Stephanie Moller, Director
Stephanie Moller has been dancing for 30 plus years and teaching dance for the last 15 years. Her training includes ballet, pointe, lyrical, theatre jazz and tap. Miss Stephanie studied at Long Island Academy of Dance Arts, Stony Brook University, and has attended various national conventions. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre from Stony Brook University. She received ballet scholarships to Dance Educators of America, dance scholarships for college, and an invitation to represent the USA in the World Dance Competition in Germany. She has won choreography awards for her competition dances at Starquest, Starpower, and National Dance Showcase. Along with choreographing and designing costumes for the stage, Miss Stephanie enjoys spending her time teaching students the art of dance. Miss Stephanie has been a member of the NSD teaching staff since the summer of 2006 and is also directs the competition team at NSD.
Marissa Rignola, Competition Director
Born in Long Island, NY, Marissa Rignola grew up training at a local studio in all genres and upon graduation, was given the opportunity to perform for the New York Knicks half time show; and soon after the ASEID Contemporary Dance Company at the Dicapo Opera Theatre. Marissa continued her growth in dance by attending the pro-semester at Broadway Dance Center. Sheila Barker, Tracie Stanfield and Kat Wildish were some of her greatest mentors. Their guidance is what ignited her passion for teaching and choreography. After completing her dance residency in the city, sharing her knowledge and love of dance with the younger generations was inevitable. Through her guidance, Marissa’s students have gone on to dance professionally on Broadway in Grease & Beauty and the Beast, Radio City, Sythesis Dance Project, Cruise Lines and Universities such as Marymount, Montclair State, AMDA, RUTGERS and DEAN just to name a few. Some of Rignola’s best work has been recognized nationally at some of today’s most prestigious dance competitions where she has been named “Choreographer Of The Year”. Her creativity has been described as captivating, moving and inspiring. Marissa is one of today’s most sought after choreographers and currently holding the title of Competition Director at NSD.
Calli is a performer hailing from the beautiful Chicagoland area! Her time there was spent training hard in the dance studio, along with performing in the Joffrey Ballet Chicago and Indiana Youth Ballet. After traveling the country with NRG Dance Project she finally landed in NYC, and couldn’t be happier! Since moving here she has danced on Nickelodeon, performed in the sold out Prudential Center (EEP!), and had her hand in many other shows, productions, and events! She also keeps busy assisting Broadway Dance Center and Steps faculty weekly. Calli finds so much joy running all over the city teaching the youth of Manhattan! She’s recently had the opportunity to expand her horizons, judging and teaching with Artistic Dance Exchange- so fun! All of that being said Calli is so happy and humbled to call NSD a home! She hopes to instill confidence in her students and nurture their love for the arts as many teachers have done for her!
Born in South Korea and raised on Long Island, New York, Marisa has had a lifelong passion and appreciation for the arts and performance. Marisa has been dancing for nearly 30 years and has studied ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical and hip hop. She danced competitively for ten years. Marisa has appeared in television commercials, print ads and had a reoccurring role on the children’s show Zebby’s Zoo. Marisa is celebrating ten years of working at North Shore & is humbled to work beside such an inspiring and
Deanna has had a lifelong passion for dance, most especially ballet. She is also trained in pointe, jazz, lyrical and tap. Deanna teaches a range of ages from our toddler classes through our adult classes. She also teaches and trains dancers on college teams and professional levels. Deanna spent much of her young dance career as a competitive dancer earing high accolades as a soloist on both the regional and national levels including a National Title. She was invited to represent the United States at a World Dance Competition in Hungary as well as an invitation to perform in the Half Time Show at the Pro Ball. She is the recipient of numerous prestigious dance scholarships including Dance Alliance and Dance Educators of America. Deanna attended Hofstra University and has a BA in Business. Deanna has been teaching dance for 19 years. She has won many awards for outstanding choreography in jazz and lyrical. Deanna is so happy and proud to be a member of the North Shore Dance Family!
Marco Cruz is a Choreographer, Dancer, Artistic Director, Judge, Master Class Instructor, and Leader in the Contemporary and Hip Hop Arenas. Marco Cruz is the CEO of True Dance Potential (TDP) conditioning and strengthening dancers of all ages. His musicality and attention to detail have been described as captivating, inspirational and breathtaking. His passion for dance is what has made him one of todayʼs most sought after choreographers and a true original in his field. His professional persuits have no end. Marco has performed, choreographed and directed music videos, commercials and award shows for recording artist such as Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Rihanna, Naturi Naughton, Olivia Newton John, Kenny Loggins, and Kwanza Jones; and production companies including Paramount Pictures, ABC, Nickelodeon, Disney, Power of Youth, Variety Magazine, and Nigel Lythgoe’s Dizzy Feet Foundation.
Cruz is no stranger to the world of competitive dance. His work has placed first against some of today’s most elite dance studios. He has earned several National Championship Titles at some of the most prestigious competitions: ShowStoppers, Hollywood Vibe, Starpower, Hall of Fame, Hollywood Connection, Jump, The Dance Awards and KAR just to name a few. Dance education and instilling a respect of the art of dance is of primary focus for Cruz. Several of his students have chosen to pursue dance education at the collegiate level. Likewise, many of Cruz’s students have excelled in dance and the entertainment industry and have moved on to dance professionally for companies such as Joffrey, Ballet Hispanico in New York, Lines in San Francisco, Santa Barbra’s State Street Ballet, and many more.
Megan Doyle-Paterniani hails from Albany, New York. She began dancing at the Cantarella School of Dance at the age of 2 and performed with the Albany Berkshire Ballet. She continued her serious study with David Otto and Leslie Roy, both former soloists with the New York City Ballet where her training took her to pursue summer dance intensives at New York State Summer School of the Arts (NYSSA) and North Carolina School of the Arts.
Megan is a graduate of the Conservatory of Dance at Purchase College where she received her BFA in Dance Performance and performed soloist roles with the Purchase Dance Corp such as, “The Nutcracker”, “Serenade”, and “Who Cares?”. Mrs. Paterniani spent a summer abroad at the Caracas Metropolitan Ballet in Caracus, Venezuela and was a guest artist at the Dance for Life AIDS benefit for the Capitol Ballet Company.
Upon graduation, Megan danced as a soloist for Ballet Long Island under the direction of Debra Punzi and and also acted as her Ballet Mistress for the Nutcracker. There she performed roles in “A Midsummer’s Night Dream”, “Pas de Quatre”, “Le Corsaire Pas de Deux”, “The Nutcracker”, and “Peter and the Wolf”. During this time she also performed with Ballet Builders at the Florance Guild Hall as well as performing her own works at the Merce Cunningham Studio and the Blue Muse Project at Riverside Church in New York City.
Megan is a former dance faculty member at Adelphi University in New York and has taught at many studios in the Long Island area. She has choreographed many pieces for Competition and Nationals where some have won 1st place overall. Megan is currently collaborating with a local author of children’s books by creating the author’s story through dance as well as co-directing the Nutcracker for North Shore Studio of Dance’s Holiday Pageant. She is a proud wife and mother of 4 children and hopes to continue to inspire a new generation of dancers to come!
Keri DeMelfi started dancing at 3 years old. After years of training and competing, she began her path in teaching. Through out her years at NSD she has brought much success with her passion in Tap. Keri not only choreographs for our competition team but teaches all ages and levels in Tap and Jazz. Keri has been apart of the North Shore Dance family for 10 years and excited to continue to teach and love her students here at NSD!
Lorissa brings over 20 years teaching experience to the amazing staff at North Shore Dance. She has studied tap, ballet, jazz, hip hop, lyrical and modern dance by some of the most revered names in the industry. Her love of dance has earned her many scholarships and opportunities to perform all over the country, including 2 Macys Parades. She was featured as a Firedancer for the NY Dragons professional football team. Miss Lorissa’s choreography has won many high point awards and choreography awards at many regional competitions, including a top choreography award at Access Broadway nationals. She is so excited to starting her second season with the amazing staff and students at NSD!