Valerie Stead Potsos is the head coach of the nationally ranked University of Michigan Dance Team. She is the Director/Owner of Dancer's Edge in Dexter, Michigan. She has choreographed for professional corporate sponsors including Ford Motor Company and much more. Dancer’s Edge was named as “Top Studios on the Move” in Dance Spirit for 2007. Her articles on coaching and dance have appeared in Dance Spirit, American Cheerleader and in Motion Magazines. She is a Seminar presenter, and consultant for AACCA (American Association of Cheer Coaches and Administrators) and staff member for Universal Dance Association on topics such as Motivation, Leadership, Team-building and many more!
Along with judging local and state competitions, Valerie has judged Studio, High School, College Dance Nationals and Worlds as well for various organizations including Nexstar, Contest of Champions and many more. She coached The Royal Oak Kimball Dance Company and The Royal Oak Kimball Varsity Dance Team for 8 years and is in her 16th season coaching The University of Michigan Dance Team. She also teaches for the kinesiology department, “U-Move” at The University of Michigan. A choreographer for several teams and studios, Valerie has also choreographed for professional singers and for Ford Motor Company at Ford Field. She has been dancing since age three and teaching dance since age fourteen and was a member and captain of The University of Michigan Dance Team. Valerie graduated with a B.A. from the University of Michigan in Communication and Dance Education and has additional graduate studies in Secondary Education from Michigan State University. Valerie resides in Dexter, MI with her husband and three children.
Jenn has been teaching dance in the Dexter area for over 13 years. She specializes in the young dancer and teaches tap, jazz, ballet, and musical theatre. Jenn was the director of the Very Young Dancer program at Dexter Academy of Dance under Mollie Murphy for 7 years. She has 10 years experience in private Summer Camp Administration and lesson planning/teaching in numerous subjects from reading to fine Italian cooking. She is an avid musical theatre performer and choreographer. She works with many area theatre groups such as Ann Arbor Civic Theatre, Dexter Community Players, Saline Area Players, Pinckney Players, and the University of Michigan Gilbert and Sullivan Society both onstage, as a choreographer, and as a dance captain.
Leah was born and raised in Knoxville, Tennesse where she was a part of both studio and school dance teams. She was on the Farragut Middle School and Farragut High School dance teams, both of which ranked nationally. After graduation she stepped in as a technique coach for both middle and high schools. While working with both teams and attending nationals with the teams, the middle school became UDA National Champions and the high school ranked 5th. As for herself, she trained under Adina Tarca of the Romanian Ballet and choreographer for the Korean Ballet and Jordan McLaughlin, a three time National Champion. With Jordan McLaughlin she helped to choreograph for Worlds and several other competition pieces. Her training includes dance technique, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, pom and hip-hop tricks. At Virginia Tech she pursued a major in national security and double minor in philosophy, politics, and economics. During this time she was a member of the university's dance team and lettered within her first semester. While in Michigan she plans to finish her Masters through Virginia Tech and work for the Michigan Intelligence Operations Center. Leah is currently the head coach for the Dexter High School and Mill Creek Middle School Dance Teams.
Alicia has been dancing for 25 years in a variety of styles, including Cecchetti and Russian Ballet, Lyrical, Jazz, Swing, Modern, Tap, Tango, Foxtrot, African Dance, and even more! She has performed with the Cincinnati Ballet Company, Monroe Ballet Company, and at the Plymouth Canton Ballet Company, and the Detroit Children Ballet Theatre as a soloist. She has formal training from the Cecchetti Council of America and the American Ballet Theatre. At Dancer’s Edge, Alicia teaches competition ballet, lyrical, pre-pointe, contemporary, hip-hop and ballet.
Rachel has been dancing for over 20 years and holds a BFA in Musical Theater from Oakland University. She also holds a certificate of completion from The Hydrama Classical Greek Theatre Training Program in Hydra, Greece. Dance credits include choreogrphing for such production as Antigone, Under Milkwood, British Invasion and We've Got Dancin' To Do. Rachel has also danced for The Detroit Dolls and Kid Rock.
Amanda has been dancing since the age of three and trained in ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, pointe, and kickline. She began teaching when she was 17. Amanda taught both recreational and competition teams in Long Beach, California at Diamond Dance Academy. Since then, Amanda has judged local competitions as well and various high school dance team tryouts. Amanda coached the Dexter High School Varsity Dance Team for four years.
Carson has been dancing for as long as she can remember. She trained in a variety of styles including jazz, pom, lyrical, hip-hop, and contemporary. Carson began competing as a dancer at age 11 and has won various regional, national, and world champion titles in her time since. She enjoys being a part of a team and striving for goals with others by her side. She has been teaching for 3 years now and is passionate about watching her students grow as dancers and people. Carson is currently a student at the University of Michigan and a proud member of the University of Michigan Dance Team.
Joan came to Dancer's Edge as a student in 2009, where she began her competitive dance training. She learned from current and past Dancer's Edge teachers in ballet, jazz, pointe, modern and contemporary dance. She has been teaching at the studio since the age of 16. Outside of dance she worked for four years as a summer camp counselor at the Ann Arbor YMCA's Camp Al-Gon-Quian before beginning to work towards a Bachelors of Science in Nursing at the University of Michigan. Joan currently works at Michigan Medicine as a patient care technician, in addition to teaching dance at the studio. Her goal is for each student to develop skills that transcend past the dance studio into a dancer's character and overall mindset.
Christy began training in dance at the age of 2. She has been trained in various styles including Russian ballet, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, tap, hip-hop, modern, musical theatre and improv. She has enjoyed dancing competitively as well as in ballet productions. Currently living in Detroit, she is pursuing a BFA in dance at Wayne State University. She is passionate about participating in dance related opportunities available in the city. Some of these iclude artist Nick Cave's "Heard Detroit, Detroit Dance Race and multiple performances at the DIA.
Emily began her dance training at the age of 7 in Sourthern California at The Element Dance Center. She competed and trained in various styles including tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical and hip-hop. Emily has studied with some of the most well known and revered teachers and choreographer in the industry, and has won numerous awards and titles. She is passionate about all styles but is especially accomplished in tap. Emily has been teaching dance for 5 years and enjoys working with students of all ages. She currently attends the University of Michigan where she is proud to represent her school as a member of the Dance Team.
Jen is one of our Dancer's Edge alumnae and has danced competitively for more than nine years. She has choreographed and taugh in many different styles such as jazz, pom, ballet and contemporary. She is currently on the University of Michigan Dance Team.