(781) 942-4500

Encore Faculty

Erica Vining

Studio Director

Erica Vining began her dance training over 20 years ago, studying at numerous schools throughout New England.  She went on to study dance and dance theory at Roger Williams University under the direction of Kelli Wicke-Davis. There she was a dance theater member, performing in numerous pieces commissioned by the college. She later graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from Merrimack College. After college Erica began choreographing and teaching at local dance studios. Her choreography has been recognized at numerous regional and national level competitions. Erica continues her own dance education by attending classes taught by some of the most notable names in the dance industry in cities like New York and Boston. Erica’s own methodology centers itself on sharing her own teaching techniques with other teachers and choreographers, in hopes of creating an exchange of knowledge and ideas. This way, Erica hopes to keep the dance program at Encore always progressive, innovative and enriching for all of her students.

Jacklyn Tabor

Creative Director

Jacklyn Tabor has been teaching dance for almost a decade. She started her training at the age of three and went on to study Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Lyrical, Modern, Hip Hop and Acrobatics.  She has trained under some of the most prestigious dance educators including Sandi Duncan and Nailah Bellinger. She continues to expand her dance education through her involvement with such programs as; NYCDA teacher courses, the Dance Teacher Magazine Summer and Winter Conferences, and membership with IADMS (The International Association for Dance Medicine & Science).Her choreography has been recognized at numerous dance competitions throughout the area on both a regional and national level. As our studio’s Creative Director, Jacklyn combines her own dance knowledge and extensive training with imaginative and innovative techniques to bring out the best in all of her students.

Ruth Benson Levin

After graduating with honors from the Adelphi University Dance Program, Ruth Benson Levin moved to Boston in 1976 and has been delighting audiences with her choreography ever since.  She has received commissions for her work from Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Boston’s First Night Celebration and the Cambridge River Festival, and she is an Artist’s Foundation Grant Winner in Choreography.  Her dances have been produced in collaboration with Massachusetts Dance Ensemble, Dance Umbrella, Choreographer’s Group, and Dance Collective. Ms. Levin’s full-evening work, Dance With Me, was praised by audiences and critics for its sensitive and moving portrayal of older dancers and the transitions they experience.  Ms. Levin’s Three Ways to be Modern project was hailed by Boston Globe dance critic, Christine Temin, as the “most cleverly crafted commission” in the Dance Umbrella’s Boston Moves production.  Her work has been described by Theodore Bale of the Boston Herald, as “rigorous, sophisticated, powerful, and poignant.” Ms. Levin is a highly regarded teacher of both ballet and modern dance.  She was a member of the Performing Arts Faculty of Brookline High School for fourteen years as well as several area colleges.  In 1997 Ms. Levin earned a Masters of Arts Degree from Lesley University in Choreography and Dance Education.  Since 1999, Ms. Levin has been teaching ballet and period dance at Boston University and mentoring dance pedagogy students at Lesley University.

Kendra James

Kendra has been teaching gymnastics and cheerleading to students for close to twelve years. She began her training at Walker’s Dance and Gymnastics where she was a dancer and gymnast for twelve years. She has made appearances on ESPN as a cheerleader. She has won numerous state, regional and national titles for both gymnastics and cheerleading. Since then, Kendra has been coaching cheerleading for Pop-Warner thru All- Star students and gymnastics for students at Wilkey’s Gym, 5-6-7-8 Dance Studio and Encore Dance Academy. Kendra’s one-on-one approach to teaching allows each individual to grow according to their ability.

Megan Davis

Megan began her dance training at age 3. She has studied ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, contemporary and hip hop. Over her career Megan has studied with some of the most sought after instructors and choreographers in the world.

In the summer of 2003, Megan worked as a singer/dancer in the show "This is Octoberfest" at Busch Gardens, Williamsburg. The next summer she was chosen to train with the River North Chicago Dance Company under the direction of Frank Chaves. In 2009 Megan resided in New York City where she was an intern at the Broadway Dance Center, training intensely to perfect her craft. Her film/print work includes being a two time contestant for Fox's hit reality show So You Think You Can Dance, season 5 being in the final 37 girls of vegas week and a featured performer and final 65 total contestant for season 7. You can also catch Megan modeling for Dance Spirit Magazine in their May/June 2009 issue.

Megan's choreography highlights include American Dance Awards 4 time regional young choreographer of the year along with ADA's diamond choreography winner. In the 2010 season alone, Megan was awarded with the choreography award at the past 8 competitions her dancers attended.

As a dancer, instructor and choreographer, Megan wishes to inspire her students and in turn be continually inspired by them. As a choreographer she hopes to continue to push new movement, strong technique and emotional commitment.

Lisa Powers

Lisa began her dance training at Legein Dance Academy where she trained extensively for 13 years in all forms of dance. Lisa's training continued at the Dance Teacher's Club of Boston Dance Education Training where she graduated in 2004. Lisa is a recipient of the Mary Jane Brown Tap Scholarship and a Dance Masters of America Tap Scholarship. After graduating High School, Lisa continued her education and Dance training with a full Performing Arts Scholarship to Dean College. Lisa has a true passion for teaching and choreographing and has been teaching dance since 2004. She has been on the faculty of Legein Dance Academy and has taught Master Classes throughout New England. Lisa's love for the arts reaches beyond dance, she has trained extensively in voice and theatre and is currently a member of the Youth Actors Ensemble and serves on the Executive Board. Currently, Lisa is Co-founder of Kinetic Synergy Dance Company, a collaborative Dance Company in Boston, MA. Recently, Lisa's choreography was chosen for a Dance Works Boston project which was quite an honor.

Shawna Varacalli

Shawna began her dance training over 25 years ago. She has been teaching dance for close to 10 years for ages 2 through 18. As a former competitive dancer Shawna won various regional and national level awards. Shawna’s passion for dance is shared in every class she teaches. She cannot wait to share her love for dance with her students.

Liz Bishop

Liz Bishop is a graduate from Dean College in Franklin Massachusetts where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Dance. While at Dean, she studied various forms of dance including Ballet, Modern, Jazz, Musical Theatre, Contemporary, and Hip Hop and was a member of the Dance Company all four years . After graduating from college she became one of the main faculty members and co-competition director at Dance Productions where she grew up dancing for over 18 years. Liz has choreographed numerous recital and competition pieces that have gone on to regional and national dance competitions where they have received high score, overall and entertainment awards. Along with teaching all forms of dance, Liz became a certified Zumba Fitness Instructor with certifications in B1, B2, Zumba Toning, and Zumba Sentao. In 2013, Liz decided to go back to school to combine her passion for dance with physical therapy. She has since graduated and has become a practicing Licensed Physical Therapist Assistant. Liz's enthusiasm and passion for working with children of all ages is shown throughout every class she teaches!