DEVONPORT

SCHOOL OF DANCE TEACHERS

 
Miss Emily

Emily Summerville

Principal

BDance, RAD R.T.S, NZAMD Teaching Member, PBT Certified Teacher, Silver Swans Licensee

Emily is the Principal and owner of Devonport School of Dance and began her dance training in Timaru at The Timaru Dance Studio, sitting examinations in NZAMD jazz, hip hop, contemporary and RAD ballet. She then moved to Auckland, completed a Bachelor of Dance at AUT University and received the Top Academic Scholar award in 2013. Emily also gained her Royal Academy of Dance registered teaching status alongside this degree.

Emily spent a year in Melbourne dancing full time, completing The Edge Certificate of Commercial Dance and Performance at The Edge Performers School. Here and throughout her years of dancing, Emily trained in ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, tap, lyrical, commercial jazz, musical theatre, drama and singing. She has also performed in musical theatre productions with the South Canterbury Drama League and the North Shore Music Theatre.

Emily has taught dance in Timaru, Melbourne and more recently, in various primary schools and dance studios around Auckland. She is experienced in teaching ballet, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, lyrical, tap, musical theatre, pre-school dance, adult dance, competition solos, duos and troupes. Being able to do what she loves and share her passion for dance, Emily considers her job to be the best!

She absolutely loves teaching the Devonport School of Dance students and watching them develop their skills, confidence and love of dance. 

Miss Emily is currently teaching reduced hours and managing the studio whilst she spends time with her little one.

 
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Arini Going

Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Dance Fitness & Competition Teacher​

Diploma in Musical Theatre, ADJA Jazz Teaching Certificate

Arini has an extensive background in both performing and teaching in all forms of dancing. She has been teaching for over 15years and has been a freelance dancer performing with Diamond Dance, Candy Lane and Soul of Siren. Arini has a teaching certificate in ADJA jazz, Diploma in Musical Theatre from the Apollo Theatre School.

 
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Claire Halliday

Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Musical Theatre, Pre-School and Adult Teacher

DipLC, DipMT, PBT Certified Teacher, AJDA Teaching Degree


Claire has been dancing since the age of 5. Starting with RAD Ballet right here at Devonport School of Dance. 

From there training in Jazz, Tap and competing in competitions. 


After training full time and gaining a Musical Theatre Diploma and Teaching degree, Claire began teaching at various dance schools and performing professionally. Highlights include Performing with the Young Americans in LA, Playing Luxe in Burning mans production of Artimus at Sky City theatre, Performing in the Musical GREASE in Melbourne Australia and being a regular at Encore Cabaret. 


Teaching and dance has been Claires' lifelong passion and she is incredibly happy being back home at Devonport School of Dance. 

 
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JESS OPACIC

Ballet Teacher​

Diploma in Dance Performance, RAD Diploma in Dance Teaching Studies, Certificate 3 & 4 in Fitness

Born in Auckland, Jessica Opacic ARAD studied RAD Ballet, JDNZ Jazz and BAL Tap until she moved to Melbourne to further her dance education as a full-time student. During these studies, Jessica was offered a contract with Black Grace Dance Company and joined them for their 2007 tour of their work 'Amata' before completing her qualification.

Jess’s qualifications include a Diploma in Dance (Performance), Certificate 3 and 4 in fitness and a Diploma in Dance Teaching Studies (Distinction) with the RAD.

Jess has worked extensively with The Australian School of Performing Arts, toured internationally through Europe, America and Hong Kong as choreographer for the Australian Girls’ Choir and worked with Aboriginal Youth in remote towns in Australia.

Jess is an approachable and committed dance teacher with a particular love for classical and contemporary ballet and believes the arts are a vital aspect of education. Her dedication to fostering young dancers had led her to join Meghan Rowe with a joint vision of providing performance opportunities for young dancers in a collaborative environment through their youth company The Classical Collab.


Jess is delighted to be joining the team at Devonport School of Dance this year and is looking forward to meeting the students!

 
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INDIA STEWARD

Jazz, Tap, Ballet & Lyrical Teacher​

Bachelor of Dance Studies, University of Auckland

India started dancing at the age of 5 at Devonport School of Dance. She started her training in ballet and has since formally trained in lyrical, contemporary, and tap. India is currently working towards her Advanced One Ballet exam and NZAMD Level 7 Tap exam. She has completed all levels of NCEA dance and taught one of the Takapuna Grammar School dance companies, along side co-founding the TGS Tap Group.

India is in her third year of completing a Bachelor of Dance Studies at the University of Auckland. She aims to complete her Royal Academy of Dance Certificate of Ballet Teaching Studies in the near future and hopes to dance overseas alongside this.

India has also assisted teaching Miss Emily for 2 years and has been a cover teacher for Devonport School of Dance for 2 years.

 
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EMMA ROLFES

Contemporary and Jazz Teacher​

Bachelor of Dance Studies, University of Auckland

Emma started dancing at the age of 5, commencing with Hip Hop.  She attended many different classes and workshops.


As her passion for this grew, she participated in Hip Hop competitions and was offered many opportunities such as performing on television with well known troupes. As Emma’s passion for dance continued to grow, she became fond of different genres including lyrical and jazz.  She performed in many different shows, and continued to expand her interest and commitment to various genres.


Emma completed all levels of NCEA Dance, partook in Stage Challenge from year 9-13, and co-choreographed for J Rock in her final year of High School.


Emma has recently completed a Bachelor of Dance Studies at the University of Auckland where she became very familiar with the genre contemporary. Technique and choreography were two papers that enabled her to gain technical and creative experience. Establishing the technical elements as well as challenging her ideas to think outside the box.


Emma’s dance degree has enabled her to travel throughout the North Island and teach students in High Schools and Primary Schools as well as leading workshops, perform in multiple shows, and learn from some astounding choreographers in Aotearoa.


Aside from this Emma also has experience as a Barre instructor, where she has worked with teenagers, through to adults to assist them with their needs in their personal fitness journey.

 
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Abi Jones

Acro Teacher

Bachelor of Dance Studies, University of Auckland

Abi is a graduate of The University of Auckland, Batchelor's of Dance Studies program. Her dance career has allowed for opportunities to travel overseas, with performance and teaching opportunities in China, Korea, the United States of America, Edinburgh and Aotearoa. Including professional development workshops and intensives in Los Angeles, Chicago, Israel, and Edinburgh.


Additionally, Abi has training in Cheerleading, gymnastics and various musical theatre productions. While based in Aotearoa, Abi has choreographed her own contemporary dance works for festivals such as Short and Sweet Festival and Tempo Dance Festival, and brings an in-depth knowledge of dance contemporary techniques and performance.


In her spare time, she enjoys Scuba Diving, Horse Riding, sports, and has a passion for the environment. 

 
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MADISON FOTTI-KNOWLES

Ballet, PBT, Jazz, Musical Theatre and Pre-School Teacher

Madison began her ballet training in Hobsonville, Auckland before moving to Moscow at 17 to study full time at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy. She has danced with Russian National Ballet, New York Dance Project and City Ballet Boston, as well as featuring in the Stars of Russian Ballet and Beyond gala. She has taught across New Zealand and the US with various establishments, including Yale University’s Ballet program.