Shawn Blasingame - Studio Owner
Miss Shawn began dance training in Toledo, Oh.. where she studied ballet, tap, acrobatics, jazz and partnered adagio. Her professional career started at the early age of 11, performing 4 nights a week, as a dancer and featured acro adagio act at the Eastwood Memory Lane Palladium Theatre. Ms. Blasingame was awarded a scholarship to train with the prestigious Toledo Repertoire Theatre, where she performed featured roles in many of their musicals and at other area theatres. While still living in Toledo, Shawn studied voice with the area's most sought after voice teacher, Helen Joseph. After moving to NYC, Miss Shawn studied with world famous instructors that include Frank Hatchette (Jazz), Phil Black (Tap/Jazz), Luigi (Jazz), Brenda Bufalino (Tap), Peff Modelski and Madame Darvash (Ballet).
Miss Shawn toured the Nation for 15 years in her adult professional performance career, dancing, singing and acting in productions, TV Shows and commercials. These shows include the National tour of “Baggy Pants & Co.” starring Will B. Able, Busch Gardens, (Wlmbg. & Tampa), as the lead dancer and captain in the main stage shows of "Stagestruck", "Feats Too Big" "Kaleidoscope" and "This Is Ocktoberfest". In Nashville, TN. Shawn performed at Opryland USA on the Gen. Jackson Showboat in "A Dixie Melody" and under Broadway Director Michael Shawn in the "All-Star Revue". Her castmates include Broadway stars Christiane Noll (Dear Evan Hansen/Jekyll & Hyde) and Paul Castree (Grease / Saturday Night Fever). During this time, she also performed in one of her favorite musicals, "Chicago" as Hunyak at the Chaffin’s Barn Dinner Theatre. Other career performances include Tidewater Dinner Theatre (“A Chorus Line”-Judy), in TV (FBI Files, New Detectives) and Commercials - (Busch Gardens, Toledo Rep Theatre, CBN).
Her opportunities as a choreographer began at Busch Gardens Tampa. Here she choreographed the Miss Gulf Coast Pageant for the Miss America Pageant System and the NFL Hall Of Fame Bowl show. In addition to dancing, she served as assistant park choreographer, auditioning, training and supervising performers for all the park's shows and also performed in their shows.
Miss Shawn met her husband, Lee, also a performer, while dancing here in Williamsburg at Busch Gardens. After they were married, they decided to stay in the Hampton Roads area and raise their family. At this time, Miss Shawn changed her focus from performing and choreographing professionals, to taking what she has learned in her professional life and teaching children, Before beginning her own companies, she had the pleasure of working with various area studios including Chamber Ballet, Academy of Dance, EVSPA and the Betty Smith School of Dance. During this time she also judged for dance competitions, pageants, performed and choreographed locally.
In 1997, she joined Gayla Johnson in founding the “Dazzle Song & Dance Co.” This Non-Profit children’s group performed theme park styled music revues that were directed, choreographed and instructed by Miss Shawn. Their performances include Walt Disney World, the Carnival cruise ship “Jubilee”, Busch Gardens “Freedom Song” and many revues for local events and festivals. This venture and the encouragement of Busch Gardens vice president of entertainment, led Miss Shawn to open Broadway Dance Arts in July of 2000. Since this opening, she has launched another musical revue co. (Revolution), a National Award winning competition team and taught hundreds of area students of all ages in many styles of dance and theatre arts. Miss Shawn and her students have received many top awards in National and Regional competitions. These include Best Choreography, Best Jazz, Most Entertaining, Best Costuming, Best Sportsmanship, Title Award Winners and High Score Overalls in advanced divisions. Her competition team has been invited to compete in the acclaimed Starpower National “Battle Of The Stars”, Starquest “Quest For The Best” and world elite finals at WCTE. They were also invited to perform twice in a competition filmed for the reality TV show “Dancemoms” and on "Real Pets". Many of her students have gone on to professional careers of their own in Broadway Tours, Regional Theatres and theme parks including Walt Disney World & Busch Gardens.
Outside of the studio, Miss Shawn is still judging competitions, pageants and choreographing shows for theatre companies and schools. She choreographed the Broadway musicals, “CATS” "A CHORUS LINE" & "THE PRODUCERS"for the Williamsburg Players theatre. At Berkeley Middle School, "HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 2", "SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK" and "WILLIE WONKA". She has also begun presenting dance and theatre workshops around the country, her most recent being the Virginia Theatre Conference (VTA) Annual conference in Norfolk, VA. and at Perform Orlando.
Samantha Martinez - Instructor
Samantha started her dance training at the age of 4 on Long Island, NY. Studying all different styles from Ballet, Tap, Jazz, and Hip Hop. Her family moved to the Williamsburg area in 2000; and in 2001 she continued her study of dance at BDA. She competed on BDA’s competition team until she graduated high school in 2007. As a member of the competition team, Samantha received 2nd place at Nationals for her tap solo “Business of Love” choreographed by Miss Shawn. She has also received other regional and national awards. From there she attended Old Dominion University; studying Modern and Ballet. While at ODU she attend many American College Dance Festival Association (ACDFA) conferences where she took classes from different professors from other colleges. She also represented ODU performing at a conference for Virginia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (VAPHERD). Her fondest memory at ODU was when her senior project opened the show at University Dance Theater (UDT). It was a great honor. In 2011, she received her B.A. in Dance with a minor in Health and Wellness. She currently works alongside Miss. Shawn choreographing for BDA’s competition team. She loves watching her students not only dance, but DANCE through her work. She tries to instill two key components in her students: Determination and Commitment. She believes very strongly in those two words. Samantha is very thankful for the opportunities BDA has given her to show her LOVE for dance.
Achsa Fisher-Nuckols - Instructor
BDA's ballet mistress and Pre-K Dance instructor, Miss Achsa, graduated with a focus on classical ballet from Virginia's Governor’s School for the Arts in Norfolk. Her extensive ballet training also included study with the Tidewater Ballet and Virginia Ballet Theatre under instructors whose professional backgrounds include the Joffrey. Alvin Ailey, NYC Ballet and the Dance Theatre of Harlem. While at these companies she performed featured roles and with the corps de ballet in many various Classical ballet productions. Miss Achsa holds a B.A. in English and certification in secondary education from Virginia Wesleyan College. She is a proud mother of a daughter who is also her Pre-K dance assistant.
Jasmine Tubach- Instructor
Jasmine Tubach, was born and raised in Williamsburg Va. She is a graduate of James Madison University were she was a Theatre and Dance major with a concentration in dance. Her dual major was Anthropology and Sociology, with a concentration in Sociology. Jasmine is currently a member of the RVA Dance Collective, a professional modern dance company based in Richmond. Jasmine's training began at Broadway Dance Arts where she was a member of their competitive team. She fell in love with dance while at BDA. She also trained with the Institute for Dance and was a member of their ballet company. Her performances included "Christmas Dreams " at the Kimball Theatre in Williamsburg. Jasmine’s passion to choreograph was developed and refined while at James Madison. Here she choreographed seven works with four of them showcased in JMU’s Student Concerts, including her most recent work “The Drifting Light”. Jasmine believes art should be made to touch and change lives. Jasmine also had the privilege to be a member of JMU’s Contemporary Dance Ensemble and preformed with them in March of 2013 and 2014. She was able to represent JMU at the Route 11 Dance Festival, where she performed “Out of Frame” choreographed by Olivia Landrum. This piece was chosen to open for the Trey McIntyre Project. Jasmine was able to develop her strong performance skills through being a member of the Virginia Repertory Dance Company (VRDC) at JMU. She had the pleasure of traveling to China with the company where she taught and performed in the Sichuan providence. Jasmine has worked closely with various artists across the country including Christopher K. Morgan, Karen Reedy, Nicholas Johnson, Emily Cargill and Eluza Santos from Brazil. Jasmine performed with VRDC on the JMU Main Stage Theatre, Dogtown Dance Theater, and at the Jack Guidone Theatre in D.C. Jasmine is thrilled and looking forward to the future knowing that she will continue to pursue her love of dance through many different avenues, but she will continue to always give the glory to God.
Linda Gallant - Instructor
Linda Gallant holds a Master of Arts Degree in Communication, Theatre Acting and Directing from Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA. Mrs. Gallant was a Vocal Music major at Old Dominion University where she performed as a featured soloist in the ODU choir and she was a recipient of the prestigious John C. Stamos Music Scholarship.
Prior to relocating to Virginia, Linda attended Cameron University in Oklahoma on full scholarship from the Miss America and America’s Junior Miss pageant systems. Linda Gallant currently holds a theatre teaching position with Williamsburg -James City County Public School District and is the Secondary Schools Co-Chairman for the Virginia Theatre Association, where she serves as the head of the Middle School Division. Mrs. Gallant has taught private voice lessons for 20 years and previously taught K-12 music and theatre in a private school. She is has been a vocalist on the Spirit of Norfolk, Castaldi’s, and multiple other venues.
Danielle Blasingame - Instructor
Miss Danielle’s dance training began at the age of 3 when her mother, Shawn Blasingame, opened Broadway Dance Arts. She became a member of our competition team as a “Mini” team dancer, continuing competition in all styles of dance for the next 15 years. Her participation in many dance conventions over the years and exposure to Nationally renowned instructors has enhanced the excellent training that she received in her home studio. Her favorites have included Access Broadway, (Bobby Clark, Tom Long, Rachelle Rak, Ron DeVito), Hollywood Vibe, (Christopher Smith, Chaly) and Dancemakers, Inc. (Frank Hatchette, Tommy Alexander). Danielle is currently a professional animal trainer and performer in the show “Pet Shennanigans” at Busch Gardens. Her other performance credits include, “Those Fabulous 50’s” on the Carnival cruise ship “Imagination”, “Return To The 60’s” at Hershey Park and “Bitten” at Busch Gardens. During 2015 in her first year instructing our competition dancers, Danielle’s tap trio won Platinum & First Place Overall for “The Clapping Song” at the Nexstar Competition and her Hip Hop, “Got Money” an overall “Most Entertaining” award.