Meet your 2020-2021 Illinettes Dance Team

Senior *Co-Captain

4th Year Member

Major: Kinesiology

Hometown: Mahomet, IL

Sophie Leskis

Sophie began dancing at the age of 3 on a competition team where she received numerous scholarships & awards. She trained in multiple styles. She also danced and choreographed on the Mahomet Seymour High School dance team for 4 years & was a captain her senior year. Sophie has also been instructor for the Universal Dance Association for the past 3 years where she travels across the country to teach dance to high schoolers.

Senior *Co-Captain

4th Year Member

Major: Elementary Education

Hometown: Naperville, IL

Molly Tuskey

Molly has been dancing since the age of 3. She began dancing at the School of Performing Arts in Naperville and received her training from there. She was a 4-year varsity member of St. Francis High School’s Dance Team and captain of the team her senior year.

Senior

4th Year Member

Major: Molecular and Cellular Biology

Hometown: Naperville, IL

Ashley Barz

Ashley has been dancing since she was threes years old. She trained with Dancewest Ballet, as well as competed with Midwest Edge Dance Company. Ashley was also a three year member of the Naperville North Varsity Dance Team. This is her second year as a member of the Illinettes Dance Team.

Senior

4th Year Member

Major: Advertising 

Minor: Public Relations

Hometown: Orland Park, IL

Antoinette DelGiudice

Toni has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She competed and danced at Willow Street Dance Theatre through her senior year of high school. In high school, she was on Carl Sandburg's varsity poms team and orchesis troupe all four years. Toni was the captain for both teams her senior year. She was rewarded all conference her sophomore, junior, and senior year of high school. 

Senior

3rd Year Member

Major: Advertising

Hometown: Naperville IL

Mickayla Homme

Mickayla has been dancing since the age of 3. While she started off dancing at Dance West Ballet, she trained most extensively at The Academy of Dance Arts in Downers Grove under the direction of Ricky Ruiz and Sherry Moray. She was also on the Naperville North Varsity Dance Team where she was captain her Senior Year.

Senior

4th Year Member

Major: Economics and History

Minor: Jewish Studies

Hometown: Nolensville, TN

Johnna Jones

Johnna’s dancing career commenced at the age of three in the 3rd ranked best dance studio in the nation: DC Dance Factory. Through this dance studio, Johnna attained 14 consecutive national championships. Johnna also competed on her high school dance team, a state winning championship team, and was chosen captain her junior year and sustained the role until graduation of her senior year.

Junior

3rd Year Member

Major: Community Health

Hometown: Tuscola, IL

Olivia Chester

Olivia started dancing at Art In Motion Dance Studio at age 3 and trained in a variety of styles. At the age of 5 she joined the AIM competition team and for 10 years she danced with title-winning groups. At Tuscola High School she was a member of cheer and dance teams and was chosen dance team captain her senior year. She received multiple IDTA awards, including state finalist solo and Rising Star awards.  

Junior

3rd Year Member

Major: Advertising

Hometown: Bartlett, IL

Analia Dama

Analia has been dancing since the age of 2 and was trained at Dance Motions Inc. for fifteen years. In her senior year of high school, Analia choreographed a number of pieces for the studio's Motions Dance Company. Along with dancing at Dance Motions, Analia was a part of St. Francis High School's Varsity Dance Team for four years. As a senior, Analia had the opportunity to be Captain of her school's dance team. She has worked with many choreographers like Sinead Gildea, Sarah Burney, and Aretese Low. Analia is so happy to continue her dance career on the Illinettes Dance Team and continue to make memories with the team.

Junior

3rd Year Member

Major: Business

Hometown: Naperville, IL

Bridget Glass

Bridget has been dancing since the age of 3 at the School of Performing Arts as a member of their competitive dance ensemble and teacher’s assistant program. She was a four-year member of Naperville North’s Varsity Dance Team, serving as Captain her senior year. With her team, she qualified for state all four years and was state finalist for the last two. Bridget also performed in her high school Orchises showcase during her Junior and Senior Year.

Junior

3rd Year Member

Major: Interdisciplinary Health 

Hometown: Elmhurst, IL

Kat Ciannella

Katherine has been dancing since the age of 3. She has trained at Beyond Center Stage for the past 6 years, where she has competed and attended dance conventions, receiving several scholarships. In high school she was on York's varsity dance team for all four years. Her team qualified for IHSA state all four years, winning the state title her senior year

Junior

3rd Year Member

Major: Molecular and Cellular Biology

Hometown: Brookfield, IL

Emma Dziura

Emma has been dancing since she was 3 years old.  She began training at Lively Arts Dance Academy. At the age of 14 she joined the pre-professional hip-hop company Boom Box! under the direction of Trae Turner. In 2015 she competed at Hip-Hop International against teams from all over the world. Emma also was a member of Lyons Townships's poms team all four years. During her senior year, the team won a state title from IDTA and placed at IHSA. She was a dancer and choreographer for her high school's Eurythmic Dance Company, where she  trained with choreographers like Randy Duncan, Corey Nagel and Terry Wethington. Emma is looking forward to her academic endeavors as a Biology major. 

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Business

Hometown: Naperville, IL

Emma Connelly

Emma has been dancing since the age of 3 and at the age of ten began dancing competitively for the School of Performing Arts Dance Ensemble. Emma was a four-year member of the Naperville North High School Varsity Dance Team, which qualified for the IHSA state competition all four years. Her senior year, as a captain, she helped lead the team to win the 2019 State Championship. Emma was also a member of Naperville North’s Orchesis Dance club for three years, performing and choreographing for the Orchesis showcase.

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Kinesiology

Hometown: Lake Villa, IL

Danielle Fuller

Danielle has been dancing since she was 8 years old. She trained and competed with Shine Bright Dance Studio in Antioch, IL in a variety of styles under the direction of Courtney Kozlowski. She won many titles, awards, and scholarships during her competition career at the regional and national level. At the age of 11, she was chosen to be a part of Inaside Chicago Dance’s youth training program directed by Sarah Ford-Hardy. Throughout Danielle’s dance career she has had opportunities to train in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Louisville. She has been a hip hop teaching assistant for Marcus Hardy at several Chicagoland area dance intensives.

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Elementary Education

Hometown: Arlington Heights, IL

Bridget Hennelly

Bridget has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She trained at McDonald Dance Academy and studied various different styles. She also participated in dance team and Orchesis at Prospect High School for 4 years and was chosen as a captain and head choreographer her senior year. Bridget is so excited to continue dancing in college with the Illinettes!

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Political Science

Hometown: Naperville, IL

Calle Mennecke

Calle has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She spent many of her years with Inspire School of Dance traveling to various conventions and competitions around the country. Throughout her dance career she attended LADM Nationals in Los Angeles and then multiple years in NYC as part of the NYCDA Outstanding Dancer Experience. She was a member of Neuqua Valley High School?s Orchesis Dance Company her junior year and choreographed her senior year. She was a member of Studio 8 Dance Company her senior year working with many talented choreographers.

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Undeclared

Hometown: Aurora, IL

Allison Neitzel

Allison started dancing at the age of 3. She has trained with many studios in the Chicago and Naperville area, most extensively from Steps Dance Center with whom the competed with the past 7 years under the direction of Rebecca Rosenberg and Carrie Nicastro Ruiz. She was on the her Orchesis Dance Company for 4 years at Metea Valley High School, serving 3 years as a choreographer, two years as an officer. Allison also had the pleasure of serving the position of President her senior year.

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Elementary Education

Hometown: Barrington, IL

Bri Pietrzak

Bri has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She trained and competed with Denise Sabala Dance Studio and The Dance Loft. In high school, she was a four year member of Barrington High School’s Dance Team and competed in the IHSA state competition twice. She also participated in and choreographed multiple dances for her school's Orchesis Dance Company serving as their executive director. 

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Speech and Hearing Sciences

Hometown: Downers Grove, IL

Emily has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She began her dancing at Midwest Ballet Academy. Emily continued her training at Salt Creek Ballet where she performed for five years and was a company member. She studied ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, and modern. Her senior year of high-school, Emily was a member of Downers Grove South’s varsity dance team. She also choreographed and performed with Downers Grove South’s Orchesis Dance Company. Emily is thrilled to continue dancing on the Illinettes Dance Team! 

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Communication

Hometown: Oswego, IL

Jess Schatz

Jess started her dance career at Storm Dance Alliance where she competed in all dance styles from age 11-15. She then moved on to dance on the Varsity Dance Team at Oswego East High School her freshman year. While on the dance team she held the role as co-captain her junior and senior year, choreographing routines and assisting in bettering the program. She spent this past winter break in Rome, Italy with 4 of her  teammates and dance coach. In Rome, she danced in the New Years Day Parade as part of the Universal Dance Association’s 2018 All American Team.

Sophomore

2nd Year Member

Major: Dance

Hometown: Auburn, IL

Hannah Tharp

Hannah is from Auburn, IL and attended Auburn High School. She began training in dance at 3 years old. She joined the competition team at her home studio in Chatham, IL at age 5 and travelled with them all around the Midwest. Hannah also taught at her home studio where she was able to begin teaching her own choreography. Some of Hannah’s titles that she has been awarded are Miss Teen Applause and Miss Senior Onstage America. She has also received the Dance Awards Scholarship from Break the Floor Productions multiple times, which allowed her to travel all around the country including New York, Las Vegas, California, and Orlando, Florida. There, she had the opportunity to compete as a finalist in the Best Dancer / Dance Awards competition. Hannah is a freshman this year and is so excited to be on the Illinettes and to start her her journey as a dance major. 

Sydney Tschosik

Sophomore

1st Year Member

Kelly Higgason

Sophomore

1st Year Member

Amanda Veldhuizen

Freshman

1st Year Member

Cassidy Murphy

Freshman

1st Year Member

Elizabeth Watson

Freshman

1st Year Member

Jessica Cvengros

Freshman

1st Year Member

Megan Graham
Eva Hahnfeld

Freshman

1st Year Member

Freshman

1st Year Member

Lilly Mullaney

Freshman

1st Year Member

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