recent years, Monika was awarded “high achievement” in HSC Dance and PDHPE attaining callback offers for both Composition and Major Composition contemporary pieces in 2017.
Monika’s PDHPE achievements have furthered her extensive knowledge of body performance with a deep understanding of how, through correct dance technique, safeguarding and nurturing dancers’ bodies are prime priorities. With 12 years of dancing in a wide range of dance styles, Monika is especially passionate about Jazz and Contemporary. Elevate students adore their happy classes with Miss Monika, as she is a beloved teacher gifted with outstanding skills. Always striving for the utmost professionalism, Monika is also currently studying at the Australian Catholic University - Bachelor of Primary Education. As a respected dance and eventually Primary school teacher, Monika delights in assisting young individuals achieve their potential whether in the dance or school classroom.