THE CONSERVATORY FACULTY 2016-2017
Our faculty brings professional experience from the international stages which include the finest credits in their respective fields, such as the New York City Ballet, Broadway musicals, MTV, network television award shows, Radio City Music Hall, the Greatest Moscow State Circus, distinguished universities and, of course, the spectacular Las Vegas stages. This outstanding faculty is yet another reason for the Conservatory being the largest school of its kind in Nevada.
FERN ADAIR - OWNER/DIRECTOR
Fern studied from early childhood to become a dance teacher and to develop interest in the arts with children. She has studied with many of the dance world’s famous artists and is certified to teach by Dance Masters of America. She has taught in Spain, and owned dance studios in her native California before relocating to Nevada. Fern and her husband, Ray Criddle, opened a studio in Las Vegas in 1974, which has become the largest school of the arts in the state. She has taught at national and regional conventions and seminars. As a dancer and singer, Fern toured with her own single act in the West as well as in Asia, Pacific Islands and Alaska. Fern Adair is biographed in Distinguished Women in Southern Nevada, was the recipient of the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce Achievement in the Arts Award, recipient of Clark County Commissioners Proclamation of Appreciation, and 1996 Fern Adair Day proclaimed by the City of Las Vegas. Fern has been the guest speaker for Dance Teacher Training sessions of Dance Educators of America who also recently honored her with a lifetime membership.
VICKI VOS - DANCE
Ms. Vicki is bringing over 30 years of teaching and studio experience to our studio. At an early age, Vicki knew her passion would be behind the scenes so she began teaching at 16. She is trained in Jazz, Ballet, Tap, and Musical Theatre and has owned studios in Canada and has set up dance programs in schools and recreational centers. Her choreography credits include theater productions of Grease and Anything Goes, bridal shows, pageants, dance festival highlight shows and numerous dance year end production showcases. Vicki also adjudicates dance competitions throughout Canada and the USA. Some of her former students can be seen on TV, working on cruise ships, dancing with Disney and many are sharing her love of teaching
ANDREW PHILLIPS - DANCE
Andrew Phillips has been dancing since five years of age training in all styles of dance from Ballet to Jazz Funk at The Dance Refinery in Indianapolis. Then he continued his study with kinesiology and contemporary dance at Indiana University. His choreography credit includes, regional musical theatre productions, such as “Oklahoma!”, show choirs, and several dance studios around the U.S. He has received choreography awards from the American College Dance Festival and regional dance competitions. Andrew has performed on many cruise ships sailing the world for three years, was a featured audition for season 7 of So You Think You Can Dance, performed many musical roles, music videos, parades, and movies. His career has led him to choreograph, teach master classes with conventions, and even judge for a few dance competitions.
JOEY SANDRA- DANCE
Joey has been a performer in legendary shows such as “Enter the Night” and “Viva Las Vegas” at the Stardust as well as “Legends in Concert” and “Las Vegas Magic” in Korea. He has choreographed for countless tradeshows such as M.A.G.I.C. and Miss Nevada/Teen Nevada and received his training with legends such as Joe Tremaine, Jamie Marshall, and Jenny Ballard.
JEANETTE MORENO- DANCE
Jeannette grew up dancing in Edmonton, Alberta, where she trained extensively in Tap, Jazz, Ballet, Hip Hop, Highland, and Theatre. She later traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia where she continued her training in the Vaganova method. She has also trained at “Edmonton Musical Theatre”, and performed at “the Citadel” in Edmonton. Her studies took her to Los Angeles, California where she was awarded a full year scholarship to “The Tremaine Dance Centre” and studied under Joe Tremaine, Doug Caldwell, Liz Imperio, Ryan Heffington, Wade Robson, Mia Michaels, Melissa Williams, Bubba Carr, and Marguerite Derricks. LA credits include “Fame LA”, with Marguerite Derricks, “The Gypsy Awards Live”, with Bella Fosse and Gwen Verdon, “Winners TV” with Melissa Williams, “Madness at Billboard”, with Bubba Carr and “Elvira’s Rock and Shock Revue”, with Elvira. Film credits include “Between the Sheets” with Dom DeLouise, and “The Dancers”. She has worked for Holland America Cruise Lines as a dancer and singer, and from there, she moved to New York to pursue theatre where her credits include, “The Music Man”, “Tintinabula”, in “A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to The Forum”, “Angel” in “Anything Goes”, “Tracy” in “Hairspray”, and “Roxie Hart” in “Chicago”. She was the dance captain for the European tour of the musical “Grease”, which toured for two years all over Germany and Austria. Jeannette continues to teach master classes, workshops, and adjudicate all over North America, and has been credited with many awards for her choreography.
NATACHA SORAYA BACHOUR- DANCE
Currently performing in “Showstoppers” at the Wynn and a former performer in “Vegas! The Show” at Planet Hollywood, Natacha earned her dance degree from the University of Arizona. Natacha has also studied at the Tempe Dance Academy, School of Ballet Arizona, ABT, and NY Dance Alliance.
TRAVIS PULLINS - DANCE
A native of Utah, Travis has been teaching dance in both private dance studios as well as public schools for more than 20 years. His national television debut was on "Star Search," and he has also been featured as a dancer at Opryland U.S.A., aboard the historic S/S Norway, on CBS' "Touched by an Angel," with Solstice Dance Theater and in numerous industrials and trade shows. In 2002, Travis was able to return to Salt Lake City, where he appeared nightly as one of the dancers at the medals ceremonies at the Winter Olympic Games. He has choreographed and directed for Jean Ann Ryan Productions and has also worked for Starlight Productions, Nexus Dance Workshops and Tamjams Dance Workshops. He is proud to have been a part of the Conservatory family for over 15 years now. In addition to his work in the dance world, he and his wife are the proud parents of three children, and he teaches Spanish for the Clark County School District.
SEAN CRONIN - Pas De Duex
Sean trained and graduated from Carmichael’s School of the Performing Arts. He joined Capital City Ballet in Sacramento, California, which led him to start working in Hello Hollywood, Hello! in Reno. Sean joined the Lido de Paris and later performed in Follies Bergere in Las Vegas, where he was the principal understudy. Under the direction of Don Arden, Sean was swept to the Lido de Paris in Paris, France, where he and his adagio partner, Pamela Langevin, were the stars of the show. After 4½ years in Paris, Sean returned to the United States and performed in Miami before his return to the Las Vegas stage. He has performed principal roles in Spain, France, Japan, Korea and on cruise ships and in numerous ballet companies. Sean’s expertise in adagio is sought after by professionals and aspiring professionals and he has created a 4-DVD series for instruction and demonstrating Pas de Deux.
RULIKO CRONIN - DANCE
We are proud to welcome Ruliko Cronin to our faculty. Studying at the Conservatory for fifteen years she was often seen assisting in her father Sean’s pas de deux classes. Ruliko debuted a pas de deux act with her father at the age of four to the cheers of audiences. Ruliko’s dance studies included ballet, jazz, tap and contemporary for which she earned the highest awards in various competitions in Nevada and California. Her academic excellence is also acknowledged through high school and is now shown at UNLV..
GREGORY FILLER - DANCE
Gregory has performed professionally touring in book shows and reviews. He made his Las Vegas debut in Starlight Express as the Flying Marshal. Gregory directed The Will Rogers Follies, Grease and George M for Jean Ann Ryan Productions. He choreographed the1996 gymnastics tour of Olympic World Champions. Concert Fantasy 2010 featured Gregory's choreography of Riverdance in the Celtic Productions.
ALEX YONKOVICH - DANCE
A graduate of the University of Arizona with a BFA in Dane and a minor in Business Administration, Alex has studied with BODYTRAFFIC, River North Dance Chicago/Pro Intensive, Interlochen Arts Camp, Boulder Jazz Dance, along with many others. She can currently be seen in Cirque Du Soleil’s The Beatles: Love.
COLETTE HARRIS - DANCE
Colette Began studying at the Ruth Page Foundation School of Dance in Chicago, IL later receiving a Summer Fellowship to the Alvin Ailey School of Dance in NYC and apprenticing for River North Dance Company. After earning her B.A. in Management and minor in Dance at Hope College, Colette accepted a position with Royal Caribbean Productions later moving to Las Vegas to perform in Jubilee!, with the Las Vegas Contemporary Dance Company, in Dirk Arthur:Xtreme Magic and Bite.
TAYLOR BRADLEY - DANCE
A graduate of the University of Arizona with a BFA in Dance, Bradley brings a long list of stage credits including Footloose, Vampire Diaries, Cinderella Story: Once Upon a Song, and So You Think You Can Dance. He is currently appearing in Steve Wynn’s Showstoppers.
REGINA LAUGHLIN - DANCE
Regina Laughlin has spent her last few years as a Dance Supervisor with Princess Cruises and performing in shows such as Anything Goes, Sweet Charity and Peter Pan starring Cathy Rigby. Other notable credits include: Legends in Concert, Dino’s Christmas Spectacular, Celebrate America, The Promise, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Princess Cruises and Disneyland Resort. Ms. Laughlin received her BFA in Dance from Webster University, during which she was also involved with the Miss America Scholarship Program for over 7 years. In her free time, Regina enjoys traveling the country as a dance competition adjudicator.
ANNA VAN SAMBECK- DANCE/ BALLET BARRE
Anna received her BFA in Dance Performance at the University of the Arts and has studied with Eastern Connecticut Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and Alvin Ailey. She is certified in Pilates, ACE and Barre Fitness Method and can currently be seen in the show “Matt Goss Live” at Caesar’s Palace. Anna has also performed in “Sirens of TI”, “Vegas! The Show”, and “Nathan Burton: Comedy Magic” as well as for Royal Caribbean Cruiselines.
TYRELL SANDERS - HIP HOP
Tyrell Sanders has been using dance as an outlet to stay on the positive side of negative situations since high school. Since then Tyrell has grown a very savvy/edgy Hip Hop style which includes Poppin, Tutting, Housing and Beginner Breaking along with a five year Krump Background. He and his partners Cykhyia and Brian have created a dance studio called "Hip Hop SoulSation Academy" which developed groups such as NSR-new school rebels, NZB-new zoo boyz, Drish, and Hostile Fam. He then launched "Shogun ShoDown" an all styles battle conducted for trophies and prizes. Tyrell has been in countless productions and has opened up for Tyga, Tank, E-40, Lloyd, Lupe Fiasco and more. He has competed in “World of Dance” (a world traveling dance convention) for 4 years and has won numerous trophies at many competitions with training from Brian Puspos, Kyle Hanigami, Chloe Puff and more.
JONATHAN MAYUGA- BREAKDANCE, KARATE, GYMNASTICS
Jonathan has been Breaking competitively for over 10 plus years, and represented Chicago on a high caliber participating in the infamous RedBull BC One Qualifer Midwest 4 years in a row. A long with battling from coast to coast, he has also traveled overseas to perform at the prestigious World Expo in Shanghai and competed winning 2nd place in Taiwan’s Battle Mania Vol.26. He is currently the newest member of Las Vegas’s infamous Bboy crew Knucklehead Zoo.
ODALYS VALDES PUENTES-SPANISH SPEAKING PROGRAM
Odalys Valdes Puentes is a native of Havana, Cuba and a graduate of the ENA (National Art School). She has held lead roles in theater, magazines, musicals and television, including the show "Tropicana Cuba," which enabled her to travel to different Latin American countries. Odalys has worked in Mexico as a teacher, choreographer and artistic director in her own academy with neoclassic, contemporary and acrobatic technique. She is also well versed in electronic, pop, hip hop, flamenco, Brazilian and tropical genres (salsa, rumba, conga, bachata, merengue, mambo, cha cha cha), successfully presenting shows for 20 years.
MUSICAL THEATRE DEPARTMENT
DELEE LIVELY TORTI - MUSICAL THEATRE
For the past 12 years, DeLee has enjoyed "giving back" what she learned, early on, in her career of performing, which began in Houston, Tx. at the age of 9, as "Baby June" in "Gypsy" for Theatre Under the Stars. Her hard work paid off, just 2 days after graduating high school, she was asked to join "A Chorus Line" and that's when her dreams took off. (Working on Broadway, singing and dancing in over 20 television commercials, and seeing the world while getting paid.) She continued to work professionally, nonstop, until 2000, when she decided to move into "mommyhood." She married the man of her dreams, Robert Torti, moved to L.A. where she and Bob were blessed with two precious girls, Faith and Chloe. Two years ago, they relocated to Las Vegas. Throughout her career, she has taught all over the country "Musical Theater Master Dance Classes." For 5 years she was on the Dance Panel for "YoungArts" in Miami, Florida, 3 of those years as "Head Chair," and is a recurring "Musical Theater Panelist" for "The Spotlight Awards," in Los Angeles. She is the founder of "Dancin' with DeLee," a company she created while performing on Broadway, teaching self-esteem, to all ages, through dance.
ROBERT TORTI - MUSICAL THEATRE
Robert Torti Host of The Filthy Rich Guide, is a Tony Nominated Actor for his role of Greaseball in Starlight Express. Other Broadway credits include, Joseph and the Amazing….. (Pharaoh), Smokey Joe’s Cafe, and Reefer Madness. Multiple starring roles in Film include, That Thing You Do, She’s The Man,The Game Plan, Race To Witch Mountain, Reefer Madness and Joseph and The Amazing…. as the Pharaoh opposite Donny Osmand. He has one multiple Ovation Awards for LA Theatre and received a Gold Record for Mr. Downtown in the ﬁlm That Thing You Do. Multiple T.V. series regulars and Guest Stars include, The Drew Carey Show, Vinnie and Bobby, Generations, The Young and The Restless, Days of our Lives and many more. He is currently starring in Rock of Ages Vegas and has been since 2012.
GIANNI MATTEO- VOICE AND MUSIC
Gianni is a Las Vegas native, who pursued his Bachelor’s degree in vocal performance and music education. He has performed in Osaka, Japan in R&B Jukebox with Universal Studios in Japan. While performing overseas, he was musical director for Jason Robert Brown’s “Songs for a New World” and Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods”. Gianni’s performance ranges from music theatre to opera including Edwin from Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury” and Randall in “Bring It On the Musical”.
MARTIAL ARTS DEPARTMENT
VICTORIA HETEY - MARTIAL ARTS
Victoria started her training in New York in Okinawan Go-Ju Ryu Karate and Judo and has studied Shaolin Kempo for twenty years and holds a Nidan (2ND Degree) rank. She was a chief instructor in two schools in Orange County, California, and currently teaches the karate to Toddlers, Juniors, Teens and Adult program at the Conservatory, as well as classes in the Arts Day Camp, Martial Arts Summer Boot Camp. Victoria also trains in the Iadio which is the traditional art of Japanese Sword, has been fortunate to visit and train in China with the Shaolin Monks. In addition to her passion for martial arts she has competed in ballroom dancing is also a passion and she will again visit Argentina where she studied Tango. She coordinates the Ninja Nights, The Annual Karate Olympics for the Conservatory Martial Arts program.
SHERRIE BODENSTAB - AEROBICS
When, due to job obligations, Barb Kordestani could no longer teach aerobics, her sister, Sherrie, became the Director of Aerobic Fun!. Sherrie has taught dance both in the Clark County School District and dance studios for over 35 years.
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LILIANA ARREGUIN - ZUMBA
Liliana (Lily) Arreguin has been practicing Zumba for 5 years and is very passionate about the exercise craze. She was certified and began her class because she believes that Zumba is a great way to get in shape and have fun at the same time. “Just feel the music and let go” is her motto and her goal is to make her students feel welcome and comfortable in the positive atmosphere of her class.
EMILY WILSON – AERIAL GYMNASTICS
Emily is thrilled to be moving into her fourth season as Aerial Coach at the Conservatory! Her favorite credits include time spent performing for Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, and Suspended Artistry as well as Stage Management for Juilliard School, Carnival Cruise Lines, and Cirque Du Soleil’s The Beatles Love. When not forcing students to do push-ups, pull ups, or conquer difficult Aerial feats, Emily works as a Stage Manager at Cirque Du Soleil’s “O.” This Circus girl is a mother of 3 fur babies an anxiously awaiting her wedding in December!
MICHAEL RADIFF - AERIAL GYMNASTICS
Michael Radiff is originally from Pueblo, Colorado. There he trained in gymnastics which lead to his training in dance. From there he went on to work as a performer for Royal Caribbean Cruise Line for 6 years. Within that time he quickly developed his passion for aerial arts. He moved to Las Vegas where he has had the privilege of performing in Les Folies Bergere at the Tropicana, Donn Arden's Jubilee at Bally's, and now is proud to be a part of Steve Wynn's Show Stoppers at Wynn Las Vegas along with teaching Aerial classes at Fern Adair.
CASSIE SANDOU - AERIAL GYMNASTICS
Coach Cassie brings an exciting array of experience to the Conservatory Gymnastics Department. Recently on a yearlong Britney Spears Circus Tour Cassie’s schedule takes her internationally to perform. This year we all applauded her o America’s Got Talent. She competed in the USA Gymnastics levels through Elite Level at regionals and nationals. She then competed in the AAU Junior Olympics program. As an Elite Level Gymnast, Cassie also competed at Texas State University. Cassie was the head coach for the Sandou Circus/Gymnastics School here in Las Vegas. Cassie now teaches Aerial, Acro, Web, Lyra and related arts at the Conservatory.
Russian Bar Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3WxFrc7J-0
GREGG GRANT – GYMNASTICS
The Conservatory welcomed Coach Gregg Grant to our faculty this spring. Gregg has enjoyed a full background in theatre, dance, cheerleading, as well as competing in men’s gymnastics where he regionally titled in floor, vault and high bar. He attended Cal Arts in California and choreographed middle school dance teams and various musicals. In 2007 United Spirit Association (USA) added Gregg to their coaching staff for their cheer camps traveling as far away as Japan to coach and work their national competition. A popular coach on tour... a popular coach in our gym!
ELENA ALEXANDROVA - GYMNASTICS
After graduation from a professional sport and circus college in Russia, Elena’s world class act appeared with the Greatest Moscow State Circus for twenty years touring Australia, France, Denmark, Yugoslavia and more. Elena has also performed in the center ring of The Greatest Show on Earth-Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus performing the Russian Bar and single trapeze on ABC-TV’s Good Morning America.
CASEY SAEGER – GYMNASTICS
Casey Saeger has a USAG competition background, and is the newest gymnastics instructor here at the Conservatory. She is teaching pre-school and beginner classes, and coaching the girls team. A graduate of Oklahoma City University with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in dance, Casey is both an accomplished performer and dancer having appeared in many stage productions here in Las Vegas at Harrah's, Rio, MGM, and Luxor among others.
NINA REISS - GYMNASTICS
Nina Reiss of UNLV, Nina studied gymnastics at the Conservatory and was a competing member of the first Adair-Ettes Gymnastics Team. Graduating from UNLV Nina taught elementary schools teacher in the Clark County School District for nine years. Nina specialized in gymnastics for small children including Play Gym which includes the parents’ participation.
NAT HAMMOND - TUMBLING
Nat started gymnastics when he was 8. He was a member of the Junior National Team twice and attended 2 National training camps at the OTC in Colorado Springs. His senior year in High School he was a member of the Junior Elite Class 1 Regional Championship Team. He accepted a scholarship to BYU and competed four years of NCAA gymnastics and worked as a graduate assistant to the team his 5th year. He began coaching in Santa Cruz and spent 3 years there. Nat is also the Nevada State Judging Director for Men’s gymnastics.
TARA OKATAN - GYMNASTICS
Coach Tara is currently a student at CSN working on a degree in elementary education. She began gymnastics at the late age of 12. She worked her way up to a competitive Level 10 gymnast and competed for five years with gyms in both Las Vegas and Florida. She has medaled in gold, and silver, in all four events and all-around. At 15, she began coaching at recreational gymnastics summer camps and went on to build a recreational gymnastics program as the Gymnastics and Cheer Coordinator for the YMCA. Her passions are gymnastics and working with children.
SEILKHAN (SAM) MOUZDYNAEV- GYMNASTICS
Seilkehan (Sam) has 31 years of experience in the performance and competitive gymnastics. He worked 17 years with the Moscow Circus traveling all over Europe as a performer and team trainer. In the U.S., Sam was a featured act with Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus and a coach and instructor at World Class Gymnastics in Chappaqua, N.Y. He has worked with all age groups in tumbling, apparatus strength training and performance.
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