Your local dance studio for more than 35 years
Call: 703-759-5652
760 Walker Rd, Village Centre
Great Falls, VA 22066
School Of Theatrical Dance
Theresa D'Alessandro, Founder/Director

Our Faculty in Great Falls, VA

Learn More about Our Founder

Theresa D'Alessandro, Founder and Artistic Director/ Director of Upper School

Theresa has been in the teaching profession for more than 30 years. Her formal ballet training began in the early 60s with Solange Binda at the Ballet Academy of Northern Virginia. This is the person Theresa thanks for making childhood dance a nurturing and inspiring experience.

At age 9, Theresa danced in the National Ballet's "Nutcracker." She went on to study at the Washington School of Ballet under Mary Day, Julio DeBettencourt, and Martin Buchner. She received her BA in Dance from Mary Washington University. After opening the school, she continued to pursue her performing career.

Theresa danced with the Washington Opera Ballet for 5 seasons at the Kennedy Center, working with such world-renowned choreographers as Baayork Lee, Donald Sadler, and Brian Macdonald. She was 1 of 4 dancers in Ring Around the Moon at Arena Stage.

For 10 years, Theresa was a member and soloist with the Modern Dance Company, KHG Dance Theatre. Through the years, she has choreographed numerous original ballets, such as "From Amber to Blue," "Cuban Overture," "Equisses de Royaute," "Brandenberg Concerto," "The Little Mermaid," "La Fortuna," "Come Spring," "Bach," "Firebird," and "Seasons," as well as Modern Dance suites, and Jazz and Tap Revues.

Theresa has also worked in television, acting and choreographing for the Korean EBS network, as well as being a voice actor for radio and video. She is registered with the Royal Academy of Dancing and AGMA. Theresa has a son, Tommy, "a joy in constant motion."
Kris Beery, Assistant Director/Director of Children’s Classes
Kris was a student for seven years and teaching assistant at The School of Theatrical Dance before receiving a scholarship to Shenandoah University. Her studies included Ballet, Modern Jazz, Choreography, Biomechanics and Kinesiology, and she graduated summa cum laude with a B.F.A. in Dance Performance from the school conservatory. Kris is currently a member of the Kathy Harty Gray Dance Theater, performing several times a year. She has taught Ballet and Jazz at Northern Virginia Community College and dance for theater at Burgundy Farm Country Day School. Kris has been a choreographer for 10 years. In 2001 Kris created her first full children’s Ballet, Jazz and Tap work, “Beauty and The Beach", followed by “Toy Box,” “Happy Birthday Doctor” a tribute to Dr. Seuss and “One Magical Day”. In Fall 2003 she was invited to appear at Shenandoah University as a guest soloist. Kris has a son, Jack ,daughter, Peyton and husband Michael.
Carol Hallman - Tap Director
Carol holds a B.A. from Mary Washington College, and an M.A. from George Mason University. Carol’s mother was with NYC Ballet and toured with Balanchine. She was later on the board of NW FL Ballet where there is a scholarship in her name. Carol studied ballet as a youth and returned to dance in tap as an adult in 1980. She was a Tap dancer with the Great Falls Dance Company and studied with Brown Cardwell. She also studied with Toni Lombrey of Taps and Co. in Washington, as well as master classes with Jimmy Slyde and Maurice Hines. Carol has been a part of the SOTD family for 25 years.
Ashely O Banion - (SOTD Alumni) Instructor - Ballet & Pointe Variations
Ashley was a student for five years at SOTD. She continued her studies at The Maryland Youth Ballet with world-renowned Tensia Fonseca and the late Eric Hampton. Throughout her study at MYB, Ashley worked with The Washington School of Ballet, The Kirov Academy of Ballet of DC, and was selected to train with The Boston Ballet, The American Academy of Ballet, and received a scholarship to The Joffrey Ballet School in NYC. In 2005, Ashley graduated from the College of Charleston in SC earning degrees in Performing Arts, Ballet & Corporate Communications. In Charleston, Ashley was a member of The Robert Ivey Ballet Company for five seasons. In addition, Ashley has performed with the Joffrey Ballet and Charleston Ballet Theatre in such venues as The Kennedy Center, Wolf Trap, and the historic Sottile Theatre. We are delighted to have her back with us to teach as well as dance!
Flourian Rouiller - Guest Artist, Instructor - Ballet
Originally from Geneva , Switzerland, Mr. Rouiller received his early training with Ecole De Dance Contemporaine and the Stuttgart Ballet School. He has danced with among others, Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Ohio Ballet, Joffrey Ballet of Chicago, Milwaukee Ballet and Goteborg Ballet. He has performed the ballets of such choreographers as Balanchine, Butler, King, Prokovsky, Goh, North and many others. He was featured in Lynne Taylor- Corbett’s “In A Word” and Le Corsaire pas de deux for Ohio Ballet’s Summer Festival 2003. Mr. Rouiller moved to the D.C. area in 2004 and appeared with Theatrical Dance in La Fortuna(2004) The Seasons(2005) Reflections in Green and Christmas Eve at the Nutcracker Club (2006). We are thrilled that he has found time in his busy schedule to teach our advanced ballet students.
Contact our dance studio today in Great Falls, Virginia, for more information about our talented director.
The first Ballet teacher in Great Falls, Theresa D'Alessandro began teaching classes at the Great Falls Grange Hall. In 1980, when the Village Centre was constructed, we moved to our current location and incorporated as, The School of Theatrical Dance(SOTD). The name was chosen as a reflection of the diversity of the curriculum, and is actually the dictionary definition of Ballet.

We were home to the Great Falls Dance Company, from 1980 – 1985. Under the direction of Theresa D'Alessandro and Brown Cardwell, the Company provided an outlet for the studio's serious dancers, presenting formal concerts as well as performances at local festivals and events at Wolf Trap, Bull Run (now Jiffy Lube Live), The National Zoo, Great Falls 4th of July, Frying Pan Park, Glen Echo, The Organization of American States, etc.

We explored the dance competition circuit, garnering awards at both the local and national levels. During this time Kris Beery was one of our top students. In the early 90's, the Repertory Group was formed, and Modern was added to the curriculum. We left the competition scene to focus more on individual skill development.

Mdm. D'Alessandro revived “From Amber to Blue,” an original Ballet she had created for the Great Falls Dance Company and with the help of Martha Schwieters, coordinated a project with the Langley High School American Civilization Classes. The ballet centered around the Civil War and incorporated historical dance, ballet, and modern. As a result, Mdm. D'Alessandro received the Fairfax Arts Council award for “Contribution to Arts and Education.”

Mdm. D'Alessandro received a grant to produce a video documentary featuring our master teacher Dawei Zhang, formerly the Director of the Shanghai Ballet. The finished product, “Dancing the Same Language” can now be found in school and public libraries in Fairfax County.

By this time, we had trained in, and adopted the Royal Academy of Dancing Syllabus as the cornerstone of our Ballet program. Students took annual performance exams, administered by a representative of the Academy. Though our students passed with honors, thorough preparation required so much repetition, it proved less stimulating than fresh material and new challenges. Though we still incorporate the syllabus, we have discontinued the formal examinations.

Alumn, Kris Beery joined the faculty, and along with Theresa's mother Jerene Thomas, Brown Cardwell, and Carol Hallman, saw to it that the school remained operational during Theresa's leave of absence in Korea (‘94-‘97). In 1998, aerobic instructor, Kathy Fields joined the faculty. And in 2004, Mr. Florian Rouiller. In 2006, Alumn, Ashley O'Banion, returned to perform and teach ballet. Linda Watts, who had taught aerobic classes in the 80's, returned in 2008.

We premiered our original winter production, “Christmas Eve at the Nutcracker Club”. Set in a 1940's USO club, it not only incorporates the classical Tchaikovsky standards, it branches out to encompass swing, jazz, new age and blues. This is the ideal vehicle by which our students may express all the styles of dance they have studied.

Mdm. D'Alessandro produced a Modern Dance segment for Monkey See.

We established the Great Falls Dance Theater. Comprised of our Upper Level dancers as well as professional artists, this performing wing of the studio now presents the winter concert, as well as outreach programs in the community. Most recently, in June 2012, dancers performed our "Lion King Project"; and taught at the Loudoun County Parks and Recreation Summer camp for children with special needs. We also offer complimentary "Christmas Eve at the Nutcracker Club" tickets to Special Olympic families.