Welcome to our website
Established in 1963, the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Centre is located in the Taftville section of Norwich, Connecticut. The center is staffed by a faculty of teachers all professionally trained in dance. The teaching staff keeps up-to-date with current teaching techniques, learned through seminars, workshops and dance conventions attended annually. In addition to regular classes, we also promote master classes and workshops by visiting guest artists and teachers.
Our Pre-school dance program is a delightful introduction to the basics of dance technique and performance. The Pre-school program begins with rhythmic training, coordination, basic pre-ballet, basic pre-tap, and creative movement elements.
Classes are offered at all levels Beginner to Advance. Placement is based on ages, technical ability,physical and cognitive readiness.
Intermediate to advance students are offered performance and competition opportunites to explore.
The studio carries a complete line of dance and footwear recommended for use in the classes room and for on stage performances. We have available in-stock Leotards and Tights. All styles of footwear are fitted for the correct fit and ordered and made available in 5 to 8 business days. We are able to offer these items at a discount amount to registered students of the studio. Stop in the office to purchase exactly what you need!
Dance is forever changing and so are we!
Luis PabonOwner, Founder, Artistic Director
The success of the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Centre can be attributed to the talent and creative vision of its artistic director, Luis Pabon. Luis’ exciting choreography has enabled dancers from his nationally award winning theatre dance company “Style Extraordinaire” to capture hundreds of first place awards. His intermediate and advanced students have performed throughout New England, New York State and City, New Jersey, Louisiana, Tennessee, Florida and Las Vegas. In January 2004 the studio was selected by Dance Teachers and Dance Spirit Magazines as “One of the top 50 Dance Studios to watch for in 2004 competitions.” Luis began his dance training at age four with Madame Edga Monro. He soon became the lead dancer with the National Puerto Rican Folklore Dance Company. His dance career has included performances in television, theater and nightclubs. He has studied with leading names in the world of dance such as Peter Genaro, Luigi, Phil Black, Lee Tang, Melissa Hayden, David Howard, Kit Andre, Al Gilbert, Liz Williamson and Danny Hoctor. As a choreographer, Luis received rave reviews for his creativity in dozens of musicals from “The Music Man” to “West Side Story” to “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Kiss Me Kate” for the Pfizer Players and “Anything Goes” and “The Fantasticks” for the Norwich Arts Council. The recipient of six prestigious Eugene O’Neill Awards for his choreography, Luis has also been recognized for his contributions to organizations such as the Rose Arts Festival, Tommy Toy Fund and Dancers Responding to AIDS/Equity Fights AIDS. Luis was included in Who’s Who in Entertainment in America 1992 and in Who’s Who in the Dance Arts 2000. In addition, he is the Producer/Director of the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Pageant, a preliminary for the Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City, New Jersey. In 2001 Luis joined the judging staff of American Dance Awards to adjudicate dance competitions in the U.S. and Canada. Luis is a member of several world-wide organizations of certified dance teachers including Dance Masters of America, Dance Educators of America, the Fred Astaire Performing Arts Association, International Dance and Exercise Association.
Claudia MeloAssistant to the Artistic Director, Acro, Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Choreographer
Claudia began her dance training at the tender age of 4 and studied tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical and acrobatics. At the age of 11 she began competing regionally and nationally with Dance Master of American (DMA) and Dance Educators of America. Thoughout her career, Claudia has studied with renown teachers and choreogrpahers such as
Frank Hatchett, Savion Glover, Charles Kelly, Chet Walker, Pamela Bolling, Judy Ann Bassing, Germaine Salzberg and Sheila Barker just to name a few.
Claudia was the former owner and Executive Director of The Dancer's Edge which was an established dance studio for 22 years. In 2003, she earned her teaching certifcation through Dance Educators of America and has been a member ever since.
Claudia has had the pleasure of chreographing many award winning routines for her former dance company Prime Design. She has won top choreogaphy awards for her competitive routines at DEA. She also won the "Top Teacher Award" in 2010 with StarSystems for her routine "All That Jazz".
Claudia has had the pleasure to teach dance classes at regional workshops for DEA as well as judge national dance competitions. In 2018 she was awarded the prestigious Dance Educators of America Regional National Director's Award.
Claudia brings passion, dedication, experience and commitment when teaching her students.
Shelley Erickson GlennonJazz, Pre-school, Tap, Choreogrpaher
Shelley attended Eastern Connecticut State University and received a degree in Early Childhood Education as well as Psychology. She has been dancing for 16 years and has studied various styles including ballet, tap, jazz, lyric, and hip-hop. Winner of numerous overall titles for solos, duets, and group dances, she has been a top 10 finalist for Danceamerica’s Dancer of the Year. She has travelled across the United States to Las Vegas, Chicago, Atlantic City, and Orlando, competing at the national level, and has been a member of the U.S. Tap Team, traveling to Germany for an international competitions in 2006 and 2010.
Tyquan AndersonHip-Hop, Jazz, Choreographer
TyQuan Anderson, well know as Ty, is an artist born in Norwich Connecticut. He first started dancing at the age of eight in after school programs. He has had many opportunities to dance and perform in dance centers and trainging programs in Connecticut, New York, and Washington DC in various dance styles. Mainly Hip Hop, Ballet and Jazz.
During high school Ty was on the dance team all four years and was captain his junior and senior years. He was also a member of the the color-guard for his high school marcing band for three years. In his senior year he competed in the NAACP Act So award competition in Cincinnati, Ohio and performed at the award ceremony, choreographed by Anthony Burrell. After high school Ty started dancing professionally with his first job dancing for the WNBA Connecticut Sun. Some highlights include dancing for the Black Leaves Ballet company in Washington DC: performing Echoes of Sinatra at Resort World Catskills casino in New York; performed at an LLC New England Black Wolves with the Howlers Dance team; and dancing backup for Alyson Stoner. Most recently Ty dances backup for Joby Rogers, Michael Jackson impersonator in the Ultimate Michael Jakson Experience Tour.
When off the dance floor, Ty works as a teacher for childfen with Autism. Ty is always striving to further his artisty in dance and help people find peace and happiness.
Dance is forever changing and so are we!
Carroll MailhotDrama, Vocal Instructor
Carroll Brogan Mailhot is a professional singer and voice teacher. A graduate of the Univ. of Connecticut with a BFA in acting. She has performed in many shows in the region. Most recently she played the witch in Into the Woods at The Chestnut Street Playhouse and Dolly in Hello Dolly at The Bradley Playhouse. Carroll also is a soloist in area churches most notably Saint Patrick Cathedral in Norwich. She is excited to be joining the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Center and teaching voice and acting through song.
Laura KenyonGuest Artist: Jazz, Tap, Choreographer
Laura is a graduate of the Hartford Conservatory Diploma Program, having majored in Dance Performance and Dance Pedagogy with a minor in Musical Theatre. She’s furthered her studies taking certification courses at Broadway Dance Center and Steps on Broadway. Laura has over 10 years experience teaching artists ages 6 to adult, from beginner to pre-professional and competitive level dancers. Her in depth knowledge of proper dance technique, staging, music, costuming and drama gives her the unique ability to instruct and direct performers of all levels and abilities at rehearsals to achieve their desired effect. She is most comfortable working with dancers in musical theater having choreographed over 20 musicals. Laura has also choreographed for many recitals and showcases and award winning competition choreography. She most recently started producing and directing cabarets featuring and showcasing a variety of local talent.
Billy GriffinGuest Artist: Choreogrpaher
Billy Griffin is a New York City based choreographer and dance educator with a BFA from NYU/Tisch. Select choreography credits include the Off-Broadway and National Tour of Friends! The Musical Parody, as well as work for the Hudson Valley Dance Festival featuring So You Think You Can Dance winner Ricky Ubeda, The Red Bucket Follies for BC/EFA, The Drama League Gala At The Plaza Hotel (honoring Steve Martin), Hershey Park, Issac Mizrahi for QVC, The Miss America Organization,The National YoungArts Foundation, New York Musical Festival (nomination for choreography), The Joffrey Ballet School, The Steps Conservatory, Fordham/Ailey, New York University and Pace University. As a performer Billy was in the Broadway/National Tour Productions of Mary Poppins, White Christmas and Young Frankenstein. Associate/Assistant credits include work with Sonya Tayeh, Josh Bergasse, Andy Blankenbuhler and Al Blackstone. Most recently Billy restaged and provided additional choreography for the Public Theatre's Free Shakespeare in the Park production of As You Like It. Billy is on faculty and teaches weekly at both Steps on Broadway and Broadway Dance Center. Billy is also a legacy ambassador for lululemon. You can learn more about him online. @SillyBillyGriffin, www.billygriffinonline.com
Stanley BoyesAssociate Director, Administrator
A graduate of Central Connecticut State University, with a degree in Business Administration, Stan began his involvement with the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Centre in 1980. His dance interest began with the Backus Up Follies where he got his first taste of dance performance. From that start, Stan began his formal dance training at the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Centre. With his knowledge, interest and desire to dance, Stan gained many dance parts in community theater productions of “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Gypsy”, “Bells are Ringing”, “SRO”, “Music Man” and “Damn Yankees” where he was the featured male dancer. He has attended many national dance workshops with P.D.T.A., Dance Olympus, Dance Masters and Dance Educators of America. He is also no stranger to pageants. Stan began his association with the Miss America Program 30 years ago as a local pageant director. He has served as Vice-President, Program Book Chair, Associate Producer and for six years held the position of Executive Director with the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Corporation. Stan was instrumental in securing over $150,000 in in-kind scholarships for the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Foundation. He currently serves as Associate Director and Administrator of the Dance Centre, as well as company manager to “Style Extraordinaire”.
Dance is forever changing and so are we!
Patricia BrearleyAcro, Ballet, Jazz, Lyric, Choreographer
Patty Brearley has over 30 years of experience as a dance educator. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Performance/Exercise Science, an Associates in Physical Therapy, and is also a Certified Personal Trainer through NASM. Her education has given her a unique eye for proper placement, form, and technique that provides a safe and progressive classroom while promoting injury prevention in the young dancer. Patty has traveled the U.S and Canada as an adjudicator, choreographer, and teacher. Her experience includes disciplines in Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Modern, tumbling, and musical theater. Patty has performed professionally with Trinity Rep in Providence in their production of "West Side Story and has been a featured singer for several weddings in the Rhode Island area. Patty's calling and true passion resides in the classroom. Her contagious energy, love for the art form, and sincere approach to each and every student has made her one of the most sought after teachers in the New England Area.
Melody Martin FredricksenGuest Artist: Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre
Melody Martin is an old friend to LPDAC! She was part of our faculty for 20 years! Melody studied under Gloria Jean Cuming and is currently celebrating 59 years of dance! She was Dance Masters of America NYC Chapter 26 Miss Dance of NYC in 1978. Her students have won numerous regional and national awards. She has done two national TV commercials for Novo Nordisk's Victoza, a non-insulin diabetes medication. She was involved in the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Pageant in many capacities. Melody is retired from Yale University and enjoying every minute of it, traveling with her husband Ed. She is thrilled to be joining the staff of LPDAC's summer program!
Sheri BonannoGuest Artist: Tap, Jazz, Lyric
Sheri Bonanno has been teaching dance in CT and the surrounding New England Area for the past 29 years. Her early training came from Sharon DiCrosta at the Dancer's Studio. She received her BA in Dance from DeSales University. Sheri has performed with the Muhlenberg Summer Theatre and The Anita Feldman Dance Company. She is certified to teach by Dance Masters of America and is a member of DMA Chapter 18. Sheri's students and choreography have won numerous awards on the State, National and International stages. Her teaching experience includes teaching children ages 2 through adult in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, modern, and acro with an emphasis in tap. She also continues to work as an assistant coach/choreographer for the American Dance Collaborative which is a group of dancers who represent the United States at the World Tap Dance Championships.
Gary ColburnGuest Artist: Acro, Ballet, Jazz
Gary began training in acrobatics, gymnastics and dance at an early age. He received the bulk of his training from Edith and Bill Royal of Orlando, FL. The Royals were wonderful teachers, operating three studios and directing the Central Florida Ballet Company. Upon graduation from high school, Gary accepted a gymnastics scholarship to Kent State University in Ohio. He competed in the Mid-American Athletic Conference for four seasons on their gymnastics team. Gary served as team captain in his last season and competed in the Lake Erie Gymnastics League Championship. After college, Gary pursued a career as a professional dancer and acrobat. He appeared as a Principle Dancer in shows in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and Reno for the next 12 years. Hollywood was the next stop for Gary. He was featured in both television and on film. His credits include: 6 episodes of TV’s “Star Search”, Rocky IV, and Michael Jackson’s music video “Smooth Criminal”. Gary began a career in choreography at Walt Disney World, which would last for the next seven years. He helped produce 8 national TV Specials and worked with stage shows and parades in the Magic Kingdom and Disney/MGM Studios. Gary is on the staff of the Luis Pabon Dance Arts Centre, teaching Acrobatics, Ballet, and Jazz classes. He also enjoys traveling to teach master classes at numerous D.M.A chapters across the U.S. and a yearly trip to Canada to teach at a top studio in Toronto.
Dance is forever changing and so are we!
Anthony ManeriGuest Artists: Hip-Hop
Anthony Maneri is a hip hop dancer, coach, and choreographer from Southeastern Connecticut. Anthony was the Founder, Head Coach and Director of Renegade All Stars where he recruited the best dancers from CT to train with him and his staff. With his all star program, he earned over 20 national titles and choreography awards. Since then, Anthony has focused solely on choreography, and has gotten to work with and choreograph for many renowned all star, high school, college, and professional dance teams. Recently, Anthony’s choreography won two national titles – Elon University (D1 Hip Hip) and Valdosta State University (D2 Hip Hop) at the 2022 NDA College Dance Team Nationals in Daytona, FL.