Gina Chiavelli - Artistic Director
Gina Chiavelli is the Artistic Director of both Dutchess Dance Theatre and Pinewood School of Dance. She is a former adjunct professor at both Fordham University and the State University of New York at New Paltz, where she taught classical ballet and jazz. She is the Associate Director and International Judge representing the American Academy of Ballet and in this capacity travels throughout the U.S. as well as London, Paris, Mexico, Israel, Japan, and South Africa.
She is currently on the faculty of the American Academy of Ballet Summer School of Excellence at SUNY Purchase. Her article, “Choosing Dance as a College major” was published and can be seen in the Prentice Hall Student Success Supersite. She has won numerous choreography awards from many major dance organizations, most notably she is a four-time recipient of the Dance Educators of America Outstanding Choreography Award. She has been featured in articles in both Dance Teacher Magazine and Dance Studio Life magazine. Gina studied with many notable ballet, tap and jazz teachers at both The New York Conservatory of Dance and Broadway Dance Center. She has studied with both the Royal Academy of Dance and the American Academy of Ballet at their summer intensives for dance teachers at both Vassar College and the State University of New York at Purchase.
Her students have appeared professionally on Broadway, Off-Broadway and in National and European touring companies with such shows as An American in Paris, Rent, West Side Story, Hello Dolly, Pippin, A Chorus Line, Oklahoma, The Music Man, George M!, and the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes. They have danced professionally in Ballet and Modern dance companies including Boston Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Baltimore Ballet, Ballet Next, North Carolina Dance Theatre, Momix, Peridance Contemporary Dance Co. and Buglisi Dance Theatre. They have been accepted to many prestigious summer intensive programs, most notably: The Juilliard School, American Ballet Theatre, Boston Ballet, The School of American Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet, The Nutmeg Conservatory and The American Academy of Ballet.
Many of her graduates have become Dance and Theatre majors at prestigious colleges and universities throughout the U.S., including The Boston Conservatory, Marymount Manhattan College, SUNY Purchase, Fordham University, Point Park College, The University of the Arts in Philadelphia and many more.
Olga Aisenstat studied all forms of dance and gymnastics at Pinewood from the age of three until she graduated from High School. For many years she was a member of the Pinewood Dance Company receiving numerous awards from major regional and national competitions for her solo and group performances. She was the recipient of scholarships from Dance Educators of America and Joffrey Ballet School. She danced at the Bardavon Opera House in the Gilbert and Sullivan Society production of “The Most Happy Fella" and performed as a principle dancer in Dutchess Dance Theatre’s production of “The Nutcracker.” Olga was also a member of Carmel High School’s cheerleading team.
Olga holds a bachelors degree in Mathematics with a concentration in Elementary Education from Mount Saint Mary College. In 2012, she received a Master’s Degree in Instructional Technology. She has been working in education and teaching many forms of dance to students of all ages for 15 years. Olga is very happy to be teaching at Pinewood once again while focusing on her growing family.
Jessica has studied many forms of dance at Pinewood as well as Marymount College, where she earned her Bachelors Degree in Education. She was a member of the Pinewood Dance Company and performed in many John Jay High School Proscenium shows. She also appeared in “The Most Happy Fella”, a production by the Gilbert and Sullivan Society at the Bardavon Opera House. She has also studied Jeet Kune Do Martial Arts at her father’s school from a very young age.
Jessica is currently an elementary school teacher with a Masters Degree in Language and Literacy from Fordham University.
Stephanie has studied Tap, Jazz, and Ballet since the age of three. In addition to the training she received at Pinewood School of Dance, she continues her studies at the Broadway Dance Center and attends master classes and workshops. She has choreographed award winning solo and duo/trio pieces for Pinewood School of Dance students and Dance Company members.
Stephanie joined the faculty of Pinewood School of Dance in 1990, teaching ballet, pointe, tap and jazz to students in beginner through advanced levels. She has won numerous awards for her performances as a Dance Company member, and appeared at the Bardavon Opera House in the Gilbert and Sullivan Society’s production of “The Most Happy Fella." She has been the recipient of “Outstanding Choreography Awards” from American Dance Awards and Dance Ovations. She was a principle dancer in Dutchess Dance Theatre’s production of “The Nutcracker."
Stephanie earned her Bachelors Degree in Nursing at Mount Saint Mary College and is a registered nurse at Westchester Medical Center.
Dorothy received her B.S. degree in Dance from S.U.N.Y. Brockport. She studied the Modern Dance techniques of Humphrey, Limon, and Martha Graham, as well as ballet, jazz, character dance and Afro-Caribbean. She also studied with notable dance masters Merce Cunningham, Anna Sokolow, Garth Fagan, Jim Payton, Suzannah Newman, Tom Adair and Mdm. Seda Suny Sorvillo. She has danced with Poughkeepsie Ballet Theatre and Brockport Repertory Dance Company, performing roles in (Sokolow’s) Rooms, Graduation Ball, Mass, Clowns, La Sacre du Printemps, Swan Lake, and Nutcracker to name a few.
Dorothy has taught, directed, coached and choreographed for United States Gymnastics Federation teams, dance studios, fitness studios and cheer teams. She is also an adjunct professor at Dutchess Community College. She has been the recipient of “Outstanding Choreography Awards” from Starquest International and That’s Entertainment, Performing Arts Competition. Dorothy also holds yoga and Aerobic and Fitness Association of America certifications.
Grace’s education in dance includes studies in Ballet, Jazz, Tap and Fitness. She has studied with many notable teachers in New York City as well as the Royal Academy of Dance Teacher Program and the American Academy of Ballet Summer Intensive for dance teachers. She has received numerous choreography awards from dance competition organizations and is a triple recipient of the “Diamond Choreography Award” from American Dance Awards. Grace also choreographs for the Arlington High School, ADMIRAL PLAYERS, theatre program. She continues to study at STEPS on Broadway.
Shanon has studied the art of Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Gymnastics since the age of seven. She has taught these art forms professionally for the past 28 years. Shanon started her training at the Taconic Art Center, and then in 1984 began to study at Pinewood. She then joined the Pinewood staff in 1986. Shanon has choreographed and assisted in the direction of the Pinewood Dance Company as well as the Dutchess Dance Theatre. She has also taught numerous fitness programs. Shanon is a former varsity gymnast who specialized in the balance beam and floor exercise. She has also taught gymnastics for the Arlington School District and has privately coached many local gymnasts. Shanon designs sets and costumes, as well as choreographs for many community church and school productions.
She continues her studies at Broadway Dance Center, and also attends master classes and workshops. Most recently Shanon has developed a new dance education program for preschoolers. This program is called Tiny Toes and its focus is on creative movement. Shanon juggles a growing young family as well as teaching elementary art at Tabernacle Christian Academy, and preschool at Calvary Christian Nursery School.
Morissa has danced at Pinewood School of Dance since the age of 3. She not only attended class but was a member of the dance company for 7 years. She graduated with her undergraduate degree from Hofstra University with a major in Mathematics and Mathematics Education, grades 5-12, and a Minor in Dance. She went on to complete her Masters Degree from St. Joseph’s University in Special Education. Currently, she works at the Mahopac Middle School where she teaches Math 8 and Algebra 1.
Morissa has coached the Carmel High School Varsity Dance Team for 6 years and has also choreographed and co-directed for the Carmel High School’s musical productions of Beauty and the Beast, H.M.S Pinafore, The Music Man and Legally Blonde. She also is a former adjunct professor at Dutchess Community College where she taught tap. Morissa is happy to have the opportunity to teach at Pinewood and is looking forward to the opportunity to spend many more years here.
Allison has studied dance at the Pinewood School since the age of 3. She studied all forms of dance and was a member of the dance company. She graduated with her undergraduate degree from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Anthropology and Sociology, where she also studied various styles of dance. She went on to complete her Master's degree from SUNY New Paltz in Childhood Special Education, and currently teaches at Noxon Road Elementary School in the Arlington School District.
As a member of her college dance team, Allison taught and choreographed many forms of dance. She
holds a Zumba certification and has taught since 2012.
Amanda danced at Pinewood from the age of 7 until high school. She was a member of the dance
company and performed in The Nutcracker.
She graduated summa cum laude from Hofstra University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance, and a minor in Public Relations.
She has performed internationally with Royal Caribbean, with Robin Becker Dance at Georgetown
University and University of Wisconsin, Madison, and as a member of The New York Baroque Dance
Company. She has performed in venues across New York City while a member of contemporary dance troupe mishiDance and as a guest artist with Amalgamate Dance Company and Hysterika Jazz Dance.
She has taught dance to various ages and levels across multiple genres, and has choreographed for
youth and college dancers.
Currently, Amanda works at Point72 Asset Management and lives in Hopewell with her husband,
daughter, and son.