Shely Pack Dancers
Shely Pack Manning
Shely Pack-Manning has been a dance educator for over 40 years and has taught on the San Mateo Coast Side for 23. Originally from Pittsburgh, PA, she danced professionally with The Pittsburgh Ballet Theater and “Timepiece” a Pittsburgh based modern dance company. She earned her BA in Performing Arts from St. Mary’s College of California. She is certified by Dance Masters of America to teach Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Modern and Acrobatics. Shely was awarded the 2012 Arts Educator of the Year by the San Mateo Arts Foundation.
Shely has had many award winning students throughout the years, including the 2000 Miss Dance of America, 2001 Teen Mr. Dance of America, 2003 Mr. Dance of America, 2006 Teen Mr. Dance of a America, and the 2009 Junior Mr. Dance of America and is the Teacher of Recognition for the 2015 Petite Miss Dance of America. Shely’s students can be seen on Broadway, in National and International Touring Companies, music videos, television shows and commercials, professional ballet and modern dance companies. Shely has served as the Chairman of the Modern Dance Education Committee for Dance Masters of America and was the co-producer, with her husband Jim Manning, of DMA’s Modern Dance and Classical Ballet training videos.
Assistant Artistic Director
Grace Pack began her dance training with the Shely Pack Dancers under director Shely Pack-Manning (Past President of Dance Masters of America). She furthered her ballet training and intensively studied under Alexsey Berdyugin, former principal dancer with the Bolshoi Ballet, and Nina Amato, former principal dancer with the Sacramento Ballet. Grace has over 15 years of teaching experience in many different styles. She is currently certified in Ballet, Jazz, and Acrobatics through Dance Masters of America. She is also a nationally certified jazz examiner as well as a chapter examiner in acrobatics. Grace enjoys teaching, choreographing and judging for Dance Masters of America and it’s affiliated chapters. Grace’s students have won many awards including Dance Master’s Pacific Coast Petite Miss, Junior Miss, Teen Miss and Miss Dances and the 2015 Petite Miss Dance of America. She’s honored to have received choreography awards throughout her years of teaching especially the DMA George Lon Memorial Award. Most recent projects include Marya Stark’s music video for her single Stargazer for which Grace was proud to be the choreographer. She is also honored to have choreographed for the award-winning short movie ‘Carnival of Wonders’ directed by Christopher Childers.
She is a former Petite Miss and Miss Dance of Dance Masters of California where she also enjoyed serving on board of directors. She is featured in Dance Master’s of America instructional DVD “The Art of Teaching Ballet”. She is currently the National Junior Title Director for Dance Masters of America as well as the Title Co-Chair and PAC Co-Chair of Dance Masters Pacific Coast. Favorite quote: “To touch, to move, to inspire. That is the true gift of dance”- Aubrey Lynch.
Company Teacher and Choreographer
Tamara Shuttle was born and raised in the bay area and started dancing at the age of four. She was involved in theater and was in musical touring groups, plays and musicals throughout college including Evita, Godspell, The Robber Bridegroom and Jesus Christ Superstar. She graduated from SFSU with a degree in Dance and a credential in teaching elementary school. Tamara went on tour with a five star cruise line, performing on multiple ships around the world. She studied jazz with Berle Davis and the iconic Ann Barrett.
Tamara has taught jazz to both adults and children. She teaches at various locations in the bay area including City Dance, Continuing Education, San Mateo Parks, Shely Pack and BABC . Tamara loves to choreograph to a variety of music infusing a multitude of jazz styles, from classic, to funky, to lyrical. She uses her fitness training to incorporate muscular strength, endurance and flexibility into her classes. She continues to take class and perform locally. Tamara believes in fostering the love of movement for dancers of all levels.
Company Teacher and Choreographer
Christopher Childers comes to the Shely Pack Dancers from a prolific professional dance career. He has worked with such legends as Liza Minelli, Madonna, Sting, Michael Jackson, Prince, Paula Abdul and many others. Christopher performed in “Jerome Robbins’ Broadway”, was the principle dancer with the “Follies Bergere” in Las Vegas, appeared as the “Red Bird” in the Cirque du Soleil production “Mystere” where he became the dance coach, not only for “Mystere”, but the hugely successful show “O” at the Bellagio Hotel. He then went on to become the artistic director of “Le Reve” at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas.
Christopher grew up in the San Francisco Bay area and studied dance at his mother’s dance studio from the age of 3 until he was 17. Christopher won the title Mr. Dance of CA. Chapter 13 in 1981 and was first runner-up for title of Mr. Dance of America in 1983, for Dance Masters of America.
We are thrilled to welcome him to the SPD staff as a teacher and choreographer.
Leigh Ann Koelsch
Leigh Ann Koelsch LRAD- Leigh Ann is a coastside native and received her early training from Susan Hayward. She attended School of the Arts (SOTA) High School in San Francisco. She received her Diploma of Classical Ballet teaching from The College of The Royal Academy of Dance in London, and was also awarded the Licentiate (LRAD) In more than 25 years of teaching, Leigh Ann has prepared students for Royal Academy of Dance ballet examinations and also choreographed and coached students for competitions including the Youth America Grand Prix and the Genee International Ballet Competition. She has also choreographed for Nutcracker, mixed repertoire productions, and local musicals at both the High School and Coastal Rep.
Above all, Leigh Ann’s teaching philosophy is that dance should be taught in away that is correct, safe, musical and most of all brings joy and engages the imagination of the dancer. Regardless of what path life takes for her students, she is proud to be a part of the journey and strives to be a caring and positive impact on young lives. Leigh Ann is the mother of two boys. She is an active volunteer in the school community and enjoys many active outdoor pursuits with her family when she is not in the studio.
Zoe Grisim has trained at the Shely Pack Dancers studio since the age of four with Shely Pack-Manning and Grace Pack as her primary teachers. This fall she will be studying Psychology as a Freshman at the College of San Mateo while working to become certified by Dance Masters of America in Ballet and Jazz. In High School, Zoe was a competitive dancer on her school’s dance team for Pom, Lyrical and Hip Hop, being co-captain of the Hip Hop team for two years. Throughout her dance experience, Zoe has won numerous dance awards. Regionally she was crowned the Title Winner at competitions Masquerade, Revolution, and Nexstar, placed as a Top 12 Contemporary Finalist at YAGP multiple times and won the title of Junior and Teen Miss Dance of Southern California and Miss Dance Pacific Coast. Nationally she scored as a Top 10 Finalist for Teen Miss Dance of America and 3rd Runner Up for both Junior and Miss Dance of America. Aside from competing, Zoe has attended many intensive programs including the Student Honors Intensive Program in Dallas, TX offered by DMA, a three week Joffrey Summer Intensive in NYC with a 100% scholarship, the Dancerpalooza Hip Hop intensive Kamotion, a Rockettes Summer Intensive, and a ten day intensive in London with a partial scholarship. Some of her most notable performances include being a dancer in a promotional video for the London Spring Tour, a principal dancer in recording artist Marya Stark’s music video, Stargazer, and an actor and dancer in an international award-winning short film, Carnival of Wonders.
Zoe is a natural born leader with a strong passion to elevate and help those around her. She has always been a highly motivated individual who loves a good challenge and strives for excellence. With her optimistic attitude and clean eye for detail she hopes to be a refreshing addition to the faculty at Shely Pack Dancers!
Hip Hop Teacher
Lara Keshav is a Junior at Woodside Priory School in the Bay Area. Lara enjoys dance and the performing arts and has gained all her training on the coastside from Shely Pack Dancers (Shely and Grace) and Coastal Rep Theater (Kimberly and Sabina). Lara has performed in various competitions, dance recital and plays. Her favorite theater roles were the titular role as Aladdin at Sea Crest School and as a dancestor in Coastal Reps mainstage play Addams Family. Over the last several years, Lara has worked on the other side of the stage as a dance, theater and singing assistant teacher at Coastal Rep Theater’s Summer Program. She choreographed dances for Willy Wonka and Sound of Music. She has also been a substitute teacher for Shely Pack Dancers for the younger kids. Lara’s favorite style of dance is tap. Lara also enjoys traveling and is always planning new trips with her family: 20 countries & counting.
Why I teach: For the love of dance I am honored to pass on the beauty and grace of the art of dance that has filled my life with joy.
I grew up dancing at a local studio; CAPA, in Moraga CA. We competed and travelled with our dance company around the country and Europe. I went to NYU for my Freshman year of college in the Dance Department, and then transferred to Emerson College where I got a degree in Dance and Theater Education. Since then, I taught in multiple studio's in the Bay Area, as well as continued to perform locally. In 2014 I started The Green Room Theater and Dance, a company dedicated to putting on Musical Theater Productions in schools from Hillsborough to Saratoga. In 2018 I sold the company to my business partner, who still runs it currently, to become a stay at home mom to my daughter Leiah. I currently teach theater and dance with a small home school community. I am grateful to begin working with Shely Pack Dancers this 2022 season, and hope to help serve the dance community in a greater way!