Studio Owner and Director
Deena began dancing at the age of 10 after completing a book report on Maria Tallchief’s autobiography and has loved dance ever since. She studied with the Milwaukee Ballet School and School of Chicago City Ballet under such notable teachers as Francoise Martinet, Paul Sutherland, Basil Thompson, Melissa Hayden, Maria Tallchief, Diana Adams, Homer Bryant, Edward Villella, Allegra Kent and Joel Hall. Upon returning home, Deena enrolled in college and continued to perform for two civic ballet companies, Plymouth-Canton Ballet Company and Livonia Civic Ballet Company. She performed leading and soloist roles in The Nutcracker, Coppelia, Cinderella, Flying Colors, Paquita, Les Sylphides, Swan Lake and Dracula. She also began studying her Cecchetti Teacher’s Certification. She currently holds her Professional Advanced VII certificate with the Cecchetti Council of America to which she has been a member since 1992.
Deena has over 30 years of dance teaching experience and has co-owned Ann Arbor Dance Classics with Lisa Holland since 2000. She is currently sole owner and director of AADC. In those 30+ years, she has had several dancers compete regionally and nationally. She has had students win scholarships as well as competitive awards. Many of her students have gone on to study dance in colleges across the country and have also gone on to perform professionally as well. Her love and knowledge of dance has also inspired many of her former students to become dance teachers. She continues to teach her love of dance to as many young people as she can.
Deena currently resides in Milan, Michigan with her husband Jason and her two daughters, Evi and Saila. She also enjoys camping, hiking and cooking.
Lisa has been teaching dance for more than 20 years. She founded Ann Arbor Dance Classics in 1996 with the objective of creating an environment for dance education which included various styles of dance, but remained centered on a foundation of classical ballet training.
In 2000, Lisa Holland was reunited with Deena Fournier, a friend with whom she had trained in ballet for many years. They became business partners, and in 2004 established the AADC Youth Dance Ensemble (YDE), an in-house performance company for dancers between the ages of 8 and 18. With Deena directing the ballet program, Lisa was able to turn her attention to her passion for musical theater and tap. Having enjoyed performing in numerous shows including A Chorus Line, Pippin, and Jesus Christ Superstar, Lisa enjoys creating production numbers for YDE which focus on the theatrical elements of dance. When she has time, Lisa enjoys working with groups outside AADC, most recently choreographing Pippin for Saline High School and the CRU National Dance Spectacular.
In December of 2019, Lisa handed over ownership and directorship of Ann Arbor Dance Classics solely to Deena Fournier. Semi-retired from AADC, she continues to help produce AADC's March Benefit Concert performance for the Youth Dance Ensemble.
Lisa continues to work as a Survey Director at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan where she attended graduate school. She lives in Saline with her husband Steve, and her daughters Analise and Hannah.
Emma has been dancing since the age of seven with most of her training focused on ballet, pointe, jazz and modern. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Eastern Michigan University in 2011 with a degree in Dance Studio Management. While at EMU, she performed in numerous faculty and guest artist pieces, multiple full length ballets, and many student choreography pieces. She also served as secretary for EMU Dance Forum. She continues her own training any chance she can with classes and workshops. She has taken class at Chicago's Lou Conte Dance Studio and the Joffrey Ballet School as well as attending the Jazz Dance World Congress in Pittsburgh.
Emma has been teaching at Ann Arbor Dance Classics since 2011 and enjoys working with every age and level. She choreographs for the Youth Dance Ensemble and Competition Team and loves working with a wide range of students in many different styles of dance.
Stephanie is a native of the Detroit-Metro area, having received her early training at Noretta Dunworth School of Dance (NDSD) in Dearborn, Michigan. Seeking further education in the art form, she attended Eastern Michigan University (EMU) where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Dance, focused in Studio Management. Throughout her college career, Stephanie had the opportunity to perform in multiple works at the American College Dance Festival (ACDF) and claimed starring roles in the ballets Cinderella and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It was during this time that she also gained professional performing experience with RusticGroove Dance—a modern concert dance company based in Jackson, Michigan.
Stephanie has recently returned to Michigan after receiving her Master of Arts at New York University with a full certification in the American Ballet Theatre® (ABT) National Training Curriculum (NTC)—a breakthrough eight level program that combines high quality artistic training with the basics of dancer health and child development. While in New York, Stephanie worked in Development at ABT and was a substitute instructor at several area dance academies, including the Joffrey Ballet School. In her spare time, Stephanie fed her love of performance by dancing with theater dance company Aries in Flight, founded by her NYU cohort, Catherine Baggs.
Stephanie continues to work in Development, now with the Detroit Institute of Arts, and lives in Plymouth with her husband Ray.
Melanie has been dancing for 22 years and competing since the age of eight. She is trained in ballet, pointe, jazz, gymnastics, tap, musical theatre, hip hop, modern and precision pom. She is a Livonia Churchill High School graduate where she participated in the Creative And Performing Arts program. While in CAPA, she danced in choreographed group and solo numbers for her fellow dancers. It was during her time at Churchill that she discovered her passion for choreography and teaching. She was also a member of the award winning Churchill Chargers Pom Pon team.
After high school Melanie attended Eastern Michigan University majoring in Dance Performance. She has had the pleasure of studying under many master teachers including Glenn Packard (from the television show "Brooke Knows Best”), Addison O’Day (formerly of the Alabama Ballet), Keith Clifton, Rhonda Miller, and Jamie Trepanier. Melanie was also selected by audition for a small part in the movie “Youth In Revolt”.
Recently she has been teaching and choreographing for several local dance studios. Her engaging and engertic choreography has helped her students to achieve numerous regional and national awards. Melanie is looking forward to sharing her dedication, energy, and creative choreography with her students this year.
Avery trained with Ann Arbor Dance Classics for thirteen years, spending several of those years as a member of the YDE competition team. Her training includes a diverse repertoire of tap, ballet, contemporary, jazz, modern, musical theater, and forays into ballroom dance. During her dance career she had the opportunity to train with the Cecchetti Council of America, the Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet, and the Radio City Rockettes.
In 2019, she graduated from Georgetown University with a Bachelor of Arts in Justice & Peace Studies and Women's & Gender Studies. During her time at Georgetown, she worked in the University's Health Education Services center as an interpersonal violence prevention educator and health promotion team member. Outside of her studies and work, she stayed active exploring various cross-training techniques and participating in Georgetown's annual Latin dance performance, Reventon.
Avery has recently returned to Ann Arbor, where she works in Student & Academic Services at the University of Michigan Ford School of Public Policy. She is thankful for the opportunity to return to AADC and to be able to share her own passion for dance with the next generation of dancers.
Darion began dancing in 7th grade at a home town studio as well as her middle school dance team. She auditioned and joined the Detroit Pistons youth hip hop group during her Junior year of high school performing at their home games, one of which Flo-Rida performed. After high school, Darion attended Western Michigan University receiving a major in Dance and a minor in Communications. While studying dance at WMU, Darion also participated in performances within her dance program and auditioned to be a part of a hip hop company called Hip Hop ConnXion. She helped direct and choreograph for Hip Hop ConnXion her senior year at WMU.
This is Darion’s first season with AADC and we are very excited to have her teaching with us!
Elli began dancing at age 6, and has trained in ballet, pointe, tap, jazz, and lyrical. She participated in competition teams for six years and studied Cecchetti, taking examinations through Grade VII. She was in local productions of the Nutcracker with the Livonia Civic Ballet Company and Plymouth Canton Ballet Company, where she performed various roles including Solider, Clara, Doll, and Snow Queen. During the summers, Elli attended the Cecchetti Summer Intensive in Holland, Michigan, American Ballet Theatre Summer Intensive in Detroit, and BalletMet Summer Intensive in Columbus, Ohio.
After graduating from Walled Lake Central High School in 2008, Elli attended the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, and she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry in 2012. While there, Elli was a four year member of the University of Michigan Dance Team, where she performed at football and basketball games. She also traveled with the team and competed at the Universal Dance Association College Dance Team Nationals in Orlando from her sophomore through senior years. Elli started teaching in 2012, working with competition teams in ballet, pointe, jazz, lyrical and contemporary. She is also certified to teach Cecchetti Grades I and II.
Elli currently works at Cayman Chemical in Ann Arbor in the Immunoassay New Product Development Department. While employed at Cayman, Elli earned a Master of Science degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Eastern Michigan University in the Spring of 2016.
Kelly has been dancing for over 15 years. Her training includes tap, jazz, modern, contemporary, hip hop, ballet, and musical theater. Kelly developed a love for teaching dance while in high school, and has been teaching ever since.
Kelly graduated from Bowling Green State University in 2014 earning a Bachelor's degree in Dance Education. During her time at BGSU, she danced for the University's performance company, Dance Repertory Ensemble, which held a Winter Concert every year. Her senior year choreography piece was selected to perform in the Winter Concert, and she attended the American College Dance Festival her sophomore and junior year.
In her spare time, Kelly enjoys doing Pure Barre and taking dance classes. She also looks forward to attending Motor City Tap Festival each summer, and is excited for another season teaching at AADC.
Patricia began her training at the age of four at Ann Arbor Dance Classics and continued through her senior year in the Youth Dance Ensemble. During her summers she had opportunities to train with companies such as LINES Ballet, the Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet, and Royal Winnipeg Ballet. A former member of the YDE competition team, she is returning to Ann Arbor Dance Classics as a choreographer for competition solos and duets as well as a ballet teacher for young dancers.
A student at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business studying Finance/Pre-Law, but still continues to dance. Patricia takes weekly ballet classes through the U of M Department of Dance and is the treasurer and an active member of Salto Dance Company, a ballet and contemporary student dance group at the university.
Patricia is so thankful to be returning to Ann Arbor Dance Classics where she will have the opportunity to teach and inspire upcoming dancers.