Teachers

jessica lighthartJessica Lighthart

Jessica Lighthart is from Boca Raton, FL, where she trained with Boca Ballet Theatre under the direction of Dan Guin and Jane Tyree. While at Boca Ballet Theatre, Jessica danced in Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, Les Sylphides, Coppelia, La Bayadere and much more. Jessica, a graduate from the College of Charleston, has been teaching at Ballet Aca­demy of Charleston for 10 years. She has recently completed the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet Academy Teacher Certification Program in New York City. Jessica lives in James Island with her husband and children.

 

lesliejonesLeslie Jones

Leslie Jones holds an MFA in Dance from Texas Woman’s University and a BFA in Dance and Minor in Music from the University of Central Oklahoma. During college, Leslie performed with UCO’s Kaleidoscope Dance Company across the Midwest and at the Performaticá Festival in Puebla, Mexico and later with Oklahoma City’s modern and aerial dance company, Perpetual Motion Dance. Leslie’s choreography has been presented at the World AIDS Day ceremony in Oklahoma City, and at the {254} Festival in Texas. She enjoys teaching various levels of ballet, modern, tap, and creative dance as well as lecture classes including Dance Appreciation and Dance, Gender, & Culture. Leslie has also served as an adjudicator for the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute ballet program and as a Teaching Artist for Oklahoma’s Arts Adventure Summer Camp. After graduate school, Leslie moved to Charleston to teach dance in public schools and in 2015, she joined the adjunct dance faculty at the College of Charleston, as well as our team.

 

Douglas Smoak

Douglas Smoak studied with Robert Ivey Ballet in Charleston before attending the University of North Carolina School of the Arts for dance.  With Robert Ivey Ballet, he performed in Russia, Denmark, Spain and S. America.  While at UNCSA, he participated in a student exchange program in Budapest, Hungary.  He began his professional career with Nevada Dance Theatre, and then moved on to Florida, where he danced professionally with Sarasota Ballet and Ballet Eddy Toussaint. Mr. Smoak began teaching while in Florida, and continued teaching upon his return to South Carolina.  Several dance schools in the Tricounty area have benefited from his instruction, and he currently teaches at Ballet Academy of Charleston. For the past several years, Mr. Smoak has served as the Community Coordinator for the Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, preparing the local children’s cast of 60 to 120 dancers.

 

Delaney Shorb

Delaney Shorb grew up in York, Pennsylvania and began her dance training at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. She danced with the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet for ten years where she had the opportunity to perform many of George Balanchine’s works including The Nutcracker, Serenade, and Stars and Stripes in addition to other original works of guest choreographers. After graduating high school, Delaney continued her dance training and education at Point Park University on scholarship where she received a bachelor’s degree in dance with a concentration in ballet.
Delaney spent a year dancing professionally with Ballet Austin, as a fellowship dancer, where she performed in Stephen Mills’ production of The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty and as well as many fellowship performances for the community. She has also worked as a guest artist for Lake Erie Ballet and Baltimore Ballet. Delaney has attended many summer intensives on scholarship including; Pacific Northwest Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Ballet Austin and Charlotte Ballet. Delaney  currently dances for Ballet Evolution of Charleston and is going into her second season with the company.

 

Sarah Bowdoin

Sarah Bowdoin  first began her classical ballet training in Houston, Texas. As a pre-professional, she had the opportunity to tour internationally twice with Kingwood Dance Theatre in Austria, Italy, and Germany as a cast member of Young! Tanzsommer. After high school, she went on to study dance at The University of Oklahoma, graduating with a BFA in Ballet Performance from the College of Fine Arts. In addition, Sarah completed a second degree in Organizational Studies, particularly designed for running non-profit arts organizations. Sarah spent a year as an Apprentice with Charlotte Ballet, where she performed choreography by Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux and worked closely with Mark Diamond and 2014 Kennedy Center Honoree Patricia McBride. Sarah has received additional training at the intensives of Kansas City Ballet, Ballet West, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Carolina Ballet, and the Académie Américaine de Danse de Paris in Paris, France. Sarah will be dancing with Ballet Evolution of Charleston for the 2017/2018 season. She is also a Registered Yoga Teacher.

 

Rebekah Lyons

Rebekah Lyons graduated from the SC Governor’s School for the Arts as a dance major and went on to join the professional touring dance company of Ballet Magnificent as an apprentice in Jackson, Mississippi. Growing up, she trained with Atlanta Ballet, Myrtle Beach School of Performing Arts, the Draper Center for Dance Education in Rochester, NY, and completed RAD (Royal Academy of Dance) training at Coastal Youth Ballet Theater.  She also trained at Richmond Ballet and Charlotte Ballet and has been teaching dance the past eight years in several places throughout SC, NC and MS. She began working as a dance enrichment partner for Charleston County Schools in January 2017.  Rebekah is currently working on a double major in Elementary Education and Dance with a minor in Russian at the College of Charleston.

Rebecca Smith

Rebecca Smith danced with the Charleston Ballet Theatre for 3 years before sustaining multiple injuries that forced her to end her career early.  She loves to teach and continously takes courses and certifications to grow as a ballet teacher. She teaches some of our Creative Movement classes and also regularly subs for other  classes. In addition, she is the assistant to the director and takes care of the many administrative tasks for Ballet Academy of Charleston.