Founder of BDA Dance
Beth is proudly celebrating over 40 years as a dance educator and a true inspiration to countless young women. She continues to provide consistent excellence in dance education that has become her signature...a well deserved reputation of merit celebrated throughout the dance community.
Katie is the owner, Artistic Director and Company Director of the celebrated BDA Dance Studio with over twenty years of teaching experience.
Katie is dedicated to inspiring dancers of all ages with her fresh and inspiring approach to dance. She is professionally trained in ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop and choreography.
Katie’s goal is to inspire her dancers confidence and to nurture their talent.
She learned the art of dance from her mother Beth Lottino. Katie began her love for dance the moment she hit the stage at age 3 and quickly became a company competitive dancer.
She has studied Hip-hop at Hubbard street/Lou Conte in Chicago, Millennium Dance studio and Debbie Reynolds in Los Angeles. She has led and attended multiple chorographer training seminars to further her education as a teacher and mentor.
Katie Shaw’s energy for yoga, fitness and dance is infectious and is sought after by both the dance and fitness communities.
She fell in love with yoga when she opened her heart and mind to the many benefits besides just the physical. She wanted to dive deeper into her practice which led her to become a 200HR Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance.
She is excited to offer Yoga to all of our BDA students and families. Katie’s journey and dedication to yoga, health and movement has taken her career throughout the nation and now worldwide as she’s featured in the book, Market Fresh Mixology Presents - Life, Love, Happiness and Cocktails.
Katie currently resides in Shorewood, IL with her husband and two beautiful daughters.
Alex started dancing at the age of four and has been trained in many styles including jazz, tap, hip hop, contemporary, lyrical and ballet. After high school, she continued her dance education at Columbia College in Chicago.
Alex developed a passion for choreographing at an early age and her work has been presented at various shows across the Chicagoland area including World of Dance, The One Showcase and The Carnival: Choreographer's Ball. She has received numerous awards and recognitions for her choreography at multiple regional and national competitions.
Alex was previously a director for Hip Hop Connxion's downtown Chicago branch and has judged at many competitions across the country.
Recently, she has worked on high school productions such as The Addams Family, Pippin, The Drowsy Chaperone and Cinderella. Currently residing in Minooka, Alex currently teaches at TNT Dance Studio and BDA Dance and she is continuously working to further her dance education and knowledge to help her students grow and achieve their goals!
Carissa received her formal ballet training from Claudette Soltis (former dancer of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo) of the Joliet Ballet Society. While at the Ballet Society she was given the opportunity to work with many other ballet greats such as Irina Kolpakova, of the American Ballet Theatre, and Dace Dindonis, formerly of the Indianapolis Ballet. It was also there where she felt the lights of the stage performing in pieces such as The Nutcracker, with the Indianapolis Ballet, and Japanese Suite, both choreographed by Dace Dinodis.
Her first tour of the United States began at the age of 17 in the tour of The Nutcracker with the Chicago Jazz Company, the Joel Hall Dancers. Her most memorable performance with Joel Hall was at Jazz Dance World Congress, held at Navy Pier in Chicago, performing El Gato Negro.
Abbie began dancing at BDA at 3 years old. She instantly fell in love with dance and has not stopped since. She trained in ballet, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, and pointe. Throughout her time with BDA she was part of the BDA Dance Company and was a member of the JCA Dance Team.
She earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Biology from the University of Illinois and her masters degree in Biomedical Science at Midwestern University. She currently works for a sports medicine and regenerative therapy clinic in Hinsdale. As clinic director, she focuses on bone health and regenerative treatments.
Abbie has always had a special passion for ballet and contemporary, a mix of both artistry and technique. She loves adding a bit of an anatomy lesson into her classes whenever she can! Abbie looks forward to another year teaching and sharing her love of dance with her students.
Kristin started dancing at an early age beginning her technical training in ballet, jazz, tap and hip hop for 13 years at BDA Dance. She then went on to continue her training at Downstage Dance Company. Kristin started competing at age eight and has traveled both regionally and nationally receiving numerous solo titles and top honors.
Kristin began teaching jazz and technique classes when she was 18 and realized that sharing her passion was something she would pursue. Since then, her choreography has been recognized with Entertainment Awards, Top Overalls, and Choreography Awards. Most recently, Kristin spent two years as a member of the Chicago based 18+ professional dance company, The Kate Jablonski Statement, where she continued her dance education.
In addition to dancing and teaching, Kristin also received her Associate Degree in Art with a full scholarship at Joliet Junior College. She has always called BDA Dance home and is so excited to share her love of dance with her students.
Lauren began dancing at an early age in Miss Beth’s 3 year-old ballet class. She then continued her training at Beth’s Dance Academy up until her graduating year in 2017. Lauren also competed with BDA for nine years before moving on to study dance in her college years.
She graduated from the University of Kansas in May of 2021 with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing and a Minor in Dance. While at KU, Lauren auditioned and became 4 year member of the University Dance Company where she performed pieces for esteemed KU Faculty members Maya Tillman-Rayton and Andie Stitt. Lauren also choreographed for her sorority in their production for the university’s largest charitable fundraiser: Rock Chalk Revue. She was elected and remained a Rock Chalk Revue Director for 3 years, representing Delta Gamma. Lauren also received the opportunity to teach at a local dance studio while she studied in Kansas. Here, she trained and worked with students from ages 7-18, teaching styles such as hip hop, ballet, tap, jazz, and contemporary.
Lauren made her debut as a choreographer for BDA Dance Company back in 2019 and has been back ever since teaching hip hop, working with the company, and attending competitions as part of the BDA faculty. Lauren could not be happier to be back at her home base to watch her BDA students shine brighter each day!
Tasha began dancing at the age of nine. She studied jazz, tap, ballet, hip hop, lyrical and Musical Theater at Gotta Dance Studio where she competed with the Starlight Dance Co. until she was fifteen. She continued her studies at Midwest Dance Authority where she also competed and was trained to assist and instruct dance classes.
Tasha began instructing classes at the age of seventeen at Midwest Dance Authority, and from there she went on to teaching. She has taught Jazz, Tap, and Hip Hop at Broadway Star Dance Co. She taught Tap and Hip Hop at the School of Dance West Ballet, and Jazz, Tap and Hip Hop at Allegro Center for the Performing Arts.
Miss Marti began dancing in the late 1980's through 2000 with Beth's Dance Academy where she trained in Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Pointe and HipHop Dance. She began to choreograph at age 17 as part of the Orchesis Dance Club at Lockport Township High School. During her years dancing at BDA & LTHS, she had many performances under the lights and most memorable at the Rialto Theater in Joliet, IL. After graduation Marti found herself back in local dance studios practicing the art of dance while raising a family and teaching her daughters dance at home. From the age of 16 when she began as a Swim Instructor for LTHS, she has always been excited to ignite the spark of a child through movement. Marti has been a studio dance instructor/choreographer since 2017. When she is not with her dance students or at home with her lovely family of 5, you'll find her as a volunteer Choreographer for a local children's theater program, and even a dance student taking adult tap & ballet classes! Miss Marti is so excited to share her love of dance with BDA dancers.
Susan began dancing at BDA Dance when she was four years old. She trained in all genres of dance, were she discovered her passion for acrobatics. She continued tumbling for many years. Taking multiple acrobat classes weekly, and tumbling on a competitive cheer squad.
She has over 20 years of technical training in acrobatics. Starting as an assistant at Carolyn’s Toe N Tap, and continuing on as their primary instructor. She continued to participate as a student to actively practice her curriculum. Through this time she has created an unconditional love for teaching acrobats.
Susan is currently certified in the world wide Acrobatic Arts program. This curriculum offers 12 levels of training focusing on flexibility, strength conditioning, balancing technique, limbering skills, and tumbling. Starting at primary level, and progressing all the way to pre-professional training.
As BDA’s Acrobatic Director, Susan is always eager to share her knowledge. She strives to safely build strong tumblers and dancers. As a very hands on instructor, she looks forward to leading her students to their highest potential.
Cindy began dancing at age 4 at Kelly's School of Dance in Joliet which later became Beth's Dance Academy (BDA Dance). She trained there throughout high school as well as taking classes at River North Dance Studio in Chicago. She began assistant teaching at 16 at Beth's as well as Carolyn's Toe & Tap. She continued teaching and started the TNT Dance Company in the early 1990s. She eventually became owner of TNT Dance Studio where she teaches pointe, ballet, tap, jazz and hip hop.
Tina began taking classes at BDA when she was 11 years old and fell in love with the acrobatics classes. She continued tumbling for many years, taking multiple acrobat classes weekly, and tumbling on competitive cheer teams.
Tina was an instructor for the National Cheerleaders Association for 17 years. She attended USF where she was a member of Spiritline, a team that competed in both cheer and dance. When she graduated with her degree in education, Tina became the assistant cheer/dance team coach at USF. Tina is currently a mathematics teacher at Joliet Catholic Academy where she coached the cheerleading team from 2002-2013.
She started out as an assistant acrobatics instructor at BDA and Carolyn’s Toe N Tap more than 30 years ago. It was here at BDA where she discovered her love for teaching leading to her career at JCA. Tina is excited to be teaching acro at BDA, where it all began!
Hailey began her dance training with BDA twenty-one years ago at the age of three. She has studied a number of styles with a focus on Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, and Hip Hop. Early on she grew a passion for dance and began competing at age nine, where she then went on to achieve numerous scholarships, awards, and titles both for herself and alongside her team.
Hailey began assisting for Beth Lottino during her teens, where she established her love for Ballet and demonstrating.
After graduating, Hailey continued her dance study in Los Angeles, training at studios including Playground LA, Debbie Reynold’s, MovementLifestyle, Millennium Dance Complex, and Edge Performing Arts Center.
At nineteen she auditioned to join an agency and was selected to sign with McDonald Selznick Associates. Some of her work included performing at Radio Disney Music Festival, DancerPalooza, and a number of music videos. She has also performed in Carnival: Choreographer’s Ball, both in Chicago and LA.
Since returning, Hailey has found herself back at her home base, with a reignited passion for dance and sharing her love for the art!
Performance Team Manager
Phaelon started her dance journey at Beth’s Dance Academy when she was 2, where she continued training until she graduated from high school. During her time there, she was a member of company, which provided her the opportunity to compete in front of, and take classes from, world renowned dancers.
While at BDA, she trained in tap, jazz, ballet, pointe, lyrical and hip-hop. Now, Phaelon continues taking classes when she can, as dance is always evolving and she wants to ensure that she is providing the best education to her students.
She loves that life has come full circle and she has been given the opportunity to teach at the studio she grew up in. She currently teaches ballet and jazz classes and is the Manager and Technique Instructor of BDA Performance Team.
Outside of the studio, Phaelon has choreographed for The McNary Experience’s All Hail The Queen: Tribute to Aretha Franklin.
When asked one thing she wants her students to take away from class she replied, "There are two big things I hope dancers learn by the time they leave my class that apply to both dance and life in general. I want them to know no one is perfect, and asking for or accepting help is okay. I also hope all of my dancers learn that if they believe in themselves, work hard and never give up, there are no limits to what they can accomplish."
Sarah Wiers is a multifaceted dance performer who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance Sequence from Illinois State University. While at the university, she was also attaining a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education.
Sarah started her dance training at Beth’s Dance Academy, which led her to find her love and passion for dance. While attaining her dance degree, she performed in Dance Theatre, a preprofessional company, for 7 semesters. Through this experience, she was able to work with many choreographers including Illinois State dance faculty, Sara Semonis, Kaley Pruitt, Greg Merriman, and Laina Carney, as well as guest choreographers Joshua Blake Carter, Tina Marie Custer, Stephanie Pizzo, Kaitlin Webster, and Anthony “YNOT” DiNardo.
While working as a dancer, Sarah promotes motivation, collaborative efforts, and a positive atmosphere. Sarah has had the opportunity to attend the American College Dance Association. While attending the conferences, she was able to make connections with the dance community, perform in adjudication concerts, and have her own work showcased in an adjudication concert. Sarah has also choreographed competition pieces for Beth’s Dance Academy and choreographed three works for non-dancers t for March Madness, a charitable dance competition. Sarah’s leadership experiences include being the president and treasurer for Dance Association, a registered student organization, and being the Vice President of Recruitment for her sorority, Alpha Gamma Delta. When she is not dancing, Sarah enjoys spending time with family and friends, working with children, and outside activities. Her future goals are to continue to expand her dance knowledge as both a performer and choreographer.
BDA Student Teachers
Introducing: BDA Student Teachers! These talented dancers have years of experience dancing and performing. They are passionate about sharing their love of dance with young students while helping them reach their full potential.
Bailee started dancing at the age of three. She began her training in ballet, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, and acro. She has broadened her knowledge of dance to many other styles. Bailee has been on the competitive team here at BDA for 9 years and has also been a competitive soloist for 4 years. She has been teaching for three years here at BDA and was an assistant for three years prior to that. Along with her dance career Bailee is also on the Joliet West varsity dance team. Bailee has always had a passion for dance and loves passing her knowledge on to all of her students.
Bricia started dancing at the age of three with ballet and tap. For the last 8 years, she has been dancing with BDA Dance. During this time, she has competed with the company, both regionally and nationally. As a team they have won numerous top awards. Throughout the years, she has enjoyed Tap and Hip Hop most. She is currently a senior at Plainfield Central High School, where she is one of the captains on the Varsity Poms Team, National Honor Society, and various student organizations. Aside from dancing, she is also a swim instructor for kids ages: 4 months-12 years. She enjoys teaching, as she can share what she has learned during her classes in studio and from her training in swim. She is very excited and look forward to sharing her passion and love for dance with our BDA students.
Kaitlyn has been dancing since the age of 3 and at BDA since 4. She has studied the styles of ballet, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, and acrobatics. At the age of 12 she was offered a spot on the competitive team and has been competing as a soloist for 3 years. To further her dancing career she joined her high school dance team at Plainfield South. She has taken masters classes under many famous choreographers such as Twitch and William T. Loftis. Kaitlyn has been an assistant for 2 years. Over the summer her as well as another assistant were given the opportunity to instruct a 3 and 4 year old summer camp. After becoming part of BDA’s faculty she wanted to further her students safety, so through the studio she became CPR certified. She has a strong passion for dance and wants to pass it on to others. She hopes that this is something she can pursue as a career in the future.
My name is Miss Lainie! I am 15 and go to JCA. I started dancing at BDA when I was three. I have been part of BDA Dance Company for the past few years. My favorite classes are leaps and turns and acro. One of my goals is to be a good role model and teacher to all of my students. I am very excited to be teaching leaps and turns this season.