The Faculty

Co-Owner / Director

Alicia has more than 30 years of teaching experience. She is honored to have trained from childhood under the legendary Paulette Harwood, who became her personal and professional mentor and lifelong friend. She continues her training on a regular basis under Master Teachers such as Joe Lanteri, Suzi Taylor, E. Laura Haussman, Tom Ralabate, Diane Gudat, and Thelma Goldberg. Alicia is an active member of Dance Masters of America and the Dance Teachers Club of Boston where she is now on the Board of Directors serves as Second Vice President.  Her goal is to inspire in every dancer … whether they aspire to dance professionally or not …the joy, magic, and feeling of personal triumph that is dance.

ALICIA SANTAMARIA

Co-Owner / Director

Gemma has been studying dance since the age of three. Growing and learning under the skilled direction of Paulette Harwood led to her continued dance education throughout college and the years following. After receiving a degree in Communication from UMass Amherst, Gemma decided she wanted nothing more than to incorporate dance into her career. She has since been teaching for Paulette’s Ballet Studio, choreographing for various school plays, teaching dance classes as an art elective in schools, and developed her own adult dance for fitness program, The BeautyBarre. She has always dreamed of owning and operating her own studio, and is excited that Total Eclipse Dance Studio will project all the core structured values she grew up with, as well as new, modern values as well.

GEMMA JOYCE

Taylor is a local girl who began her training under the prestigious Paulette Harwood. Starting while in preschool, she grew to become Paulette’s assistant, and eventually a faculty member. Taylor has experience teaching all styles to all age groups from preschool to adults. Taylor tested through the DTCB teacher training program in high school and is an active member of the DTCB today. For many years she choreographed for the NHS dance team as well as surrounding towns’ school plays and has volunteered her time and talents for various town “Dancing with the Stars” fundraisers. Taylor loves any opportunity to continue her own dance education by attending workshops and conventions such as the BDC NY Teacher Workshop, The Pulse, NYCDA, Dance Teacher Magazine Intensive, and the BDC Rhapsody James Summer Intensive. She has been lucky enough to have taken class from Bob Rizzo, Frank Hatchett, and Sheila Barker and loves drawing inspiration while taking class from current dance favorites like Brian Friedman, Mia Michaels, Tyce Diorio, Jamie Goodwin and Alex Fetbroth. Taylor adores teaching and loves her students like her own little sisters. Her classes are loud! Full of laughter and emotion, she challenges her students to push their limits and strive for their best self.  

TAYLOR MCLAUGHLIN

I have loved to dance for as long as I can remember. I started dancing at the age of six and haven’t stopped since.  I grew up dancing at Paulette’s Ballet Studio in Newton. I studied ballet, pointe, tap, jazz and character at Paulette’s.  I attended Skidmore College, where I studied classical ballet and modern, though I graduated with a degree in Business/Math.  Most recently I was on the faculty of Paulette’s Ballet Studio in Newton and Medfield, teaching ballet and modern. I am thrilled to be a part of Total Eclipse Dance Studio. I love teaching and sharing the passion, beauty and art of dance with students and feel so fortunate to be able to continue my teaching career at Total Eclipse.

SUE HORTON

I am excited to join with the talented faculty of Total Eclipse Dance. Most of us have been working together for many years and have a wonderful rapport. I was honored to be on the faculty of Paulette’s  Ballet Studio for close to 20 years, where I taught beginner through advanced dancers, specializing in classical ballet and pointe. I attended College of the Holy Cross where I earned a concentration in dance. There I served as President of the Dance Ensemble and was accepted into the Worcester Dance Consortium. I have also taught at the Worcester School of Performing Arts and ran the dance program at Needham Parks and Recreation for many years. I am a mother of six and am excited that my own daughters are similarly falling in love with the art of dance!

AMANDA LILJEDAHL

Alexandria has always had a passion for dance from performing to instructing since a very young age. After growing up taking all genres of dance she continued her dance career in college on the UMass Amherst dance team. She then pursued dancing professionally in the NFL for the New England Patriots and Dallas Cowboys for 5 seasons. During her time cheering, she was a team captain, danced all over the world, performed at a Superbowl, and was 2016  Pro Bowl selection.

 

Teaching and choreographing has continued to be a passion over the years. She has taught all age ranges and levels both at home and abroad through her exposure with NFL cheering. Alexandria has been a dance instructor for Boston Public Schools, the head coach of Northeastern University Dance Team, and the Dance Trainer for the New England Patriots Cheerleaders. Alex loves sharing her dance experience, knowledge, and enthusiasm!

ALEXANDRIA STAVROPOULOS

Frankie began dancing at the age of three under the instruction of Paulette Harwood at Paulettes Ballet Studio. The next 14 years were a whirlwind of more time spent in the studio than at home. Dance provided her with a structured environment to grow, laugh, and challenge herself daily. Upon graduating high school, and effectively studio life, Frankie left to attend the University of Massachusetts and study Communications and Spanish. During her time in college she was a member of the schools performance and competitive dance team; which introduced a whole new perspective on dance. It provided her the opportunity to travel and compete with dancers from all over the country, and learn in new and collaborative ways. Their success was a product of countless hours of hard work and perseverance, something any dancer would understand. Frankie later joined the faculty at Paulettes Ballet Studio, instructing classes of various ages and styles. She believes the greatest thing about working in this industry is the endless opportunities to grow, take new classes, and expand your horizons. She is excited to bring something new and exciting to Total Eclipse, and continue to grow alongside the students and amazing faculty!

FRANKIE MANZON

Dancing has been a huge part of my life since age six. After graduating high school I began my college eduction at Suffolk University. Partial way through my freshman year I decided that I could not live without dancing, so I began a search to complete my life’s puzzle. At this point I decided to audition for Marymount Manhatten’s dance program in New York. After a rigorous audition process I was pleased to make it into the program although I later decided that leaving Suffolk University was not the best option for my personal career goals. In 2013 I made the Boston Celtics Dancers at age 18 and started dancing professionally. Through my time with the Celtics, I had the opportunity to travel globally and represent not only the Celtics but the NBA as a whole. In 2016 I was selected to represent the Celtics at the NBA Allstar games along with one member from each other dance team in the NBA. From dancing at pro team conventions to representing dancers in Reebok photoshoots, there is endless growth that comes from dancing. Every characteristic about myself, stems from my dancing and I absolutely love sharing that with my dance students. There is nothing better than using an art, like dance, to put a smile on my students faces each day. When both passion and determination work together, opportunities are endless! 

VICTORIA STAVROPOULOS

Ricky is an industry experienced dancer, choreographer and teacher.  He began his dance training at the age of 9 on the North Shore. Over the past many years, he has been intensely studying Tap, Jazz, Jazz Funk, Lyrical, Contemporary, Ballet, Modern and Hip-Hop. Ricky has received several awards such as the “Future Star Award” presented by Dance Spirit Magazine and “Young Choreographer of The Year” at the American Dance Awards. Ricky studied dance arts and choreography at Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. After training at Marymount, Ricky decided the Los Angeles dance industry would be the best fit for his work. He choreographed for singer/songwriter, Kate Nash whose music has been featured on So You Think You Can Dance. Aside from years of company work, Ricky has been featured on television shows such as Pretty Little Liars, House, Criminal Minds, Gilmore Girls and many others. He recently decided it was time to get back to his roots and relocate back to Boston. Ricky looks forward to continuing his training, while sharing his love and knowledge of dance with his students.

RICKY CUSHING

1132 Highland Avenue, Needham, MA 02494

781-405-6198

​© 2018 Total Eclipse Dance Studio

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