About Us

The academy has been established in Remuera for over 20 years.   We specialise in modern, fun and exciting jazz,

hip hop & performance dance classes from preschool level to professional level using modern, upbeat music. 

Our classes are taken by qualified and experienced teachers who have a passion for dance and performance. As one of Auckland’s largest dance academies our aim is for our students to enjoy their dance experience with us and our teachers will inspire their students to appreciate the art of movement.

The class environment is fun, safe and friendly.  We not only offer the opportunity to sit exams each year but also to take part in an outstanding dance production held at a professional theatre at the end of the dancing year which draws in an audience of around 800 each year.

Teachers

NATASHA INSLEY (Jazz Teacher & Principal)

Natasha has been dancing since she was 5 years old.  She trained in RAD Ballet to Advanced level, NZAMD and JDNZ jazz (gaining her Solo diploma) and BBO Ballet and Tap to Advanced level.  Natasha also studied Spanish Dance (with Jane Luscombe) Hip Hop and Contemporary Dance.

She was a most successful dance competitor for many years and went on to dance professionally both in New Zealand, Australia & the USA (where she danced with the Mariah Carey Dancers).  Natasha was also a successful aerobics competitor.  Natasha has been teaching jazz for 20 years and hip hop for 5 years as well as teaching many successful competition students.  She operated Hodson Dance Academy in the capacity of teacher and choreographer for ten years from 1980-2000.  She then opened up her own jazz and hip hop studio in Hobsonville whilst also teaching Jazz & Hip Hop for Rachel Elliott Dance Academy in Remuera.

In 2006 she purchased the school which she has been successfully running ever since.  Natasha is a fully qualified JDNZ & NZAMD jazz teacher and JDNZ hip hop, lyrical & tap adjudicator as well as a jazz examiner. She enjoys examining jazz, lyrical, Tap, Contemporary & hip hop students nation wide.

 

DANIELLE TIMBERS (Jazz & Hip Hop Teacher)

Danielle has been dancing since the age of 5. She has successfully competed throughout New Zealand and Australia at a high level of Modern Jazz (JDNZ), Contemporary, Lyrical, Cabaret, Hip Hop, and Ballet. She gained her solo diploma in 2010 and has been loving teaching ever since. Danielle is currently dancing professionally for SkyCity Cheer Team & Soul of Siren Dance Company. Her most current dance work has been performing at a wide range of large corporate events, alongside some of NZ's most iconic singers such as Jackie Clark and Jon Toogood, and TV work such as X-Factor earlier this year. This work allows Danielle to travel Nationwide performing and growing within her art, an art which she is enthused about sharing with her NHDA students, helping them grow to be strong, competitive, and passionate dancers.

 

GRACE KOK (Lyrical & Jazz Teacher)

Grace has been dancing since the age of 5 years old. She has been trained in Jazz (JDNZ), Ballet (RAD), Cheerleading, Aerobics and Rhythmic Gymnastics. She gained her Jazz (JDNZ) solo diploma in 2014. She competed successfully in jazz, lyrical and contemporary competitions in New Zealand. She has also won national titles competing in Sports Aerobics and Rhythmic Gymnastics. Grace is currently studying French, Spanish and Economics at the University of Auckland while teaching at NHDA.

 

GRACE STEVENS (Jazz & Hip Hop Teacher)

Grace has been dancing since the age of 3. She has trained at an advanced level at jazz, ballet, lyrical, contemporary and hip hop, and has recently completed her solo diploma, as well as competing successfully in countless competitions over the years. She also represented New Zealand in the World Dance Championships in Florida earlier this year, coming away second place with the rest of her troupe. She is so passionate about dancing and is excited to start teaching more at NHDA next year! 

 

MIKAELA FOY (Jazz & Hip Hop Teacher/Relief Teacher)

Mikaela is 20 years old and has over 15 years of dance training. She specialises in jazz, ballet, lyrical, contemporary and cabaret. In the professional world, Mikaela dances under Momentum Productions for the NZ Breakers, Vodafone Warriors and the NRL 9’s while also featuring as core dancer for Diamond Entertainment doing many corporate jobs regularly. Mikaela loves to teach and is looking forward to meeting everyone at the start of term 2! 

 

KIRSTEN OCAMPO (Relief Teacher)

Kirsten is 23 years of age. She has become a versatile dancer after dancing for 16 years. Her passion was in Ballet and Jazz but later found interest in Lyrical, Hip Hop, and other styles. Kirsten is in a film titled Born To Dance which premiers later this year, working alongside Parris Goebel and Stan Walker. Kirsten was a dancer on The X Factor NZ, and dances for the Sky City Warriors Cheer Team. Kirsten was a part of Infinite Dance crew who represented New Zealand in Belgrade, Serbia and the crew won first place at the 2013 Hip Hop Unite World Championships. She accomplished The American Jazz Dance Affiliation Advanced Level Directors Award, at the Phoenix International Dance Workshop in Palmerston North and gained a lot of experience dancing in L.A from international choreographers. She has taught dance for five years in Wellington ranging from baby ballet to adult hip hop. She has a Diploma in Performing Arts (Commercial Dance).

 

NIKKI MARIE (Relief Teacher)

Nikki started her dance career at Keri Edley Modern Dance School then moved with the studio to join Auckland Academy of Dance. She has completed all her Jazz Dance New Zealand exams to Advanced level and competed in the studio troupes.

She then went on to join Academy D’s Ultim8 Zone Dance Team and danced at many events including International Hockey Games, Speedway, Corporate events, Special Childrens Christmas Parties, Auckland Basketball and NZ Fashion Week. During her time at Academy D she tried some new styles of dance and gained a Bronze and Silver Medal in Cheerleading Technique and Irish Dance (IDTA).

Her teaching career started at YMCA where she grew and retained the dance programe at the Mt Albert branch and went on to start classes at the Ellerslie and Massey branches. Nikki also directed, produced and danced in the YMCA 150th Celebrations Dance Show in Aucklands Town Hall.

In 2005 She opened First Steps Dance School which specialised in Preschool Dance then renamed in 2008 to Nikki Marie Dance to reflect the growth of the studio and students. Nikki ran a succesful studio for 9.5 years with students regularly competing at local and national competitions with her students holding national and international awards.Nikki made the tough decision to close the doors in July 2015 to spend time with her young family and has been enjoying just being a mum for the last 6 months.

With 16 years teaching experience Nikki brings a lot of patience and passion to classes with a huge focus on students self esteem and personal growth.