Dance Instructors | Old Bethpage, NY

Teachers

staff member
Toni Maestre   AIM Director

Toni Maestre started dancing at the age of two. Toni had the privilege of training with some of the best teachers in NY. She studied with the likes of Finus Jung (Ballet), Madame Darvash (Ballet), Phil Black (Tap), Alan Onickle (Tap), Jose De La Cuesta (Tap & Theatre Jazz) Frank Hatchet (Jazz), Susie Taylor (Lyrical Jazz), Josh Bergase (Theatre Dance) and Donna DeSimone (Ballroom). She and her husband Frank danced professionally for many years traveling throughout the U.S. and abroad, but her heart has always been in the classroom with her students. She believes every child should be able to enjoy the joys of dance and loves watching her students grow and gain self- confidence. Toni is known for offering a family feel at her studio and prides herself on the fact that so many former students have not only remained close to her, but now entrust her to teach their own children. To Toni, there is no greater honor!

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Marcy White   Dance Instructor

Marcy White is the founder and former owner/Artistic Director of LIDF. She started dancing at the age of 11, soon after watching her cousin's recital, and was mesmerized with the magic of the stage and instantly knew that was where she wanted to be. She quickly discovered that dancing was her passion. She continued her education through college as a dance major, then receiving a scholarship at Steps on Broadway in NYC. Her areas of study include Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Hip hop, Modern and Ballroom. She has studied with master teachers/choreographers such as Joe Lanteri (NYCDA), Jane Miller Gifford, and Mia Michaels (SYTYCD). She's performed with the Eglevsky Ballet, Dance Odyssey Dance Company, recording artists, and has made several TV appearances.

In the fall of 1999 Marcy opened LIDF with the intent of sharing her passion for dance while instilling structure, discipline and self confidence in her students. She's won numerous choreography awards, top place and special awards. Some of her dancers have gone on to continue their education and develop their craft in the dance world, such as NYC Ballet, SYTYCD, Hit the Floor, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleader. Marcy continues to enjoy sharing her passion with her students, while striving for them to feel like the "STARS" that they are!!

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Aja Beckmann   Dance & Zumba® Instructor

"Doing what you love is freedom, loving what you do is happiness."

Aja has been a dance instructor since 2002, and there is nothing else she could see herself doing. Dance is not a job for her, it's her passion. Before she started teaching at AIM, she was an active student in the studio as well as an assistant teacher. Toni soon recognized her passion for dance and working with children. She taught her first class at AIM and never looked back nor doubted where she was supposed to be. She believes the strongest dancers are the ones with the biggest hearts and desires. She works with all ages in the recreational program and especially loves watching the toddlers grow and progress.

In February 2011, Aja became a Zumba® instructor and started working with both children and adults to help them lead a more positive and healthier lifestyle. Being an instructor has helped her grow. Aja says as much as she inspires her students; they inspire her all the same. She has a positive force of energy and is a role model for all children. She believes she was given a gift which she tries to use to the best of her ability.

Aja relates well to the saying: 'when you love what you do, you never work a day in your life,' because right now she's living the dream.

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Lindsey Lykowski   Dance Instructor

Lindsey Lykowski was born and raised in the Chicago-land area. She graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in May 2012 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. Lindsey was the only undergraduate to ever perform a solo work in a main stage performance. During this time Lindsey also performed in Light, a Christmas production in Chicago, catering to a total audience of 90,000 and televised in 13 countries.

In the summer of 2012 she moved to New York City after being chosen as a Professional Semester Intern at Broadway Dance Center and Parsons Dance. In February 2013, she was selected as one of the original company members of Sans Limites Dance as both a soloist and eventually rehearsal director. Lindsey also choreographed her first concert piece Limites with director Diana Petersen that was presented in numerous festivals including Jennifer Mueller’s Hatched series.

In recent history, she has performed with Roschman Dance in NYC and Lindsey currently dances with Aya Saotome in the production, “Who Knows?” as the featured ballet dancer. Lindsey also works as a freelance representative for both Ballet Rosa and likeG dance wear companies. She was born and raised in the Chicago-land area. She graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in May 2012 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. Lindsey was the only undergraduate to ever perform a solo work in a main stage performance. During this time Lindsey also performed in Light, a Christmas production in Chicago, catering to a total audience of 90,000 and televised in 13 countries.

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Maddie Brown   Dance Instructor

Madison Brown is originally from Pittsburgh and currently resides in New York City. She graduated with a BFA in Dance and a minor in Musical Theatre from the University of The Arts in Philadelphia. Madison values education and strives for excellence. Along with her Bachelor's degree, she holds an MS in Dance and Movement Therapy from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. She has had the opportunity to train closely under the mentorship of Milton Myers from Alvin Ailey and Kim Bears-Bailey. In addition, she has performed in works choreographed by Gary Jeter from BalletX, Marguerite Hemmings, Sidra Bell Dance New York, Tommie Waheed, Katie Swords Thurman, Jesse Zarrit, and was a soloist in Milton Myers work "Rituals." She was a competitive dancer for over 12 years, training in various styles, and has received numerous awards for first overalls, scholarships, and national and regional titles. Madison has taught and choreographed for many studios and national dance competitions along the East Coast. Her choreographic experiences include choreographing the opening number for Ticket to Broadway National Dance Competition's Nationals "Callback Battle" 3 years in a row, competition choreography for multiple studios on the coast, and choreography for fellow students at the University of The Arts. By continuing to teach at studios and competitions and sharing her knowledge and passion with students of all ages, she hopes to promote an enjoyable learning environment for beginners to advanced students to express themselves and promote passion.

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Samantha Witt   Dance Instructor

Samantha Witt grew up dancing on Long Island and is a graduate of BOCES Cultural Arts Center, now known as Long Island High School of the Performing Arts. She continued her dance education at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA where she earned a BFA in Dance with a concentration in Jazz Performance. She also studied at New York University Tisch for a summer intensive program. Samantha has also been trained in and taught, performed, and choreographed for ballroom style dance shows and workshops. She is also a certified Aerial Yoga instructor.

Samantha’s performance credits include dancing professionally and performing as a hula hoop artist and aerialist touring nationally and internationally with different circus companies such as Cirque Le Masque, Cirque Legacy, Cirque Bravo, Life in Color, Cirque Central and more. She has also been seen dancing and performing in shows in Atlantic City, on television programs and commercials, and with the artist MIA at the YouTube Music Awards.

Samantha has always loved and had a passion for teaching and choreographing. She has taught master classes in stretch and conditioning, hula hooping, jazz and tap in addition to teaching her regular classes. She believes there is nothing better as a dance instructor than watching students grow, learn, and witness their own passion for dance and movement develop.

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Andrea Gripaldi   Dance Instructor

Andrea Grippaldi has been dancing since the age of 3 and never stopped! She attended the BOCES Cultural Arts Center now known as the Long Island High School of the Arts her junior and and senior year of High School.

In 1996 her sister opened a dance studio where she taught all forms of dance such as ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, hip hop and acro for 20 years until her sisters retirement. Andrea has competed in dance competitions across Long Island winning high score and choreography awards.

She had the honor of touring with Starpower Dance Competiton performing in Disney, Texas and Vegas. Andrea also trained with the Eglevsky Ballet for a year before joining their company

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Aaron Parkhurst   Dance Instructor

Aaron Parkhurst has over two decades of tap dance experience, and has worked professionally for the past 10 years in NYC, which he now calls home. Aaron currently tours teaching tap for Revel Dance Convention, has previously toured with 24 Seven Dance Convention, Shuffles NYC, Dance Masters of America and Sheer Talent. Currently you can catch him teaching at Broadway Dance Center as well as the American Tap Festival, a week long tap intensive by Mike Minery and Anthony Morigerato. He also teaches weekly classes throughout NYC and NJ, and travels the country to choreograph and instruct master classes.

Aaron enjoys teaching and passing on his love for dance to younger generations. Aaron has also enjoyed a career in concert dance, working as a soloist and collaborator. Solo Performances include "The Best of Duke Ellington's Sacred Concerts" conducted by Roland Carter. He has traveled through Europe dancing with The Tap Factor and danced on World of Dance Season 1. Favorite theatre credits include: 42 Street, White Christmas, Thoroughly Modern Millie and My One and Only.

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SYDNEY SJOBLOM   Dance Instructor

Sydney Sjoblom was born and raised in Rome, NY, and began her dance journey at the age of 4. With a robust, advanced technical background spanning hip hop, contemporary, acro, lyrical, and jazz, she brings over a decade of teaching experience to our studio.

She received her dance training at CVS School Of Dance in upstate NY, followed by a dance major at Nassau Community College. Since 2014, Sydney has been a dedicated member of the AIM family, while also sharing her expertise at Deanna’s Dance Academy in Upstate NY.

Having graced stages across NY, NJ, and PA, and featured in music videos and festivals, Sydney brings a wealth of performance and competitive experience to our students. At AIM, she teaches hip hop, acro, contemporary, lyrical, jazz, and technique/conditioning.

What we love about Sydney is watching her instill the same love and passion for dance that inspired her along her own dance journey. She aspires to cultivate a deep appreciation for the art of dance, empowering each of her students to embrace their potential fully.

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Zarai Acosta   Dance Instructor

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