FACULTY AND FACILITY
Alana Turner, CDTA, MLDMA, DMA, DEA, our company's founder and Director, has vast experience in Dance Education as well as the entrepreneurial skill set required to own and operate a dance studio. As the founder and Director of one of Canada's largest dance studios, Dancers Burlington, Ms. Turner brings a wealth of knowledge and ability to this exciting new enterprise. After directing the Toronto studio very successfully for 25 years, Ms. Turner and her family relocated to Lakewood Ranch in August of 2014 following her husband’s Air Canada employment transfer
Ms. Alana’s unique and diverse background includes training in Toronto with Brian Foley, New York with Lynda Gache, and Miami with Jill Mallory. She has been recruited to choreograph performances ranging from events for His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, (Prince Charles) to movies with Brooke Shields and Whoopi Goldberg produced by Barbra Streisand, to choreographing the Orange Bowl Half-Time Show. She has choreographed many professional theater shows including 42nd Street, and staged charity events with professional companies such as Tap Dogs. She has judged for many international dance competitions such as Starpower, and On Stage America. She was also honored to be named to Chatelaine magazine’s ‘Who’s Who of Canadian Women’ for both her enrichment and support of the arts, and her work with advocacy for women’s and children’s issues. Her dance performances, with students from beginner to pre- professional, have won countless overall High Score and Best Choreography awards across North America at prestigious dance competitions.
Ms. Alana is well-known to many dance families in the Lakewood Ranch area due to her outstanding work developing countless Lakewood Ranch and Sarasota dancers through her work with various local studios. Her successes are well-documented; including multitudinous Overall High Score Awards including National Championship numbers such as 'Newsies" in 2016 and countless others in 2017.
As a current valued member of the Dance Faculty at Manatee School For The Arts in Palmetto, (voted one of America's Best High Schools by US News and World Report) Ms. Turner thoroughly enjoys her position as Choreographer/ Teacher for the Advanced Jazz/ Tap curriculum. Alana’s dedication to excellence is well- documented by the client base she has had the opportunity to serve thus far, and she is eager to expand this service by building the very best faculty and facility available, and ensuring only the very best in instruction and customer service at this exciting new venture, Art & Soul Dance Company.
Sarah Metzler, born in Valparaiso, Indiana, began dancing at the age of six with Tracy Petruska Brumley at a local studio. In 2002, she and her family relocated to Florida, and she continued her training with Dan Deal of the Florida Ballet School, under the direction of Roni Wright and Mary Devine. During this time she attended numerous summer intensives such as Ruth Page Dance Center (Chicago, IL), The Joffrey Ballet School (New York, NY), Orlando Ballet School (Orlando, FL), Sarasota Ballet (Sarasota, FL), BalletMet (Columbus, OH), and Ballet Theatre of Maryland (Annapolis, MD). In 2006 Sarah trained at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York City as a trainee for one year, with teachers such as Francesca Corkle, John Magnus, Liz D’Anna, Zelma Bustillo, and Eleanor D'Antuono. The following year she was invited to be a trainee with the Sarasota Ballet on scholarship. She then attended the University of South Florida in 2008 and trained with Gretchen Ward Warren, Sandra Robinson, Julio Montana, John Parks, Lynne Wimmer, and Sasha Yapporov. Sarah was selected to dance the principal role in Yapporov’s Tarantella, and a soloist role in a contemporary work choreographed by guest choreographer Rick McCollough. During this time she also trained at Tampa Bay Ballet (TBB) with Lindsay Clark and Richard Geiger during TBB’s first year of operation. In 2009, Sarah then began her career as a professional dancer with the Ballet Theatre of Maryland under the direction of Dianna Cuatto for two seasons. Some of her favorite roles danced there include Ghost Waltz couples in Beauty and the Beast, Arabian demi-soloist in The Nutcracker, and Peacock demi-soloist in Alice in Wonderland.
Sarah returned to teach at TBB and dance in their company, Tampa Ballet Theatre (TBT) in 2011 as a soloist for 2 seasons. In addition to performing, Sarah also assisted in setting choreography, running rehearsals, and teaching technique classes. She was also a mentor and coach to the TBT II Trainees, the top students in the school who are preparing for a professional career in dance. With TBT she has performed various roles, including the character role of the Queen in Sleeping Beauty; a soloist in Paquita; the Snow Queen, Dew Drop, Marzipan, and Rat Queen in The Nutcracker; a soloist in Les Sylphides; Cinderella in Cinderella; and as Gamazatti in La Bayadere. She also collaborated with TBB and TBT’s Artistic Director Lindsay Clark on choreographing and dancing in two contemporary works to music by Pink Floyd.
In February 2013, Sarah was invited by the Artistic Director of Brandon Ballet, Octavio Martin, to join his company. In hopes of furthering her performing career, she happily accepted. Her first performance with the company was in Spanish Divertissements, where she performed as a soloist in both Paquita and Don Quixote. Other roles include as the Sugar Plum in The Nutcracker, a stepsister in Cinderella, The Moon in Hansel and Gretel, Lucy in Dracula, Eden the Genie in Aladdin, Myrtha in Giselle, Esmerelda in La Esmerelda Pas de Six, soloist in Les Sylphides, soloist in Le Grande Pas de Quatre, and Phyrgia in Adagio Pas de deux from Spartacus. In addition to dancing with the Brandon Ballet, Sarah also taught ballet, pointe, and conditioning in the pre-professional program. Sarah has re-staged choreography by Octavio Martin on pre-professional and training dancers, as well as running rehearsals and offering individual coaching.
Throughout her performing career, Sarah has taught classes in ballet, pointe, conditioning, and jazz at various studios in Pinellas, Hillsborough, and Pasco counties. In April of 2017, she was a guest judge at Ticket to Broadway Dance competitions in both Venice and Coral Springs. Sarah believes providing top quality training to young aspiring dancers to give them their best foot forward. She has an immense love for performing, and loves to educate and pass down her passion to future generations of dancers. Sarah is excited to teach at Art & Soul Dance Company for the 2018-2019 season!
Lauryn Franck has been training in dance since the age of 5. While growing up she danced competitively for nine years. While in high school she also danced for her Varsity high school dance team where she served as Captain from her Sophomore through Senior year. While in high school she received All-Iowa Dancer recognition as well as All-State recognition through the Iowa State Drill Team Organization. Growing up she was also active in power tumbling and gymnastics where she earned 5 National Titles and 33 State Titles through the USTA, USAG, and AAU organizations. She also received the AAU Outstanding Athlete Award in Tumbling and Trampoline.
After high school, Lauryn continued her love for dance at the competitive collegiate level. She earned a scholarship for dance to Barton College in
Great Bend, Kansas, where she was competitive through the NDA organization. While dancing competitively her team earned two top 5 National finishes. After earning her AA she auditioned for the Division I Wichita State Shockers Dance team where she also earned her spot and danced competitively through the UDA organization. Once realizing what she wanted to pursue her career in, she returned home to Iowa to pursue a degree in sports broadcasting at William Penn University. While here, she cheered competitively through the UCA organization and served as the Captain for the team her Senior year.
Since graduating college, Lauryn has continued her passion of dance and tumbling into her career. She has taught and choreographed Hip Hop and Contemporary competitively for the past five years, while earning first place finishes and choreography awards through several major competitive outlets. She has also taught and choreographed Pom, Jazz, Tap, Cheer, Lyrical, and Acro across the United States. Lauryn also taught dance and gymnastics at the World Class Olympic Training Facility, Chows Gymnastics, the home of the Olympic Gold- Medalists Shawn Johnson and Gabby Douglas.
Since moving to Florida, Lauryn co-directed for the company and choreographed at Suncoast Dance Theatre. This year Lauryn accepted the position at Manatee School For the Arts where she teaches at the high school full time to over 150 students. Her repertoire at the high school has included, Hip Hop, World Dance, and 6th Grade Dance. Since taking the position, Lauryn has been asked to start her own Acrobatic Dance Program at the high school for the fall of 2018
Certified with American Ballet Theater (ABT) Teacher's Training, Miss Sofia comes to us from Argentina, and is fluently bilingual. She has a Specialized Training in teaching younger dancers, and is adored for her lovely and nurturing demeanor, and gentle method of instruction. Miss Sophia will be co-teaching our fabulous pre-school Little Manatee Dance and Tumbling Program. Welcome Miss Sophia to our amazing Faculty!
RUSKA 'ROSSY' MIHAYLOVA
Miss Rossy comes to us with a Master's in Economics of Building Design and an outstanding resume in gymnastics, stretch, strengthen, aerobics, fitness and yoga. After graduating with an additional degree as a Gymnastics Trainer from the National Sports and Science University in Sophia, she was honored with the highest sports title in Bulgaria, "Master of Sports". We are so thrilled to have a teacher with her experience and certifications.
We are so excited to welcome Natalia Mock! Originally from Pittsburgh PA, she is very excited to join get team of Art & Soul! She is an accomplished performer, choreographer, teacher and director who has worked all over the U.S. Natalia has a BFA in Musical Theater with minors in Business Management and Dance from Point Park Conservatory in Pittsburgh. Throughout her performing career, Ms. Mock has worked at the Pittsburgh Playhouse, CLO, Benadum Center, and the Florida Studio Theater. In addition to performing, Natalia has been teaching dance, acting, theater, musical theater, directing and theater arts for over 20 years. She currently calls Florida her home and is the Thespian Sponsor and Teacher at Manatee School For The Arts. Her greatest role is being a mother to her amazing son, Kepler! Welcome Natalia!
BRIAN 'BB' BRISTOL
Mr. Brian is excited to return to Art & Soul... where is now teaching both Recreational and Competitive Hip Hop. His cutting edge choreography is well loved by all the kids he teaches AND he is excited to begin an Adult Hip Hop Program this year as well!
A former Captain of Manatee School for the Arts Hip Hop Team, Brian brings a wealth of talent and a phenomenal ability to inspire to his classes. So happy to have you back!
We are so happy to have Miss Elaynne join our team! With experience in Gymnastics, Jazz, Tap, and Musical Theater...and a background with the Disney College Program, Miss Elaynne's wonderful energy and enthusiasm with her classes is a huge favorite of our parents and dancers. So grateful to have you! Amazing choreography and top- notch technique teacher; another perfect fit for us!
KIARA (KIKI) BARNES
Miss Kiki is the most beloved of all teachers! Currently a Senior at Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School, Miss Kiki brings a genuine warmth and authenticity to her classes that no-one can match. Her classes are ALWAYS full and she is the Director of Summer Camps! Miss Kiki has a vast knowledge of Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop, Contemporary, Lyrical, and Ballet and is eager to share her knowledge with the LWR/Sarasota community! After winning countless Overall High Score Awards, Miss Kiki is ready to dedicate herself to the students of Art & Soul. Lucky us!
DANIELLE DOWNES: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Miss Danielle has 3 daughters who dance, and is therefore an amazing addition to our team! As the mother of dancers, she works with each Art & Soul Family to find the perfect fit of programming. Furthermore, her Masters in Food Sciences makes her a go- to for the nutrition and health of our dancers. Miss Danielle's skills in organization, office management and Customer Experience are foundations of the outstanding Customer Service and WOW factor our families experience with us!