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

Dance Instructor

Meaganne Nellis

Meaganne has been dancing with Forever Dance for 3 years, and on their competition team for the last 2. Meaganne has trained in ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, heels, musical theater, and aerial silks. She danced in the Pinkerton Ballet Theater The Nutcracker the last 5 years, last year performing the role as Clara and Dew Drop fairy. She is so excited to share her love for ballet and contemporary in her classes this year!

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

Sarah Stenger

Sarah was born and raised in Carson City, Nevada and has been inspired by dancing since she was 3 years old. She was part of the Forever Dance competition team for four years, during which time she received an amazing opportunity to perform in “Red Hot Superstars” at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, motivating her further to continue dancing. Sarah received a scholarship to the Edge Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles, where she studied jazz, ballet, tap, hip hop, and contemporary from many inspiring and successful choreographers. Sarah continued her dance career performing in Florida, and then traveling to the Bahamas on the Grand Celebration cruise ship as a performer and magician’s assistant. Sarah is excited to start teaching where she made her root, Forever Dance.

Aerial Silks 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 Instructor

Jenna Nellis

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!

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

Jordan Van Worth

Dancing has always been an integral part of Jordan’s life. Starting gymnastics at age 3, and quickly moving to dance at age 5. She is trained in ballet, contemporary, jazz, musical theater, tumbling/acrobatics, partnering, and various other styles. Jordan had the pleasure of joining the Forever Dance Competition Team from 2014-2016. She had the amazing opportunity and privilege to work with some of the best choreographers in the country. Her greatest accomplishments include winning the senior duet category at Nationals, bringing back to back National Production Championships home, and placing in the top five Senior solos at KAR Nationals. Jordan has performed with numerous local companies as a soloist as well as a core dancer. Most recently Jordan won the Miss Nevada Preliminary Talent Award! Jordan has recently performed in Beauty and the Beast and as the Arabian Princess in the Nutcracker! She is excited to be teaching at Forever Dance Carson City! Jordan believes that with hard work and determination, all dreams are attainable. She is thrilled to share her passion for dance with all of her students.

Dance Instructor

Stacy Kennison

Stacy has been dancing for ten years and is a Senior Dancer on Forever Dance's Competition Team. She is trained in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, tumbling, baton and musical theater. In addition, she has been captain of many of her team dances, a teacher assistant and substitute teacher for FD. This year Stacy will be teaching our Tot Combo classes. 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

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.

Aerial Silks Instructor

Jake Peck

Jacob Peck is the aerial instructor for our aerial program at Forever Dance and has been instructing and performing aerial silks for over a decade. He prides himself on safely expressing one’s self through aerials and dance. He gathers his knowledge nationwide from professionals within the aerial field as well as circus schools and performing arts centers. Jacob is proficient on many apparatuses such as static trapeze, lyra, hammock, bungee, straps and silks but loves discovering new invented apparatus to twist and play on. Beyond aerials Jacob can been seen walking high on stilts or eating fire. True circus performer at heart with a passion for teaching aerials to those eager to learn.

Aerial Silks Intructor

Desiree Costello

Born and raised in Carson City, Desiree just returned with her husband and two daughters from Vancouver Washington. Desiree is a graduate of business management at UNR, and she followed passions into massage therapy and Aeriel Silks. She started taking aerial silks classes in 2007 and has found that teaching and dancing in a silk provides her strength of both body and mind. She started teaching in 2009 and loves watching her students grow in strength and express themselves in performances and play. She not only loves teaching kids but adults as well. Desiree believes that aerial silks can benefit anyone who believes that they would have fun doing it and that it does not matter the shape you are currently in. Strength is gained by coming to class.