Come meet our friendly staff at Bay City Ballet!
Dance of the Phoenix classes are taught by Leslie Case. Leslie has
studied dance since she was 6 years old, and has trained under the direction of Judy Skinner (from Dance Alive National Ballet
and Pofahl's Dance Studio) and Connie Youngmann (from Tampa Dancenter), among many others. She attended the Florida
School of the Arts, with a major in Musical Theatre/Dance. Leslie specializes in teaching dance to children and
adults with disabilities. She is certified in the AIM method, which uses movement and music to promote brain and motor
development. Leslie loves all styles of dance, but some of her favorites include tap, bellydance, and ballet.
She is a current member of several performing groups, including the Rouderette's dance team, Dance Express of Clearwater, and
the Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corp, and can be seen performing in many local parades. She has performed all across
the country, and will perform in Las Vegas, Key West, and New York City in 2008. Stay tuned this Thanksgiving, to see
her perform in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York. She will be at the front and center of the kick line
of the Rounders Marching Band. In addition to her performing background, Leslie is a licensed psychologist and a board
certified behavior analyst.
Bay City Ballet artistic director, Mark Jelks, has been called "one
of New York's most dynamic young teachers." He has performed throughout the US and Europe with the Alabama Ballet, Atlanta
Ballet, Omni Dance Theater and the Scottish Ballet. As a teacher, Mark has been on the faculty of major New York dance
schools including Broadway Dance Center, Feld Ballets NewYork, Ballet Academy East, and the world famous David Howard Dance
Center. He still works closely with members of the New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theater, San Francisco Ballet
and Joffrey Ballet. Mark's early training was with Dame Sonia Arova and Thor Sutowski at the Alabama School of Fine
Arts and Gaenor Grange A.R.A.D. He has worked with such stars as Gelsey Kirkland, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Darci Kistler,
Cynthia Harvey and Sylvie Guillem as well as leading Tony award winning Broadway stars such as Bebe Neuwirth (Chicago), Audra
Ann McDonald (Carousel), and Taye Diggs (Rent). Mr. Jelks acts as Dance Casting Assistant to the Johnson-Liff Casting
Agency in New York, which casts such shows as "Cats," "Phantom of the Opera," and "Beauty and the Beast."
Bay City Ballet faculty is a unique and diverse group of practicing
professional artists/teachers, who willingly share their creative expertise with their students. Although demanding,
the instructors are caring and provide a teaching and learning environment, which not only challenges students to achieve
excellence in the development of their talents, but also nurtures the student's emotional growth as well. The faculty
is always willing to help guide dancers and students in various ways, including college applications, auditions, and summer
programs that are available to exceptional young dancers. The acceptance rate of our dancers will speak for itself.
Bay City Ballet's guest faculty have included Mary Carpenter, Lynda Sing, Patrick Shea, David Howard, Wil Turner, George Gallahan,
and Adrian Ciobanu.
Dance of the Phoenix