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Crystal Dionne - Owner/DirectorCrystal DionneCrystal Dionne

Miss Crystal began her dance training at age 5 under the direction of Diane Higgins. While pursuing a business degree, Crystal remained active in dance, spending her free time dancing at the Boston Conservatory for Dance learning from her colleagues. She has also attended numerous teacher training workshops and studied under ballet masters from all over the country including Cathy Roe, Judy Rice, Finis Jhung and David Howard to name a few. In the summer of 2001, while choreographing, performing and modelling for the “Cinderella Dancers”, Crystal decided to turn her lifelong passion for dance into a reality and opened CKC Dance Academy with her two partners and dear friends Kristy and Colette.

 

Crystal is a firm believer that each student deserves to have a positive experience in a healthy and nurturing environment while developing an appreciation for the art of dance. She also believes in the importance of being well-rounded, productive citizens and therefore encourages and provides opportunities for students to give back to their communities by performing for various charities such as “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer”, “Dancers Making a Difference”, “American Heart Association” and “Warm Homes NH”.  Her students have competed in several dance competitions earning numerous platinum and special judges awards in addition to numerous choreography awards for creativity and expressive concepts.

 

Crystal is a certified ballet instructor with Dance Masters of America (DMA) and an active member of DMA Chapter #5, New England. She is the proud mother of her son Sam, future pro athlete and her daughter Ella Grace, future prima ballerina.

 

Meghan SlaalienMeghan SlaalienMeghan Slaalien - Assistant Director

Meghan is an alumnus of CKC Dance Academy and is excited to return as the studio’s new Assistant Director. She first discovered her love for dance at the age of 4 when taking classes at Pat Morse School of Dance in Manchester. NH. She continued her dance education at CKC where she eventually became an assistant instructor for numerous classes including Creative Movement, Pre-Dance, Tap and Jazz.

Meghan received her associate’s degree in Dance from Dean College where she studied teaching creative movement, choreography, rhythmic analysis, dance history, and anatomy for dancers. In addition to her classroom coursework, Meghan continued to develop her physical technique in the ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, and modern dance forms.

After graduating from Dean, Meghan transferred to Lesley College to study counseling psychology. Due to the holistic nature of the college she was involved with not only courses on psychology and human development, but also in yoga practice, theory and expressive arts therapy. She remained involved with dance during this time as a member of Lesley’s dance team. Meghan continued her education and received her Master’s degree in Social Work from Simmons in Boston, Ma, where she provided individual and group therapy as well as organized and ran support groups for children and families who had experienced the death of a family member.

Throughout Meghan’s educational journey she has developed a deep understanding and appreciation for healthy and safe ways to cope with one’s feelings. She believes that everyone needs an outlet to fit their unique needs and passions and that dance can be a very effective outlet for anyone.

 

Kristy (Ripa) PelletierKristy (Ripa) PelletierKristy Pelletier - Instructor/Choreographer (former co-owner)

Kristy has been studying dance since the age of five.  She has studied multiple disciplines including ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, pointe, and hip hop.  Kristy’s concentration over the years has been instructing and choreographing for intermediate through advanced jazz, tap, hip hop & musical theater styles. 

Kristy has studied with many amazing master instructors and choreographers such as Wade Robson, Brian Friedman, Bob Rizzo, Anthony LoCascio and Debbie Dee, just to name a few.  In addition, Kristy has a diverse background in gymnastics and cheerleading, spending several years as both a tumbling coach and varsity cheerleading coach for Memorial High School in Manchester NH. 

As a co-founder and former director of CKC Dance Academy, Kristy has helped to foster a love for dance in hundreds of students over the past 14 years.  Kristy currently lives in Goffstown with her husband Eric and her daughter Aubrey and is very excited to be welcoming another baby in January 2016!

  

Colette CoulonColette CoulonColette Coulon - Instructor/Choreographer (former co-owner)

Colette started dancing at the age of 3.  She danced for 14 years at Pat Morse School of Dance studying ballet, tap and jazz and also began teaching students at PMSD when she was 14 years old.  Colette left to attend Keene State College to study education.  She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and later attained a Master’s degree in Education from Lesley University.  After a 10 year hiatus from dance, Colette returned to PMSD as an instructor/choreographer.  She continued for 4 more years reuniting with Kristy and working with Crystal.  It was this friendship that sparked the creation of CKC Dance Academy.  Colette, along with Crystal and Kristy, co-founded CKC Dance Academy in 2001.  She was the co-owner/director for 13 years and taught ballet, tap, and jazz to preschool children through adults along with beginner competitive jazz.  After 31 years of dance, she left CKC as a director in 2014 to pursue other adventures but still enjoys being a part of CKC. Colette continues to teach career and technical high school and preschool in the Manchester school district.

 

 

Alicia McDermottAlicia McDermottAlicia McDermott - Instructor/Choreographer 

Miss Alicia began her dance training at age 7 and has been dancing ever since! She studied tap, jazz, modern and ballet at the Reynolds Centre for the Arts and after a few short years was placed in their Junior Dance Company. Alicia traveled throughout New England competing with the Company and earning numerous high score and special awards, in addition to a dance scholarship.

Alicia continued her dance training at a few local schools and expanded into the disciplines of Pointe and Lyrical. She continued to compete with the Senior Companies, again earning numerous competitive awards.

Miss Alicia has been teaching at CKC since 2006 and brings more than 24 years of dance experience. She loves working with children and believes in bringing a fun and positive experience to her students. Alicia is also the proud mom of daughter Mia. 

 

 

 

 

Nicole BaronNicole BaronNicole Baron - Instructor/Choreographer

Nicole is a Manchester, NH native who began her dance training at age 13. After years of competitive gymnastic training, she found her love of dance under her mentor Crystal Dionne at CKC Dance Academy. At CKC, she was an assistant instructor and member of the performance and competitive teams.  Nicole has a broad range of experience in various dance styles including jazz, tap, ballet, modern, lyrical, pointe, hip-hop and contemporary. She graduated from Point Park University with a BA in Dance Pedagogy and a concentration in Jazz Dance. While at Point Park, Nicole was able to study and work with renowned teachers and choreographers including Ron Tassone, Kiesha Lalama White, Jason McDole, Ron Hutson, Susan Stowe, and Jill Lazzini. With her knowledge, training and passion, Nicole hopes to inspire her students to discover their own love for dance. 

 

 

  

JJillJillillian Poulin - Instructor/Choreographer

Jillian is a Manchester, NH native who began her dance training at the age of 3 at CKC Dance Academy. As a fourteen year veteran, Jillian has studied a variety of dance styles including ballet, pointe, lyrical, jazz, modern, tap, hip hop and theater. She was a teaching assistant for several years before stepping into a head teaching role in 2014. Jillian has a wide range of competition experience spanning ten years which began in 2005 with her team taking first place/top score at StarQuest International. Jillian has participated in numerous charitable events over the years raising money and performing for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, Dancers Making a Difference, American Heart Association and Warm Homes NH. In addition, Jillian has travelled to New York City with Team CKC on several occasions to participate in master classes at the Broadway Dance Center and with the world famous Radio City Rockettes.