Team

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Beyond Dance New Jersey is where you can find balance, harmony and energy with our experienced instructors.

Kara Cortes

Kara Cortes is the director of Beyond Dance. Kara is a graduate of Montclair State University where she majored in dance and received her BFA in fine arts in 2000. While at Montclair, she took classes in choreography, dance improvisation, dance history, rhythmic analysis, dance methods, laban movement analysis, production elements, ballet, modern and jazz. Kara feels she has become a more well rounded dancer and will incorporate her knowledge from these classes into her dance classes at Beyond Dance.

Rebecca Corrigan

Rebecca Corrigan is a 20 year old teacher and student from Rochester hills, mi. Moving to New York at 18, Rebecca has performed in several places around the city including New Victory Theatre on Broadway, Capezio ACE awards, NYU Gelatin school final Showcase, secret theatre, symphony space and many more! She has danced for artists such as 3oh3! , kid rock, and nickelback. She has traveled across the u.s as an assistant to Danity Kane's choreographer, Bobby Newberry, at Jump dance convention and was
featured in Dance Spirit magazine as a highlighted "mover and shaker". She has performed various times at Detroit opera house as principle roles in nutcracker, coppelia and sleeping beauty under the direction of ABT alumni, Cornelia Sampson. Rebecca is currently training rigorously with Nadine Bommer dance company whom just made their premiere on Broadway with 'Invisiball' and are on their way to touring in Russia, Israel and Poland this upcoming season. Rebecca has been teaching for the past four years and is incredibly grateful to be able to share her love and knowledge of dance to her students and peers!s.

Brianna Mercado

Brianna Mercado (aka Miss Bri) is a professional dance artist, teacher, and inspirational speaker based in New York City. Born and raised in San Jose, CA, she received a majority of her training at A.K.A. Dance Company, training in jazz, ballet, tap, and contemporary. In college, she was the Artistic Director of Main Stacks Dance Team, UC Berkeley's elite competitive urban hip hop dance team, and a founding member of Thrive Dance Company, Cal's first contemporary dance group. She graduated with honors in 2013 as a double major in Social Welfare and Dance & Performance Studies. Since moving to New York, Brianna has completed the Professional Semester at Broadway Dance Center, Establish Your Empire, and Rock The Industry programs. She has worked alongside New York's best teachers and choreographers such as Jon Rua, Rhapsody James, Luam Keflezgy, Joanna Numata, Derek Mitchell, Andy Blankenbuehler and Gigi Torres, and has had the honor to work in pre-production for several Broadway shows (The Spongebob Musical, Cats, & Hamilton). Credits include The Muny’s production of Aida (Dance Captain), Fuerza Bruta, Broadway Underground, Phish “Fuego” Tour, Humans Collective, Masterworks Festival Chorus in Carnegie Hall, and The Grit.

Brianna continues to spread her love and passion for life through performing, mentoring, teaching, blogging, and public speaking. She embodies her belief that inside every impossible situation there is an opportunity to be great, and no real reason to wait. If there is more to learn, someone to love, something to give, and things to do, then do them, now.

Rachel Kowalczyk

Rachel's passion for music, theater, and dance started from childhood, always performing and training in NJ and NYC throughout her life. After high school Rachel was excepted into *AMDA* (The American Musical and Dramatic Academy NYC) Rachel's professional career as a signer/ dancer/ actress has spanned over 10 years. Her theater credits include "*Frenchy" *in a *National Tour *of " *Grease*" working along side guest stars such as *Frankie Avalon, Cindy Williams, Debbie Gibson *and working with *Tony Award *winning choreographer *Jerry Mitchell. *Other credits include *"Ellie May Chipley" *in "*Showboat*", "*female swing" *for "*Dames at sea" *and " *Lavern **Andrews" *in "*Andrews sisters memoir". Cabaret *performances at *"Eighty Eights" *and *"The Duplex" * in NYC. Concert work includes "*The Family" *live concert series with CD recordings. Rachel's teaching career started over 20 years ago. As part of the company, Rachel also taught for the Westminster dance academy. She was part of the staff at *The Papermill Playhouse *and taught for *The New Jersey school of Ballet. *Rachel is happy to be teaching here at Beyond Dance, always hoping to make a difference in each students journey, while sharing her love of the arts with them. When Rachel is not creating in the studio she is creating at home designing her dream home with hubby Greg! With another passion for decorating and entertaining with family and friends.... There's no place like home!!!.

Ryann Mace

Ryann Mace began dancing at the age of 2 ½.  She was raised in Clark, New Jersey where she began her training under the Royal Ballet curriculum.  She has trained in in various styles of dance including ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, hip-hop and acrobatics.  Ryann studied under many well known and highly sought after teachers and choreographers such as Justin Sherwood, Janet Atallah, Violeta Angelova, Mike Minnery, Keri LaGrand, Derrick Shrader and Nick Gonzalez.  Ryann was a competitive dancer and traveled across the United States to many competitions and conventions winning many overall high scores, special awards and scholarships.  In addition to her dance credits, Ryann graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in Accounting.  Ryann has been teaching for six years and is so looking forward to sharing her love of dance with the talented dancers at Beyond Dance!

Mackenzie Johnson

Mackenzie Johnson is a student at Pace University in New York City. A 16 year competition dancer, Mackenzie trained in many styles, favoring tap and contemporary. She has held many titles including Starbound 2018 Dance Spirit Award and scholarship winner. Mackenzie started teaching dance at 15 years old and has found an extreme love for the art and her students. She looks forward to joining the Beyond Dance family while continuing her studies in the city!

Laura Pierpont
Laura grew up in Maryland and always dreamed of becoming a professional dancer/choreographer. Still fairly new to the city, she moved to NYC 3 years ago after earning her BFA in Musical Theatre from Coastal Carolina University. In those three years she has most recently traveled the world in the US/Japan Touring Company of A Chorus Line as Bebe under the direction of the legendary Baayork Lee and Peter Pileski. Laura then went on to portray Bebe again in the China Premiere of A Chorus Line in Shanghai. She has also preformed regionally including Billy Elliot (Assistant Choreographer - Ogunquit Playhouse) and H2$ (Ms. Krumholtz/Dance Captain - Virginia Musical Theatre) as well as being apart of ShadowPlay (Mermaid/Wendy's Shadow/Fight Captain) at the Access Theater in NYC.
Choreography has been a passion that has tremendously grown over the years. Laura runs her own choreography passion project titled Cut Dancers of NY. It is all about celebrating the 'failures' in life that push us to our 'successes'! She will also be making her solo professional choreography debut for the new musical Revolutionary premiering at the 10th Anniversary Dream Up Festival this fall.
Laura is very excited to start passing on her love and joy of dance to the younger generation!
Cassandra Bonventure

Cassie started dancing at the age of three in Woodbridge, NJ.  She grew a passion for dance and started assisting classes at the age of thirteen. By the age of eighteen she was teaching at her childhood dance studio. Cassie has organized and choreographed numbers for young students at the performing arts outreach program in her hometown of Carteret, in addition to administrative experience from working at her previous studio.

Cassie received her Bachelor’s Degree from Stockton University in May 2018- her degree is in Dance Studio Operations with a minor in business and childhood studies. During her time at Stockton, Cassie worked with professional companies such as Gallim Dance, Robert Moses’ Kin, and Rain Ross Dance- just to name a few. Cassie performed at the American College Dance Association festival- a higher education conference that supports the study of collegiate dance through regional conferences, an adjudication process, and national festivals.

Recently, Cassie has completed the Summer Session at Broadway Dance Center in New York City. She has had the opportunity to study under many well-known teachers and choreographers of the industry. Some include Sheila Barker, Neil Schwartz, Carlos Neto, Bopark,  and David Thomas.  Since then she has performed in New York City at Choregrapher’s Carnival, performed in music video, and did back-up dancing for up and coming artists. Cassie is thrilled to be with our studio!

Lauren Frazier

Lauren Frazier is a New York and New Jersey based dancer, singer, and actor. Lauren has been studying dance and performing for 15 years. A recent graduate of Fordham University, she has been able to study at the London Dramatic Academy, the Rockette Summer Intensive, Broadway Dance Center, New Jersey Ballet, and Broadway Dance Theatre. Lauren is also training privately with her mentor Rhonda Malkin. She has also studied voice under Tom Smargiassi, Linda Smargiassi, and Elaine LaChica. Performance credits include The Tempest, West Side Story, South Pacific, Bye, Bye, Birdie, Crazy for You, Guys and Dolls, and Legally Blonde, the musical. Living in New York during her time at Fordham, Lauren has performed at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, and NYU Skirball. She also can be seen in episodes of MTV's Singled Out. Lauren is currently auditioning for professional shows in New York and is excited to bring her passion for the arts and knowledge to Beyond Dance!

Tracy Kelly

Tracy Kelly is a native of Bayonne, NJ. She began her training at the age of 4 at Dance with me Dance Studio in Bayonne, NJ. Tracy continued her training at Beyond Dance. During her childhood Tracy competed on many stages throughout the Tri-State area receiving awards and scholarships from leading dance competitions in NJ. Upon completing HS at Saint Dominic Academy she went on to train at Broadway Dance Center studied under their Training Program. She had the pleasure of training under Heather Rigg, Salim Gauwloos (SLAM) and Shelia Barker to name a few. She performed at the Macys Day Parade under the direction of Nappy Tabs as well as multiple Broadway Dance Center showcases. Tracy is also featured in A Wish Come True dance catalogs. She is now entering her third year on the Jets Flight Crew where she performs during football games at MetLife Stadium for 80,000 fans. She is looking forward to sharing her passion and love of dance with the next generation of dancers.

Brenna Sautter

Brenna Sautter is receiving her BFA in Dance Performance with a concentration in Ballet from Marymount Manhattan College. She has performed repertoire by May O’Donnell, Sidra Bell, and Larry Keigwin. She has also trained and traveled with Tremaine Dance Conventions for 7 years as a company member performing and assisting the faculty under Joe Tremaine. She is trained in Ballet, Jazz, contemprary, classical modern techniques, and is currently finishing her Pilates Brenna Sautter is receiving her BFA in Dance Performance with a concentration in Ballet from Marymount Manhattan College. She has performed repertoire by May O’Donnell, Sidra Bell, and Larry Keigwin. She has also trained and traveled with Tremaine Dance Conventions for 7 years as a company member performing and assisting the faculty under Joe Tremaine. She is trained in Ballet, Jazz, contemprary, classical modern techniques, and is currently finishing her Pilates certification.