Heather Webb Jasso  is Summit Dance Academy's Co-Arstic Director and Team Director. Mrs. Jasso is also a third-generation dance teacher and studio owner. She was dancing before she could walk; and, aside from training with her mother, aunts, and grandparents (New York City Ballet), she has had the opportunity to travel and study under the dance “greats," Joe Tremaine, Brian Freidman, Tabitha, Mia Michaels, Terry Beaman, Dee Caspary, Wes Veldink, and David Scott. She has also performed key roles in ballets such as the Nutcracker, Snow White, Cinderella, and the Twelve Dancing Princesses. Heather is a title-winning dancer and choreographer at the regional and national level, winning numerous awards such as multiple FDC Judges’ Choice Awards, the Prime Time Scholarship Award, and World Dance Championship Invites in 2009 and 2011. Furthermore, she was awarded the Pulse Tour’s Teacher Scholarship in 2009 and was invited to compete in America’s Got Talent auditions in 2010. Heather was awarded Teacher of the Year in Panama City, Florida in 2011. Heather has also traveled the country and been an adjudicator for national dance competitions for 2013-2017. This last fall Ms. Webb Jasso was invited to adjudicate for Australia's Get The Beat International Competition.  Ms. Webb Jasso is so excited to invite you and your dancer to come share her passion for dance!

Ashley M. Nemeth is Summit Dance Academy's Co-Arstic Director and Ballet Director. Ms. Nemeth is from Denver, Colorado and has been teaching ballet for 14 years. Ms. Nemeth trained at The Academy of Colorado Ballet, The Academy of Russian Ballet, and Burklyn Ballet Theatre. While dancing, she performed numerous roles including; Lilac Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty, Soloist in Paquita, Spanish in The Nutcracker, and many original works by Elizabeth Shipiatsky, Robert Royce, Angela Whitehill, and Thom Clower. For the 2008-2009 season she was the Ballet Mistress with Western Arkansas Ballet of Fort Smith, Arkansas. She is currently in her 13th year as the Assistant to the Artistic Director and Ballet Mistress with Burklyn Ballet Theatre, under the direction of Joanne Whitehill. With Burklyn Ballet Theatre, she has traveled numerous times to Scotland to perform in The Edinburgh Festival Fringe.  For the past three years, she has produced and directed her own full-length production of The Nutcracker. Her students have gone on to dance professionally and to dance in college dance programs such as Colorado State University, The University of Arizona, and The University of Oklahoma. As Co-Owner of Summit Dance Academy she is looking forward to inspiring her students and building a studio that that will continue to thrive in years to come!




Kelly Amadeo is Summit Dance Academy’s Children’s Program Director and Competition Team Communications Administrator. Kelly has an extensive background in child and adolescent development, education, and dance instruction. Kelly is a licensed teacher in the state of Colorado, has a bachelor’s degree in childhood education, and a master’s degree in elementary education. She danced and performed at the advanced level at Colorado State University while obtaining her degrees. Kelly teaches classroom management, communication, and education courses at a local university in her spare time. Kelly was trained in the Russian Ballet Technique and is knowledgeable about a variety of styles and schools of dance. Her areas of specialty included pas de deux, pointe, ballet, and children’s dance. Kelly studied dance at Ballet Northwest, Perry-Mansfield, Colorado State University, and Colorado Ballet. She was also a company member of a traveling dance company that taught elementary students around the western states about the history of dance. Kelly has performed lead roles in The Firebird, Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Dracula, Beauty and the Beast, Robin Hood, and many others in her 30 years of dance.  She has choreographed and directed dance productions including the Nutcracker. Her pedagogy of dance education is that all children can master skills in dance to build a solid foundation for a lifetime of dance through fun, safe, consistent, and structured education. She encourages students and parents to build respectful relationships with each other and their instructors to create a safe and enjoyable environment for all. 

Susan Beens is Summit Dance Academy's Tumbling, Strength, Fitness Director. Ms. Fitness USA 2009. She is a Colorado native, but spent time in Nashville getting her undergraduate degree in business.  While in Nashville, she opened a gymnastics facility. She trained a level 10 gymnast to the national championships, level 8s and 9s to state and regional championships, and had several TOPS national qualifiers.  Susan also worked with a handful of junior fitness competitors and took them to local and national level shows.  She has been teaching tumbling and acro for dance, along with strength and flexibility for many years.  She was a competitive gymnast, stopping at level 9. Susan also trained in ballet, jazz, and lyrical at The Durango Ballet Academy. 

Heather Palumbo has taught jazz, hip hop, and tap to ages three to adult for over 19 years. She was a part of the Dance Motion Performing Company at Bender Performing Arts in Phoenix, Arizona.  Being a member of the company gave her the opportunity to train under and work with Ryan Cyphert, Tina Caspary (West Coast Dance Explosion/SHOCK Intensive), and Jeff "Phi" Nguyen (member of the Jabbawockeez-MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew).  She was awarded UDA All-American Dancer and traveled with the National Dance Alliance for two years before getting her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Arizona State University with a minor in dance education.  She was also a professional dancer for Applause Dance Productions and choreographed for many local high schools, dance studios, theater shows, and competition groups in Arizona receiving numerous awards.  Many of her students have gone on to do professional work in Arizona, New York, and Los Angeles and have been featured on So You Think You Can Dance. Heather holds a Master’s Degree in Bilingual/Multicultural Education and is currently a K-5 English Language Acquisition Specialist in the Cherry Creek School District.  Heather’s main goal for her students is to develop a love and respect for the art of dance while increasing their self-esteem.  Heather is also a wife and mother of two amazing boys named Christian and Hudson.  ​

Ellen Collison is a graduate of Northern Illinois University with her BFA in Theatre with an emphasis in Dance Performance where she received training with equal emphasis in ballet and modern. She interned with Ballet Concerto of Fort Worth, TX in 2013 where she worked with renowned choreographer Luis Montero performing as a soloist in his works. She was also a member of Kim Robards Dance of Aurora, CO from June of 2014 to April of 2015.  She has taught for various studios throughout Denver and the Chicagoland areas. Ellen has spent her past three summers with Burklyn Ballet Theatre in Johnson, VT. She was a counselor for the summers of 2013 and 2014, as well as assisting with BBT’s Intermediate program in 2014, and directing the program in 2015.


Colby Foss began his dance training in Fargo, ND at 15. He attended summer programs on full scholarship with Milwaukee Ballet, Boston Ballet, Queen City Ballet, and River North Chicago Dance Company.  He graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Arizona in 2008 with a BFA in dance. Since graduating, Colby has danced professionally at Ballet Nouveau Colorado and Wonderbound for 7 seasons. He has also been a principle artist with Central City Opera, and has worked with choreographers such as Ma Cong, Mark Godden, Alex Ketley, Maurya Kerr, and Danny Pelzig. Colby is will be teaching Improv, Contemporary and Partnering.

Melanie Haug is Summit Dance Academy's Business Manager. Ms. Haug has over 20 years of experience and a Masters in Business.  Melanie is a financial and business management expert.  Her experience includes working for organizations in the public and private sector, as well as, not-for-profit sector.  She is a strong business leader and trusted advisor in her profession and has been instrumental in her contribution to operational goals and client and personnel relations.  Melanie has a solid understanding of the dance world as she grew up dancing and has three daughters who have all danced competitively.  She also has previous experience in assisting in the launch of a dance studio.  Additionally, Melanie owns her own business and has a solid understanding of what it takes to get a business started from the floor up.  As the Business Manager of Summit Dance, Melanie is committed to providing the highest quality services to its clients and helping to develop a solid infrastructure for rapid growth.  Melanie will be responsible for all financial aspects of the business.   She will be your main point of contact with any billing questions. 

Guest Faculty

About Us

Our Vision

Co-Directors

In House Faculty

Providing artistic excellence driven to enrich and inspire students through prestigious and progressive dance education intended to develop strong technique and a love of the arts.

Lisa Hess Jones a native of Amarillo, Texas; Ms. Hess trained with her parents, Neil and Camille Hess.  Further training included the San Francisco Ballet, Harkness Ballet, School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theatre.  Ms. Hess joined New York City Ballet in 1975 and later became a soloist.  She danced with Nureyev and Friends, was a guest artist with Sydney Ballet in Australia and toured Asia with Stars of the American Ballet.  In 1989, Ms. Hess became involved with the Carlisle Project allowing her to create choreography for professional dancers and for the Northeast Regional Dance Festival and the Southwest Regional Dance Festival.  She has created works for ballet companies around the country such as Annapolis Ballet Theatre, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Brigham Young University, and West Texas State University.

 Alexia Hess-Sheehan  studied ballet in Amarillo, Texas. At age 10, she received a scholarship to the American Ballet Theatre. The following year, she studied at the world-renowned School of American Ballet in New York City. She joined the New York City Ballet in 1979, working with choreographers George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins. Alexia Hess-Sheehan made her Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning “Jerome Robbins Broadway,” playing Maria in West Side Story. Other Broadway credits are “110 In The Shade,” “Phantom of the Opera” and “Carousel.” Alexia relocated to New Jersey in 1996 and has been teaching in the area for many years.


Jillana Hess Webb is Artistic directress of the Salt Lake Dance Center. Ms. Webb moved to Salt Lake City following her career training and performing with the New York City Ballet, the Chicago Opera Ballet, and the Particia McBride Ballet Company. Ms. Webb also majored in ballet at the University of Utah, as well as performing with Ballet West. Ms. Webb received her first scholarship at the age of 10 to the San Francisco Ballet School. Scholarships followed to the American Ballet Theatre and the New York City Ballet. During her career, Ms. Webb received contract offers with the Frankfurt Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Ballet Met. She has performed in ballets such as "The Nutcracker," "Symphony in C," "Concerto Borocco", "The Four Seasons," "Coppelia," and many others. She was fortunate to train under the truly great teachers of our time, including George Balanchine, Alexandria Danilova, Suki Shorer, and Harold Christensen. Ms. Webb has been a guest teacher for the Oklahoma Dance Masters Association and has been selected as a judge for National competitions.

Joanne Whitehill became Artistic Director of Burklyn Ballet Theatre in 2003. At 17 she was asked to join Vermont Ballet Theatre Company. She went on to dance professionally as a soloist with Allegro Dance Theatre, Nevada Dance Theatre, Oregon Ballet Theatre and as a guest Artist with New England Ballet Company as well as a Soloist with The Scottish American Ballet. She grew up in Connecticut dancing with Connecticut Ballet and New Haven Ballet.  She has a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and a Minor in dance. It was during her summers at Burklyn Ballet Theatre where she was inspired to create her ballet Midnight Blue, which received acclaim at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland. In 2001, her co-choreography for “Cinderella and the Flower Fairies” was the recipient of The Scotman’s Readers’ Choice award for “Best Dance and Physical Theatre” on the Fringe. She served as a judge for the Artistic Dance, Inc. “Raising the Barre” Competition and local studio competitions. She serves as Vice President and Artistic Advisor on the New England Ballet Company Board of Directors.Type your paragraph here.


Sarah Tallman holds a BA with honors in Dance Performance and Choreography from the University of Northern Colorado, where she was the two-time recipient of the esteemed honor of Dancer of the Year. She has participated in the Inside ODC Professional Workshop, Baardar Dance Institute in Oslo, Norway and Perry- Mansfield Performing Arts School. Sarah has danced with David Taylor Dance Theatre, Kim Robards Dance, Lynn Barr, and Gleich Dances Contemporary Ballet. Off- season, Sarah has been a Principal Artist with Central City Opera performing in Carmen, “Anna II” in Seven Deadly Sins and “Dream Laurey” in Oklahoma!. Since joining Wonderbound, Sarah has danced leading roles in Garrett Ammon’sSmile, When the Power Goes Out, Intersection, Rock Ballets,Vagabond Hill, and Love in the Digital Age, as well as Dawn Fay’s Like An Onion. Sarah has been featured in world premiers by Alex Ketley, Maurya Kerr, Amy Seiwert, Mark Godden, Ma Cong and Lauri Stallings. An accomplished choreographer, she has created several works for Wonderbound including See Yourself, In Between Seams, and most recently Intimate Letters. Sarah has taught and created works for Wonderbound’s affiliated school CCD, and has directed the Intermediate Program at Burklyn Ballet Theatre.  


​Mallauri Esquibel a native of Colorado moved to Los Angeles at the age of 17, right away started working with choreographers such as Tina D’Amato, Mark Meismer, Doug Caldwell, and Brian Friedman. Mallauri was a principle dancer for Mark Meismers professional company Evolution where she worked along side Dee Caspary, Justin Giles, Jason Parsons, and Liz Imperio. She then moved to Utah to be a featured dancer in the well respected company Odyssey Dance Theater, where she did shows in Utah, as well as a week at the Ailey center in New York City, a European tour, and had the opportunity to perform at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. Mallauri has assisted Tyce Diorio on Season 2-9 of So You Think You Can dance. Can also be seen dancing on Dancing with the stars, Jimmy Kimmel, Good Morning America, VH1 Divas, Glee, House, Bones, Warren the ape, Cold Case, High school Musical 1, 2 and 3.  She is the featured ballerina in the remake of the legendary 80′s movie FAME. She was also the animated body double for the princess and the frog for Disney’s The Princess and the Frog. She has danced for Artists such as Paula Abdul, Joss Stone, Jordin Sparks, The Gypsy Kings, Florence and the Machine, and Leona Lewis. She toured around the world with AR Rahman, and the opportunity to perform with him for his win of the Nobel Peace Prize. Mallauri was a featured ensemble as well as dance captain for the Broadway musical “Wonderland” choreographed by Marguerite Derricks. She had the opportunity to featured on the cover of the December issue of Dance spirit. She recently finished the 1st national tour of the Frank Sinatra show “Come Fly Away” choreographed by Twyla Tharp. You can see Mallauri as a series regular on the ABC family TV series “Bunheads” as well as dancing in the new movie “Behind the Candleabra” Starring Michael Douglass and Matt Damon. She was also cast as one of the principle dancers for the remake of Dirty Dancing that has recently been postponed. She is anxiously waiting to get back into the studio with Mr. Kenny Ortega. Mallauri is currently on the RED world tour with Taylor Swift. Although Mallauri loves being on the stage her heart is in teaching. Her knowledge of training and technique has taken her around the US, Canada, Japan, Germany and London.

​Cat Cogliandro, a native of Houston, Texas, received her BFA in Dance from SUNY Purchase. Since then, she has worked with choreographers such as Al Blackstone, Tyce Diorio, Mike Esperanza, Talia Favia, Jason Gorman, Nicole Hogg, Juliette Irons, Sonya Tayeh, Teddy Tedholm, and Jaci Royal. Cat's credits include So You Think You Can Dance, America's Got Talent, The 2014 Gypsy Awards,and The Pulse on Tour. She was also named one of Dance Spirit Magazine's "13 of the Dance World's Hottest Young Choreographers" in the November 2014 issue.
Cat is currently on faculty at Broadway Dance Center and The Edge, and guest teaches at studios such as Millennium Dance Complex (LA and Pittsburgh), Peridance, Movement Lifestyle. She also taught forThe Pulse on Tour Annual Teacher Workshop, Wild Dance Intensive and Turn It Up Dance Challenge. Cat's work has been presented at The Young Choreographers Festival, Young! Tanzsommer, Sirens After Dark, Jared Grimes's Feel Good, Dancin' Downtown at The Joyce, Riverside Church, RAW at The Cutting Room, Dixon Place and The Pulse Showcase Finale in New York City. Cat now travels between LA and New York, as she continues to teach nationally and internationally, and is in the process of starting her own company, catastrophe!.

About Summit Dance Academy

At Summit Dance Academy in Parker, Colorado we have year round, ballet and pre-ballet programs in addition to jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary, modern, acro and tap. Please call for information or email us at info@summitdanceacademy.com.

Our directors' students have received and are continually awarded scholarships to university and college dance programs such as AMDA, Brigham Young University, University of Utah, Snow College, Rick's College, Colorado State University, University of Arizona, University of Oklahoma, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Texas Tech and the College of Eastern Utah. Graduated students have worked as Rockettes and on cruise lines. Many former students have also received scholarships and have been accepted into summer programs such as American Ballet Theater, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Burklyn Ballet, San Francisco Ballet and Joffrey Ballet/Jazz summer program