FACULTY

Danny Bevins

Danny Bevins is thrilled to return to the dance studio that helped raise him! After graduating Summa Cum Laude from Elon University with a BFA in Music Theater, he moved to NYC and began performing around the country. He’s performed at theatres such as The Muny, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Music Theatre of Wichita, Papermill Playhouse, Bucks County Playhouse, and Barrington Stage Co. Danny is also an ACE certified strength coach, and specializes in functional movement based training. He runs Bespoke Personal Training in between performance opportunities and is signed with People Store Inc and DGRW Agency. Danny is ecstatic to return to DSOB to teach what he’s learned from the entertainment and fitness communities of NYC and ATL!

Monica Garcia Bradley

Monica has been dancing for over 25 years, and grew up as a competition dancer in Houston, Texas. She spent nearly a decade in New York City performing professionally and is a proud member of the Actors Equity Association. She has traveled the country performing in Musical Theatre at Paper Mill Playhouse, TUTS, Ivoryton Playhouse, The Elektra and North Carolina Theatre. Now in Atlanta, Monica is a full time performing artist and teacher. Outside of dance, she is also an accomplished film actress, having been in feature films and network television shows, such as The Resident (FOX), MacGyver (CBS). Monica is currently a recurring guest star on Tyler Perry’s Sistas (BET), and is featured on numerous regional and national commercials. Dance is the heartbeat of her career and success, and she looks forward to working with the students of Decatur School of Ballet.

Leslie Palmer Gourley

Leslie started her dance training at age six in Marietta and continued her dance studies in Mississippi and with the Joffrey School of Ballet in New York. At age 16 she came to study with Decatur School of Ballet. After graduating from Texas Christian University as a ballet major in 1986, she returned to teach and dance with our school and company. In July 2018, Leslie purchased Decatur School of Ballet and became Artistic Director of Decatur City Dance.

Meg Gourley

Meg is a recent graduate of the University of Georgia with her B.F.A. in Dance, with a K12 Certification, and a Minor in Anthropology. She began her dance training at age three at Decatur School of Ballet and continued through high school as a member of the Apprentice Ensemble of Decatur City Dance and DSOB’s Rug Cutters. Meg has studied with the Joffrey Ballet School, staibdance, the Governor’s Honors Program, and the American Dance Festival. During her years at UGA, she performed in various faculty and student pieces and was chosen to work with notable guests such as Alexandre Munz and Luis Piedra. She performed with Danza Universitaria in San Jose, Costa Rica. For two summers, Meg served as the Head Resident Assistant for the Joffrey South program on UGA’s campus, as well as Joffrey Denver. This season, she is dancing with Sideways Contemporary Dance Company and Fuerta Dance Company. She will also appear in the Dance Canvas 10th Anniversary Performance. Meg is very excited to return to DSOB as a faculty member. 

Kyme Hersi-Sallid

Kyme is a graduate of the acclaimed New York City High School of Performing Arts, and has performed nationally and internationally as a dancer, singer, and actress. Her credits include three Broadway shows and tours of an additional three Broadway shows. As a film and TV actress, Kyme played Rachel Meadows in Spike Lee’s film School Daze, and guest starred on TV shows such as 24, NYPD Blue, Frasier, and many more. Her love of the arts and teaching led her to found a performing arts academy in a charter school in Los Angeles in 2006. Kyme moved to Atlanta in 2012 where she continues to share her passion and passes on the fruits of her experience and success. As Associate Director, Kyme oversees the Junior Rhythm Keepers and the Rhythm Keepers of Decatur City Dance.

Nacoleon Hillsman III

Nacoleon is from Atlanta, Georgia and holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Oklahoma. Taking his first dance class at the age of 14 at the Cobb County Center for Excellence in the Performing Arts at Pebblebrook High School, he fell in love with dance. He has trained in multiple styles, including jazz, ballet, modern, and hip hop. He has performed on stage in New York, San Francisco, Beijing China, just to name a few. Nacoleon is excited to continue to inspire students in their love for dance and artistic creativity at Decatur School of Ballet!

Kate Holland

Kate Holland has more than thirty years experience as a dancer, teacher and choreographer. She has received funding from
the City of Atlanta Bureau of Cultural Affairs, the Georgia Council for the Arts and both Fulton and Dekalb County Arts Councils. Kate started her study of yoga in 1973 with Yogi Amrit Desai and currently studies with Divine Mother Karunamayi, sharing many classes throughout Atlanta.

Olivia Mitchell

Olivia began her dance training at Decatur School of Ballet at age 4. A member of Decatur City Dance, she continued studying at DSOB until age 18. She received her BFA in Dance with a concentration in Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. While at UNCG, she had the privilege of studying under dance artists BJ Sullivan, Robin Gee, Janet Lily, Elizabeth Johnson, Jan Van Dyke and Duane Cyrus. 

Eliza Reese

Eliza started her dance training at our studio at age four and has been assistant teaching since age nine. She was a member of Decatur City Dance (Junior and Apprentice Ensembles and Junior Rhythm Keepers) and DSOB's teen swing group The Rug Cutters. Eliza recently graduated from Agnes Scott College with a major in Biology and a minor in Dance. 

Jessica Paget Reese

Jessica began her dance training at the Gainesville School of Ballet at age six. A professional performer with South Carolina Ballet Theatre, she also taught with the Columbia Ballet School before opening her own studio in Lexington, South Carolina. In addition to her classical ballet training, Jessica has performed in musical theater productions. With a BA degree in English and an M.Ed. in elementary education from Columbia College, she taught seventh grade for seven years. Jessica is an associate director of Decatur City Dance.

Birda Ringstad

Birda began dancing at the age of eight at the Art Linkletter Dance Studio in Chicago, Illinois. She has been fortunate to study with some of the great tap dancers of our time, including Brenda Buffalino, Pat Rico, Al Gilbert, Gregory Hines, and Tommy Sutton. She has been teaching tap to dancers of all ages and levels since 1986. Birda directs the Rug Cutters of Decatur School of Ballet, plus the Rhythm Keepers of Decatur City Dance.

Daphanie Scandrick

Daphanie began her modern dance training at Davidson Fine Arts School in Augusta, Georgia. Over the years, she has performed with the Augusta Ballet Apprentice Company, Zoetic Dance Ensemble, Gathering Wild, and StaibDance. In 2000, Daphanie obtained a B.B.A. in computer information systems from Georgia State University and currently works as director of decision support services for Georgia's Department of Community Health.

Dee Wagner

Dee has taught dance, mime and theatre for 30 years through Company Kaye, the Georgia Council for the Arts, and Georgia Dance Conservatory. She has been teaching Mommy and Me classes for 10 years. She has choreographed the musicals at the Paideia School for 28 years. As a performer, her work was seen at the New England Vaudeville Festival and the Governor's Awards for the Arts. Dee has taught summer musical theatre camps through the Marietta Community Schools and Decatur School of Ballet. Dee is also a practicing licensed professional counselor and registered dance therapist.

Toya Willingham

Toya started her dance training at age three and came to Decatur School of Ballet at age 13. She has been a company dancer with Decatur City Dance since 1992. She is a graduate of the DeKalb Center for the Performing Arts. In the summer of 1995, she participated in the Governor’s Honors Dance program. Toya trained as a demonstrator, an assistant teacher, and a substitute teacher in younger children’s classes at our school. She has a strong foundation in ballet and has also trained in modern dance, jazz, and tap. Toya is Director of AboutFace, the professional jazz ensemble of Decatur City Dance.

Heather Yates

Heather began her dance training at Decatur School of Ballet at age eight and continued her study with the Atlanta Ballet, the Royal Academy of Dance and the Cleveland Ballet, where she also danced in the company. She also danced professionally with the American Ballet Theatre in New York City from 1988 to 1994, working with such notable artists as Twyla Tharp, Natalia Makarova, Jiri Kylian and Mark Morris. Heather is also a professional chef.

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