ACCSD has gathered the best & brightest teachers in the mechanicsville area!

Our teachers are college educated professionals with a wealth of experience in dance and beyond.  Each teacher brings their own unique vision and artistry to every class.  Many of our teachers grew up as students at ACCSD, and have passed on our traditions and family vibe.  We love what we do!

 
 
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Autumn Waddell

Education & Training

Autumn Proctor Waddell was born and raised in Virginia, where she started her early years of training with her mother through the Ann Catherine Cross School of Dance, where she is currently the Associate Artistic Director. She had additional training at the Washington Ballet, Richmond Ballet, and the Virginia School of the Arts. She also had many opportunities to study closely under the direction of Luigi in NYC. As a young teen, Autumn was selected as one of the first National touring company members of the Hoctor’s Dance Caravan Jr. Caravan Kid program, where she studied intensely under the direction of Kit Andre, Mallory Graham, Jerry Rose, and Tommy Tune to name a few, while traveling Nationwide. She later continued her dance training into college. During this time Autumn was fortunate to have the experience of working closely with Milton Myers, studying and demonstrating the Horton technique at Steps on Broadway and at the Alvin Ailey School. She was also a scholarship student for two summers at Jacob’s Pillow in the contemporary program under the direction of Milton Myers. In the summer of 2005, Autumn traveled abroad to study at Danceworks Berlin in Germany, where she had the opportunity to study Gaga technique, which was founded and developed by Ohad Naharin, Director of Batsheva Dance Company in Israel. During this same summer she also attended Impulstanz in Vienna, Austria as Milton Myer’s class assistant/demonstrator. In the fall to follow, Autumn presented work in the Collaborative, Here Now Three at the Cunningham Studios, NYC, with Kyle Abraham, and Bridget L. Moore.

Autumn received her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Dance with a concentration in Modern from Marymount Manhattan College, NYC. She holds a Masters of Fine Arts (MFA) in dance performance and choreography from New York University, Tisch School of the Arts. Upon completing graduate school, Autumn served as adjunct faculty at East Carolina University and the University of Virginia. She also co-founded and directs a summer dance program, We Are Artists, in the Richmond area which works to serve young aspiring artists in their continued creative process, technical training, and exposure endeavors. In the summer of 2009 she spent a month in Canada performing in the Montreal Fringe Festival and working intensely at Springboard Danse Montreal with BJM Danse Montreal. Autumn has worked extensively with various artists including: Kyle Abraham, Bill Young, Cheryl Therion, Rodger Belman, Bridget L. Moore, Milton Myers and VCU’s own Christian von Howard. She has also performed works by: Angelin Preljocaj, Pina Bausch, Merce Cunningham, Jose Limón, Jiří Kylián, Maguy Marin, Azure Barton and others. Autumn is currently a member of the Von Howard Project, directed by Christian von Howard, based in Richmond, VA and NYC. Most recently, she was fortunate to have the opportunity to visit and teach as a guest artist in Arezzo, Italy at the Accademia dell’ Arte.

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, Musical Theater

What do you love most about dance?
That it is an art form that asks the entire body, mind, heart and spirit to merge as one voice of heightened and expressive language. I love that music is its companion and that the language of the physical form allows you to speak in a way that will touch everyone from the core of their own person. I love that it has always asked more of me than I think I can give. 

What do you love most about teaching?
There is a reflection of learning that accompanies the art of authentic teaching and I cherish the exchange that the teacher-student "mirror" creates. While sharing in the gift of how one's physical and emotional growth evolves in new learning situations over a period of time, teaching becomes a gift that allows one to keep giving while also receiving in unexpected ways. 

What's your favorite quote?
"in these bodies we will live, in these bodies we will die, where you invest your love, you invest your life"
– Mumford & Sons 

 
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Blake Roeder

Education & Training
• MFA in Dance from Hollins University
• BFA in Contemporary Dance from UNCSA
• Student at ACCSD  /  age 3-18

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Contemporary, and sometimes Hip-Hop!

What do you love most about dance?
The endless possibility for new discoveries in movement and coordination.  Each discovery builds on the previous one, opening the way for more complex and interesting results.

What do you love most about teaching?
Watching kids push through challenges, helping them find the drive and confidence to be the best dancer they can possibly be.

What's your favorite quote?
"We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice that thorn bushes have roses."  
– Abraham Lincoln

 
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stephanie roeder

Education & Training
• BFA in Contemporary Dance from UNCSA
• Internship with Movement Research
• Full-Time Scholarship student at ADF
• Student at ACCSD  /  age 3-17

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, Tap, & Musical Theater

What do you love most about dance?
I love the expression, the performance, the connection, the process, the passion, the flow of movement, the music, the growth, the positive memories, the strength, the challenge, and most of all I love the everlasting fulfillment.

What do you love most about teaching?
I love working with kids!  They are honest, energetic, and inspiring.  They keep me grounded and never cease to amaze me.

What's your favorite quote?
"Strength doesn't come from what you can do.  It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't."  
– Rikki Rogers

 
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Nakita James

Education & Training
• The Right Way Dance Studio  /  age 6-16
• The Dance Spot  /  age 16-18
• BFA in Dance from VCU

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Jazz, Tap, Contemporary and Musical Theater

What do you love most about dance?
I love dance because it's the universal connection which brings people  together.  You can express yourself in so many different ways the way you're feeling can be shown through the movement.

What do you love most about teaching?
It's an amazing feeling when you have a litttle person achieve a goal and knowing you might be the person behind that goal. Plus they make it so much fun those smiles and it so worth it.

What's your favorite quote?
"If you think you can or you think you can't either way you're right"  
– Henry Ford 

 
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Anna Jane Glascock

Education & Training
• Student at ACCSD  /  age 7-18
• BFA in Dance and Choreography from VCU
• Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance (DanceJerusalem Program) 
• Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israeli Art and Culture) 
• Israeli Choreographers Workshop (Batsheva & Vertigo Dance Companies)
• We Are Artists 2008-present
• Visceral Dance Company Summer intensive
• Member of Karar Dance Company

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Acro, Jazz, Contemporary, Musical Theatre

What do you love most about dance?
I love the element of creative expression and embodying elements of music through a movement language that is unique to each individual’s artistic voice.

What do you love most about teaching?
I love passing on what I have learned, and I take pride in pushing my students past their limits to watch them achieve a higher level of potential than they had ever thought possible.

What's your favorite quote?
"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."  
– Neale Donald Walsch

 
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Carol Taylor

Education & Training
• Grew up dancing at Ann Catherine Cross School of Dance
• BS in Human Development from Virginia Tech  
• Dancer on nationally ranked Virginia Tech Dance Team
• Associate member of the Contemporary Dance Ensemble at Virginia Tech
• Performer in Kings Dominion's Halloween shows
• Member of the Karar Dance Company
• Performer and Choreographer for We Are Artists
• Teacher at ACCSD for 6 years

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Creative movement, Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theater, Contemporary, Lyrical, Hip-Hop, Improvisation, and Adult Tap

What do you love most about dance?
The blend of artistry and athleticism.  Also I love the feeling of performing on a stage and being able to put all of my heart and soul into the movement.

What do you love most about teaching?
Being able to share my passion for dancing with my students and being able to watch them learn and grow.

What's your favorite quote?
“It's the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.”
– Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

 
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Caroline Echevarria

Education & Training
• Student at ACCSD  /  age 12-18
• BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Elon University
• B.S. in Exercise Science from Elon University

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theater

What do you love most about dance?
I love the athleticism and physicality of movement, and the creative freedom it gives me.

What do you love most about teaching?
I love watching my students succeed at tasks they've found difficult in the past, and being surrounded by the energy they have for learning/experiencing dance.

What's your favorite quote?
"Whether you think you can or you think you can't, either way you are right."
– Henry Ford

 
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Emily Yarbrough

Education & Training
• BS in Biology with a minor in Business Administration from CNU
• Student at ACCSD  /  age 3-18
• Several years studying & performing with We Are Artists
• Licensed Veterinary Technician degree from Blue Ridge Community College

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theater, Contemporary

What do you love most about dance?
Dance gives me a creative break from the job I do during the day. Dance is something I do for me!

What do you love most about teaching?
Realizing that I can make a difference in someone's life, just by encouraging them to be their best. 

What's your favorite quote?
"Faith is taking the first step, even when you can't see the whole staircase" 
– Martin Luther King Jr

 
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Allie Ramirez

Education & Training
• Studied with Matt Steffanina, Dana Alexa, Will Adams and JoJo Gomez

What do you teach at ACCSD?
Hip-Hop

What do you love most about dance?
Coming Soon!

What do you love most about teaching?
Coming Soon!

What's your favorite quote?
Coming Soon!