About the Dance Lab

Mary Beth | Director at the Dance Lab, Saratoga Springs, NYMary Beth, Director

Mary Beth began dancing at the age of four and her love and enthusiasm for the art has grown ever since. She is formally trained in ballet, tap, jazz, modern, lyrical and hip hop. Throughout her years of training, she has taken master classes under renowned dancers and choreographers such as, Mia Michaels, tWitch, Mandy Moore, Savion Glover, Gus Giordano, Frank Hatchett and many others. She has won numerous awards at national dance competitions. Mary Beth also performed as a backup dancer in a Jessica Simpson concert in Syracuse, NY.

After graduating from high school, Mary Beth attended Siena College where she was a member of the Siena College Dance Team for four years and served as Captain of the Dance Team for her junior and senior year. During the same time, she studied ballet and modern at Skidmore College. Mary Beth was also a member of the Ultimate Dance Team in Albany, which won several awards at various competitions throughout New York State.

Mary Beth has been teaching dance for the last sixteen years. Throughout those years her dancers have won many awards including placement and Entertainment Awards for her choreography. One of her former students recently performed on Broadway! She was also a consultant to the Head Coach of the Ice Mice Dance Team, which performed at AHL Hockey Games. Along with her dance training, Mary Beth was also a certified Zumba instructor for two years. She also continues to expand her knowledge of dance through continuing education courses.

The Dance Lab has been a life-long dream of Mary Beth’s and she is beyond excited to share her passion and knowledge of dance with her students!

Lindsay Shaner

Lindsay began her dance training at the Mary Lee School of Dance in Virginia and then Carter School of Dance in Maryland, where she trained in ballet (Cecchetti method), tap, jazz, modern, pointe, and hip hop.  Lindsay received her B.S. in Dance from Radford University in 2001, graduating with honors. While at Radford, she studied under Frano Jelincic, Dagmar Kessler, Dr. Pegeen Albig, Margaret Devaney, and Doris Ressl and performed in Ballet and Modern productions.  She was also one of the original members of the RU Cloggers.

Lindsay has experience teaching creative movement, tumbling, ballet, tap, jazz, modern, pointe, hip hop, and liturgical and has worked with ages 2-adult.  In addition to teaching, Lindsay spent 2 years performing professionally with Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble, under the direction of Eileen Carson-Schatz.  Footworks performs Appalachian Clogging, Irish, Cape Bretton Step Dancing, South African Boot Dances, Hambone, and Tap.

Heather Hay

Heather has been dancing since she was four years old and danced competitively from age 10 to just this past year, earning many top-ranking awards from regional and national dance competitions. She has trained in the styles of ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, pointe, and lyrical and attended many dance camps and trainings in order to strengthen her technique and knowledge in these styles. She began teaching dance as a teacher’s assistant at age 12 and later took on solo dancers in choreographing for national dance competitions. She has experience with teaching ages 3-adult. After high school, she attended SUNY Oneonta where she received a B.S. in Psychology with a concentration in Pre-Occupational Therapy and a minor in Art. While at college she continued dancing as she was able to be a part of the Oneonta State Dance Team and the Terpsichorean Dance Company. She was chosen by the student board of the Terpsichorean Dance Company to choreograph for four semesters out of her eight semesters with this company, in the styles of jazz, contemporary, and hip hop. She also continued her education of dance by taking Modern and Jazz academic dance classes while at school. Heather has dreamed of being a dance teacher since she was little and is so thankful and excited for this experience!

Emily Tonkin

Emily began dancing when she was three and performed on London’s West End in a variety of musicals, Sunday Night’s at London Pallidum and Drury Lane from the age of five. She is ISTD trained in Modern and Tap and RAD trained in Ballet, and has been taught Jazz and Musical Theatre from some of the industry’s most renowned. Emily was an Italia Conti Associate and attended Yew Tree Theatre School before she got accepted into London’s The Centre at eighteen. Emily continued to dance professionally and got booked out on both dancing and acting roles. She’s stared in shows with St. Albans based dance company, music videos, commercials, live T.V. performances, a movie and toured with artist, Kylie Minogue, before she hung up her performing shoes.

Emily has over 10 years of experience teaching and choreographing for all age groups, has a 500hr yoga certification as well as her ISTD Modern teaching qualification. She has a profound love for all genres and movement forms. She cares deeply about finding each student’s unique expression and enjoyment of the art form, as well as teaching the fundamentals every dancer requires.

Maureen Smith

Maureen began dancing at the age of 2 1/2 at Stepping Star Studio with Peggy Delay. She enjoyed taking tap, ballet, pointe and jazz. At 15, Maureen started teaching at Stepping Star Studio and started her own ‘studio’—teaching neighborhood children out of her garage!

After graduating with Bachelors in Psychology and Elementary Education, Maureen returned to her passion and opened her own dance studio, this time opting for a studio in Round Lakel instead of her garage! She taught students from age 3 to adult until selling her dance studio to become an Elementary School teacher.

Throughout her 30 years of teaching elementary aged children she continued to dance, expanding her interests and eventually competing in country lead and follow and ballroom styles. Now retired, Maureen is reigniting her love for dance here at The Dance Lab. She is honored and excited to work with Mary Beth and be a part of The Dance Lab team!