Jayne began taking dance classes in Youngstown, Ohio in 1959 at almost 3. Her Aunt Flo opened a small studio and had been training in the "Al Gilbert" method of teaching Tap Dance (Al is still the "voice" of tap at TJ Dance) Then came the early 60s and most of Jayne's family moved to the San Fernando Valley in California. Aunt Flo opened another studio so Jayne's dance training hardly missed a beat!
Throughout her many years of dancing, Jayne was lucky enough to dance with Al Gilbert, Luigi and other local teachers that became legends (in Hollywood). Debbie Reynolds would often stop by and observe classes looking for local talent for her "Debbie Reynolds Show". In the mid 60s, Jayne often attended the summer workshops known as "Dance Caravan" with teachers Betty & Danny Hoctor, Mallory Graham and Kit Andree. Luigi often taught at the "Caravans" also. "It was so fun to spend the day in a huge ballroom full of dancers, changing teachers and dance styles every hour. During our lunch breaks, we would walk the Santa Monica Pier and love being on our own at the beach!" Jayne remembers. After high school, Jayne attended two colleges and soon after became a wife and mother. By the time Jayne's second son was born, Jayne REALLY started to miss dancing! In 1984 she got out her old "Al Gilbert Tap Exercise" LPs and her Luigi Warm Up album and started practicing on the porch! A dance studio was in the making!
Jayne has been so lucky to continue learning with so many "GREATS"... The classic hoofers! Brenda Buffalino, Arthur Duncan (from Lawrence Welk) Jerry Aimes, Sam Webber, Cholly Atlins (a Motown Choreographer) Lynn Daley, Diane Walker (from the movie "TAP") Savion Glover (remember when he was on Sesame Street?) and even Gregory Hines, who Jayne still quotes to all the boys and men interested in dance, but hesitant to give it a try - Gregory always said "It's the place to meet all the girls! You will be surrounded by them!" Jayne credits "Johnson and Peters", a Dancing Duo that have their own studio in Seattle (originally with Shirley Jenkins on Capitol Hill) for regenerating and energizing TAP in the Northwest!
Jayne is truly thankful that she has had such wonderful family support over the years, as well as friends and the community. TJ Dance has always had one main goal. "To instill a love of dance in every dancer". When former students return or bring their kids back to our studio to dance, Jayne feels we've done our job. At TJ Dance - It matters less how "well" you dance and more how much you "love" to dance! We work endlessly on technique, but each dancer has their own style and each dancer has their own level of "natural ability". Jayne also believes in keeping dancers strong and flexible because she truly believes that strength is grace! "Dance" expresses what we are from the inside - out. Our energy, our body's rhythms, our emotions - It's all a part of us and of "dance"!
Thanks to her Mom, Lorraine, Peg began dancing at age 3 with Rosemary's Academy of Ballet in Richland, WA. She studied ballet, character and later pointe until the age of 15. She also attended summer classes at The Novikov Ballet School and Lois Rathvons Dance Studio. In high school, Peg used her dance training in cheer, drill and the gymnastics team.
In the summer between her Jr. & Sr. year, Peg taught dance to Head Start Preschoolers.
Peg moved to Seattle in 1969 and while attending the University of Washington, took ballet classes with Hannah Wiley (classes were at 7:30AM!) She then took a few years off from dance training to raise a family.
Music and Dance were always, and continue to be, a big presence in her home.
Peg joined Jayne at TJ Dance in 1989 to teach a few ballet classes and to learn tap dancing from Jayne. The rest is history! Jayne and Peg are "TJ Dance"! Peg continues to study dance by taking class in ballet at Pacific Northwest Ballet School Eastside, jazz classes and tap workshops locally.
Peg believes in teaching the love of dance and learning an appreciation for classical music, along with the fundamentals. Dancing should be a joy!
Born and raised here in Duvall! Aariel has been dancing since the age of three, all of which have been right here at TJ Dance. She performed in her first TJ Dance recital alongside her mother and her sister, and has been dancing ever since! Dancing is only the beginning of her creativity. For as long as she can remember, Aariel has also been in love with drawing. She graduated from DigiPen Institute of Technology in 2012 and has been working as a 3D Animator ever since.
Pursuing passion for creativity is something Aariel feels strongly about because oftentimes, both dancing and animation are labeled as hobbies for our younger years. Aariel truly enjoys teaching the middle school/high school age classes and hopes to inspire others who may be transitioning into their teen and adult years to continue with their interests regardless of peer pressure or stereotypes.
Bethany started learning how to dance at the age of six at TJ Dance Studio! She began with ballet, jazz, and tap to then continued onto hip hop and lyrical.
TJ Dance created the foundation of her love for dance, as she didn’t miss a single year all the way to performing a senior dance routine at 18 years old at the annual show.
In addition to TJ Dance, Bethany also took dance classes at Kirkland Dance Center, performed on the Eastside Moving Company while attending Bellevue College, and continued to expand in learning different styles of dance.
Bethany began teaching dance her senior year of high school at TJ Dance and soon later became a youth and adult dance teacher at Kirkland Dance Center. She loves teaching both children and adult classes as both bring great fun and diversity. She was raised by TJ Dance’s motto that any one can dance, and stands by that statement! She believes dancing brings joy and loves to pass that on to all ages through her teaching. Bethany taught dance for 6 years and then took a 2 year break to become a student of dance again. She is spinning and leaping in excitement to be joining the TJ Dance Studio for the 2017-2018 dance year and for many, many years
While Bethany is not dancing she spends her time being a new mom of her baby boy, taking her energetic dogs on adventures, and relaxing with her friends and family.
Ileah began taking dance lessons at age 2 with TJ Dance. She continued dancing through high school, taking classes in jazz, tap, hiphop, ballet, pointe, and belly dance. She lived in Los Angeles for a while, attending make-up school and taking dance classes at Millenium Dance.
Ileah moved back to Washington and completed cosmetology school. Currently, she spends her time at the hair salon, taking care of her 2 cats, and dancing in a competitive country line dancing group. She is proud to be #2 in the World, in her age group, this year. Ileah can't seem to stay away from TJ Dance, so you can find her teaching hiphop/cheer on Monday evenings.
TJ Dance Add: How lucky we are to have her!
You probably ALL know Margie keeps us running smoothly as our wonderful office manager and bookkeeper. She does so many things there are too many to mention on the fly... You can find her in the office on Tuesday evening. She is an amazing friend and we all LOVE her!
Dance has always been a part of Rachel’s life. From as early as she can remember she loved creative movement- starting in pre-school gymnastics, then moving into clogging once school aged, and honing her ballet skills as an adolescent and beyond.
Rachel trained in Las Vegas, Nevada in various schools and academies, most notably the Academy of Nevada Ballet Theatre and Las Vegas Academy of the Arts. Rachel studied the arts of ballet (Balanchine & Vaganova), jazz, modern (Graham & Horton), contemporary, clogging, character dance, choreography, and improvisation. In late high school, Rachel found herself dancing ~6 hrs per day, 6 days a week, soaking in all the dance training she could and loving every second of it! Post high school, Rachel took the “responsible” route and pursued a degree in Business in Hilo, Hawaii, taking ballet as a college elective and teaching ballet, jazz, and contemporary at a local studio on the side. Upon graduation she was blessed with a job in corporate finance in Seattle and ventured off to the Pacific Northwest. While the majority of her days were now spent in spreadsheets she continued to take class when she could, mostly at Pacific Northwest Ballet, and sought out various dance opportunities. Right before the pandemic she landed a contemporary dance role in Seattle’s Tint Festival, but never got the chance to perform due to lock-downs. As work from home measures droned on, Rachel’s longing to be back in the dance world reached an all-time high and at the beginning of 2022 she finally decided to quit corporate and go after her dance dreams full-time! Rachel is so excited to be teaching again, sharing the gift of dance with all those who dare to dream.
Grace started dancing at TJ Dance Studio at the age of six. She fell in love with yoga during high school, where she discovered that it helped her to relax and refocus her energies towards achieving her life goals. Grace received her Yoga Instructor Certification at Bellevue College and is recognized by the National Yoga Alliance where she has completed over 200 hours of training. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced yogi, Grace is thrilled to support you.
Chelsea is Jayne’s daughter and has grown up dancing her entire life. She was born into the love of dance in 1992 just ten days after recital! She has taken almost every class at TJ Dance as well as attended many workshops with dancers from all over. She loves all the classes here but favors tap the most.
Chelsea is currently a Kidney Dialysis Technician at Puget Sound Kidney Center and is married to her husband Bill. She has a passion for people as well as dance and loves helping in any way she can. She is excited about teaching again this year!
Bailey started dancing when she was about 4 years old. When she was 11 she took a break from dancing to pursue figure skating. In 2013 Bailey met Chelsea and picked up dancing at TJ Dance and fell in love with it all over again. Bailey loves all forms of dance and struggles to pick a favorite.
Bailey attended Western Washington University, graduated in 2016 and is now a preschool teacher. She is currently living with her husband Chris and dog Chloe.