The Academy of Dance Arts, Inc.
1425 West First St. Winston Salem, NC 27101
We place a heavy emphasis on faculty at the Academy of Dance Arts. The quality of instruction should be of utmost importance, even at a private studio. With our current compliment of instructors we tap into the knowledge and experience of years of professional training and expertise. The results speak for themselves, with alumni dancing professionally all over the country including with the New York Ballet, recent dance television shows, and even acting in current broadcast television. See more about our History here...
Wanda Plemmons, Director
Wanda Plemmons serves as Director and Owner of the Academy of Dance Arts, Inc. where she studied Ballet at an early age. Wanda's training continued at the University of N.C. School of the Arts where she serves currently on the Board of Associates. She helped found the Alumni Association and served as President of the Alumni at U.N.C.S.A for several years. Wanda also sat on the Chancellor's Search Committee and the Governor's Choice for Teaching Excellence Committee. Wanda was designated "Outstanding Teacher in the Arts" by UNC School of Arts in 2009 and participated in the graduation ceremonies. She performed with the Winston-Salem Civic Ballet Co., Governor's School and University of N.C. School of the Arts productions. Wanda has been a guest teacher for Wake Forest University and the N.C. Governor's School , served as dance consultant for C.M.S. and choreographed numerous pieces for local concerns including R.J.R's The Vantage, the City of Winston-Salem, Hanes Mall and Disney's 'Kid Jam". Wanda serves on the President's Advisory Council for Small Business Leaders of the U. S.
Follow this link to see a short film about North Carolina School of the Arts alumnus and ADA owner, Wanda Plemmons, This film was produced by the school as a part of their This School, This City project. We are very proud to be associated with the UNCSA.
Debbie Sayles has been teaching for over 32 years, all including the Academy of Dance Arts. She received her B.F.A. in dance from the University of N.C. at Greensboro. She received training at East Carolina and performed with the dance companies at both universities. Debbie joined the faculty at the Academy of Dance Arts, Inc. in 1983 and has trained and inspired thousands of dancers in her years of teaching as well as being instrumental in developing the Tap program. She also has taught Tap at Wake Forest University as an adjunct professor since the fall of 2010. She has completed tap pieces both in 2012 and 2015 to present in the Wake Forest University Fall Faculty and Guest Artist Dance Concert. Debbie's versatility in teaching has included the pre-ballet program as well as Jazz. Debbie is Mother to two daughters who are both graduates from the Academy, Megan and Katie.
Maiya Silver graduated high school from UNC School of the Arts with a concentration in Modern dance, studied dance at East Carolina University and completed her BFA with a concentration in Dance Education and Choreography at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. In attendance at ECU, she participated in the American College Dance Festival Association and at UNCG, Mrs. Silver was the 2004-2007 recipient of the Gay Cheney Dance Scholarship in Choreography. She has been a featured performer in numerous faculty and graduate pieces and has choreographed for concerts at UNCG and ECU.
Maiya's choreography has been not only selected to for shows at both ECU and UNCG but was featured in Raleigh NC at Memorial Auditorium, for Stellar Award Nominee Mr. Gerald Hinton and at the Fletcher Opera Theatre for the Capital Girls’ Choir. She served as the co-artistic director of “The Nutcracker Suite” at DCG as well as contributing choreographer for “The Nutcracker Ballet” at City Ballet and BPAC. Maiya has performed for Sidelong Dance Company in Winston Salem, NC and with independent contemporary choreographers Liz Waddell, Heather Doyle, Kathryn Ullom, and Melissa Pihos at NC Dances, NC Dance Festival, First Friday in Downtown Raleigh, Arts Place in Washington DC and the Charlotte Dance Festival. She was honored to perform for Sidelong Dance Company’s last Winston-Salem Performance. Mrs. Silver is now going back to school for medical imaging technology to explore the body from the inside out. She currently resides in Winston Salem with her Husband Jonas and their three children, Tilly (11), Remfry (5) and Battle (3).
Luci Jennings received her training at N.C. Governor's School, U.N.C. School of the Arts and University of N.C. at Greensboro. Luci owned and operated a successful dance studio in Mt. Airy for twelve years. She served on the Board of Directors for the Surry Arts Council and choreographed musical productions at the Andy Griffith Playhouse. She also teaches with nationally recognized Dancing Classrooms. Luci has been on the faculty for many dance conventions in N.C., S.C. Virginia and Louisiana. She has taught at the Lynchburg Fine Arts Center and choreographed musicals for the associated area schools and colleges.
Jami-Ross Berry Wilkerson
Jami-Ross, a former Academy of Dance, Inc. student, attended the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where she was a scholarship student concentrating in ballet. She received her B.S.A. degree in dance and drama from East Carolina University. Jami studied in New York at the Actor's Studio with Greg Zittel. Jami-Ross was the lead dancer on MTV's Boogie at Midnight with Skip Castro. She performed in the Off-Broadway play, Boom Boom Room. Jami-Ross has been seen in dozens of regional shows including Chicago, Jerry's Girls, Pippin', and Cabaret. She teaches jazz, tap and Pilates. Jami-Ross also teaches flexibility and strength training at Salem College and also teaches with nationally recognized Dancing Classrooms. In addition to this busy schedule, Jami-Ross teaches Hip Hop workshops and is a judge for National Competitions.
Kim, a former Academy of Dance, Inc. student, graduated from ECU with a BFA in dance. After graduation, Kim taught continuing education classes at ECU and also performed in many Dance Theatre productions. She became an instructor at Academy of Dance Arts in Greenville and performed and choreographed in the local production of the Nutcracker. Kim also taught in Athens, Ga. before moving back to Winston-Salem with her family. She now teaches dance at Summit School in their after school program and in the summer in conjunction with the Winston Salem Symphony's Music, Mind and Reading program.
Lindsey Bramham Howie
Lindsey holds an MFA in Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a BFA in Dance Performance with a concentration in Jazz Dance from East Carolina University. She is a current member of the Van Dyke Dance Group in Greensboro, NC and you can catch her on tour as part of the North Carolina Dance Festival. Her work was recently selected to be a part of Dance Charlotte. She is currently adjunct professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and serves as the Director of the Dance Department at High Point University..
Debra began her professional career at the age of nine when she performed with the New York City Ballet Company. Debra was a student at The School of American Ballet and performed with the company in The Nutcracker, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Harlequinade. She studied modern at the Alvin Ailey School and jazz with Luigi, Charles Kelly and Nat Horne. Growing up in New York City she had the opportunity to study acting at HB Studios and voice with some of the greatest teachers in musical theater.
Her performing credits also include: A Chorus Line, West Side Story, I Ought to Be In Pictures and Educating Rita. As a director, choreographer and teacher, Debra has traveled extensively. She moved recently to the Winston-Salem area and is thrilled to be part of the performing arts in our community. She also teaches ZUMBA and is a Teaching Artist for Dancing Classrooms.
Luane began dancing at age six and hasn’t stopped yet! She has received training in ballet, pointe, tap, jazz and modern. She was a four year member and scholarship recipient of the Concert Dance Company at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she earned a BSED in Early Childhood Education. Besides teaching dance, Luane has taught preschool, kindergarten, first grade and fourth grade. Luane genuinely enjoys working with young children and is delighted to be sharing her love of dance with them. Luane is a wife and mother of four. She currently resides in Clemmons, NC.
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