BARBARA HAMMOND, DIRECTOR
A dancer since age five, Barbara studied, performed and taught at the Jane Hart School of Dance in Hartford, CT. She opened her first studio in LaGrange, NY in 1975 and after twenty-one seasons relocated to Richmond. Her university training was in mathematics education and she has a B.S. from Central Connecticut State University and a M.A. from the University of Connecticut. She taught high school math for several years before deciding to teach dance full-time. Barbara is a member of Dance Masters of America, Inc. and Dance Educators of America, Inc. Both are organizations for dance educators that conduct teacher training and certification programs and provide continuous education through workshops, seminars, conventions and publications. Each summer Barbara attends dance conventions to take classes with nationally recognized teachers and choreographers. In recent years she has attended Rhee Gold’s DanceLife Teacher’s Conference, Dance Teacher Web, and Dance Educators of America, Inc. National Convention. Barbara’s current and former students have been very successful in various dance pursuits. The studio’s dance competition teams have won numerous first place, high score, choreography, and special recognition awards. Several former students have gone on to major in college dance programs, teach dance, and perform professionally.
JENNIFER HAMMOND, INSTRUCTOR
Jennifer's introduction to the dance world came at a very young age. Every day was "take your daughter to work day" so Jennifer would watch Barbara teach classes from the comfort of her swing. Just before her 3rd birthday, she began as a student and hasn't stopped. Currently, she teaches ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical and musical theatre. She graduated magna cum laude from the State University of New York at Buffalo with a B.A. degree in dance performance and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. She choreographs many of our competition team routines. Over the years, she has received special recognition for her choreography. Additionally, Jennifer has worked throughout the Richmond theatre community acting with several regional theaters before transitioning into the role of choreographer. Since 2005, she has choreographed over 50 musicals for CharcterWorks, a non-profit childrens' theatre company. She has also choreographed for local high school musicals, concert choirs and show choirs. Jennifer's favorite part of teaching is the moment you see a student break through to the next level. The moment they realize they have achieved a goal is so exciting to witness and that never gets old! It is a gift to watch our students grow from timid children to confident young adults.
CHELSEA DELANO, INSTRUCTOR
Chelsea teaches ballet, pointe, jazz, hip hop, lyrical and modern classes at the studio. She began her dance training at Barbara Hammond’s School of Dance, Inc. and later studied at Henrico High School’s Center for the Arts. She went on to complete her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and Choreography at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has performed locally with the Richmond Symphony and has choreographed and performed in Glorious Christmas Nights, the annual Christmas production presented by West End Assembly of God and viewed by about 25,000 people each year. She has also performed in works by choreographers Christian von Howard, Martha Curtis, Melanie Richards, Autumn Eckman, and numerous student works throughout her duration at VCU Dance. After a season of dancing in New York, she traveled to France, England, Germany and India, performing, teaching and sharing dance as ministry. Chelsea is currently a company member in RVA Tap Troupe and Karar Dance Company.
ANDREA HAMMOND PODASKI, GUEST INSTRUCTOR AND PERFORMER
Andrea learned to dance at Barbara Hammond’s School of Dance, Inc. and went on to be a Radio City Rockette in The Radio City Christmas Spectacular for eleven seasons. As a Rockette she performed at The Radio City Music Hall in New York City, as well as theaters in Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Fort Lauderdale, Myrtle Beach, Nashville, Orlando and Tampa. Additional performances as a Rockette included the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the New York City Columbus Day Parade, appearances on NBC’s Today Show and ABC’s Good Morning America and a spot on Country Music Television. She was also an instructor for The Rockette Intensive and The Rockette Experience at the Radio City Music Hall. Previous credits include Bella Fortuna at the Italy Pavilion at Disney’s EPCOT Center and Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Andrea performs in our annual recital and has taught master classes at the studio.
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3063 Lauderdale Drive Richmond, VA 23233
Call (804) 364-2900 Anytime