WHO WE ARE AT NSD
Jennifer Picart-Branner and Stephanie Clarke are the founders and owners of Northwest School of Dance. Together they form a dynamic teaching team with more than 30 years combined teaching experience. They've been teaching for the past 16 years in Kitsap County and surrounding areas.
Our mission at the Northwest School of Dance is to create a positive motivational environment that nurtures dancers of all ages and levels to be strong athletes, expressive artists, and inspired individuals in the studio and in their community. Classes are offered in ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, acro arts, contemporary, lyrical, tap, musical theatre, hip hop, ballroom and conditioning for students to explore recreationally or train for a future in dance.
Our studio offers a safe, healthy learning environment and team atmosphere in every class in order to help each student achieve their best level of success.
All classes are led by passionate, caring, adult instructors. We pride ourselves on high quality, hands on instruction. This allows us to give each dancer more individualized attention, which has been proven to increase the quality of instruction, help the dancers excel more rapidly, greatly improve their technique and prevent injuries. Both owners and instructors are committed to continuing their education by attending Certified Teacher Courses yearly throughout the country.
Co-Owner/JPB/Ballet Director - Miss Jenn attended the University of Music and Art in Frankfurt, where she received her Master of Arts Degree in Theater Dance with a major in Classical Vaganova Technique. During her residency in Germany, she danced with the Frankfurt Ballet Company and was a guest performer with Royal Ballet Company in London. Miss Jenn began her teaching in Germany and has continued teaching in Washington for the past 20 years. She is certified by the world-renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy of Moscow as having completed Levels A and B (1st through 5th year of dance education) of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy Teacher Certification Program. She plans to complete the Bolshoi Teacher Certification by summer 2021 which would then certify her to teach 6th-8th year of dance education. The summer of 2019 she was invited by the Royal Ballets Artistic faculty to continue her professional development by observing teachers first hand teaching future world class dancers at the Royal Ballet School London. She recently became certified in Progressing Ballet Technique for Junior, Senior and advanced programs. Miss Jenn is the founder of JPB’s Le Petit Ballet, which opened in 2007 and is now NSD’s pre-professional ballet company.
Co-Owner/CDG/Lyrical/Jazz - Miss Stephanie is a co-owner and instructor at Northwest School of Dance, and Director of the studio’s competition dance team, Clarke Dance Group. She has been teaching and choreographing dance for over 20 years. The greater part of her dance training was completed at Cornish College of the Arts, where she received a BFA in Dance, Cum Laude. Miss Stephanie’s studies originally focused on Ballet and Modern. However, after graduating college, her passion and training began shifting to Lyrical, Contemporary and Jazz styles, which is what she primarily teaches now. Miss Stephanie is excited to continually hone her skills and training which has taken her throughout Washington, Oregon, Montana, Boston, Arizona, California and Chicago. She began studying the Giordano Jazz technique two years ago, completing four levels of training. Miss Stephanie received her certification in the Basic, Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced levels of the Giordano technique.
Ballet/Jazz/Combo/Lyrical - JoAnne Wynn is a native of Washington State and relocated to Delaware in 2002 where she spent 14 years as a studio instructor. She returned home to Washington to continue her career as a studio instructor and recently began teaching dance at a public Performing Arts Elementary School where she instructs weekly classes, choreographs routines, and plans and organizes performances. JoAnne built her strong foundation through the study and performance of classical ballet and has spent 20 years developing her teaching skills in all dance styles by attending professional workshops in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Seattle. She also continued her personal dance training at Academy of the Dance and First State Ballet Theater in Wilmington, DE. JoAnne’s choreography has received Critic’s Choice/Best in Show, Exceptional Staging, and Outstanding Ballet Performance Awards at many regional dance competitions and several of her former students have gone on to pursue dance at the college and professional level, as well as become the next generation of dance instructors. JoAnne currently teaches at Northwest School of Dance and View Ridge Performing Arts Elementary School, is certified in Anne Green Gilbert’s acclaimed Creative Dance program and recently became a certified instructor of the Progressing Ballet Technique method of training.
Hip Hop/Boys - Sam Picart (Kansas City, MO) began his dance training in urban street styles at the age of 15 and began ballet training at 18 under his aunt Jennifer Picart-Branner, formerly of the Frankfurt Ballet. Sam received a BFA from Cornish College of the Arts in 2013 and in 2016 he was the chosen winner of Ellen’s Dance Off competition and was a featured guest on the show. Sam’s training also includes the Joffrey Ballet Summer Program in NYC, Boulder Jazz Dance Festival, and the summer program at the Académie du Domaine Forget with Rubberband Dance. He has worked with notable choreographers such as Mandy Moore, Camille A Brown, Victor Quijada and Iyun Ashani Harrison. He continues to perform many solo pieces and has been featured at multiple Seattle Mariners baseball games, The Harlem Globetrotters halftime show, and has done commercial work for Microsoft. In addition to teaching in institutions all over the PNW including Northwest School of Dance, Exit Space School of Dance, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Cornish College of the Arts, he is teaching full time for Showstopper Dance Convention based out of Myrtle Beach.
Modern/Lyrical/Jazz/Ballet - Miss Becca has been dancing since the age of six, and doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon. She received her early training from Ewajo Dance Centre and Bainbridge Ballet, then went on to study dance at the University of Washington. Since graduating, she has been performing professionally in Seattle as a freelance dancer and choreographer. She was a member of Au Collective from 2015 to 2019. Miss Becca has been teaching since 2014, and is excited to be teaching even more classes at NSD this year!
Acro/Jazz - Jessi has been dancing since the age of 3. She studied jazz, tap, ballet, lyrical and acro/tumbling at her hometown studio in Butte, Montana. She performed and competed with dance and acro/tumbling teams on a local and national level for 7 years. Jessi started teaching dance in 1995 and has taught in the Kitsap area since 2002. She is an Acrobatic Arts certified instructor in Modules One and Two. She holds a BFA in graphic design from Montana State University and is a freelance graphic and web designer. Jessi is proud to have passed her love of dance onto her daughter, Lainey who dances here at NSD!
Tap/Jazz - Jamie has been dancing since she was 4 years old and has been performing since she was 8. She competed on a dance team for 7 years, participating in many competitions and conventions throughout Washington and California. She performed at Disneyland with her dance team in 2000 and 2002, as well as competing at Hollywood Connections National Finals in 2005. Jamie also trained at SDL intensive for 5 years where she studied with Denise Debrosky from San Diego Ballet and John Passafiume from New York. She has taught for 5 years in various styles, ages 6-18. This year she received certification from the Acrobatic Arts Teacher Training course. She is also the Dance Club instructor at View Ridge Elementary in Bremerton. Jamie is now married and has five children, one of which dances at NSD and is on the competition team.
Tap/Jazz - Kathy Dalessi has been dancing more or less non-stop since the age of three. As a featured dancer for Disneyland, she has danced in countless parades; The Main Street Electrical Parade being her favorite, and many special events, commercials, and has performed at a variety of locations; Opening Ceremony of 1984 Olympics, Dodgers World Series celebrations, for two Presidents and many other VIPS. She also was part of the Entertainment production team for many Walt Disney Studios movie premiers including Evita, Pocahontas and Mulan. For over 20 years, she has taken her love of tap and jazz to the classroom and taught thousands of students in Colorado, Nevada and Washington. She has choreographed numerous award winning competition team numbers and has received acclaim for her innovative choreography. She also worked as a Judge, and Stage Manager for Thunderstruck Dance Productions, helping many dancers thrive on the competitive stage. She is passionate about Tap and the tries to honor the Legends while learning and teaching all of the latest trends and styles. Her greatest personal accomplishment has been passing on the love of dance to her two daughters, Sarah and Sydney.
Combo and Adult Ballet - Miss Cheyenne Martinek has grown up performing in Kitsap County, with over 16 years of dance background and 8+ years of experience working with children in a variety of settings. She has danced with pre-professional ballet companies, including Dance Ensemble Northwest and JPB, and competed tap in local dance competitions. Miss Cheyenne has two degrees in Early Childhood education, a Montessori diploma, and a certification in Anne Green Gilbert’s critically acclaimed Creative Dance program. She is also certified in the Progressing Ballet Technique program. Working as both a preschool teacher with NSD’s Performing Arts Preschool and a dance instructor, Miss Cheyenne loves to encourage children to be creative, express themselves and develop a love for the arts.
Hip Hop - Heather Dobbins, raised in Gig Harbor, WA, has been dancing nearly her entire life. She began dancing at Jo Emery’s Ballet School at the age of three, where she studied strictly in ballet for eight years. Ready to explore more fields of dance, Heather then moved on to study with Harbor Dance and Performance Center where she was introduced to contemporary, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop. After being a company member for several years, she began teaching her own classes at Harbor Dance at the age of 15. On top of being a dance instructor, Dobbins danced with and was captain of, the Gig Harbor High School Dance Team, H2Whoa. Now, a recent graduate from Gig Harbor High School, Heather is staying in the Gig Harbor area to continue her training as a hip hop dancer, and work towards her dream of being a choreographer. She is currently teaching hip hop at Harbor Dance, assistant coaching the Gig Harbor High School Dance Team, and is beginning her first year as a hip hop instructor at Northwest School of Dance in Bremerton. Her goal as a choreographer is to create healing through movement, and allow her students to express themselves in the most natural way possible.
Hip Hop/Tot Hop - Miss Mackenzie has been dancing and performing for 16 years now. She has trained extensively in Jazz, Ballet, Hip Hop, Tap, Lyrical and Contemporary. However, she’s always been most passionate for the Jazz and Hip Hop styles. She started competing at the age of 7 and continued until she graduated in 2018. Her dance studies and commitment have taken her throughout Washington, Oregon and California. This will be Mackenzie’s second year teaching, but before that, she served as a TA and co-teacher at NSD for several years. She is also an assistant for the studio’s competition team, the Clarke Dance Group.
Tina Mari Fox
COME BE A PART OF THE NSD FAMILY!
Interested in working for Northwest School of Dance? We are always looking to expand our faculty and staff.
Current Job Openings
Now hiring part-time dance instructor positions in all dance styles including ballet, hip hop, jazz, lyrical, modern, and tap. Experience is required. It is preferred that instructors are well rounded in their training and able to teach more than one style, but it is not required. Hours of instruction may vary depending on a variety of factors. Positions open for summer and fall (2019-2020 school year) teaching. Ideally looking for someone who can teach in the fall, or start in the summer and continue throughout the next school year, 2019-2020. Starting wage dependent on experience & qualifications, extra pay offered for travel reimbursement. Please send resumes to email@example.com.
*On Call Substitute Instructor*
We are looking for an experienced substitute dance teacher in all areas of dance (ballet, jazz, modern, hip hop, tap, contemporary) to add to our on-call list. To apply for this position, please email us your resume, headshot, and coverletter to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Northwest School of Dance is a member of NDEO (National Dance Education Organization), a non-profit membership organization dedicated to the advancement and promotion of high quality education in the art of dance. As a member, we are able to take part in National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA). Student induction into the NHSDA is awarded on the basis of points earned for meritorious work in dance. These students receive a Certificate of Membership, added prestige in scholarship applications & future resumes, wear NHSDA honor cords & gold honor pins during graduation ceremonies, and are eligible to apply for the NDEO Artistic Merit, Leadership and Academic Achievement Award.