LAURA MONROE (TAP I/I and Tap III) was born and raised in West Philadelphia, PA. She was introduced to dance at the age of 8 at the Progressive Center for dance, where she took my first dance class. From there she went on to take Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Pointe, Modern and Hip-Hop. Although she trained in various styles of dance, Tap became one of her favorite classes. She grew up dancing at PCD and remained there all the way through her senior year in high school. After a brief hiatus to pursue school she returned to teach Adult Tap, which also lead to teaching Tap 1-2 as well. She is proud to say that she has been teaching Tap for over 8 years.
Aside from teaching dance, she has obtain her Bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences from Penn State University and obtained my Master's degree in Elementary Education from Drexel University. She is currently working as a substitute teacher for the Universal and Mastery Charter Schools in the Philadelphia, Springfield, and Chester Counties. She is also and employed as an administrator at the Glen Mills School. She is a current member of the Big Brother/ Big Sister program in Philadelphia where she has been a Big Sister for the last 4 years. The passion she has for the Arts and Education is endless and she is excited to be sharing it with the new group of students this year at X-Press Yourself.
DEVON BRISBON (POINTE and BALLET II) is a native of Camden, New Jersey, Devon M. Brisbon began her dance training at the early age of 3. Devon has trained at DeMarco Dance Center (Merchantville, NJ), Dance Sensations of NJ, Inc. (Pennsauken, NJ), and The Pointe! Dance Studio (Philadelphia, PA) working with teachers and choreographers such as Dara Meredith, LaCeda Nelson, Shawn-Lamere Williams, Wayne St. David, Eric Bean, Teneise Mitchell, Kareem Goodwin, Tommie Waheed-Evans and Lamar Baylor. She is a 4-time New Jersey NAACP ACT-SO competition medalist in Dance giving her the opportunity to travel the national competitions in both Detroit, Michigan and New York City while also getting the chance to attend the Alvin Ailey Summer Dance Intensive, working with artists and instructors such as Christian Von Howard and the late Denise Jefferson. She also has had performance experience with Dance Sensations Competition Team, Straight to the Pointe! Company IV and Eleone Connection, the 2nd company to Eleone Dance Theatre, where she was a principal dancer as well as captain for her last two years with them. After graduating from Creative Arts High School in 2009, Devon took her talents to Michigan where she furthered her education and techniques at Alma College. During that time with the Alma College Dance Company, she performed Ballet de corps in Les Sylphides, 2nd soloist in Paquita, the Sapphire Jewel in Sleeping Beauty, and Mirltons and Snow Corps in The Nutcracker while also choreographing and performing modern and jazz works. Devon participated in the Alma College exchange program with the Tainan University of Technology (Taiwan) where she traveled to Taiwan all of May 2012 to perform and work with the students and professors there. This past spring, Devon graduated from Alma College with a Bachelors of Arts in Dance & Theater with Honors, and currently dances as a member of Grace Dance Theater in Philadelphia, PA.
JASMINE BROWN (CHILDREN'S DANCE AND MOVEMENT I and KIDDIE HIP HOP) took her first dance class at Progressive Center for Dance (now Carol's Cubbage School of Dance) at the age of 5. Unfortunately she only stayed for one year but her love for dance never subsided. She later returned to PCD at the age of 11 where she stayed and trained in ballet, tap, hip hop, and her two favorite styles modern and jazz until graduating from high school. While attending Philadelphia High School for Girls she was captain of the dance team and co captain of the step squad. She was also a part of Penn State University's dance team. Jasmine currently dances as a member and is an assistant choreographer for the Greater Exodus Baptist Church's praise dance ministry, Ministry in Motion. It is here where she has developed her love of teaching, choreography, and most of all her love for children.
JEANINE FENNAL(CHILDREN'S DANCE AND MOVEMENT I/II, ACROBATICS: BEGINNERS/ INTRO)is a Philadelphia native who began her dance training at Progressive Center for Dance (PCD). Jeanine fell in love with the art of dance at a young age. She branched out and received training at Philadanco’s Children’s Program and became a camper at Young Performers Theater Camp. A couple years later, Jeanine furthered her dance education at The High School for the Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA). During her years at CAPA, she was introduced to acting, became a member of Grace Dance Theater, and fell in love with little people (children ages 3-5). At 17 years old, she taught her first dance class, which happened to be acrobatics. After graduating from CAPA, Jeanine went on to further her education at Temple University where she graduated with a Bachelors in Education. Although she majored in Early Childhood/Elementary Education, Jeanine went on to teach high school English for three years. After solely taking care of her daughters for a couple years, Jeanine decided to get back into the arts again. She had the chance to perform in her first stage play as the leading lady in “My Husband Didn’t Teach Me French” and had the chance to be in a film. Currently Jeanine is dancing again with Grace Dance Theater, teaches dance, and teaches Pre-K while raising her two daughters Angel and Aaliyah.
RASHAN JACKSON(JAZZ I/II)
JULIANNA TAYLOR (CHILDREN'S DANCE AND MOVEMENT II AND JAZZ III) is Philadelphia native and started her dance career at the tender age of 4, where she attended ballet at her local YMCA. At the age of 9, she was enrolled at the Progressive Center for Dance (PCD) for the 1995-1996 dance season, under the direction of the late Carol Cubbage-Davis. Julianna soon shared a bond with Mrs. Carol; it was through her that Julianna discovered he love for the arts and an appreciation for placement, persistence, and dedication. While enrolled at PCD she studied Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Pointe, Hip-Hop, and Modern where she blossomed as a dancer joining the Training Company of Grace at the age of 16 and then graduated to Grace Dance Theater (formally known as Company Grace) at the age of 18. In 2008, Julianna was offered a position to teach at PCD where she developed skills as a leader and instructor, and also mentored aspiring dancers. Julianna has also taught at J-rock, (a performing arts summer camp), Simons Recreation Center, SCH CAPA (a non-profit performing arts after school program), Feltonville Dream Center and most recently X-Press Yourself. Julianna has also danced with MIM at the Exodus Baptist Church under the direction on Fayette Coppock, and currently leads Praise Break at the Church of Christian Compassion. Amidst all of her dancing Julianna currently holds a BA in Psychology with a specialization in childhood development, and is working towards obtaining a MA in School Counseling starting in the fall of 2014.
"The art of expression is the only talent you need"