Our Teachers

Vanessa Berry Owner/Director of Kick Dance Studios 

Vanessa-And-Sadie- (Copy)A Jersey Shore native, Vanessa Berry has been teaching since she was 16. Her education in dance includes Red Bank Regional Dance Major, a degree in dance education from New York University, multiple fitness certifications, and extensive training in the Lotte Berke method. Performing credits include stage and television.

Before Vanessa became the proud owner of Kick Dance Studios she taught at some of the best studios in NY and Colorado including Equinox, New York Sports Club, Lotte Berke Method, Dance West, and the Boulder Arts Festival. Vanessa’s unique workouts were featured in articles in Self, Fitness, and Parenting magazine and she also made multiple appearances on Good Morning New York as a fitness leader. Vanessa was also chosen to lead a warm up for the Revlon Run/Walk in Times Square.  As a choreographer and dance teacher, Vanessa has received many accolades including Top Studio, Best Choreography, Most Entertaining, and multiple first place awards.

Her classes offer strong classic dance technique in a fun and caring style. Her students learn confidence, grace, stage presence, and coordination while developing a love for dance in all its styles.In the 14 years that Vanessa has owned Kick, the studio has gained a reputation of being a premiere dance and fitness facility on the Jersey Shore. Her children’s classes are always popular and full of energy. With over 500 students each week, Vanessa is also known for  her amazing children’s Dance Sampler, Hip Hop, Musical Theater, Ballet and Jazz dance classes.

Vanessa is also the mother of two beautiful young dancers Sadie and Henry.

Kaitlyn Kurkemelis

KatieKaitlyn Kurkemelis is best known to her Kick Family as Miss Katie.

Dancing since the age of three, her training started at The Kathy Kull Dance Center then continued on under the direction of Janet Layden, creator of Allegro Dance Academy. Most recent training credits include Broadway Dance Center, Dance Masters of America, Dance Alliance, and Steps on Broadway. Kaitlyn has performed in numerous musicals and staged performances, many of which have been under the production team, Cabaret For Life. Immediately after high school, Kaitlyn set off to NYC to pursue a career in Broadway. She was represented under Renata English, Barry Kolker, and various casting agencies. During these years, Kaitlyn starting substituting for Miss Vanessa. She fell in

love with the Kick Dance Studio and the little town of Fair Haven, NJ. In the past six years she has gone from teaching one class per week to now teaching over 20 classes per week. Kaitlyn teaches ages 3-12 Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, and Musical Theatre. Her classes are high energy and tons of fun while focusing on technique and performance skills.

Miss Katie is grateful for the love she has found at the Kick Dance Studios. Sharing her passion for performing is the greatest gift and she is looking forward to what the future has in store!

Marcy Millington Ryan

Marcy Ryan

Marcy began dancing at the age of eight when her family opened a dance studio in her hometown of Edmond, Oklahoma.

Her performance career started at an early age as a Party Guest in the Nutcracker Ballet at the University of Oklahoma. Immediately falling in love with performing, she continued to audition and study locally. As a teenager, Marcy was one of the youngest dancers to be selected for college level musical productions at the University of Central Oklahoma. She performed in the dance ensemble of, A Chorus Line, Chicago, and, as Liza in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Marcy was also selected to train as a Ballet student at two prestigious summer camps, Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute and Ballet West in Colorado.

While attending the University of Oklahoma majoring in Communications, Marcy was selected to be a member of the Varsity Pom Pon Squad and was Captain her senior year.

Post graduation, Marcy taught extensively and was a dancer for the professional arena football team, the Wranglers. Additionally she worked for Odyssey Dance Competitions touring the U.S. as the National Director for the competition brand. A job with Dance Spirit and American Cheerleader Magazine moved her to New York City and led to new adventures and opportunities on the East Coast. Marcy also has extensive experience in Styling, Event Planning, and Merchandising. Some of her work has been featured on blogs including: Style Me Pretty, Anthropologie, When There’s (A) Will, and Belle Joie.

Marcy now lives in Rumson, New Jersey and continues to train in New York at Broadway Dance Center, Physique 57, and Steps on Broadway. When she is not dancing she loves spending time with her husband, Dan, and their three Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Franklin, Ollie, and Lily. Marcy’s prides her teaching style on instilling grace, confidence, and poise in a positive and fun classroom environment.

Wendy Stein

wendy (Copy)

Wendy Stein is originally from Long Island. She began her classical ballet training in NYC with Andre Eglevsky , Robert Joffrey and has continued her study of ballet with Finis Jhung. In her teens she studied modern dance at the Martha Graham School and traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, South and Central America performing as a soloist with Larry Richardson, Yuriko, Pearl Lang and was on the staff of the New School in New York City.

Ms. Wendy currently teaches in several professional dance studios in the tri state area. She was a dance instructor at the Performing Arts High School in Middlesex County. In addition to her teaching commitments Wendy travels to many cities in the US Judging Dance Competitions both at Regional and National levels. She also conducts Intensives, Workshops and Master Classes in ballet, pre pointe, pointe and modern.

As an accomplished ballet/modern dancer and teacher Miss Wendy is totally committed to giving back. “I teach from my heart, I want to give my students everything I know”. She is intensely passionate about dance and totally devoted to her students. She has instructed students of all ages.

Miss Wendy has choreographed many award winning pieces in both classical and modern dance. Many students of Ms. Wendy have been very successful in the dance industry.

Gabrielle Winter


Gabrielle has been teaching for over 7 years throughout the New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania area.  While receiving her B.A. in Dance from DeSales University, she directed the Conservatory of Dance connected with the school.  She was also a rehearsal director for Repertory Dance Theatre, a pre-professional ballet company located in Allentown, PA.  After graduating she moved back to her home town on Long Island and taught at two studios for the past 3 years.  At the studios she taught classes such as ballet, modern, tap, jazz, lyrical, pointe and acro to children of all ages.  She also dances for a small contemporary company based in New York City called DM Dance Company.  She teaches many workshops and master classes with the company all along the east coast.  Gabrielle is very excited to be apart of Kick this year!

Deidra Wyckoff 

DeidraDeidra Wyckoff began training as a dancer when she was nine years old, beginning as a young and talented jazz student. After graduating from Brookdale Community College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Performing Arts, she pursued her career as a professional dance instructor at seven different dance academies! Some of her career highlights as a dancer include performing and training at Monsters of Hip Hop for eight consecutive years, performing at Disney World’s Magic Music Days and training with legendary dance instructors, such as Geo Hubela, Napoleon and Tabitha Dumo (Nappy Tabs), and Rhapsody James among many many other world renown choreographers. Deidra has also excelled as a hip-hop dancer for infamous dance crews, including ‘In Da Clutch’ crew, who appeared on "America's Best Dance Crew." She even had the pleasure to train with the amazingly talented Rockettes! Deidra is now currently under the instruction of Parris Goebel and Nick Demoura to expand on her styles of hip hop and choreography.

At the current time, Deidra's position remains as a lead instructor teaching young students several different genres of dance and technique; from ballet to ballroom to hip hop. Through this role, she has incorporated being a mentor to young children while encouraging them to learn the art of dance and helping them pursue their passion. Deidra hopes to continue to educate and inspire children while furthering her career as a professional dancer and or choreographer. She was just recently hired to shoot an upcoming promotional dance music video that will showcase her and her choreography for an up and coming traveling dance convention!

Dawn Mazzeo 

Dawn Mazzeo graduated from Sarah Lawrence College with a BA in both Dance and Theater. Her Senior year she spearheaded a Theater Outreach Troupe to go into Senior Centers and under funded elementary schools. The New York Times wrote a feature article chronicling their work. Dawn spent a semester abroad studying at the Royal Court Theater in London. She began acting in Off-Off Broadway plays her Senior year and went on to found her own Theater Company which workshopped and performed new plays.

Dawn has studied at the HB Studio in NYC, The Stella Adler Conservatory of Acting in NYC and with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company. Dawn was on faculty at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange in Brooklyn for over ten years where she taught dance, improvisation, theater games, voice for the stage, and audition techniques. Dawn has worked at The Publuc Theater in Manhattan, in numerous Off Broadway plays as well as in film and television. She lives in Rumson with her teen age daughter and son. Her favorite students are children!incredible teachers and to others.

Heather Pappas

Heather was a level 9 and collegiate gymnast. She began coaching at the age of 14 and brings over 26 years of coaching experience to the kick family of teachers. She competed for Somerville High School as well as Rutgers University. In addition to coaching gymnastics, she has been a certified high school gymnastics and JOGA judge for over 22 years. Heather is also the proud mother of her two daughters Ariana and Anastasia.

Caroline Keating

Caroline is an alumnus of Kick Dance Studio and has been dancing since age 10. After assistant teaching for 4 years and dancing on Team Kick for 6, she is very excited to be teaching her love of dance to others. Caroline has studied Jazz, Ballet, Hip-Hop, Lyrical, and Contemporary throughout her years of dancing. Her senior solo, Walking in Memphis, was awarded “Most Entertaining” at a regional competition. A senior at Monmouth University, Caroline continues to dance and is majoring in Health Studies and is in the Gerontology Certificate Program.

Samantha Mazza

Samantha grew up in Colts Neck, New Jersey and started dancing at the age of 3. She attended the Freehold Regional High School District's Fine and Performing Arts Center as a dance major from 2002-2005.  As a junior at FPAC she was selected as 1 of 12 dancers in New Jersey to attended the New Jersey Governors School for the Arts.  From 2005-2009 she attended The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, in which she holds a BFA in Dance.  While attending UARTS Samantha was a "Soulmate" dancer for the arena football team, Philadelphia Soul.  Samantha also studied at the University of Colorado at Boulder during her summers in college.  There she attended the annual Boulder Jazz Dance Workshop and was an intern with their resident company, Interweave Dance Theatre (IDT).  Some of her professional achievements include live performances with Bon Jovi, and Ne-Yo for XBox Kinect in Times Square.

Amanda Pyne

Amanda Pyne began dancing with Not Your Ordinary Dancers at age seven and mainly focused on ballet and pointe technique studying under Yekatrina Strelnikova for eight years. Amanda was accepted to be a part of Boston Ballets program and attended their summer intensive. Amanda was then one of forty selected out of thousands to be a part of Joffrey Ballet School's Jazz and Contemporary year round trainee program dancing many different techniques throughout the  day. At Joffrey she has trained with many well known and creative teachers and dancers such as, Michael Blake, Sidra Bell, Janis Brenner, Francesca Harper, Jana Hicks, Devin Pullins, Tyler Gilstrap, and Angelica Stiskin. Amanda was also involved in fashion week collaborating with parsons school of design on a Louis Vuitton project. Amanda absolutely loves teaching and choreographing and passing on the knowledge and love of dance she has learned from such incredible teachers and to others.

Robyn Etzler

Robyn is our teacher of our youngest group of dancers at Kick. Starting as a young child she danced in South Florida at The Academy of Performing Arts. She performed in The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella. In addition to dance, she was involved in theater. She was Snoopy in Your a Good Man Charlie Brown that traveled throughout Broward County.  Between her love for dance and theater, she decided to go back to her roots and began teaching dance. She started the Mommy and Me program with Vanessa over five years.   This branched out into another class involving 2 and 3 year old drop off with a recital. Her classes have performed to songs incorporating Mickey Mouse and Dr. Seuss. We will have to wait and see what she will come up with next!

Celebrating 13 years of Amazing Dance Classes to Amazing Kids! Read Reviews on Kick! "Kick Experience"

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