Artistic Director & Co-Owner

Joan Elias

Joan is the Artistic Director of Forever Dance and co-owner with Ellen and Andy Dauscher. Joan holds a BFA in Dance from East Carolina University, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. After graduation, Joan started her professional career dancing at the Lone Star Dramas in Galveston, Texas. She worked her way up the ranks of the theatre as dancer, dance captain, assistant choreographer and choreographer of the musicals “The Lone Star”, “Annie Get Your Gun”, “Hello Dolly” and “South Pacific”. Joan danced for Houston Grand Opera in “Hansel and Gretel” and choreographed for the Galveston Island Opera House. Joan danced in San Francisco with the modern company, Gretchen Harding and Friends, which performed at the Palace of Fine Arts. She also danced professionally in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and Lake Tahoe with “Melinda, the First Lady of Magic”, “The Girls of Rock and Roll”, Desert Rose Productions and Caesar Palace Conventions. After settling down in Lake Tahoe to start her family, Joan found her passion for teaching, choreographing and coaching dancers of all ages.

Tap, Contemporary, Jazz Funk, Musical Theater

Dino Elias

Dino has been hooked on dance since he won his first National competition at age 10! Dino specializes in Tap, Contemporary, Jazz Funk, and Musical Theater. In 2012, he attended Jacob's Pillow in the pre-professional tap program, studying with Diane Walker, Lane Alexander, Derek Grand, Brenda Buffalino, and Lisa LaTouche. In December 2013, Dino performed in the first all tap show ``Juba!``, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Dino choreographed and danced in ``Red Hot Superstars`` at the Grand Sierra Resort and in 2014 performed in the Muny's production of ``Billy Elliot`` in St. Louis, MO. Dino currently judges for Thunderstruck and KAR competitions, as well as teaches tap on the KAR Convention circuit. He enjoys choreographing and teaching master classes for studios throughout the West and East coasts. Dino has been recognized on the national level for his choreography and teaching abilities, including two nominations for the Industry Dance Awards. FD4REAL

Jazz, Ballet, Tot Combo, Mini-Team

Katie Lauer

Katie a native of Carson City, NV, is trained in ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, lyrical and contemporary. She studied at Capital City Ballet in Boise, ID. Katie has performed as Clara and Snow Queen with Pinkerton Ballet Theatre's The Nutcracker, was an apprentice and company member with Sierra Nevada Ballet and has also danced with the University of Nevada Dance Team and Reno Bighorns Dance Team. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Business Management from the University of Nevada Reno. Katie has been teaching dance for 5 years and is currently a dancer and performer for Karen Burns Productions and BLV Productions in Reno and Lake Tahoe, NV.

Dance Instructor

Corinne Novotny

Beginning to dance at the age of 3, dancing has been a huge part of Corinne’s life. She was a member of the Forever Dance competititon team for 13 years, and a part of the original Mini-Team. A well rounded dancer, she has been trained in ballet, contemporary, hip hop, jazz funk, modern, jazz, lyrical, musical theater, tumbling, partnering, and ballroom. During her many years competing with Forever Dance, she has taken home many top awards in regional and national competitions with her solos, duos, trios, groups, productions, including titles. Corinne has trained at the Edge, Millennium and Movement Lifestyle. She has danced professionally in the Reno Fashion Show and Red Hot Production’s, “The Michael Jackson Tribute”. Corinne currently teaches Jr & Tot Hip Hop, Technique 1-2 classes, and is an assistant coach for Forever Dance’s Mini-Team.

Dance Instructor

Jessica Shull

As a Forever Dance alumni, Jessica grew up as a competitive dancer and is excited to be back with her Forever Dance family. After graduation, Jessica relocated to Los Angeles, to pursue her professional career as a dancer and choreographer joining the contemporary company, Emerge. Soon after, Jessica starred as one of the top six in Laurianne Gibson's TV show: BORN TO DANCE. This exposure opened doors for music videos, TV Shows such as Glee, NCIS, The Monique Show, performing along side Shakira in the Latin Grammys and working as assistant choreographer/dancer in Nick Cassavetes movie “Yellow”. Venturing out of the commercial world, Jessica worked as a lead performer for Norwegian Cruise and Bahamas Paradise. Jessica is currently an adjudicator on the competition circuit and most recently has been cast in commercials for Baby Bottle Pop, Girls Trip and Cuba Gooding Jr.'s recent movie Bayou Caviar.

Dance Instructor

Suzie Elias

Suzie has been dancing at Forever Dance since she was 3 years old. She has been a member of the FD Competition Team for 10 years. Suzie has garnered the Titles of Petite, Junior, Teen & Senior Miss Spotlight, including the National Miss Teen Title. She also won dance titles for Kids Artistic Review, Masquerade, Nexstar, Rainbow and Starpower. Suzie has won 1st Overall National Awards for her solo work at Thunderstruck, Dance USA, and Encore. She was chosen to perform her contemporary solo at 2013 Rainbow Nationals Showcase. August 2013, Suzie attended the Joffrey Ballet Jazz/Contemporary Summer Intensive in New York City. She danced on scholarship in the Elite level of classes and performed in the student showcase at Symphony Space in NYC. Professional credits include “Red Hot Superstars” at the Grand Sierra Resort; Emerge Concert at the El Portal Theatre in Los Angeles and she is currently a member of Sugar N Spikes cabaret performers.

Dance Instructor

Meaganne Nellis

Formerly a Forever Dance student and Competition Team member, Meaganne has trained in ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, heels, musical theater, and aerial silks. She danced in the Pinkerton Ballet's Nutcracker for 5 years, and has performed the roles of Clara and Dew Drop fairy. She is so excited to share her love for ballet and contemporary in her classes this year.

Dance Instructor

Stacy Kennison

Stacy has been dancing for thirteen years and is a senior dancer on Forever Dance’s Competition Team. She is trained in ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, lyrical, contemporary, tumbling, baton, and musical theatre. In addition, she has been captain of many of her team dances, a teacher assistant and substitute teacher for FD. This is Stacy’s fourth year teaching at Forever Dance and this year she will be teaching Tot Combo, Tot Tumbling/Hip Hop, Baton 1, Tumbling 1-2, Jazz 2, and Pre-Tap. Stacy lives in Carson City, Nevada and attends Carson High School.

Dance Instructor

Amara Tedford

Born and raised in Caron City, Nevada – Amara Tedford began her dance training at the age of 2 1/2. She has spent the last 13 years training in ballet, jazz, tap, hip hop, contemporary, jazz funk, musical theater, and tumbling. At the age of 10 Amara was thrilled to become a member of Forever Dance’s competition team where her drive and technique has continued to grow. She has won many regional and national titles and currently holds the title of Teen Miss Spotlight. She has place first for her solo at nationals two years in a row. Amara is excited to be sharing her love of dance, and is honored to be teaching for Forever Dance.

Dance Instructor

Ashlan Galaviz

Ashlan Galaviz was born in Maui, Hawaii and moved to Lake Tahoe, NV and began her dance training at the age of 3. For the past 13 years Ashlan has trained and competed in many styles of dance such as ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary, jazz-funk, tumbling, baton, pointe and partnering at Forever Dance (formerly Dance Visions). She has taken classes at studios in LA, as well as from guest instructors and choreographers at Forever Dance. As a member of the Forever Dance competition team since she was 6 years old, she has helped the team win many regional and national awards and titles.
Ashlan has been a Teachers Assistant and Substitute teacher over the last few years, but is proud and excited to now be teaching her own class of young dancers. Ashlan has always had a strong passion and love for dance and music, and feels honored to share this passion with her students at Forever Dance.

Dance Instructor

Michaela Smith

Michaela Smith was born and raised in Tahoe City, CA and attends North Tahoe High School. She has been dancing with Forever Dance for 5 years. She has trained in ballet, contemporary, hip hop, musical theater, jazz and tumbling. Michaela is a senior dancer on the Forever Dance Competition Team. She has been TAing ballet 1 for two years and is excited to be teaching for Forever Dance.

Aerial Silks/Lyra Instructor

Laura Nellis

Laura Nellis is one of our newest aerial arts instructors with 5 plus years of aerialist experience. She has lived in the Carson Valley for nearly 15 years and has trained at studios all over the area from Tahoe, Reno, Minden, to Carson City. She has received in depth education from international Cirque performers and has a new found love for educating others. She has a passion for all things aerial from simple dynamic poses to intricate drop sequencing and everything in between. She can’t wait to help her students develop their skills and gain a passion for aerial artistry.

Aerial Silks/Lyra Instructor

Jenna Justman

Requiring equal parts strength and grace, Aerial was love at first sight for Jenna Nellis. First introduced to the art form 7 years ago through her dance studio, aerial arts quickly married her love of dance and her admiration for strength training. From a very young age, Jenna Nellis has been involved in gymnastics and classical ballet. When college paused her dance journey, she plunged all the more deeply into weight training and physical endurance and found a passion for it. Over the years, Jenna has trained on Aerial Hammock, Silk, Lyra, and Aerial Cube, learning from a variety of teachers across Northern Nevada. Today, Jenna envisions a future where aerial is a more easily accessible and empowering means of self and community expression. She's so excited to join the Forever Dance family this year!