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Instructors

Kelly McDermott, Director

Kelly has been teaching dance and choreographing performances for over 20 years. She is trained in Tap, Ballet, Jazz, Hip-hop, and Modern. After graduating from the Somerset County Gifted and Talented Dance Program with Honors, Kelly was a dance instructor for several Gotta Dance studio locations and managed a dance team that performed throughout New Jersey. In 2002, Kelly opened the The Dance Factory in Skillman, NJ. As the Artistic Director and Head Dance Instructor at The Dance Factory, Kelly directs over 700 students each year in wonderful, Broadway-style productions held at Patriots Theatre at the War Memorial in Trenton, NJ.

Kelly also has a passion for and extensive experience in the theater; her choreography credits include "Seussical", "Willy Wonka", "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang", "Footloose", and "Shrek" with the Sourland Hills Actors Guild (SHAG), "All Shook Up" with the MHS Players, and "Annie Jr.", "The Music Man", "Bye, Bye Birdie", “My Son Pinocchio”, and “The Little Mermaid” with the Montgomery LMS.

Kelly believes strongly in giving back to the community. In summer 2007 she created The Dance Factory Tour Team, which includes two Summer Teams and a Holiday Team. After teaching exciting routines to her dancers, Kelly and the team travel to the VA Hospital, Senior Centers, Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Centers throughout Somerset County and Mercer County to spend time with and perform for residents. The Summer Tour Team also performs at the Somerset Patriots pre-game activities twice during the summer months.

Kelly is fiercely passionate about dance and her students. She prides herself on running a comprehensive, multi-level dance program that is fun, inclusive, and educational for each and every student.

 

Caroline Hidalgo

Caroline joined the Dance Factory staff in 2009 as Ballet Mistress. Caroline trained at the New Jersey School of Ballet from a young age and performed in numerous roles in the New Jersey Ballet Company's "Nutcracker", as well as "Cinderella". She has also performed several roles in the Ft. Worth Ballet Company's production of "Cinderella". In 1994, she was selected as one of twelve dancers in New Jersey to attend the Governor's School of the Arts. Caroline received a BFA in Dance from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University.

Caroline has been teaching dance since 1995 and feels passionately about always growing as an educator and learning any new techniques or processes which can help her guide her students to their highest potentials. She is a certified "Dance Educator of America" with high honors. She is also certified to teach the Vaganova (Russian) method of ballet.

 

Megan McDermott

Megan is a 2015 graduate of Montclair State University with a BFA in Dance. She also trained at the Somerset County Vo-Tech in the gifted and talented dance program. Megan danced professionally with Clair Porter.

Megan teaches Dance Factory Modern classes, Leaps and Turns, as well as our Young Dancer through Advanced Jazz and Tap classes. Megan co-directs The Dance Factory Summer and Holiday Tour Teams and choreographs many memorable routines that are showcased at venues around the community, including the Somerset Patriots' baseball pre-game activities. She has been assisting and/or teaching pre-school dance classes and summer camps for over 8 years.

 

Jj Montell

Jermaine Montell "Jj" has been a successful professional actor and dancer for over 20 years. During his extensive career, Jj has worked all over the world and has toured and danced with the likes of Toni Braxton, Tevin Campbell, Brandy, Will Smith, Deborah Cox, Brian McKnight, Dru Hill, and Jesse Powell, among others. Also as a dancer, he has appeared in movies such as Clueless, Friends with Benefits, the soon to be feature Bolden! And the Netflix series The Get Down. His theater credits include Finding Nemo: The Musical and Off-Broadway Radiant Baby, directed by the Tony-winning director George C. Wolf and choreographed by Tony nominee John Carrafa.

As a hip-hop and street jazz teacher, Jj has worked at dance studios such as Peridance and Broadway Dance Center. Currently, he teaches weekly at 305 Fitness in NYC and at The Dance Factory. Jermaine is a member of SAG/AFTRA and AEA.

 

Megan Pfau

Megan, originally from VA, began her training at Barton and Williams School of Dance, Ltd. She went on to pursue a BFA in Dance at George Mason University's School of Dance. Megan was honored to perform the works of Lar Lubovitch, Daniele Ezralow, Kate Skarpetowska, Susan Marshall, and Twyla Tharp. Megan continued to teach dance at her hometown studio and took classes in Washington D.C. and NYC.

Like many dancers, Megan recognized the therapeutic value of self-expression through movement. Megan has a Masters in Creative Arts in Therapy from Drexel University with a concentration in Dance/Movement Therapy. Upon her graduation, she moved to NJ and began teaching at The Dance Factory in 2013. Megan specializes in Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, and Tap. She seeks to educate her students not only on technique, but also on effort qualities and developing their own artistry and confidence with self-expression.

Megan is currently developing an inclusion program for children and adolescents with special needs to provide traditional dance classes with the hopes to transition them into the regular classroom setting. Megan believes there are fewer things more beautiful than seeing children with all abilities dance on stage.

 

Danica Sharpley

Danica has over 12 years of experience teaching dance to students age 3 to adult in all dance genres and experience levels. She has choreographed many routines from solo performances to small ensembles to large scale numbers.

Danica began her dance training at Wendi Sue Porter School of Dance at 8 years old. With a passion for dance, she learned Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Modern and Hip Hop. She competed in dance competitions and workshops throughout the tri-state area with her first professional experience in 2005 with Rutgers University's African Dance Ensemble under the choreographer Pascal. While attending Montclair State University as a biology major and dance minor, Danica danced at Six Flags Great Adventure and throughout the country with Silver Tree Productions in 2006-2008 in the pop-fusion, "STOMP" type show, "Industrial Movement". Danica joined a local Hip-Hop group, "Fast FWD", and performed in venues throughout the state. In 2010, she became a NJ Nets dancer, performing at NBA basketball games and charity events. Danica also recently performed and danced in a Michael Jackson Charity Tribute Performance in south Jersey.

Danica teaches the Dance Factory Intensive Program, the Dance Factory Showstopper Dance Company, and is the coach of the Dance Factory Elite Performance Company (DFEPC).