Our Faculty

Casey Nemec  

Artistic Director-Acting, Hip Hop, Modern, Revolution Competition Team, Pom, Tap

Casey Nemec has been in the performing arts for 36 years, and instructing dance for over twenty years. She was formally trained in tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, and ballet at the Phil Osterhouse Dance Studio and The Dance Network in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Casey also grew up competing in Winter Guard International, where she honed her dance and performance skills throughout the nation. Her choreography has been seen on stage, on screen, winning awards in studio dance competitions, state championship high school dance team competitions, and even on the basketball court of her alma mater, Florida Gulf Coast University (Go Eagles!), where Casey was a Magna cum Laude graduate. She has been certified to teach through both Dance Educators of America and Dance Masters of America. In addition to dance, Casey trained at the Grand Rapids Civic Theatre School of Theatre Arts, having been both a lead actress and a teaching/choreography assistant in their prestigious Summer Stock Program. Casey became a professional actress at the age of 12 when she appeared as the lead actress in the touring production of The Troll and the Elephant Prince. She has appeared in international campaigns for Sega, Buick, and Artistry Beauty, among others, numerous theatrical productions, and made her silver-screen debut in the Academy-award winning film Dreamgirls. Casey has also been featured in print modeling campaigns, commercials, documentaries, runway shows, as a feature model on the Home Shopping Network, and on the cover of best-selling novels Could I Have this Dance?, For the Rest of My Life, and All I’ll Ever Need. She is also currently working as an on-air Fashion Contributor for the Home Shopping Network. Casey has been a guest instructor at Beer City Barre in Grand Rapids, and frequently attends teacher workshops and master classes throughout the nation to continue her training and inspiration! Casey also holds her Master’s degree in history from the University of Massachusetts.

Sarah McBride

Assistant Artistic Director- Acrobatics, Hip Hop, Jazz, Lyrical, Revolution Competition Team

Sarah McBride began dancing at the age of 5. She was formally trained in jazz, contemporary, acro, tap, hip-hop, ballet, pointe, and circus. She has performed for Disney and the Sailor Circus in addition to competing in dance competitions regionally. In addition to performing and competing, Sarah began choreographing a wide variety of genres of dance for children ages 2-18 when she was 15 years old. In 2008, she graduated from USF in Tampa with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She currently teaches acro, jazz, lyrical, and hip-hop, and is an award-winning choreographer. Sarah has a passion for dance, and inspiring children to have a love for dance as well. 

Jennifer Deke

Children’s Combination

Jennifer, an Ohio native, began dancing as a toddler. She went on to become a competitor (and award winner) on the national stage, and danced her way through the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade! Jennifer holds her Bachelor’s degree in early childhood education, and her Master’s in educational leadership. She is a second grade teacher at Deep Creek Elementary School, and is excited to return to preschool dance instruction!

Ali Gregoire-Baker

Acro, Children’s Combination, Hip Hop, Revolution Competition Team, Tap

Ali Gregoire-Baker started dancing when she was 8 years old, and soon after started to dance competitively around the state and country. Ali is formally trained in jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, hip-hop, and ballet. Ali recently graduated from the University of South Florida with a degree in Children’s Mental Health. While attending USF, she was a member of Sigma Kappa sorority, and choreographed a number of performances for philanthropic events. She is very excited to be a part of Studio Seven and can’t wait to see what is in store for this season!

Sofie Hansen

Acro, Hip Hop

Sofie Hansen has been involved in the arts since the age of four, and began her time with Studio Seven in the year 2014. In addition to studying jazz, hip hop, tap, modern, and ballet, she also enjoys watercolor painting, cooking, and theatre. Sofie is currently a sophomore at Charlotte High School, and is working on graduating with her AICE diploma as part of a Cambridge program, in the year 2024. Sofie has been seen in numerous Charlotte Players musicals, and is very involved in the theatre program at her school. She plans on attending a university with a focus on psychology and art history, and using these skills to have a career reliant on helping others. Sofie finds joy in spreading kindness to others, and can’t wait to continue doing that this year. She looks forward to having another great year at Studio Seven!

Emma Hawes

Acro, Hip Hop

Emma has been dancing at the studio since she was 9 years old, and is a member of the Revolution dance team. She enjoys all styles of dance, but has a special place in her heart for ballet, lyrical, and tap. Besides taking numerous classes at the studio, Emma has been assisting in dance classes and dance camps for the last several years. She attends Charlotte High School, where she is enrolled in honors classes. Emma is also a varsity football cheerleader, and loves cheering on her teammates both at dance and on the football field. After high school, she plans to further her education at the university level in order to become a teacher. Emma is also a member of Deep Creek Community Church, where she volunteers in kids ministry teaching preschool-aged children. In any free time she may have, she loves going to the beach, working out, or lounging around watching Netflix.

Megan Lebeau

Acrobatics

Megan Lebeau began taking dance lessons at the age of five. When she was nine, Megan joined a competitive dance team that traveled throughout the state of Florida. She attended numerous workshops, where she was provided the opportunity to train under many well-known dancers and choreographers. Over the years, Megan studied ballet, jazz, tap, hip hop, lyrical, pointe, acrobatics, circus, and gymnastics. In 2010, she graduated from Warner University with a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education and exceptional education. She taught at the elementary level for five years, and is now teaching and coaching track and field at her alma mater, Charlotte High School. Megan loves working with children, helping them build confidence and a love for learning.

Sarah Mann

Ballet, Revolution Competition Team

Ms. Sarah started dancing at the age of 3 in Warren, Ohio. She started her competing career at age 9 throughout the states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and South Carolina. She moved to Florida where she continued competing throughout the state. Upon graduating Venice High School in 2004, she followed her love of dance to college at Oklahoma City University in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma where she graduated with a degree in Dance Management. While attending school she was a member of Alpha Chi Omega sorority, Students of Arts Management, and Relay for Life. Ms. Sarah worked in numerous concerts, dance competitions, and theatrical productions, learning all aspects of show business.  Sarah moved back home to tend to her family, and continue her love for kids and dance. Ms. Sarah is a first grade teacher at Deep Creek Elementary School, and their team captain for Relay for Life.

Barbara Marangon

Ballet

Barbara Marangon was born in New York, and received pre-professional ballet training at Balanchine’s School of American Ballet. While studying, she had the opportunity to dance with the Royal Ballet in Sleeping Beauty, with Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Later she performed with the Garden State Ballet and the New York Dance Ensemble until she received a contract to dance with the Stadttheater of Klagenfurt, Austria. She has danced in classical ballets, operas, musicals—and the circus. During her career she has danced in a variety of famous venues such as the Metropolitan Opera, Madison Square Garden, New York World’s Fair, and Italy’s historical Teatro Goldoni in Venice. Barbara taught and choreographed ballets in Italy, the Czech Republic, and Spain. Before Carla Fracci’s appointment, she was the choreographer for the Italian Renaissance Festival, La Dama Castellana, for five years. Students from her ballet school, Scuola di Danze American Ballet, near Venice, Italy, were awarded 26 scholarships to Vignale Danza, admitted to La Scala Ballet School, and represented  Italy in the Prix de Lausanne competition in 2000. At the International Dance Grand Prix in Barcelona, Spain, her dancers won a Best Ballet Award for their interpretation and her choreography of L’aprés midi d’un faune. She has restaged full-length classical ballets including The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Firebird, Petrouchka, the musical On Your Toes, in Italy, and assisted in productions of Swan Lake, Pas de Quatre, Harlequinade, and the opera, Lucia di Lammermoor for the Oklahoma Festival Ballet. Barbara has an MFA in Dance from the University of Oklahoma where she taught ballet and was the recipient of the Ballets Russes Fellowship. She has written 2 books, Detour on an Elephant, A Year Dancing with the Greatest Show on Earth and Chasing Castles, Nineteen Years Living and Teaching Ballet in Italy. www.barbarafilemarangon.com

 

Lucia Rivadeneira 

Tap

Lucia Rivadeneira was introduced to the performing arts at age three, and began her creative journey with Studio Seven in the Fall of 2016. Along with competing on the Revolution Acro, Jazz, Hip-Hop, and Modern Teams, she also studies ballet/pointe, leaps and turns, lyrical, and visual art. Lucia attends North Fort Myers High School as a senior, and is currently enrolled as a dance major, theatre minor, and is a member of the Cambridge AICE program. She plans on graduating with her AICE diploma in 2022. Lucia has been involved in countless musicals, and has choreographed for the professional Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine. She plans on attending an artistically-focused university, and is extremely interested in pursuing a career in the performing arts. Lucia has attended numerous dance and theatre workshops over the years, and is always looking for new opportunities to further her training. When not at the studio or on stage, Lucia enjoys painting, gardening, traveling, writing, hairstyling, volunteering, photography, videography, and film producing. Lucia loves inspiring others, and is a friend to everyone at the studio. She is extremely excited for this season with Studio Seven and cannot wait to see what the future has in store for her!

Vanessa Simmons  

Pom

Vanessa started dancing at the age of 4 practicing ballet, jazz, and tap in Windermere, FL. At 14 years of age she began studying other genres like lyrical, modern, and contemporary and began dancing competitively with Joan Crawford School of Dance (currently known as Shooting Stars School of Dance). She was on her high school dance team who also competed and traveled with the school marching band performing at football halftime shows. After graduating high school, Vanessa was chosen for the NBA’s Orlando Magic Dance Team, the Orlando Magic Dancers, from 2001-2006 and team captain for the last two seasons. As an “OMD,” she performed at Orlando Magic home games and promotional events, and was invited by the Armed Forces Entertainment to perform for the US Military and their families in several countries overseas. Vanessa graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in event management from the University of Central Florida, and later worked as Development Associate for the non-profit organization “Be a Star” Foundation, in North Palm Beach, FL from 2008-2011. She moved to Punta Gorda with her husband and two children in 2015, and is excited to return to her passion for dance inspiring young dancers.

Ron Bates

Art Director-Art, Set Design

Ron Bates is a freelance graphic artist, muralist, set designer, and internationally-published illustrator. Ron’s cartoons are published regularly in The Charlotte Sun and Harbor Style, and have also appeared in USA Today, Gator Country, and on the nationally-syndicated television show Fox & Friends. Ron has been the recipient of numerous first-place journalism awards for his editorial cartoons from such prestigious organizations as The Florida Society of News Editors, The Florida Press Club, and The National Newspaper Association. Ron was also recently recognized for his contribution to the 2016 Pulitzer Prize won by the Charlotte Sun. Ron not only has murals painted throughout the nation, and designed sets for over 15 theatrical productions, but he has also custom designed, constructed and painted beautiful pieces of furniture housed in ten libraries throughout the state of Michigan, and at the famed Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago. Ron’s most recent international commission came from designing the official commemorative t-shirt for high-wire legend Nik Wallenda’s historical Chicago Skyscraper Live! stunt. Ron was also invited to participate in the internationally-recognized and highly-selective ArtPrize Seven competition!

Scott Toney

Drums

Scott, who also teaches Social Studies at Port Charlotte High School, joins us with over ten years of drum instruction experience. Scott began his career in drumming as a percussionist with both the Austin Symphony and the Rochester Symphony. Before moving to Florida, Scott was a director for the Boys and Girls Clubs for fourteen years. Upon his relocation, Scott accepted a position as the Music Director for Harvest United Methodist Church in Bradenton. After moving to Punta Gorda, Scott played the drums for First United Methodist Church for eight years. Scott is married to Natalie, and they have one daughter, acrobat extraordinaire, Rachel. Scott is excited to be a part of the Studio Seven team and share his love of music!

Mia White

Piano, Vocal Performance

Mia White is an established vocal performance and piano instructor, currently celebrating her 31st year instructing students here in Charlotte County! Ms. White graduated from Stetson University in Deland, Florida in 1972 with her Bachelor of Music Education degree. She also received post-graduate training at Florida State University and Indiana University. Her training has also included traveling to New York, and abroad to study classical music. Mia has performed in several musicals and operas, including Annie Get Your Gun, Brigadoon, Carousel, The Marriage of Figaro, Die Fleder-maus and The Mikado, having leading roles in all. She has also done extensive solo vocal work, performing throughout the nation, including singing at the grand opening of Walt Disney World. Mia is an ordained minister, and currently hosts a ladies’ ministry called “Women of Destiny.”

Amanda Carr

Conditioning

Born and raised in Punta Gorda, Amanda is a proud alumni of Charlotte High, where she holds the record for the most varsity letters earned by a male or female student athlete – 17. Her athletic career includes competing in the 2016 Olympic Games, representing her mother’s home country of Thailand, a gold medal from the 2014 Asian Games, and an ACC collegiate athlete at both NC State and Florida State in Women’s Soccer and Track & Field, respectively. Following the Olympics, she returned to Punta Gorda, where she helps manage Charlotte BMX (a not-for-profit organization), and is the head coach for the Lady Tarpons soccer team. Amanda is currently pursuing a career in aviation.

Guest Faculty

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Angel Bartolotta

So You Want to Be a Rock Star

Angel Bartolotta (aka Andrew Bartolotta, born November 26, 1981) has been playing drums his whole life. From a kid banging on pots and pans, to a studio session drummer and hired-gun, touring the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Europe. Angel has devoted his entire life to the art of drumming. Angel is best known as the drummer for Dope, Genitorturers, PIG, Crossbreed, Switched, The Undead, and many other bands, as well as being an Artist on the DW, PDP, Zildjian, Evans and ProMark rosters. He is also the founder of Team Cybergeist, a collaborative music project featuring over 100 musicians from all around the world. Angel has a true passion for teaching. He is currently a member of the DW Drums Department Of Education and teaches private lessons, group lessons, online lessons, and drum clinics. He is also the creator of The Dinosaur Method, an easy-to-use lesson plan for kids, and the owner of The RockBox Music School and Stage in North Port.

www.angelbartolotta.com

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Jason Holmes

So You Want to Be a Rock Star

Emily Morgan

Performance Series

Emily Morgan has an extensive background in the performing arts, ranging from choreography to costume design, on the screen and on the stage. The theatre is her first love, having obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Michigan State University and her Master’s in Fine Arts-Costume Design from the University of California, San Diego. Her work in Costume Design has been featured on the stage of Yale University, in the famed LaJolla Playhouse, on Nickelodeon, and on The Today Show, among hundreds of others. In 2013, Emily was invited to lecture on early theatre career development at New York University. She has also been on faculty at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Television and Film Institute, and a teaching assistant at the University of California, San Diego. Emily is currently employed as the Costume Director for the Richmond Ballet in Richmond, Virginia. We were thrilled to have Emily here at Studio Seven to kick-off our Performance Series!

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Robin Warsaw

Performance Series

Robin Warsaw is a graduate of Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ with a Bachelor of Music in Education. Ms. Warsaw has taught private piano and vocal music for over 25 years. Her most recent position was as a kindergarten assistant and private music instructor at the prestigious Gerstell Academy in Maryland. In addition to her teaching, Ms. Warsaw is also a published composer of children’s anthems.

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Kimberly Brown

Barre, Power Vinyasa Yoga, TurboKick

Kim believes that you should be having fun while you exercise! That’s why you’ll find her yoga class isn’t your typical quiet, serene environment; stimulating music and a bit of humor are interspersed into an active Power Vinyasa Yoga class. Kim is a registered yoga instructor with Yoga Alliance, a certified TurboKick instructor, and a certified Barre instructor. Kim is also certified with the Pink Ribbon Program, which is designed for post-operative breast surgery patients using Pilates exercises. We were honored to have Kim with us to host our first Core Warrior Weekend!

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