Meet Our Team

Karen Johnston – Principal

dance teacher Karen

Karen trained at the London College of Dance in England for 3 years where she gained her ISTD Teachers diploma. She then furthered her training in England and gained her Associate Diploma in modern jazz and her RAD Ballet Teachers certificate. Since moving to Australia Karen has achieved her Licenciate Diploma in the Cecchetti method of Ballet and her CSTD Teachers Certificate. Karen is delighted to be able to pass on her knowledge and love of dance to all her dancers and strives to ensure the studio has a friendly and encouraging atmosphere.

Summer Clarke – Junior Teacher

dance teacher Summer

Summer has been a dancer at the Jay school of dance for 10 years and has been teaching  Jazz, Tap, Hip hop and Contemporary for 4 years. Throughout her dancing career Summer has gained her major exam levels in Cecchetti ballet, CSTD Jazz and CSTD tap, performed in the Hairspray arena spectacular Hairspray and has worked as a model parading Tutus. By the end of this year Summer is hoping to gain her CSTD Jazz teachers certificate and after this achievement work for her CSTD Tap teachers certificate. Summer enjoys watching her students grow and develop into dancers by sharing her knowledge. She aims for her students to grow in confidence and achieve new goals and skills throughout the year.

Ashleigh Killin – Junior teacher

Ashleigh Killin – Junior teacher

In 2012 we moved to Adelaide from London and after trying a few schools I was fortunate to find the Jay School of Dance where I do contemporary and classical ballet. Ms Karen has guided me through every concert and exam in Australia, making them memorable, challenging and exciting. Besides dancing, I have learned to be more confident, overcome my shyness and perseverance. I cannot imagine a future without ballet and love the friendship and comradery I have formed throughout the years.

Ballet highlights for me include successfully auditioning for a role with the London Children’s Ballet and performing ‘A little Princess’ with them for a week at the Peacock Theatre. Passing my Advanced II ballet exam was also a highlight as many hours of work and dedication paid off.

My teaching experience began when I started helping with classes. Through this, I found I loved passing on my passion and being part of the process of helping the next generation emerge and do what they love. I am currently working toward my Cecchetti teaching qualifications.

Leo Ashenden – Contemporary teacher

dance teacher Leo

Leo is currently in his 3rd year at Flinders University, Adelaide College of the Arts studying to gain his Bachelor of Creative Arts in Dance and his Certificate IV and advanced diploma in dance.

Harriet Johnston – Assistant Teacher

dance teacher Harriet

Harriet Johnston is currently studying Sace year 12 dance and is completing her certificate in childcare. Harriet loves working with children and dedicates a large amount of her time to the school, As well as assisting in the lessons Harriet communicates to the parents, helps with costumes and the general day to day running of the studio. Harriet enjoys classes at the Jay school in Jazz, Tap and Contemporary.

Jesse Moore – advanced Hip Hop teacher

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Jesse is a professionally trained Adelaide dancer. Growing up she trained in many styles such as ballet, contemporary, theatre, jazz, tap and Hip hop. After finishing tertiary education Jesse went on to further study dance at Adelaide College of the Arts. This full time three year course involving high physical demand and theory subjects gained her a Bachelor of Creative Arts in Dance upon graduation in 2016. 
In 2017 Jesse continued to train as well as teach for various dance schools, Jay School of Dance being her primary place. She also studied and became a fully qualified Xtend Barre Instructor. 
In 2018 Jesse spread her wings to Paris where she performed on the famous stage of the Moulin Rouge, in their show called Feerie. The next two year she got the opportunity to perform in various European stages and on for french television with the company. 
Jesse has now returned to Adelaide and hopes to pass on her knowledge from her experience to aspiring dancers around Adelaide.  

Clare Crittenden – Assistant Teacher

Clare Photo

Clare started dancing when she was little at a studio in Willunga, before moving to The Jay School of Dance in 2016. She greatly enjoys taking classes in Hip hop, Contemporary and Jazz, and joining in on CanDance fun. Since coming to the Jay School, she believes that she has become a much better dancer and gained more confidence in her performances. Clare’s favourite part of teaching is seeing young dancers improve throughout the year and having fun while doing so.  

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