Eve McClanahan, Director and Head Instructor. Eve holds a BFA in Film / Video from the Rhode Island School of Design and a MA Degree in Dance / Dance Education from NYU. She has been teaching dance for over 25 years, is New York State Certified in Dance, and holds 3 teaching certificates in Aerial Yoga teacher training. Eve was a professional modern dancer in NYC from 1987 - 1995. She danced for the Linda Nutter Dance Company, Noel Natambu Hall, Joy Kellman, Illana Suprin. Dance began at age 3 and Eve was accepted via scholarship into the American Ballet Theater. When she is not taking care of her family, 3 dogs and 29 chickens, she voraciously practices Crossfit and Blacksmithing. She feels blessed to have the amazing staff that has gravitated to this school to share their unique expertise at Black Dirt Dance - now celebrating it's 18th season!!
Jenny Link, Instructor. Jenny teaches adult and children's aerial yoga classes, and has been a student of dance for the past 7 years at Black Dirt Dance. She has a BA in Fitness and Wellness Management / Physical Education from Northern Arizona University and did her post - graduate work at Biomechanics at San Diego State University. Jenny was a NATA Certified Athletic Trainer for the University of California, San Diego, and area high schools. She has practiced yoga since 2002 and after completing a certification course for Aerial Yoga in Boulder, CO, was happy to join the inspiring team at Black Dirt Dance!
Tami Small, Instructor. Tami Small is an accomplished performer and teacher. She's been in the Hudson Valley for the last 10 years, moving from NYC where she taught at the School at Steps, Peridance, Columbia University, and Ballet Hispanico. She began her training in Ohio, primarily studying tap and jazz. She started taking ballet at 15, and was fortunate enough to have an amazing teacher who fostered love of the art and upholding the tradition and etiquette involved - all while making it fun! That's what Tami strives to do in her classes. A lifelong student (as all performers should be!), her biggest influential teachers were Carole Alexis, Pamela Bolling, Mdme. Peff Modelski, and Jeff Shade. As as dancer, she has performed in the Castle Show in the Magic Kingdom at Disney World, with the Tom Evert Company for the Great Lakes Theater Festival, Cleveland Ballet Dancing Wheels, the Miss Orlando pageant, and many regional musicals. As an actor, Tami has appeared in "Watching the Detectives" on A & E, and several commercials for Disney. As much as she enjoyed performing, her greatest accomplishments have been as a dance teacher, working with adults and children of all levels.
Gwynenn Taylor Jones, Instructor. Gwynenn began her dance training with the Pittsburgh Youth Ballet at the age of 14. She continued her studies at Ballet Met Academy in Columbus, OH. In 1998 Jones moved to NYC where she studied at the Ailey School as a fellowship student for 2 years. She danced with Ailey II from 2000 - 2002. Jones was an original member of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet from 2003 - 2004. She was a member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater from 2004 - 2009. She returned to Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, under Director Benoit Swan Pouffer from 2009 - 2012. Jones has also danced with Earl Mosley Diversity of Dance, Fred Benjamin Dance Company, and performed with Aretha Franklin. She now resides in Orange County, NY with her husband and two children. She is happy to be starting her fourth year at Black Dirt Dance.
Joan E. Rapp - Dunn aka Miss Joan is a native of Queens. She has a Bachelors Degree in Theatre from Queens College. She is a member of Actors Equity Association (AEA). She has worked with Queens Theatre in the Park, AMAS Musical Theater and many others. Besides acting, Joan was a Wardrobe Dresser and Wardrobe Supervisor. She dressed Renee Taylor, Joseph Bologna, Donna McKechnie, Rita Moreno, Lois Nettleton, The Paul Taylor Dance Company, Momix, Bill T. Jones and Arnie Zane. She was the Assistant Director, Director, and Choreographer for the Sandforville Elementary Drama Club here in Warwick for 6 years. Joan resides in Warwick with her husband and two children.