MEREDITH DREYFUSS

Dance Director/Owner

Meredith Dreyfuss, founder and director of Dance Through the Ages, has been dancing for over 30 years, instructing in studios and schools for over 10 and always striving to learn more about the technical and current trends in the dance world. Because of her love for dance, and her belief that all extracurricular activities are an essential part of building a child’s confidence in themselves and others, she founded Dance Through the Ages.

“There is nothing better than seeing a child excel at something they at first found impossible to do.   When children are exposed to dance through school enrichments, they are learning within a comfort zone they are familiar with.  This enables them to enjoy dance, and all of its benefits to the fullest extent. With loving instruction, and a positive atmosphere, there is little a child cannot accomplish.  Because of this philosophy, Dance Through the Ages is dedicated to sharing that love of dance with children and adults alike.”

Meredith trained at The British Academy of Theatrical Arts under Jeanne Hichcliffe, as well as with various master teachers and choreographers, studying tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, and the hip hop genres. She won numerous awards in both local and national competitions and was also a chosen dancer in the SuperBowl XXIX Pre-Game show.

Meredith began teaching at age 18 and soon became an Assistant Director of a dance studio, managing, teaching, and assisting in the direction of shows. She developed Studio Success—a well known series of guides and scripted themes dedicated to helping dance studio owners and instructors organize a successful school and recital. After receiving her B.A. in English Literature from Florida Atlantic University, Meredith earned her teaching certification and has taught in preschools, elementary schools, and middle schools.  She is also a member of the International Dance Teachers Association.

GABRIELA DREYFUSS

Co-Director

Gabriela, known to our dancers as “Miss Gaby”, is an integral part of the DTTA family! Now in her second year as the Assistant Director, she is responsible for managing and instructing students in both school & studio locations.  Born and raised in Florida, she started dancing at the Emerald Hills Dance Studio under the instruction of Debbie Montgomery. Miss Gaby excelled in tap and modern dance, and is eager to instruct our dancers. During her training, she participated in various charity events, and parades throughout Broward County. In high school, her love of dance and theater enticed her to get involved with the drama club. She provided choreography and make-up artistry for her school’s performances, while lending her time to teach dance to elementary school students. Since the age of 18, Miss Gaby has excelled in leadership as she has held the title of Office Manager for a prominent veterinary clinic.  She is always working diligently to continue to grow in her dancing and teaching styles, attending workshops & conventions in Hip Hop and Contemporary styles of dance.

CHRISTINE PACETTI

Instructor

Christine, born in New York, but raised in Florida, has been a patron of the arts since the age of 4. Her love of showmanship has driven her to study everything from ballet, modern dance, jazz, lyrical, cheerleading, gymnastics, ballroom, & Middle Eastern dance to acting & theater. She has been teaching others since the age of 16, having served as a volunteer coach for the local optimists, which was one of her many teaching experiences. This included instruction at the City of Tamarac, McCarther HIgh School and Walter C. Young. Christine always found that she had a love of teaching children, whether it be choreography, dance technique or cheerleading. She has always found the time to share her broad array of dance experience with others. While studying dance theater and acting in college, she also found time to choreograph for her cheerleading team (Nova and The University of Florida). She would go on to excel in many performances, including commercials for Disney, back up dancing for Jessica Simpson and numerous ballet & dance theater productions. She is thrilled to be with Dance Through the Ages and excited to share her passion for dance.

CYNDI CHRISTOPHER

Instructor

Cyndi is a South Florida native. Growing up in Ft. Lauderdale, she was exposed to the performing arts at a very young age. For her, it was love at first site and at age 6, she began dancing with Michael’s School of Dance.  At 12 and throughout high school,  Alina Guererra-Pena came into her life and offered an extremely strong ballet foundation to Cyndi, which she credits for taking her to the next level as a dancer. During this time, she joined the Ft. Lauderdale Children’s Theatre and in her first year was cast in 3 plays. Cyndi continued studying acting in school, where she joined the drama club and participated in many school productions. However, dance always remained her first love. Cyndi went on to college and after graduating from UCF, she moved to Los Angeles where she continued to pursue acting and dancing. Cyndi gained a position dancing with H2H entertainment. And after the birth of her daughter, she relocated back to South Florida. 

Cyndi is elated to be back where it all began! She is a firm believer in the many positive effects performing arts have on a child’s self-esteem as well as their intelligence! Cyndi considers herself a former “dance kid” having spent 6 days a week in the studio and countless weekends competing and performing. She is extremely excited to be part of the next dance generation!

JENNIFER JOY O’GRADY

Instructor

Growing up as a South Florida native who yearnd for adventure, Jennifer quickly discovered her creative outlets in writing and performing. Jennifer’s experience in performing started very early on in dancing, singing and acting. She grew up training and competing in a local youth dance team, eventually becoming a junior director and choreographer. She also discovered her passion for working with the camera. Viewing the world through a film lens, she believes everywhere you look there is a story to be told and an audience to inspire. She decided to pursue this passion, earning her Bachelors of the Arts Degree in Cinema & Television (Screen Acting Track) and Creative Writing from Palm Beach Atlantic University. She gained on-camera experience in independent short and feature films, web-series, A&E’s The Glades, Lifetime’s Designing Spaces, Nickelodeon’s I am Frankie and Television commercials. As a versatile talent, she has also written, directed, and produced award winning films and series. Her extensive and unique experience performing on camera, on stage as well as leading behind the scenes has given her the insights and training in order to direct talent, lead a crew to achieve the vision, and impart to her students. Her passion for working with young children and teens extends into her career as an educator and public speaker. Jennifer has over six years of professional experience teaching and training youth of all ages in Screen Acting, Theatre, Acting for Dancers, Musical Theatre, Film Production, Creative Expression and Dance Courses. Jennifer’s goal is to use her gifts to encourage and empower the young people of this generation. http://jenniferjoyogrady.com

RINA HOUSTON

Instructor

Rina Houston was born and raised in Ft.Lauderdale, FL. Growing up playing soccer and softball year round as well as being in gymnastics, she soon found her passion with sports & dance. While attending American Heritage, she participated in All County for both soccer and softball, as well as cheerleading.  She was also consistently active in drama, musical theatre, and Thespian club.

Rina graduated from the University of South Florida with a degree in Exercise Physiology and Nutrition. Upon graduation, she opened her first My Gym Children’s Fitness Center in Plantation, Fl. Soon after, upon the success of the first, she opened a second My Gym location in Aventura, FL. Additionally, she worked closely with My Gym Corporate and trained future gym owners & staff before their own openings.  She continued to work as support staff and mentor for those opening their own gyms.  Having always loved working with and teaching children, combined with her passion for fitness, this was her “dream job.”

After 16 years and the birth of her second child, she left her career to care for her children as a “stay at home” mom.  Before long, she missed her calling, and is now thrilled to be a part of the DTTA Instructional staff.  Both her daughters are dancers with DTTA and it has become a second home for Ms. Rina and her girls!

MARISSA STEIMLE

Instructor

Marissa Steimle is a classically trained vocalist and has been teaching dance, voice, and musical theatre for the past 10 years. She is the Owner/Creative Director of Golden Sound Theatrics and currently pursuing her B.A. in Musical Theater at Palm Beach State College.

Her main focus is vocal instruction, but she truly loves all genres of the performing arts. She has directed numerous musicals with local theater groups, such as:Seussical the Musical, Annie, Peter Pan, and The Little Mermaid. She has choreographed numbers for Bring it On The MusicalHairspray, and 101 Dalmatians. Marissa’s passion is teaching and directing young performers and is so excited to work with Dance Through the Ages!