Meet Our Teachers

Get to know our professionally trained teaching staff at Dartmouth Dance Academy.

Lisa Hart


Lisa Hart is the Director/Owner of Dartmouth Dance Academy, Director/Choreographer of the Award-Winning Dance Team, Fusion, The Past Vice President of the CDTA National Board, and the Director of the Atlantic Division of the National Board of Directors. Lisa began her training as a dancer and instructor at Dartmouth Dance Academy. She studied Child Psychology at Mount Saint Vincent University, finishing her degree in Dance at Brigham Young University Idaho. She toured professionally with a dance team through the USA and China, setting the stage for her interest in movement as both an artistic and cultural form. Lisa has won many awards for her choreography, is presently a stage examiner for the CDTA and an Adjudicator for many dance competitions. She holds an associate in Ballet and Modern dance through the Canadian Dance Teachers Association, as well as a fellow in Jazz and Tap and a Certification in Acro. Lisa has trained students who have gone on to pursue dance at schools like Peridance (NYC), Toronto Dance Theatre, York, Randolph, and Ryerson. She is continually striving to provide her students with the best possible dance education, allowing them to achieve their goals through artistic and athletic expression of dance.

Piper Atwood

Co-Owner/Assitant Director

Piper is certified in both ADAPT and CDTA. She has an extensive training background from various programs and teachers around the world. She has trained in LA, New York, Toronto, Calgary, Utah, and Las Vegas. Piper has danced with choreographers such as Nappytabs, Blake McGrath, Brian Freidman, Ian Eastwood and many more well known choreographers in the dance industry. Piper has performed on stage in New York City on Broadway, in California’s Disney Land Park, in Christina Martin’s music videos, Brian Friedman Fashion Show, and is presently the team captain of the National Lacrosse League's Halifax Thunderbirds Dance Team. Piper has been choreographing dances and teaching dancers around Nova Scotia since she was 16. She loves to create different and exciting pieces. Her routines have achieved top mark placements at competitions and has won overall choreography awards at competitions as well. She enjoys being in the studio with her dancers to build a strong foundation and learn more from each student she teaches. Dance is her whole life and wants to share her knowledge and love for the art form with all.

Abbey Girard


Miss Abbey is an enthusiastic dancer/actress/choreographer with a passion for teaching and performing. She has more than 10 years of tumbling, dance, cheer, fitness, pageant and theatre experience. Miss Abbey has a degree in performing arts, diploma in Musical Theatre Performance and has taken part in many teaching seminars, summits, workshops, certification and competitions. During her musical Theatre days, she performed in productions such as Les Miserables, Anything Goes, 42nd Street and the Mikado, along with a touring children’s show called Munchables and Performances in Vancouver’s Push Festive and Fridge Festive. Throughout her Journey, she has worked at many different dance studios, Theatre companies and Summer Camps in various roles such as Instructor, teacher, and Program Director. Previously, she owned her own dance school and All-Star Cheerleading Gym. Miss Abbey’s true passion is teaching, she believes dance is for everyone and aims to inspire dancers to be brave, trust themselves, make mistakes and be silly!

Erin Gloyn


Erin has a BA in Psychology, BEd, and currently is enrolled in an Masters of Education for Inclusive Education. She is currently working as a special education teaching in Halifax. Erin Truly loves working with her students and creating a supportive and engaging learning enviroment. Erin has experience teaching Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical, Contemporary, Tap, Musical Theatre, Modern, Hip-Hop, Stomp, Tutting and Acro. Her specialties are Contemporary and Modern. She has worked with students ranging from the age of 18 months to 40+ years. Erin believes that everyone is capable of experiencing the magic of dance. She teaches private dance lessons to help enhance the students training and love for dance. Her passion for Dance and teaching shines in the studio. Erin has a way of engaging her students and helping them develop their own passion for the art of dance.

Stephan Jacobson


Stephen Jacobsen started dancing in his home town, at the Lake Arrowhead School of Dance, in the San Bernardino Mountains of Southern California. Training in jazz, tap, hip-hop, Polynesian, and ballet. He received a scholarship to the San Francisco Ballet School at the age of 16, then danced professionally for the Cincinnati Ballet. He has loved teaching since the age of 14, and is excited to be working with the amazing talent at Dartmouth Dance Academy.

Sophie MacMillan


Sophie began her training at Precision Dance Company located in the Annapolis Valley. There, she trained primarily in Contemporary, Modern, and Jazz techniques under the artistic direction of Christopher Knowles and Sidney Mcilroy successively. As well, she received extensive ballet training with CDTA and RAD certified Cadance Academy, directed by Gaea Jess. Sophie also has a vast background in Musical Theatre, Hip Hop, and Improvisation which have influenced her own unique style today. Sophie has earned several title and scholarship awards over the past decade while competing in dance competitions across the Maritimes, and has furthered her education from industry professionals at dance intensives, conventions, and workshops. Recently, Sophie has signed with Aspiring Artists Management and is currently training and choreographing in Halifax.

Carly Smith


Carly entered the dance world at the age of six in Ontario and fell in love with the art! Carly grew up in the competitive dance world, which led her to a passion for teaching and sharing her love and knowledge of dance with others. Carly has taught at numerous dance studios throughout Ontario with students competing in provincially, nationally and internationally. After years of living abroad, Carly has officially settled in Nova Scotia. We are thrilled to have her join us at Dartmouth Dance Academy. Leading and inspiring young dancers to believe in themselves brings Carly pure joy and she is such a wonderful role model for our young dancers.

Emily Rivard


Emily Rivard has grownup dancing in Sudbury, Ontario. Through her years of training she has participated in many competitions and professional performances including 2 years in the gala showcase held by On The Floor Dance Competition. She has had the opportunity to learn from artists such as Mitchell Jackson, Derek Piquette, Jordan Clark, Marguerite Derricks, Jim Nowakowski, Alisha Lucchese, and Jeff Wong. Over the years she has trained primarily in RAD style ballet and has completed her intermediate level exam. Emily has also spent time training with both the Quinte Ballet School of Canada and the School of Cadence Ballet. She has not only won awards for her own dancing but also for her own choreographed pieces. Emily teaches a variety of styles and focuses lots of her teaching on the minor details of technique and the building blocks to help a dancer be strong and consistent.

Fiona Laing


Fiona Laing started her dance training as early as 3 years old at the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts in Halifax Nova Scotia, her grandmother ran the school she attended and was always her biggest inspiration to start dancing and to keep dancing. All and all Fiona has been dancing for 15 years. Fiona has been in many productions during her dance career including playing a step sister in Cinderella as well as taking part in exams, no matter what style. She ended up earning Distinction on her Grade 5 RAD ballet exam. Fiona has also taken part in Taking Steps to Fly as a choreographer. She has assisted and taught whenever she could at the Conservatory as well as teaching and assisting in summer programs. Choreographing and teaching has always been in the back of Fiona’s mind and she has loved brainstorming ideas in her free time even when she was younger. When she hit high school her injuries from dance ended up getting the best of her and she was forced to stop dancing. Fiona graduated from Citadel High School in 2021 and now attends Mount St. Vincent University and is studying Child and Youth study to become a teacher.