Oak Cliff Dance Studio, located just blocks away from Sylvan Thirty and Trinity Groves, teaches students of all ages the love of dance through exceptional instruction and custom choreography.
Melissa Hunsaker, Founder & Owner
Melissa is a Texas native, and grew up in the DFW area. She began taking dance classes at age 5 and started teaching dance when she was just 15 years old. Melissa has a B.F.A. in Dance from the University of North Texas.
Since 2001 Melissa's choreography has won numerous awards such as, "Best In Class", "Judges Award", "Most Creative Choreography" as well as over 100 Top Overall Scores at local and national competitions. She has worked at various schools and studios all across North Texas specializing in technique workshops.
In 2012, she began teaching Dance at a public charter school in the south Dallas neighborhood of Oak Cliff, where she built an educational dance program from scratch. The program has grown to over 200 students in daily classes and over 50 students on the dance teams.
Recognizing the strong interest in dance throughout the Oak Cliff community, Melissa opened Oak Cliff Dance, a studio space offering classes, private lessons, and custom choreography. Melissa strongly believes that dance should be available to everyone, and wants to create a place where students of all ages and all backgrounds can come together to learn the art form.
Roselle Carlino, Instructor
Emilie Skinner, Instructor
Growing up in New York, I began dancing at 3 years old at my local studio and Broadway Dance Center, competing at 10, and teaching at 15. I have a BS in Elementary Education with a minor in Psychology from St. John’s University in NYC.
While taking daily dance classes, I also performed as Raggedy Ann in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, danced at NY Knicks games, was in several Ballets, such as Peter and the Wolf and Snow White, and danced annually at the Jordan Classic at MSG.
I was captain of my nationally ranked college dance team at St. John’s. In 2008, I began working for Universal Dance Association (UDA) as a travelling instructor for summer camps around the country. I currently work for UDA as a judge for competitions and travel internationally teaching and choreographing all styles of dance.
I have taught at several studios and coached/ choreographed for nationally ranked high school and college dance teams for the past 8 years. I currently live in Oak Cliff and also will begin teaching at The Kessler School in August.
Emilie Skinner began her classical training at the age of six with Gilbert Rome and Victoria Vittum, performing with their company Houston Repertoire Ballet until graduating High School. She has studied at summer intensives including the Joffrey Ballet, Austin Ballet and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. In the summer of 2011, she also attended the SIBA international training program in Salzburg, Austria. While the primary focus of her training is classical ballet, she also has experience in modern, jazz and contemporary dance.
In 2007, Emilie received her B.A. in French Studies with a minor in Art History from the University of North Texas, while performing with Lake Cities Ballet Theatre. After graduating, she performed with Contemporary Ballet Dallas and DGDG (Danielle Georgiou Dance Group), as well as with other local ballet companies. In 2011, Emilie founded the nonprofit, professional ballet company, Dallas Neo-Classical Ballet (DNCB), and currently serves as its Founding Artistic Director.
Born in Houston, Texas, Emilie has been teaching, choreographing and performing in the DFW area for over thirteen years and currently resides in Oak Cliff with her husband Danny and their two dogs.
Tawana Blaylock, Instructor
When is comes to forging your own pathand electrifying each person you come in contact, look no further than Tawana.
Tawana is a native of Oak Cliff. he left a career in banking to start her own businesses. She is a certified personaltrainer who is dedicated to helping others live a better "you" in every sense of the word. Tawana leads a women bootcamp and does personal training at Combine Fitness. She loves taking a client through a new workout and helping them do exercises that they never thought they would be able to do. She combines free weights and functional training into fun and different programs. Tawana's motivation and energy is amazing!
Tawana also saw a need in the pet care/dog walking space, and filled it. She is well-known for her epic walks around town with her puppy-friends in tow. As she would say, she "loves her fur-babies".
Tawana is extremely active and loves weight training, group workouts, running and yoga. She enjoys traveling, hanging out with family and friends and being social in the Oak Cliff community.
Her saying is, "Do something healthy and good for yourself everyday."
Jade Parish, Instructor
Miss. Jade teaches our 2 and 3 year old class on Saturday mornings at 9am. She has over 10 years of experience in dance and enjoys working with the young dancers in our community. She is a life long learner and takes classes anywhere she can.