Sydni Adkinson

Teacher / Choreographer

BIO COMING SOON!

Amelia Weatherford

Teacher

BIO COMING SOON!

Azure Davis

Teacher

BIO COMING SOON!

Maren Cunningham

Teacher

Meet Raley, with over two decades of dancing under her belt, Raley Zofko Zampieri brings a wealth of experience and an undeniable passion for dance. Trained in a variety of styles including ballet, jazz, gymnastics, and tap, she has honed her skills at prestigious dance institutions like Green Acres School of Dance, Dare 2 Dance in Robertsdale, Alabama, and Sheffield’s School of the Dance in Mobile, Alabama.

 

Raley's talent shines brightly, as evidenced by the numerous awards she has garnered from local dance conventions and competitions throughout her dancing journey. After high school, her love for dance continued at the University of South Alabama, where she pursued a major in Primary and Special Education. During her years at the university, she showcased her school spirit as a proud member of the University of South Alabama dance team, the “Prowlers”. In her freshman year, the team clinched the 3rd place in their division at the prestigious UDA National Dance Championship!

 

In 2007, Raley's dance career took a thrilling leap when she successfully auditioned for the world-renowned Radio City Rockettes. This marked the start of her journey with the Christmas Spectacular casts, where she danced her way across the U.S. In 2012, she ascended to the New York Radio City Rockette cast, adding to her already impressive dance resume.

 

Raley’s performances have graced many notable platforms, including the Today Show, Wendy Williams Show, America’s Got Talent, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the Radio City Spring Spectacular. With over 9 years as a Rockette, she brings a wealth of professional experience to her teaching.

 

Raley is not just a seasoned performer but also a dedicated instructor, marking her 13th year at Gulf Coast Dance Alliance (GCDA). Her depth of experience, passion for dance, and commitment to sharing her knowledge make her a cherished member of our dance family.

Raley Zofko Zampieri

Teacher / Choreographer

Wendy Langham is a highly accomplished and versatile dance teacher with an impressive background in the world of dance and performing arts. Hailing from Mobile, AL, Wendy's passion for dance was ignited at a young age as she began her training at Sheffields School of Dance and Mobile Ballet. Under the tutelage of renowned instructors, she honed her skills and developed a deep understanding of various dance genres.

 

Wendy's love for dance led her to join her family's dance school, Green Acres School of Dance, where she began her teaching journey. With her innate talent and dedication, she quickly established herself as an exceptional instructor, nurturing aspiring dancers and instilling in them a profound appreciation for the art form. In 2013, Wendy took a significant step in her career by rebranding the studio as Southern Strutt, reflecting her commitment to creating a vibrant and inclusive environment for dancers of all ages and skill levels.

 

Throughout her illustrious career, Wendy's expertise extends beyond dance. She is also trained in baton twirling and competitive gymnastics, having achieved national recognition as a competitive gymnast under the esteemed guidance of Nasser's Gymnastics in Mobile. This diverse background in multiple disciplines allows Wendy to provide a well-rounded and comprehensive dance education to her students.

 

Recognized for her exceptional teaching abilities, Wendy has been honored with the prestigious title of Dance Teacher of the Year for an impressive seven consecutive years. This recognition not only acknowledges her technical proficiency but also speaks volumes about her unparalleled commitment to fostering growth, creativity, and excellence in her students.

 

Wendy's talent as a performer has graced renowned stages across the country. She has showcased her skills at prominent venues such as Six Flags in New Orleans, LA, Opryland in Nashville, TN, and had the privilege of performing the opening number at the televised Showstoppers East Coast National Finals. Her captivating stage presence and dynamic artistry have enthralled audiences and earned her widespread acclaim.

 

Additionally, Wendy has excelled in the realm of pageantry, where she has demonstrated her multifaceted abilities. Notably, she achieved the distinguished honor of being named a Top 10 Talent Winner in the Baldwin County Junior Miss competition, further exemplifying her versatility and talent as a performer.

 

With her wealth of experience, unwavering passion, and exceptional teaching skills, Wendy Langham continues to inspire and shape the next generation of dancers. Through her dedication, artistry, and commitment to excellence, she creates an environment where students can thrive and fulfill their potential, both on and off the dance floor. Wendy Langham is not just a dance teacher but a true mentor, guiding her students to discover their own passion for dance and nurturing their dreams along the way.

 

Wendy Langham

Teacher

Gear up for another year of exciting moves as we welcome Chassitie Smith back for her 9th year with GCDA! Chassitie, a true dance enthusiast, began her dance journey at the young age of seven and, twenty years on, she shows no signs of stopping. By the time she was 15, she was already assisting in teaching at the renowned dance convention Company Dance, working alongside industry heavyweights.

 

Following her graduation from Alma Bryant High School, Chassitie continued to dance, becoming a part of the dance team at Troy University's Sound of the South marching band. Her dancing prowess didn't stop there - in 2006, she clinched the National Title of Miss VIP at the National VIP Dance Competition in Panama City, Florida.

 

Dance has carried Chassitie far and wide, leading her to serve as a guest choreographer at Tribe Studio in Elba, Alabama, for a decade. She also played an integral role in devising competition choreography for the Tribe Dance Company.

 

Beyond the dance studio, Chassitie is a nurse. However, dance continues to hold a significant place in her life. Over the past twelve years, she has dedicated herself to teaching and choreographing various dance styles, including lyrical/contemporary, hip-hop, jazz, ballet/pointe, tap, acrobatics, and baton.

 

We're overjoyed to have Chassitie back at GCDA this year, and eagerly anticipate the fantastic moves she will undoubtedly bring to the dance floor!

Chassitie Smith

Teacher / Choreographer

Andrei Ivanko is a highly experienced gymnastics and tumbling instructor with a diverse background in the circus and performing arts industry. Born in Moscow, Russia, he began his career in 1976 and has since established himself as a renowned professional in his field.

 

From 1976 to 1980, Andrei trained extensively in acrobatics and juggling at the Professional Gymnastics School in Moscow, Russia. Following his training, he joined the Moscow Circus School, where he specialized in acrobatics and juggling from 1980 to 1987.

 

In 1987, Andrei became an acrobat and juggler in a five-person troupe led by Andrei Keruschen at the Russian State Circus. This role allowed him to showcase his talents across Russia, Japan, and France, gaining international recognition for his skills. He performed at prestigious venues such as the Bolshoi Circus in Nagoya, Japan, and the coliseum in Paris, France.

 

Throughout his career, Andrei has collaborated with various circus productions and organizations. Notably, he organized and led a five-person Russian juggling troupe, performed as a solo juggling act in Koriama, Japan for Paula Paul Productions, and showcased his talents at the Circus World Museum in Baraboo, WI.

 

In his current positions, Andrei continues to share his expertise and passion for gymnastics and tumbling. Since 1999, he has been serving as a Gymnastics and Tumbling Instructor at the Andrei Ivanko Gymnastics and Tumbling School in Moscow, Russia. Additionally, he holds two other present positions, starting from 2012 and 2019 respectively, where he continues to inspire and train students in the art of gymnastics and tumbling.

Andrei has also extended his teaching skills beyond Russia. He served as an Instructor/Coordinator of circus camps for kids at Cirque du Monde, both in Ocean Springs, MS and Spotlight Elite Dance Center in Pascagoula, MS. Furthermore, he has been a Tumbling and Juggling Instructor at Lanier's Gymnastics in Gulfport, MS, and the Conservatory of Dance Arts in Slidell, LA.

With his wealth of experience, Andrei Ivanko remains a respected figure in the world of gymnastics and tumbling, inspiring students and audiences alike with his remarkable skills and dedication.

Andrei Ivanko

Teacher

Teacher/Choreographer : Director & Founder

Ballet Director / Teacher

GCDA

Dance

Meet Brooke, the talented teacher and choreographer returning for her fifth year with GCDA! Brooke's love of dance started at just two years old when she began studying ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, modern and lyrical at Gale's Studio of Dance. She continued her dance journey as a member of Davidson High School's Kinetics Dance Company and went on to attend the University of Southern Mississippi where she received a BFA in Dance Education.

 

During her time at USM, Brooke was a member of the Dixie Darlings, Southern Misses Dance Team, and USM Repertory Dance Company. Her passion and dedication earned her the Outstanding Junior and Outstanding Dance Educator awards, as well as co-chair of the NDEO USM student chapter.

 

Brooke's teaching experience includes Dance Dynamics of Hattiesburg, Nora Davis Magnet School in Laurel, MS, Dunbar Creative and Performing Arts School, and currently at Fairhope Dance Collective at Fairhope High School. In 2013, she even had the incredible opportunity to present with USM dance faculty at the National Dance Education Organization national conference in Miami.

 

At GCDA, Brooke is excited to share her passion for dance and inspire her students to reach their full potential.

Performance Team Director / 

Teacher / Choreographer

Brooke Baggett Eubanks

Meet Meryl Hyderally, a devoted dancer and choreographer with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and Choreography from Southeastern Louisiana University. Her life's work has been dedicated to the study of ballet and related art forms, and she has an impressive resume to prove it.

 

Meryl has served as the Head Ballet Mistress for the Emerald Coast Ballet and has shared her expertise as a Ballet Teacher at Pensacola School of Ballet. She currently resides in Daphne, Alabama, where she is the proud mother of two talented athletes, Sophia, a college gymnast, and Hunter, a lacrosse player.

 

At Gulf Coast Dance Alliance, Meryl is thrilled to have the opportunity to teach and share her passion for ballet with the next generation of dancers. With her vast knowledge and experience, Meryl is sure to inspire and challenge her students to achieve their full potential. Join us in welcoming Meryl Hyderally to our talented team of instructors at Gulf Coast Dance Alliance!

Meryl Hyderally

Melissa Covo's remarkable voyage through the landscape of dance commenced in 1981. Her unwavering commitment and zeal have since then transformed her into a guiding light for budding dancers. With a nineteen-year-long journey in dance training at Robinson's School of Dance, Melissa secured her place as a charter member of the prestigious Lynn Robinson Dancers, sharpening her skills primarily in ballet and modern dance. Her exceptional talent didn't go unnoticed, earning her a scholarship to the esteemed American Dance Festival in 1999. Here, she was given the opportunity to collaborate with dance icons like Paul Taylor and Alvin Ailey.

 

Driven by her passion, Melissa chose The University of Southern Mississippi for her higher studies, where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance with a concentration in performance & choreography and a minor in Psychology. As part of the USM Dance Reparatory and the captain of the Dixie Darlings, Melissa had the privilege to perform and learn from internationally recognized dance companies, including the Alvin Ailey Dance Company and Paul Taylor Dancers.

 

Upon graduation, Melissa took the leap to explore opportunities in New York City and then in Raleigh, NC, where she undertook teaching assignments and collaborated with local dance companies. In 2006, she made her way back to Mobile, AL, imparting knowledge in ballet, tap, and jazz at the Old Shell Road School of Performing Arts before stepping into the role of Director of Ballet at a dance company in Fairhope, AL.

 

Today, Melissa is celebrated as the founder and owner of the Gulf Coast Dance Alliance in Spanish Fort, AL. She has also conducted lessons at The Summer Jazz intensive in Chicago, sharing her vast experience with other distinguished dance educators. Melissa's exceptional choreography over the past decade has been widely acclaimed, securing numerous awards and recognitions at the elite level, and thereby, reinforcing her stature as a master choreographer. Her contributions also extend to her community through her volunteer work as a choreographer for the Spanish Fort senior pageant.

 

Melissa's remarkable journey is a living testimony to the virtues of perseverance, dedication, and passion. She stands as an inspiring figure for young dancers worldwide, instilling in them the belief that with hard work and determination, their aspirations can indeed become a reality.

Melissa Patterson Covo

Instructor Profiles 

GCDA

Dance

GCDA Dance

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Sydni Adkinson is an accomplished hip-hop dance teacher with a remarkable journey that commenced at the age of 11 when she first stepped into the world of dance at Five Flags Dance Academy. By age 13, her passion for dance led her to transition into the realm of competitive dancing. She later became an integral member of Labelle Performing Arts, where she received comprehensive instruction in an array of dance styles, including ballet, tap, jazz, musical theatre, lyrical, contemporary, and hip hop.

 

It was within the captivating world of hip hop that Sydni found her true passion, prompting her to dedicate herself to intensive training under the expert guidance of Mikey Trasoras, the esteemed co-creator of Art of Movement. At the young age of 16, Sydni had the privilege of assisting in masterclasses, refining her choreography skills, and eventually embracing the role of a dance instructor.

 

Sydni's teaching journey has taken her across the United States, as she imparted her knowledge and expertise in various locations, from Wixon, Michigan, to multiple studios throughout theFlorida panhandle and Gulf Coast area. Through these experiences, she discovered an unwavering love for teaching and choreographing, which led her to eagerly embark on sharing her talent at numerous dance studios in her local area.

 

Witnessing her students' growth in both confidence and technical prowess is an immensely fulfilling experience for Sydni. Guiding her students along their dance journey, as they explore their own unique passions for this art form, brings her great joy and fulfillment. Sydni Adkinsoncontinues to make a profound impact as a hip-hop dance teacher, inspiring and nurturing young talents to thrive in the world of dance.