Faculty

Carrie DeCosta

Owner/Instructor/Choreographer

 

Carrie started studying dance at the age of 3. She studied tap, jazz & ballet at Dance Arts Centre in Fitchburg, MA under the direction of Jim Caisse, Leslie Caisse Lothrop & Rainore Mayer. At the age of 8, Carrie became an elite competition dancer winning multiple national & regional competitions, as well as scholarships to summer intensive programs. At those programs she studied under many professional dancers/choreographers including Mia Michaels, Savion Glover, Debbie Allen, Debbie Dee, Brenda Bufalino, Bob Rizzo, Marcus Buglar & Gus Giordano to name a few. Carrie has also won the highest title awarded at a national competition, The Presidents Cup, with a large group tap number scoring 299 out of 300.

 

At the age of 13, Carrie changed studios to broaden her dance education as well as focus on extensive ballet training, studying at Performing Arts Theatre (now Paula Meola's Performing Arts) in Sterling, MA. Here she studied under the direction of Lisa Hughes, Paula Meola & Jennie Membrino.

 

Carrie added modern, contemporary, lyrical, hip hop & pointe to her training, giving her a vast knowledge of all forms of dance. While at PAT, Carrie performed annually over 4 years in the studio production of The Nutcracker, cast in the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy. Continuing her elite competition career, Carrie received gold medals, high score awards & countless special awards for her pointe solos including "poetry in pointe shoes". When she was 16, Carrie became an original member of the professional modern company, Jennie & Company, as well as began her teaching career. At the age of 17, she auditioned and was accepted into the Boston Ballet.

 

Carrie graduated from MWCC with her Paralegal Degree and at the top of her class with her Pre-Law degree. Teaching for 20 plus years in the Fitchburg/Leominster area, Carrie currently teaches at Nashoba Valley Movement to both recreational and competitive youth students of all ages. To keep herself educated and up to date, Carrie spends her summers with Echo Dance Collaborative as a dancer and choreographer. She also attends dance conventions such as The Beantown Tap Festival where she takes classes with the current top industry professionals. After all these years, Carrie still has the same passion and love for dance as the very first day she stepped foot into a studio. She is excited for the opportunity to share that passion and love with others.  

J'Quan Oliver

Hip Hop Instructor
 

J'Quan started dancing before he could remember. Rhythms, beats, and the art of movement were all interests to him growing up. Originally learning off the streets of Boston, he also trained as a martial artist since he was six years old. Since then, he's had extensive training in hip hop, break-dancing, lyrical, tricking & parkour, and eventually expanded his training into tap and contemporary. As J'Quan progressed, he looked into different genres of art and dance from all cultures to further expand his knowledge and understanding of dance, which lead him to develop his own unique style. J'Quan attended Becker College in Worcester, MA for Game Design with a minor in Psychology. During this time, he was an integral part of creating the Becker College Dance Program, and soon became captain of the team and president for their club. He also joined Dance Company Worcester as a guest choreographer and dancer for four years. Currently he is a member of one of the most influential hip hop crews in Boston known as Phunk Phenomenon, and a dancer and choreographer for ECHO Dance Collaborative.

Living the "Artist Life" he lives and breathes art every day. In his free time, J'Quan practices multiple forms of art such as photography, digital paint and traditional drawing. In dance, he fuses musicality and storytelling combined with the fast, intricate movements of martial arts and acrobatics to create his own style. J'Quan is excited to be part of the team at EDA and to share his philosophy of training yourself and your mind every day. "It's not always about the movement of your body, but the movement of your mind. Don't think outside of the box: Because there is no box. Your mind is unlimited so you must keep it creative and free."

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