Owner | Director | Instructor
Ashley Zelano is a dance studio owner and full time dance instructor and choreographer from New Castle, Delaware. Ashley is responsible for creating dynamic pieces that have won numerous awards, and for teaching dancers from beginner through advanced to fall in love with the art form.
Ashley's passion for dance began at an early age and continued all through her adolescent and teen years. Ashley studied dance at Cab Calloway School of the Arts, a highly sought after performing arts high school in Delaware, and then continued her training in Dance and Education at the University of Delaware, where she graduated in 2014 with a degree in Elementary Education, Special Education, and Dance. Today, Ashley is the founder and director of Fierce Dance Academy, and focuses on bringing the best training and creating artistry to all of her dancers. Her students have gone on to work in the industry as dancers, choreographers, and teaching professionals.
Ashley's choreography has been featured in music videos, concept videos, and has won a number of awards in competitions at both the regional and national level. Her dancers have received numerous first overall placements, choreography awards, Industry Dance Award nominations, overall highest score awards, technique awards, and more. Ashley’s most recent accomplishments include receiving the ADCC Studio of Excellence award, as well as the Shaffer Studio award at DanceMakers, an award presented to the studio that shows the most support, encouragement, professionalism and shares their love for dance with others.
Ashley’s students have gone on to join professional dance companies such as Mather Dance Company's Bridge into the Industry program, Broadway Dance Center's Pre-Professional Program, and Unique Soulz Company in NYC. Her students have also been signed to top talent agencies such as Bloc and MSA.
Ashley continues to further her own dance education daily by attending master classes, lectures, certifications, and conventions frequently. Most recently, Ashley completed certification for Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT), a program created by physiotherapists to safely strengthen dancers, and Acrobatic Arts, an Acro program designed to safely teach, and safely spot all Acro skills.
Ashley hopes to continue to inspire students to believe in themselves and to follow their dreams for years to come, both in dance and in their everyday lives.