Born in Annapolis, MD, Meredith Reffner-Callender grew in the Baltimore/D.C. area. From a young age she studied the Cecchetti method of ballet and won numerous awards such as Dance Masters of America's Junior Miss Dance, the East Coast Cecchetti Council scholarship, and the National Cecchetti Council of America scholarship two summers in a row. At 13, she decided to put her primary focus on ballet and attended the Washington School of Ballet in Washington, D.C. There she trained with such world renowned teachers as Lupe Serrano, Patricia Berrend, Rudolf Kharatian and Mary Day, She would then spend her summers at the School of American Ballet in NYC and the Chautauqua Institute, dancing with their Festival and professional ballet companies. While finishing up her last years of schooling, Meredith was awarded with the Maryland Distinguished Scholar in the Arts award, a Level 1 award from the National YoungArts Foundation and the highly prestigious Presidential Scholar of the Arts award which won her an invitation to perform for and meet President Clinton. After graduating high school, Meredith started her professional career with the Washington Ballet, where she had the opportunity to work with Ms. Suzanne Farrell and perform in the Kennedy Center's 25th Anniversary celebration. She then moved on to work for Paul Mejia at the Fort Worth Dallas Ballet in Texas where she performed several soloist and principal roles. Later, she moved back to the east coast to work with the Pennsylvania Ballet in Philadelphia, again having the opportunity to perform several soloist and principal roles. Some of Meredith's favorite roles include the Siren in George Balanchine's Prodigal Son, the Swan in Chris Wheeldon's Carnival of the Animals, and Coffee in George Balanchine's The Nutcracker. Meredith retired from the stage in 2010 but continues to teach in the Philadelphia region. Between her classes, she can be found enjoying her free time with her husband, fellow dancer/teacher Rick Callender, and their two daughters.
Rick Callender is from Miami, Florida and began his training with Marta Mahr School of Ballet and New World School of the Arts. He then moved to Seattle to study at the Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He later took a position with the Washington Ballet in Washington, D.C. After working at the Fort Worth Dass Ballet (Texas Ballet Theater) for five seasons, he moved to Philadelphia. Rick has also danced with the Suzanne Farrell Ballet Company, Pennsylvania Ballet, Ballet X, Miro Dance, Jeanne Ruddy Dance, Brandywine Ballet, and many others in the Philadelphia area. He has gotten to perform many wonderful roles and has enjoyed performing around the world.
Wayne St. David
Wayne St. David is the head of the Jazz/Theater Dance department at the University of The Arts in Philadelphia. He has been an ambassador for the arts and culture for over 30 years. Wayne has interjected his vigorous and dynamic jazz technique into musical theater and concert dance productions throughout the nation and internationally wide. He has received numerous honors for his efforts including the Cultures Build Communities Ground Award, Independence Foundation Cross-Cultural Movements and Ground Arts Fellowship Award, the Pew Charitable Trusts Dance Advance Program Fellowship Award, the Pennsylvania Humanities Council Fellowship Award, Faculty Award for Unwavering Commitment to Dance Education and the Mary Louise Beitzel Award for Distinguished Teaching. Wayne has a BFA in Dance from the University of the Arts.
Ms. Crystal holds a degree in Dance from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia where she is now a faculty member. Television credits include the VH1 Fashion Awards with Macy Gray, The BET Awards with Will & Jada Pinkett Smith, BET’s Comicview, Lip Service and Global Groove on MTV, Monk, and the feature film Beloved. Live stage credits include The Groovaloos Show in LA, the Italy Tour with Kathy Sledge, Illadelph Legends, and Crystal was a featured dancer and choreographer for recording artist Jill Scott’s Big Beautiful Tour. Crystal’s choreography has been featured with Garden State Dance Festival, Philadelphia 76ers Dance Team, Drexel University, Earl Mosley Institute of the Arts, Hip Hop Extravaganza in Bermuda, Taipei University of the Arts in Taiwan, Cruzan Dance in St. Croix, and Encore Danses en Tourneau in Canada. She was a co-founder of the Montazh Performing Arts Company and continues to perform with the Rennie Harris Puremovement dance company while also teaching for several dance organizations. With her broad range of talents and impeccable classes, Crystal is a valued member of the Dancers Inc. Competition family, where she has been a director since season one. Bravo Dance Center is proud to have Ms. Crystal as a Guest Choreographer for the Competition Team.
Gianna "Gia" Martello is the assistant choreographer at Abby Lee Dance Company. She is a dancer, teacher and choreographer from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She started dancing at the age of four. Her raw talent and intensive training under the direction of Abby Lee Miller and the faculty at Reign Dance Prodcutions earned her numerous titles as well as regional and national high score awards at competitions as a child. At the age of 16, Gianna began choreographing routines alongside Ms. Miller as well as on her own which led her to discover her passion for teaching and choreography. Her award-winning routines have earned her much recognition throughout the convention circuit. Most recently, she co-choreographed Alexx Calise’s, “Cry” music video and appears as the onscreen choreographer and cast member of Lifetime’s hit reality series, Dance Moms.
Matthew Prescott, born and raised in Idaho, graduated high school from Interlochen Arts Academy and attended the inaugural year of the Joffrey/New School University in New York City. In 2000, he joined the Joffrey Ballet for a number of years before setting out as a freelance artist. Working as a freelancer, Matthew has worked and performed with Donald Byrd’s Spectrum Dance Theater, Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet, Ballet NY, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Amanda Miller, The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, The Alabama Ballet, Armitage Gone! Dance, BalletX, The Lyric Opera of Chicago, Morphoses the Wheeldon Company, and Dance Theatre of Harlem. Matthew was featured in Robert Altman’s film The Company. Matthew has choreographed works performed by Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Chamber Dance Project, the Joffrey Ballet School, BalletX, Interlochen Arts Academy, for Misty Copeland for Prince’s Coming to America 2010 Madison Square Garden performances, as well as the Vail International Dance Festival. Matthew was the Resident Choreographer on the national tour of Billy Elliot as well as performing the roll of Older Billy. Matthew made his Broadway debut on Broadway in the cast of Phantom of the Opera. Matthew is currently the Artistic Director for the Joffrey Ballet School’s Summer Intensive.
Samuel Antonio Reyes
Mr. Sammy graduated from The University of the Arts in 2000. While at UArts, he received the Cushman Acting Award and the ensemble theater award for his outstanding achievements in dramatic arts. After college, Sammy continued his dance training with Ronen Koresh, Rennie Harris and Kip Martin. He was rehearsal director and member of dance theater X, directed by Charles O. Anderson. He recently completed touring the nation with television and radio artist Raven Simone. Sammy continues to choreograph independently for numerous events including the opening of the Philadephia Gay Pride Event at the Kimmel Center in May 2001. He has also worked with the Prince Music Theatre, the Cat Scratch Theater Company, Luna Theater and Jeffrey Marsh La Cabaret. Recently, he was commissioned to choreograph for Zen One Dance Collective, Montazh Dance Company, Darimar Productions, the singing group BADD and the New Jersey Garden State Arts Festival from 2004-07. Sammy is currently a teacher of jazz and hip hop all over the Philadelphia area and is currently an instructor at Temple University. Bravo Dance Center is proud to have Mr. Sammy as a Guest Choreographer for the Competition Team.
Ziegler began dancing at the age of two and currently attends the Abby Lee Dance Company. She has won numerous titles at regional, state, and national levels in the dance world. Since 2011, she has starred on Lifetime's Dance Moms a program that documents the day-to-day lives of the young dancers on the Abby Lee Dance Company Elite Competition Team. On the program, Ziegler appears alongside her mother and younger sister, Mackenzie. In 2012, Ziegler landed her first professional acting job, portraying the character of Young Deb on the Lifetime series Drop Dead Diva. She continues her acting career with guests spots on the Disney Channel series Austin & Ally. Ziegler has appeared in music videos for artists including Alexx Calise, Sia, and Todrick Hall. Sia's "Chandelier", which Ziegler stars in, received nominations at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards for Video of the Year and Best Choreography, winning the latter. The video was also nominated for Grammy Award for Best Music Video at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. Ziegler later starred with Shia LaBeouf in "Elastic Heart", also by Sia. Since the release of "Chandelier", Ziegler has performed on several shows, including The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dancing with the Stars, and Saturday Night Live, as well as at the 2014 Hollywood Bowl. On February 8, 2015, alongside Sia and Kristen Wiig, Ziegler performed at the nationally televised 57th Annual Grammy Awards.