Swingin' into Summer
Our festival offers some of the best professional tap dancers in the industry!
Don't miss out on having the opportunity of taking classes from these leading teachers, artists and performers in the tap industry!
2024 faculty will be updated in January 2024. Please see below previous faculty.
We look forward to having all of them here with us in St. Cloud, Minnesota!
Jason Janas is originally from New Jersey. He began his tap dance instruction under Ms. Deborah Mitchell and was the first charter member of the New Jersey Tap Ensemble. He then found a love for the dance and continued to learn and study the art form. He also trained and was a member of the North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble under the direction of Gene Medler.
Jason's first professional company after high school was Tapestry Dance Company in Austin TX, under the direction of Acia Gray. He was a principal dancer there for 5 years. His hard work ethic began to take notice and Derick Grant invited Jason to be in his show Imagine Tap! which ran for 6 weeks in Chicago, and changed his life. His other show credits include Souls of our Feet with Tapestry Dance Company, Wonderland with Sara Savelli and Ayodele Casel, and most recently co-choreographed and was featured in Tap Stars with Rasta Thomas. He has taught at tap festivals in New Jersey, Chicago, New York, L.A., Charlotte, Austin, San Antonio, Vancouver, Zürich, Curitiba (Brazil), Moscow, and Barcelona!
Jason loves to tap dance. He loves to learn from other dancers and about those tappers who came before him. Tap dance does a body good.
Charles Renato was born and raised in Sao Paulo, Brazil. At 14 he began teaching tap dance that lead to him win awards all over Brazil. He has won awards for Best Dancer at the Joinville Dance Festival and the TV Globo challenge show (2009 & 2010).
In 2008 Charles joined the cast of "Sinatra Blue Eyes" the musical in Lisbon, Portugal. Renato was also a member of the "KS Tap Company. Charles moved to USA in 2013 and since then he has been working all over the world teaching in festivals and workshops. Croatia, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Canada, Belgium, Ukraine, Germany, UK, Ireland, Italy are some of the places that he has been to. He was also a member of the company Apt 33 directed by Chloe Arnold and performed with Michelle Dorrance and Dorrance Dance. He’s part of the faculty at Broadway Dance Center and Metropolitan School of the Art. Currently Charles is Artist Resident at American Tap Dance Foundation and the director of his company CHR PROJECT.
Aleksandr started tap dancing at the age of 10. During his career he has become a 4 time World Champion! (2 times is Solo, once in Duo and once in small group).
2008 Aleksandr became the Winner of Ukraines, 1st season of So You Think You Can Dance.
2017 Aleksandr won the IDO-Gala Show (Bill Fowler Cup) against All Styles World Champions.
2018, Aleksandr was Performing in Disneyland (Orlando, Florida).
2018 & 2019 he was also a coach of the USA National Tap Dance Team.
2019 he was in the top 10 boys of USA, season 16 So You Think You Can Dance.
He has danced in shows such as Tap Reloaded, Wings of Rigolo, and Tap United.
Besides a dancing career, he is the founder and director of Odessa Tap Festival. He also runs a Dance Studio in the city of Odessa, Ukraine. Aleksandr has taught masterclasses and has set choreography for many countries such as; Ukraine, Poland, Czech Republic, Croatia, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, USA, and England.
Aleksandr is now living and working in Boston, MA at Nancy Chippendale's Dance Studio.
Ricci Milan attended Larkin Dance Studio here in the Twin Cities for 12 years. He then did the “New York Thing” for a year. In that time he performed tap and hip-hop dance for the NBA, PBS, Compaq Computers, choreographer showcases, botmisfas, the NCAA final four, on subway platforms, and he worked with award winning recording artist “Mya”. Ricci also taught competion kids in New Jersey and joined up with some guys to create the original cast of “Break the Floor”.
He than did the “L.A. Thing” for 9 months where he street performed with “10 foot 5” to pay the bills while he was coming up short at 100’s of industry auditions. Ricci fell out of love with LA. so he drove to South Carolina. After a year at a family theater in Myrtle Beach (Gaylord Productions) and a year in Tokyo (Tokyo Disney Sea) he moved home to Minneapolis. He rejoined with “10 foot 5” and they recharged and rebranded with the 2004 debut of the internationally acclaimed “Buckets and Tap Shoes”.
In 2008 he turned his focus to the creation of a passion project that he named, Rhythmic Circus. The company’s show was called “Feet Don’t Fail Me Now!” In that same year he started a career as a dance competition choreographer, and began hosting events for Hall of Fame Dance Challenge.
In his tenure with Rhythmic Circus, “Feet Don’t Fail Me Now” he completed 8 national tours, 4 international tours and performed a successful broadway run at the New Victory theater in time square. Ricci also broke ground on a new company named “Rhythm Street Movement”. The company has produced promotional content for TORO Corporation, and in December of 2018 a new holiday show entitled “Who Brought the Humbug?”.
Ashley began her training under the direction of Chloe Arnold, Ricci Milan, Sarah Reich and Aaron Williams growing and exploring in the art form.
Ashley sings in addition to tap dancing, teaching, and choreographing. She was a member of Chloe and Maud Arnold’s No Filter Sole Talk youth tap company, American Tap Company, and the Minnesota Dance Ensemble.
Ashley performs with Rhythm Street Movement in Waking Up, Humbug, and various driveway tours. She has performed at the 2018 Governors Ball Emmy Awards in Los Angeles, the 2018 MLBA All Star Pre Party Concert in Washington DC. Ashley performed in the Disney Newsies Broadway Musical at the University of Northwestern. In addition to this, Ashley has performed and competed internationally, receiving a bronze medal for her tap solo at the IDO World Performing Arts Cup in Seoul, South Korea. She also received a bronze medal at Dance World Cup Championships in Offenburg, Germany for a tap duet.
Along with her tap education, training, and performing, Ashley was chosen to represent the state of Minnesota as a tap dancer in the book Dance Across the USA by Jonathon Givens. Another honor she has been given was when she was chosen with a select few to sing with the Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall in 2018 in New York City. Some additional performances consist of Rejuv Medical Summit, Angel Foundation Charity event and National Tap Dance Day to name a few.
Christopher Broughton is from Los Angeles and began dancing at age 11. Under Paul and Arlene Kennedy at Universal Dance Design, he was a member of the Kennedy Tap Company and received the national NAACP ACTSO Award twice.
He is a current member of nationally proclaimed New York-based tap dance company Dorrance Dance, under the direction of MacArthur Genius Grant award winner Michelle Dorrance. His noteworthy performances include Capezio’s 130th Anniversary, New York City Center’s Cotton Club Parade; Juba! Master’s of Tap and Percussive Dance at the Kennedy Center; and Broadway’s Tony and Astaire Award–winning production After Midnight and Jelly’s Last.
Sean grew up just outside of Chicago, where he trained with Donna Johnson, Ashley Deforest Goletz, and Jay Fagan. He extended his education by being a Chicago Human Rhythm Project scholarship recipient from 2004-2010 and graduating from the School at Jacobs Pillow under the direction of Michelle Dorrance and Dormeshia.
In 2011, Sean became the Tap Director at Nolte Academy in Iowa City, IA, while simultaneously completing his Bachelors in Finance from the University of Iowa. For almost a decade, he honed his pedagogic approach while teaching hundreds of students on a weekly basis. Sean has also taught/performed at CHRP, Little Rock Tap Festival, American Tap Festival, Phoenix Tap Festival, and North Carolina Rhythm Tap Festival. He is a former member of Nico Rubio’s 333.
In 2020, Sean started touring the country with Adrenaline Dance Convention and National Dance Honors. This past winter, he made his Joyce Theater premier with Ayodele Casel’s “Chasing Magic” in NYC. Sean is currently based out of Los Angeles, California.
Anna Esposito is a dancer, performer, choreographer, and teacher from Minneapolis, MN. From a young age, Anna began performing in musical theatre and has been seen on many stages in the Twin Cities including Stages Theatre Company, Youth Performance Company, Lyric Arts, The Children’s Theatre, The Ordway and more. Her early experience in musical theatre motivated her to further her training in dance, and as a result, she began her tap training under Cathy Wind and Ellen Keane. She danced in both the Keane Sense of Rhythm Youth Tap Ensemble and Professional Company, and simultaneously began traveling to Tap festivals internationally to learn from and train with masters of the art form. Professionally as a tap dancer she has performed with Rhythm Street Movement in The Waking Up Project, Revive the Vibe Driveway Tour, and Who Brought the Humbug? Cabarave’s “Girls Just Want To..” “MadHaus 2 and 3” “Euphoria” and “Love Languages”, performed in professional showcases at the Twin Cities Tap Festival, Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Ladek Zrodj International Dance Festival, been a featured tap dancer in “Riverpants” at The Big Top Chautauqua and Mick Sterling Presents Three Stars Born at Chanhassen Dinner Theatre, choreographed and danced in Rochester Motor’s car commercials, among others. She currently guest teaches and choreographs at dance studios and theatres around the Midwest and is the tap teacher at Spotlight Productions, Urban Dance Productions, and Escalate Dance and Theatre Studio.
Rebecca Cannaday is a Professional Dancer, Teacher, Choreographer, and Adjudicator from Chesapeake, Virginia that now resides in New York City. Throughout High School she had the opportunity to be a part of Denise Wall’s pre-professional dance company and train with and perform choreography from many well-known professionals including Emmy Award winning and nominated choreographers such as Travis Wall and Anthony Morigerato. Since then, she has been working as a Professional Dancer in New York City with a focus in Tap Dance since 2016. She is also a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Old Dominion University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and Marketing.
Rebecca Cannaday is currently in three Professional Tap companies that are based out of Manhattan and travel around the country for various performances including CHRProject directed by Charles Renato where she is Dance Captain, ProjectConvergence directed by Vikas Arun and Apoorva Natarajan, and #Taplife directed by Anthony LoCascio where she is also Dance Captain and Choreographer for the company. Rebecca attended Jacob’s Pillow, the Professional School Program for Tap Dance under the close direction of Michelle Dorrance and Dormeshia Sumbry. She was 1 of 25 dancers in the world chosen to attend the Jacob’s Pillow Tap Program in 2019.