DeeAnn Valine is the owner and director of the Academy of Danse. Born and raised in the Napa Valley, DeeAnn has been dancing for over 40 years. She began taking tap at the age of four, and soon fell in love with dance – including Ballet, Jazz, and Pointe. DeeAnn attended Solano Jr. College and continued down her path in various dance classes, five days a week, under the careful eye of Sherri Stockdale (who received many Shellie Awards for her amazing choreography throughout the Bay Area). DeeAnn then auditioned for her very first musical production and discovered an additional love for musical theatre.
Even as a young girl embraced by dance, DeeAnn always knew she would follow her dream to one day own her own dance studio, allowing others to fall in love with dance and make other dreams come true. DeeAnn became the proud owner of The Academy of Danse on January 1, 1994. She taught up to 25 classes a week for the first three years while owning the studio. She started the first Academy of Danse Competition Company in 1995 and has been coaching and directing various teams ever since. The Competition Company has done very well competing at many different bay area competitions in all styles including Musical theatre. She always has high hopes and expectations for all of her students and loves watching them grow and improve over the years.
DeeAnn prides herself and the staff on the merit that Academy of Danse offers an atmosphere that is both encouraging and challenging to dancers of all levels. She feels a true sense of family created at the studio, and many students consider it their home away from home.
Alex was born in Wisconsin and moved to Napa with her family as a baby. She was first introduced to dancing at the age of three, when she began taking tap and ballet classes through the Rec Department. She loved dance from that moment on. First dancing at Napa Valley Dance Center and then joining Academy of Danse at age seven, Alex started with Miss Tizzy’s tap class, progressing through the years to learn ballet, hip-hop, jazz, pointe, contemporary and musical theater.
Alex has danced on the Academy of Danse Competition Company for many years and has been captain for the past two years. As a senior, she choreographed her own competitive solo, choosing the style of musical theater, as she loves the expressive nature of the style. This year she choreographed her own competitive hip hop routine with her duet partner.
Alex graduated from Vintage High School last year. During her four years there, she was a part of the dance program, as a dancer for three years and as a choreographer/teacher during her senior year. Alex enjoyed the creative outlet that the Vintage jazz program gave her. She loves still being able to contribute to the program by choreographing pieces for their annual Jazz show in Spring.
Since graduating, Alex is enrolled full time at Napa Valley College and plans to transfer after completing her general education to begin her major studies. She loves working with children and works for many local families, helping with their childcare and children’s tutoring needs.
During her years as a young dancer, Alex aspired to become a dance teacher herself. It is her dream job as it combines her love of dance with her love for children. After assistant teaching a jazz class at the studio for a year, Alex was very excited to lead her own Hip Hop class the following year. This will be her third year teaching Hip Hop and she is excited to also be teaching Jazz at the studio this year.
During the summer, Alex taught a Hip Hop/Jazz combo class to younger dancers, ages six to eight, through the Napa Rec department. This was a very rewarding experience for Alex as it was through a Napa Rec dance class many years earlier, that she had first developed her love of dance. Getting to share her passion with a younger generation of dancers was incredibly meaningful to Alex.
Alex enjoys teaching dancers of varying ages and abilities as she loves to see the individual personalities of her dancers shine through in class and onstage while performing her choreography.
Alex loves teaching and the great relationships she has with her students. She finds progressing her students’ dancing to be so rewarding and really looks forward to seeing them each week. She is excited for another great year of dance at the studio!
Beth’s passion for dance started with a Bella Ballerina Home Ballet Studio which she quickly outgrew and begged her parents for actual classes. She has been taking classes at Academy of Danse since the age of 7. For the first few years, she took Ballet later adding Jazz, Contemporary and most recently Hip Hop. Her favorite style of dance is Musical Theater because it allows her to play a character while also incorporating many other styles of dance.
Ever since she was 3 years old Beth has been performing, even if it was just to her family. She loved being her yearly school plays and participating in voice and piano recitals. Over the past 13 years, Beth has only missed one dance recital and that was due to a knee injury that she wishes never happened. Performing has become such an important part of her life and her hope is that she can teach children to love being on stage as well.
In 2011, Beth was invited to join the first ever Pre-Competition Company. The next year she became a member of the Competition Company and competed for 6 years. Travelling with the company to conventions and different competitions allowed Beth to experience a multitude of techniques and disciplines that she has brought into her classes as a teacher. Her time on the company taught her how much hard work and dedication are needed to achieve goals.
Growing up in a large Catholic family, Beth has been around children all her life. She has learned that patience really is the greatest virtue when teaching. She hopes that she can continue to learn from her students as well as teaching them something new. This is her fourth year of teaching Tiny Tots and her third year of Musical Theater, and she is excited to see where the year takes her!
Bianca Rodriguez has been a teacher here at the Academy of Danse for 5 years. She has been a dancer with us since the age of three. She was first inspired to take dance classes by her God sister Skye. As the years have gone by she has learned and enjoyed different dance styles including; tap, jazz, ballet, musical theater, contemporary, hip hop and was even in DeeAnn’s Disney Princess pointé dance in 2009. At the age of five she joined the Napa Valley College Ballet Folklorico dance group and participated in it for about seven year. She had the opportunity to perform dances from different regions of Mexico.
After the seven years she was asked to audition for the Academy of Danse Competition Company. Being the youngest on the company that year she loved having a group of girls to look up to. She was on the company for five years and loved all the bonding moments. Going out to dinner at crazy hours, hair and makeup before competitions and practices during the week. Through out the years she also loved growing as a dancer and as a person.
Upon graduating high school in 2013 she registered for classes at the Napa Valley College for the up coming fall semester. But it only worked out for a year. Bianca hopes to return to school but at the moment is focusing on work. In April 2014 applied at the Napa Marshalls/Homegoods store. Bianca, along with a few others, was able to see the stone grow from an empty building into what it has become today. In September 2015 she was promoted to part-time CEC (customer experience coordinator). Bianca has gained a confidence that she never thought she had and hopes to help others find theirs. She, along with being a teacher at the studio, has been working with kids at an in-home preschool since July 2017 and loves it.
In becoming a teacher Bianca hopes to, again, help others build a confidence in dance and teach them to enjoy dance as much as she does.
Caitlin was born and raised in the Napa Valley. She began dancing at the age of 4 in a tiny tots class at Academy of Danse and hasn’t stopped dancing since. Over the years Caitlin has studied tap, jazz, ballet, pointe, hip hop, modern, and contemporary.
When Caitlin was a freshman in high school she was invited to try out for the Academy of Danse Competition Company and competed with them for four years. While on the company, Caitlin had the opportunity to dance, take class, and perform at Disneyland for Magic Music days twice. She also attended multiple dance conventions including The Pulse on tour and Monsters of Contemporary. In addition to being on the Competition Company she was an assistant teacher for five years here at the studio.
After graduating high school Caitlin attended Napa Valley College where along with continuing her education she was a member of the dance department. She then attended Butte College while living in Chico, California for two years. While living there she found a love for dance fitness classes. It was because of these classes that she decided to get certified in Zumba fitness in 2012. From there she got her certification to teach Zumba Kids and Zumba Kids Jr as well.
Caitlin has always had a passion for working with children. Starting at a young age she began volunteering at West Park elementary school, where she now works as a paraeducator. She has also worked at many summer camps over the years. This past summer she volunteered for Experience Camps, grief camps for kids that have lost a parent or sibling, as a camp counselor. While there she got to teach dance to girls ranging in age from 4th grade through 12th grade. Caitlin recently went back to school to pursue a degree in psychology and hopes to continue working with children in that field in the future. Caitlin has enjoyed being back at Academy of Danse for the past 8 years and can’t wait to continue sharing her love of dance to more students this year!
Devin knew she wanted to dance from the moment she could walk. Her parents signed her up for classes at Academy of Danse when she was four years old, and she trained in all styles there for eleven years, competitively for four. She created and taught her own classes at the age of twelve to help pay her competition fees, and since then has fallen in love with teaching.
In high school she trained and competed with Chapkis Dance Family on their senior team Prophecy for three years, and with the Lisa Clark Dancers for two. In college she danced and competed with Urban Dance Company at UCSB for three years, serving as artistic director and choreographer.
Devin is so proud to be a part of the Academy of Danse family and is excited to continue to create, grow, and get her steez on with her talented students!
Jaycie Valine has been dancing since she was two years old, it has completely consumed her life and she loves it that way. She has been a part of the Academy of Danse Competition Company since 2010 and has been a very active coach since 2014. Jaycie continues to expand her coaching presence every year and choreographs numerous routines as well as teaching the two advanced levels of both contemporary and jazz, an advanced ballet class, and a technique class. Jaycie is also the coach of the Pre-Competition Company.
Jaycie graduated from Justin Siena High School in 2016 and then attended the Napa Valley College where she got her associates degree in natural sciences and math. She also completed a program to earn her certificate of nursing assistance through clinical hours worked at the Holderman Hospital in Yountville. She transferred to Arizona State University and plans on earning her bachelors in biology within the next two years and then going on to teach medical science at a secondary education level.
Jaycie has grown up working alongside teachers as an assistant for different styles and now has enjoyed teaching her own classes since 2013. She loves her current and future students and hopes to see them improve through out the years she teaches them and after. Jaycie looks forward to creating more memories this year while coaching, teaching, and continuing to follow in her mother’s footsteps.
Jaycie has been taught many things from her most admirable and inspirational hero, her mom. DeeAnn Valine has owned the Academy of Danse with Jaycie’s father, Matthew Valine for over two decades. Jaycie has grown up watching DeeAnn teach, coach, and raise the Academy of Danse family. The other teachers and staff of Academy of Danse have been a big part of Jaycie’s life since she was born and she considers them all, past present and future, a part of her family.
The past competition seasons have been very successful for the company and Jaycie. She has received choreographers awards from multiple competitions and her routines have scored high and been placed in overalls. This last season she had one of her most special routines; I Surrender, earn a first place overall award. She loves seeing the hard work the dancers put in and the time they sacrifice pay off. Jaycie looks forward to another impressive season with her dance army and cannot wait to watch them do it!
Jaycie has been instructed by an exceptional group of teachers and choreographers and will continue to use the lessons she has learned in her own teachings. She loves all styles of dance and has taken classes in Jazz, Hip-Hop, Ballet, Pointe, Contemporary, Modern, Lyrical, Musical Theatre, and Technique. Jaycie hopes to continue to strengthen her dancing ability along with the support of her amazing Academy of Danse family as it continues to grow.
Jessica has been dancing at Academy of Danse since 2006. Her mom, DeeAnn Valine, put her into Tiny Tots as soon as she could. Jessica never stops dancing, even when she is out of class; she is always practicing on her own or with her sisters Julia and Jaycie Valine who are both teachers at Academy of Danse as well.
Jessica was on the Pre-competition Company for the 2014 season and has been on the Competition Company since 2015. She is currently a dancer in the highest-level competition pieces and is enrolled in the highest-level classes for every style offered at Academy of Danse including; Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Contemporary, Hip Hop, Pointe, and a weekly Technique class.
Through years of classes, competitions, conventions, and growing up completely immersed in the dance world she has learned so much and continues to do so every day. Jessica is very excited to pass down what she has learned to her students and help shape the future dancers of Academy of Danse.
Jessica is also a junior at Justin Siena High School and has learned how to manage her time between her school studies and her love and commitment to dance, this is another skill she would like to share with her future students.
She is ready to jump headfirst into teaching. Jessica is looking forward to having fun and creating a welcoming and beneficial environment for her dancers. She has watched and learned from her mom and her sisters as they all share the same passion for dance and creating an inclusive dance family.
Julia has been dancing since she was just three years old! She has grown up at the Academy of Danse along with her talented sisters who are now teachers as well, Jessica and Jaycie. She has danced for over 14 years and continues to develop her skills. Julia has taken jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, contemporary, musical theatre, and pointe.
This is Julia’s third year teaching. Julia is trying to follow in her mom and sisters’ footsteps as amazing dance teachers. She looks up to them and hopes to choreograph routines and move people just like they have been doing for many years. Her mom, DeeAnn is the proud owner of the Academy of Danse and has always pushed her to be her best and has made a second home and family for her through the studio.
Julia Valine has been on the Competition Company since 2013. She has enjoyed being a part of the dance family and community and enjoys being a leader to all her teammates. It has given her so many opportunities to grow as a dancer and a friend and leader. Julia loves to be a friend to all and help out around the studio in any way she can. Julia is a friendly face you can always approach if you ever need anything. Julia has grown as a dancer and teacher tremendously in the past few years, she and her friend Alex have started doing master classes every few months for all ages and levels. It’s always a fun time and a great learning experience for the dancers. She also has choregraphed a platinum hip hop competition duet with Alex as her duet partner.
Julia attends Justin siena High School as a senior. She takes education very seriously and works very hard in school and wants to major in psychology to help teenagers with their mental health in the future. She also wants to continue teaching at the Academy of Danse and continue to be involved in the family business with her mom, dad and sisters. Julia has gone through ups and downs in life as everyone does growing up, but dance and teaching has always gotten her through it! This job is in her blood, she is passionate and driven.
Julia is a firm believer in being kind to all and believes the studio is a judgment free zone. Julia says she wants to use dance to spread love, kindness and joy to everyone and encourages her students to do the same.
Mackenzie Cole was born and raised in Napa and has been dancing since before she could remember. Mackenzie began dancing at the age of 2, taking ballet classes at different dance schools until she started at Academy of Danse at age 7 and fell in love with her dance family. Gradually, Mackenzie went from ballet, to jazz, to contemporary, and at age 11, she was invited to the Junior Competition Company. Since joining the company 7 years ago, Mackenzie has been doing ballet, jazz, contemporary, lyrical, hip hop, musical theatre, and pointe.
Mackenzie graduated from New Technology High School in 2019. During her 2019-2020 school year, she completed a one year Portland Bible College program which she took through her home church, The Father’s House. As of now, Mackenzie is a student at the Napa Valley College. Mackenzie plans on continuing her schooling at UC Davis, after her two years at the junior college. Mackenzie will then go on to medical school, her residency, and continue as a doctor.
Mackenzie has always loved working with children! She has three younger sisters herself! Mackenzie is a leader in her church’s kid’s ministry, and she spent two summers teaching at the Napa STEM Academy.
Mackenzie is looking forward to helping her students strengthen their skills and grow as young dancers.