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Our Story

The Dance Centre offers a comprehensive dance program for the pre-school child through professional adult and is just about to celebrate its 40th anniversary. Classes include beginning, intermediate and advanced levels in classical ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, hip-hop, modern, contemporary, lyrical, ballroom and musical theatre. We also have a specialized pre-school program for boys and girls ages 3-5 years old. Special classes and workshops such as  Ballroom Dance, Baby Ballet and Hip-Hop Fusion are also available. Our aim is to give students an education and appreciation for the art of dance, turning out dancers who are well-rounded in all dance disciplines. Classes are creative and innovative, emphasizing correct body placement, terminology, strength of movement and performance skills. Each student is considered on an individual basis with placement decided at the director's discretion. 

Our Team

Mary Beth Cauthen

 Director, All Levels Ballet, Tap, Jazz, PreDance, Baby Ballet

Mary Beth, a cum laude graduate of Berry College, formed The Dance Centre in 1983. Her dance background includes study in New York at the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, the Broadway Dance Center and the School for Ballet and Theatre Dance. In Atlanta she has studied with the Atlanta Contemporary Dance Company, the City Center Dance Theatre, Terpsichore and with Ruth Mitchell Dance Studio. She has also trained with Rockette Sandi Friedman and Jason Kalish, a former Tap Dog. Mary Beth trained under Susan Robinson and served as an instructor at The Art of Dance in Rome from 1978-1983 and studied with the notable ballet teacher Stanley Zompakos at Shorter College. Mary Beth Has served on the audition committee for the Georgia Governor's Honors Program in dance as well as Dance Coordinator for the Rome Area Council for the Arts. 

She holds many choreographic credits including The Nutcracker for Darlington Players and Twelve Dancing Princesses, The Littlest Angel and The Best Christmas Pageant Ever  for the Creative Playhouse Children's Theatre. She also created The Night Before Christmas  and  Winter Wonderland  at the Rome City Auditorium.

Mary Beth served many years as an executive officer on the Board of Directors for the Rome Area Council for the Arts and was rehearsal co-coordinator for the Rome Symphony Debutante Ball for 10 years. She is part of the production team for the Sexual Assault Center's annual Celebrity Dance Challenge, having served as judge, choreographer, stage manager and rehearsal coordinator. Mary Beth has two grown children, Anna Claire and Hampton, a son-in-law, Sam and grands, Will and Amelia


JoAnna Parker

 All levels Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Contemporary, Musical Theater, 

JoAnna Parker has been dancing since the age of 2. She started ballet and tap at The Dance Centre and has been here ever since. JoAnna has studied all dance disciplines and studied ballet under Pavel Rotaru and Kay Whiffen at the Rotaru International Children's Ballet.  She has choreographed and performed in numerous musicals such as Cats, Annie Get Your Gun (in which she played the lead role), Fiddler on the Roof, Lil Abner and all the Broadway Spectaculars for Rome Little Theater. She also performed in Pepperell High School's show choir. JoAnna was a member of Allegro Dance Company, under the direction of Georgie Riegel, for 10 years and now teaches all levels of tap, ballet, jazz, contemporary and musical theatre. JoAnna has been teaching at The Dance Centre since 2004. Currently, she is a teacher at Elm Street Elementary and works with Grand Illusion show choir at Rome Middle.  JoAnna is the proud mother of son, Kaydon and daughter, Mollie Eloise. JoAnna holds a Masters in Elementary Education and teaches 5th grade literacy. She is assistant director of Grand Illusion. 

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Hannah Camacho

 All Levels Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Musical Theatre

Hannah began her dance career as a student at The Dance Centre and worked her way up to becoming an instructor. Her training in modern as a member of Allegro Dance Company was a grounding point for her. Hannah teaches throughout the Rome area, including working with Rome Little Theatre with musicals such as, Beauty and the Beast, Wizard of Oz, Newsies and more. Hannah focuses on Contemporary and Lyrical styles, but has a love for Musical Theatre. She is mom to dancers Oliver and Tillian.  Hannah's favorite dance quote is "Great dancers are not great because of their technique, they are great because of their passion." -Martha Graham 

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Leslie Pearson

  Advanced Level Ballet, Contemporary, Modern

After 30 years of teaching dance, Leslie Pearson continues to welcome students into her classroom with excitement and anticipation for the talent and creativity that each brings. A graduate of UGA with a B.S. in education and a minor in Pre-Dance therapy, she began her teaching journey at the age of 18. While at UGA, she was a dancing member of the CORE Concert Dance Company, NON-STOP dance Company, and performed and choreographed for schools, concerts, and theater productions. She owned and operated her dance studio in Athens, Ga before coming to Rome in 2000 to be closer to family. She has taught every age group, every dance style, and at every studio in the Rome area for a number of years. Her love and devotion to the art of dance is something she is eager to share with each student in hopes that they too, one day, will love and appreciate it as much as she does.

Leslie resides in Rome with her husband and is currently enjoying an “empty nest” as all three of her children are exploring life as adults. She works as a REALTOR for Hardy Realty and when not teaching or working, you will most likely find her at the gym or playing with her adorable rescues, Lily and Lincoln.


Danielle Leonard

PreDance, Ballet, Tap, Jazz,

Team Support Staff

Danielle began dancing at the age of 3 at Baird Ballet, under the instruction of Kathy Baird.  While there she studied ballet, tap, jazz, modern, lyrical and contemporary.  In 2004, Danielle began teaching preschool and elementary school age children.  The last few years she has also taught tap and jazz to teens.  Danielle participated in the Rome Celebrity Dance Challenge from 2011-2015 and won the People's Choice award in 2014 with her partner.  She currently teaches beginner levels of ballet, tap and jazz here at The Dance Centre.  Danielle has also  served as support staff for us for many years, and continues to sub wherever and whenever needed.  Danielle and her husband, Eric live in Rome and are the proud parents of daughter Avery Reese and Sadie Jo.

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Dicie Waters

  Ballet, Tap, PreDance, Team Support Staff

Dicie began her dance career at the age of 3 years old and has not stopped dancing since. Dicie has had training from many local studios in the area including The Joanne Collier Studio of Dance, Baird Ballet, and The Dance Centre. She has a heart for contemporary dance, but has recently fallen in love with teaching the “babies” of the studio, the future of The Dance Centre. She is currently a teacher at Rome Middle School.

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Carly Duryea

  Ballet, Tap, Jazz, PreDance

Carly Duryea started dancing at The Dance Centre at the age of 5 and is still going strong 21 years later. She started apprenticing with Ms. Mary Beth while in middle school and began teaching at The Dance Centre’s satellite studio in her hometown of Centre, AL in 2017. Carly has taught ballet, tap, and jazz to students ranging from 3 to 12 years old. She also serves as a member of The Dance Center’s support staff, helping with recitals and registration events as needed.


Emily Nebb

  All Levels Hip Hop

Emily has been dancing for 12 years, and began her training at age 5 in Thomaston, GA at  Armstrong School of Dance.  She also loves performing in theater productions at Calhoun High School where she is currently a senior. While she is trained in all dance forms, her favorites are modern and hip hop. This is her second year teaching advanced beginner, intermediate and advanced hip hop classes at TDC.  
in Thomaston, GA at  Armstrong School of Dance.  She also loves performing in theater productions at Calhoun High School where she is currently a senior. While she is trained in all dance forms, her favorites are modern and hip hop. This is her second year teaching advanced beginner, intermediate and advanced hip hop classes at TDC.  


Olivia Quigley

PreDance, Hip Hop, Team Support Staff

Olivia began dancing at age 10 at The Dance Centre and she has been passionate about dance ever since. As a new teacher, she is excited to share her passion with her students. Her dance training includes ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary, lyrical, modern, musical theatre and hip hop. She was also on the Model High School dance team for three years. This year in addition to teaching preschool dance and beginning hip hop, Olivia will be part of TDC’s competition team. -


Tara Ogle

 Competition Team Director

Tara Dawn Ogle began dancing at age 3 at Donna Ellis School of Dance and continued with Diana's School of Dance, where she competed at Dance Educators of America with numerous first place finishes.  She also studied  with Tom Moore at Georgia Ballet and at Rome Civic Ballet where she founded a competition dance team in 1987.

Tara's teaching experience includes teaching tap, ballet and jazz at area studios, including Advanced Jazz and Competition at The Dance Centre. Her competition dance troupe Pizzazz won numerous 1st place and national championships. She started The Dance Centre’s
comp team in 2019, winning numerous 1st place awards, and had several dancers invited to compete, placing in the top 5 at Platinum’s National Championship The Best of the Best Competition in New Orleans. From 2003-2013, Tara owned and operated Rockmart Dance Academy. 
Tara also has extensive choreographic credits including Grand Illusion Show Choir, Rockmart Middle School Dance Team and Rockmart High School Band Dance Line. This year Tara will be teaching/coaching The Dance Centre
Competition Team, and doing choreography for individual students and small groups.

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Ms. Kay

  Office Manager, Costumier

A native of Rome, Ms. Kay attended Floyd and Dalton Colleges, and received certificates in Human Resources, Accounting, as well in several other administrative continuing education courses. Ms. Kay held staff positions at the Rome/Floyd County YMCA and local medical and manufacturing facilities. As a dance mom and office administrator, Ms. Kay has been a part of The Dance Centre family for 35+ years. She joined the team in 2006 as office manager and has loved every minute! She is a beloved and favorite staff member to all our dancers. 

        In past years, Ms. Kay was known for volunteering and becoming a “Roman Award” winning costumier for many Rome Little Theatre productions. Ms. Kay is an accomplished seamstress, an avid gardener, and an accomplished Southern cuisine chef. Her spare time is spent enjoying being Nana to her grandchildren, Kaydon and Mollie. 

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