The Motion Arts Approach

 

At Motion Arts Dance Studios, we firmly believe that dance is for every body. Young or old, beginner or experienced, we welcome you! 

Our faculty is comprised of professionals who are passionate about educating dancers and sharing their love of the arts. All faculty have been selected for their areas of expertise, which gives our students access to focused, cutting edge material. Our program is rooted in anatomical knowledge to instill a sense of strength, safety, and empowerment.

We think dance is an important part of our children's lives in many facets - as a creative outlet, a form of exercise, a line of communication, and a link to the greater community.
We encourage each individual to bring their unique talents to the group dynamic.
We provide dance education that is challenging, exciting, rewarding, and fun!

 

 
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Alexa Astarita
Artistic Director

Alexa was born and raised in Essex County, NJ. She has had extensive training in jazz, ballet, modern, hip hop, and partnering over the past 20 years, beginning under the direction of Kathy Costa-McKeown. Alexa earned her BA in dance and media/ communications from Muhlenberg College, where she choreographed seven dance pieces. She also completed a specialized teaching practicum with a focus on children’s jazz and creative movement, and a fieldwork study teaching children in the Allentown school district. Her performance credits include Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Disney World, The London 2012 Olympics, the Bethlehem SteelStacks, Convergence: Community Harmony Through Dance, and works by prestigious artists including Olasebikan Freeman, Corrie Franz Cowart, David Parker, and Jeffrey Peterson. In August 2017, Alexa spent two weeks training and performing with Amalgamate Dance Company and Damage Dance in Piobicco, Italy. Alexa's passion for the art of dance drives her work every day, and she loves to create and grow along with her students.

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Meredith Milarch

Meredith holds a B.A. from Michigan State University with specializations in Dance and Education. After teaching full time for two years at The Dance Center in Traverse City, Michigan, her acceptance to The Ailey School brought her to New York where she studied with legendary teachers and choreographers such as Milton Myers and Graciela Kozak. Meredith began her dance training in Traverse City where she studied ballet, jazz, and contemporary and performed leading roles in ballets such as Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, The Nutcracker, and several original productions. She was also a member and choreographer for Project Dance Contemporary Company and was featured as a student choreographer with the Michigan Dance Collective. At MSU she minored in dance and was a board member of Orchesis Student Dance Company for three years. While involved with Orchesis, Meredith choreographed for and performed in many repertory and student-led concerts in addition to teaching her popular ballet classes for college students. Meredith continues to teach and choreograph for studios and competitive teams in New York and New Jersey.

 Lulu French - Guest Artist of the Month  Lulu first took improv classes at Gotham City Improv over two decades ago and has been improvising ever since. She has appeared in numerous improv performances in NYC improv theaters such as Gotham City Improv, the Magnet Theater, and Upright Citizens Brigade. She is a cast member of the improv group Gary Austin’s The Classroom which is currently performing at the PIT in NYC and the new improv group, Montclair Improv which performs monthly in Montclair, NJ.  Lulu first started out as a musical theater performer. In her youth she danced with the Appalachian Ballet Company, received voice scholarships while a Music Major at The University of Tennessee and eventually graduated from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York. She has numerous stock and regional musical theater credits from her “younger” days.  Lulu has been teaching improv since 2000 and has had the privilege to teach for organizations such as Gotham City Improv, The Queens Theater in the Park, Arts Horizons, The Theater Project, The South Orange Maplewood Adult School, IN Studios, Beyond the Bell, and Dreamcatcher Rep in addition to teaching corporate improv workshops for companies such as Pfizer, Novartis and AstraZeneca. She currently lives in Maplewood, NJ with her husband and two boys ages 13 and 3.

Lulu French - Guest Artist of the Month

Lulu first took improv classes at Gotham City Improv over two decades ago and has been improvising ever since. She has appeared in numerous improv performances in NYC improv theaters such as Gotham City Improv, the Magnet Theater, and Upright Citizens Brigade. She is a cast member of the improv group Gary Austin’s The Classroom which is currently performing at the PIT in NYC and the new improv group, Montclair Improv which performs monthly in Montclair, NJ.

Lulu first started out as a musical theater performer. In her youth she danced with the Appalachian Ballet Company, received voice scholarships while a Music Major at The University of Tennessee and eventually graduated from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York. She has numerous stock and regional musical theater credits from her “younger” days.

Lulu has been teaching improv since 2000 and has had the privilege to teach for organizations such as Gotham City Improv, The Queens Theater in the Park, Arts Horizons, The Theater Project, The South Orange Maplewood Adult School, IN Studios, Beyond the Bell, and Dreamcatcher Rep in addition to teaching corporate improv workshops for companies such as Pfizer, Novartis and AstraZeneca. She currently lives in Maplewood, NJ with her husband and two boys ages 13 and 3.

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Carolyn Bonaccorsi

Carolyn is a recent graduate of Muhlenberg College, where she double majored in Theatre and Dance. While at Muhlenberg she choreographed and performed in numerous works and was a member of Six Meters, Muhlenberg’s improvisational dance company. She also led fieldwork in the Allentown School district focusing on creative movement for students in the fourth grade. In the spring of 2017, she trained in butoh, contemporary and tarantella at the Accademia dell’Arte in Arezzo, Italy. Originally from Ridgewood, NJ she began dancing at the Wyckoff School of Dance training in ballet, pointe, modern, jazz, and heeled tap with acclaimed instructor Jen Martin. In addition to teaching and choreographing she also regularly creates dance films.

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Stefanie Roper

Stefanie was born in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She was raised in Orem, Utah where she attended her first ballet class at the age of 20. Stefanie is a graduate from Utah Valley University where she recieved a BFA in ballet. As a current NYC resident, she is freelancing and dancing professionally in the city. Her performance experience includes FJK Dance, Ballet Hispánico, Ballet Hispánico Dos, Calpulli Mexican Dance Company, Repertory Ballet Ensemble, and Utah Regional Ballet guest artist. She was the executive producer of a local company called Latino Legacy for 3 years, choreographing as well as dancing contemporary and Latin folklore. With her diverse dance background she has had the opportunity to tour around the world, including at the White House for President Barack Obama.