Faculty

Christina Pastore

Studio Owner/Director

 

Christina Pastore has lived in Ballston Spa for over 30 years.   A former dancer herself she is pleased to own a dance studio that offers children a positive environment where they can develop their self-esteem, creativity, communication and become part of a team that is family.  Christina along with her husband Michael have owned and operated JDC Dance Center in Ballston Spa for the last 7 years.  The Pastore’s have 3 children Mike Jr., Jenna & Steven.  Their eldest Mike jr. is a graduate of Suny Fredonia and lives in Orange County California, where he is a successful graphic designer and personal trainer.  Their daughter, Jenna has her Associates Degree in Dance from Dean College, her Bachelors in Arts & Science from Florida State University and is currently pursuing her MBA at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida.  Jenna was a competitive dancer for 13 years and participated in many regional and national competitions. She was a 2016/2017 Boston Celtics Dancer and a Florida State Golden Girl at Florida State University.  Their son Steven attends SUNY Cortland as a Physical Education Major.  Steven is an active basketball and competitive baseball player.  The Pastore family is excited to offer dance programs that will nurture, educate and encourage all students to develop skills that will allow them to grow into confident individuals.

Candace Harblin
Dance Instructor
 

Candace has been dancing for over 35 years and has had the pleasure of teaching for more than 25 years.  She started out as a dedicated student and worked extremely hard to become the dance instructor she is today.  She studied tap, jazz, ballet, pointe and gymnastics under Joanne Sylvain. Candace currently teaches tap, jazz and ballet to students from ages 2 1/2 to 18 years old.

 

Candace continues to attend dance workshops to enhance her knowledge of dance, choreography and technique.  Candace's competition tap teams have won many high placement and specialty awards.  She's also received highly-sought-after choreography awards. For four years in a row, Candace has received the Appogee award from StarQuest in the classic division, which means her dance had received the highest score in the classic division. Her dance also received the Critiques Choice Award at NYCDA in 2014.  Each year, Candace sets an individual goal for herself and her students to reach and accomplish through each and every dance season. She strives to pass on skills that her students will use during their dance experience at JDC and in the future.  She strongly believes that dance encourages discipline, builds confidence and demonstrates the importance of teamwork.  Candace always tries to encourage her students to be the best that they can be and pushes them to their limits in a positive and fun enviornment.

 

Candace also enjoys her full-time job as a special education teaching assistant at Gordon Creek Elementary School.  She enjoys spending time with her husband, Patrick and her 13 year old daughter, Cadence.  Cadence is also a JDC competition dancer and always enjoys and looks forward to dance class each and every week.  

 

"I would like to personally welcome each and every student to an exciting dance season at JDC.  I am extremely excited to start a new year with my students and new JDC students. 

It is so nice to watch our JDC family grow from year to year!

Happy dancing and be ready to "WOW the Crowd"

-Candace Harblin

Jenna Pastore
Dance Instructor

 

Jenna Pastore is a 2015 graduate of Ballston Spa High School.  After graduation, Jenna attended Dean College in Franklin, Massachusetts pursuing her passion in dance .  In the spring of 2017, Jenna graduated Cum Laude and a Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society member with her Associates Degree in Dance.  From there, Jenna transferred to Florida State University where she obtained her Bachelors degree in Humanities, with a concentration in Dance, Communications and Digital Humanities.  Jenna is currently pursuing her MBA in Marketing at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida.  Along with her academic accomplishments Jenna is also a talented dancer. 

Jenna began dancing at the age of 2 ½ and starting competing at 10 years old.  Jenna has won many regional competitions as well as high score placements nationally, including Runner-Up for Dancer of the Year for Dance America and the Nancy Stone Award.  In addition, Jenna has won several scholarships to attend workshops and dance schools around the country, including a 2 day workshop in Orange County, California as well as scholarships to Broadway Dance Center and Steps on Broadway in New York City.  Jenna also received a full scholarship to New York City Dance Alliance (NYCDA), a full Scholarship to Artist Simple Human (ASH) Summer Intensive and Scholarships to L.A. Tap Fest.  She also attended a 1 week tap intensive "SLIDE" in NYC.  Jenna has competed and won the following Titles, Miss Starquest, Miss Teen Starbound, Talent Winner for Step-Up to Dance, Top Talent for KAR, Miss Senior Starbound, Title for Starpower and National Champion Soloist for Turn It Up Dance Challenge.  Jenna was a Florida State Golden Girl with Florida State University and her most proud accomplishment was auditioning and making the Boston Celtics Dance Team becoming a 2016/2017 Boston Celtics Dancer.

 

Jenna’s love and passion is dance and in her spare time when she is not in the studio training or in the gym working-out, she takes classes at Broadway Dance Center in NYC as well as attends workshops up and down the east coast taking classes from accomplished choreographers from all over the world.  Jenna also takes Pilates from a renowned Pilates Instructor to continue to improve her flexibility and condition her body. 

 

"As a dancer, I am very excited to mentor younger dancers not only the love and respect I have for dance but also the new and fresh choreography I continue to learn as a dancer myself.  Dance changed my life as a young girl and I truly believe that with passion, hard-work and dedication any dancer can achieve any level of dance they desire.  I love being a part of such an incredible dance family, thank you JDC"

 

Remember to always be true to yourself and “Wow that Crowd”!

- Jenna Pastore

 

 

Kasie Ritota
Dance Instructor

 

Kasie Ritota has been dancing for over twenty years. She started off as a student for The Dance Centre owned by Joanne Sylvain. Kasie started teaching when she was in high-school, which started with a few solos and a pre-school class. She now teaches students from ages 2 ½ to 18 years old. Her students range from beginners to competition students in solos all the way up to large groups and Productions. She enjoys working with all of her students and treats them all as family.

 

Kasie has had many students attend regional and national competitions where they have received high scores and special awards. Kasie also received regional and national highly-sought-after choreography awards. She enjoys working with students of many ages and enjoys taking classes of her own. She has had the privilege of taking classes from choreographers around the world in many different styles. She had competed from the age of 11 until the age of 21 where she has received many high scores and special awards for all styles of dance. In the summer of 2008 Kasie had the privilege of traveling the country for three weeks with Dance Olympus and Dance America. During this opportunity Kasie was able to grow as a dancer while studying under many choreographers.

 

Kasie proudly graduated from the College of Saint Rose in May of 2013, with bachelors in Early Childhood and Special Education. She uses her lessons learned in school while teaching her students in the dance room. Kasie feels strongly that her students will not only strive in the dance world but outside world with the lessons she teaches in the classroom. Kasie as well as the other instructors at JDC live, love, and breathe Dance. She is very excited to work with all the students at JDC.

 

“Welcome to our studio! We are very excited to have you and cannot wait to see you “WOW the CROWD” every week in your classes. We as a studio are excited to see the love of dance shine each and every day!

We know you will make memories that will last a lifetime!”

-Kasie Ritota

 

 

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Madeline Spain
Dance Instructor

 

 

 

Madeline Spain has been dancing since the age of two and has continued to pursue dance after graduating from Saratoga Springs High School in 2017. While studying to earn her degree in business management focusing in entrepreneurship, Madeline continues to share her love of dance with others. Madeline was a member of the JDC Dance Center Competition Team where she earned many high score placements with her jazz and contemporary solos as well as many of her group dances. During her competition years, she loved performing on stage as well as traveling to conventions such as Jump, NUVO, and NYCDA to expand her knowledge of dance by learning from many talented and award winning choreographers. After graduating high school, she then became a member of the Albany Empresses Dance Team. After dancing in the Arena Football League for two years, she then became the assistant coach for the RPI collegiate dance team. Madeline currently continues to help the RPI dance team in their journey to the NDA National Dance Competition.

 

I am so excited to teach at JDC Dance Center and continue to share my passion for dance!

Madison Wolfe
Dance Instructor

Madison is a former JDC Competition dancer and a 2018 graduate of Ballston Spa High School. She is currently attending Hudson Valley Community College majoring in Mechatronics, which she plans to obtain her degree in the Spring of 2019.  From there she plans to attend the College of Saint Rose pursuing a degree in Early Childhood Education.

 

Madison started her dance career at the age of 3 and started competing by the age of 11. She began assisting around the age of 13, which helped her to realize that dance is more than just her sport, it is her passion. In her early years Hip-Hop was her style of choice but as she entered her teen year’s she started venturing into new styles such as, jazz, lyrical and tap.  Madison has won many high score placements and awards in all genres and is excited to share her passion and love of dance with her students.

 

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I am beyond excited to join the JDC faculty to teach and share my love for dance with all the JDC Dancers!  ~Miss Madison~