Faculty

JANA CHRISTENSEN 

Director

Jana Christensen is currently the Artistic Director of Franklin School of Performing Arts, where she has been on faculty or a student for over twenty years. She first  began studying dance at Franklin School of Performing Arts in 1993  under the direction of Kaylee Cahoon. She was named the FSPA student of the year in 1998 and shortly thereafter joined the faculty. Jana credits her jazz and teaching style to the influences of her many teachers, Luigi (pioneer of jazz dance), Jeffery Bullock (former Hubbard Street dancer), and Geri Houlihan (former Lar Lubovitch dancer).

She has been a guest teacher for Nashville Ballet, Nashville School of the Arts, Metro Parks, and the City Performing Arts Academy in Visalia, CA. Jana has had students go on to nationally recognized college dance programs, as well as, students dancing on Broadway. Jana is also a certified Pilates instructor for SMARTCore Method. Her vast Pilates training has been through Core Dynamics Pilates in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Pilates Center of Boulder, Colorado, and Power Pilates of NYC. Jana's personal goal as a dance teacher is to instill correct alignment and body patterns in her students through the art of dance. Jana has her Associates degree in business from Columbia State Community College.

 

 

Megan Ciccoline White

 

Megan holds a Bachelor’s in Science in Psychology, Dance, and Nutrition. She currently teaches at Columbia School of Performing Arts, Franklin School of Performing Arts, and The Boys and Girls Club.


The past twenty years Megan has been studying dance in Nashville, New York, and California. She continues to pursue dance education through workshops at Giordano Jazz Dance, American Tap Dance Festival (residency with Brenda Bufalino), NYC Dance Teacher summit, Tennessee Association of Dance.  Megan has been teaching dance and fitness for over 15 years in the Middle Tennessee area where she has held the title of Artistic Director of Tennessee Dance Arts Conservatory and of the Spring Hill Arts Center's School of Dance, as well as, Executive Director of Franklin School of Performing Arts. Most recently, she held the position of adjunct professor of dance for Columbia State Community College at Ravenwood High school.   Megan's students have gone to dance with internationally recognized programs,  American Ballet Theatre, Joffery Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Next Generation Ballet, Scripps College, and Florida State University.  

 

Thom Yzaguirre

BALLET Director, ABT® Certified Teacher

 

Mr. Thom does not currently teach at the Columbia School of Performing Arts, but is the overseeing Ballet Director of both the FSPA and CSPA ballet programs. 

Originally from Montana, Thom Yzaguirre began his formal dance training at Minnesota Dance Theatre and School. Thom trained in both ballet and modern dance, and worked his way up from student to Company 2 dancer.

Thom went on to receive scholarships with the Tidewater Ballet Academy, Milwaukee Ballet, Joffrey Ballet and the School of American Ballet. Among his many teachers were Bonnie Mathis, Gene K. Hammett, Susan Borree, Robert Joffrey, Michael Bjerknes, Stephen Jenkins and Elaine Thomas.

He has danced professionally with Duluth Ballet, Ballet Arizona, as a soloist with Louisville Ballet and as a principal with Nevada Dance Theatre and Nashville Ballet. He has worked with a variety of directors including Loyce Houlton, Vassili Sulich and Janek Schergen. He has also danced a wide range of choreography by a host of dance masters including Antony Tudor, George Balanchine, Lynne Taylor-Corbett, Graham Lustig, Paul Vasterling and Choo San-Goh.

Mr. Yzaguirre has been a guest teacher for the Tidewater Ballet Academy, the Academy of Nevada Dance Theatre, the Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts, Nashville Ballet, Tennessee Association of Dance and Ballet of Theatre Arts.

He currently lives in Nashville and is the director of the ballet program at Franklin School of Performing Arts. Thom also works with competitive figure skaters at A Game Skate Academy and teaches ballet for the Commercial Entertainment Department at Columbia State Community College.
Thom Yzaguirre is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 7 + Partnering of the ABT® National Training Curriculum.

 

Lindsey Robert

Ballet & Modern

 

A Tennessee native, Lindsey started dance at an early age and has studied classical ballet along with many other styles, including modern and jazz. She trained at First Light Arts Academy, Metro Parks Dance Division, and Vanderbilt University with Tom Shoemaker and Jennifer McNamara. During high school, she took modern classes with StillPoint Dance Theater under Sharon Perry and later became a trainee with the company. Before graduating high school, she received a Certificate of Dance Studies from Vanderbilt University. She also attended summer workshops with Ballet Magnificat and the Atlanta Ballet.

Later Lindsey performed as an assistant with Illusionist Brock Gill and his wife Auny, assisting in illusions and even performing her own routines combining dance with illusion. She continued her dance education by taking master classes with Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, Joy Davis, Amy Morrow, and Luigi. She also joined and performed with Epiphany Dance Company and also taught company ballet class.

Lindsey has been teaching dance for over a decade now at several schools including Tennessee Dance Arts Conservatory, Ann Carroll School of Dance, and Fellowship School of Dance. Lindsey is now happy to be joining as a teacher at CSPA to share the joy of movement with this community. Lindsey is married to her best friend John, and they are parents to a precious little one.

 

Nikki Orlando

Hip Hop & Musical Theatre Dance

Originally from upstate New York, Nikki both performed and taught at Tap to Toe Studio of Dance for nearly fifteen years. After deciding that she wanted to pursue dance as a career she attended Point Park University for three and a half years and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance.  She performed in several different showcase pieces during her time at PPU under the direction of Broadway famous Ron Tassone, internationally acclaimed dancer Nicholas Petrov and Radio City Rockette Heather Goelz-Carpenter.  Nikki was also given the opportunity at Point Park to create a piece for the Student Choreography Project where she was able to really develop her choreographic voice. 

 

Right out of college Nikki landed her first job with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines where she performed on the Quantum of the Seas for 6 months then on the Ovation of the Seas for 9 months. While performing nearly 350 shows in the unique techno savvy venue Two70, she was able to travel all over China, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.  Nikki was also given the leadership role of dance captain and aerial coordinator on the Ovation of the Seas where her primary role was to maintain the integrity of the show and to monitor the safety of all performers.  

 

Nikki is new to the Nashville, TN area and is very excited to be a part of the Columbia School of Performing Arts team.  She is eager to share her passion of dance and to inspire others to find their own voice through movement.