Meet Our Staff

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Yolanda Smith 

 

Yolanda Smith is the Owner and Artistic Director of ADA. She began dancing at the age of six and has studied various genres of dance including: Classical Ballet, Contemporary, Modern, Jazz, Lyrical, Tap, Hip-Hop, Majorette, and Pointe.

Ms. Smith graduated with a BA Degree from South Carolina State University. During her tenure, she continued taking dance courses and was a band dancer for the SCSU 'Marching 101'. After graduating, she studied dance at Broadway Dance Center in New York City, where she completed her Dance Teacher Certificate. She continued to pursue dance as a professional, appearing in the Movie “Bolden” in 2011 and performed in several productions.

She returned back to college to complete her Master’s in Business Administration at University of Phoenix. Upon graduation, she opened Artistic Dance Academy.

Ms. Smith is a member of the National Dance Education Organization and Dance Studio Owner Association. She loves to travel across the nation to complete dance educator workshops and training. With over fifteen years of experience teaching various styles of dance, she enjoys sharing her passion with new dance students.

Emily Jordan

 

Emily Jordan had a passion for dance since the age of 2 when she started preschool dance lessons. At eight years old, she began lessons at Columbia City Jazz. A year later, she became a member of the Company, which included competing. After completing the dance program at Columbia City Jazz, she moved to New York City to attend the American Musical & Dramatic Academy. There she studied dance, singing, and acting, graduating with a Degree in Dance. After graduation, she took additional dance classes at The Broadway Dance Center and taught dance at the Ramaz School in Manhattan.

 

Samantha Whitman 

Samantha Whitman started dancing with she was three years old and continued dancing for twenty years into college.  She studied dance education at the University of Winthrop, then transferred to the University of South Carolina where she minored in ballet/contemporary under the instructor Tanya Wideman-Davis.  Samantha has performed in many festivals such as Piccolo Spoleto, Amazing Feats with Anne Brody’s ballet company, and the Orangeburg Rose Festival just to name a few.  Samantha is ecstatic to be back in the classroom again teaching the children of the Midlands area! Her passion has always been to pass on her knowledge of dance for it is an amazing discipline and can even become a career if dancing is truly something you love.

 

Mary Domenech

 

Mandy Domenech has been dancing since the age of two and began dancing competitively at 10.  She went on to earn superior ratings as a tap soloist and lyrical dancer in addition to acting and modeling.  She attended East Carolina University and Florida International University as a dance major and has taught dance classes from Georgia to Germany to now in South Carolina.  She currently lives in Lexington, S.C. with her husband and three sons.

Flora McLeod

Flora is an alumni of Nashville Classical Ballet Academy and spent her most recent season dancing with American Repertory Ballet in Princeton. Flora is a professional ballerina with Columbia Classical Ballet. She has studied with Atlanta Ballet, Oklahoma City Ballet, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.

 

Flora has also spent extensive time training in other disciplines such as contemporary and modern
dance, as well as spending many years training and performing in musical theater. Flora is incredibly passionate about teaching and understands not only the importance of technique and safety, but of having a creative outlet for dancers of any age to discover and explore. She wants every dancer’s experience to be a positive and constructive one.

 

Flora is extremely excited to share her knowledge and passion with the students and families of Artistic Dance Academy.