About EDA

Essex Dance Academy in Fairfield, N.J., offers instruction in the performing arts, adhering to the highest standards of excellence, in a nurturing and warm environment to students of all ages and skill levels. Recreational, intensive, and students with professional aspirations are guided individually by our experienced staff to reach their goals through artistic and personal development.

EDA boasts six spacious studios, each with a spring-cushioned custom dance floor and a state-of-the-art sound system. We have two comfortable waiting rooms with plenty of seating. There are TVs and a selection of DVDs to help entertain siblings during class. For your convenience, EDA even has an in-studio store where you can stock up on shoes, tights, leotards, dance bags and fun EDA-wear.

 

Marie Fischbach

Studio Owner, Director, Instructor
Marie Fischbach

Marie trained at an early age under the tutelage of Barbara Barshtak.  She continued her training at Ballet Arts, New Jersey Ballet and American Ballet Theater.  At age 18, she began her teaching career and has continued to the present time while launching Essex Dance Academy 15 years ago.  She choreographed her first full length play at age 17 and has been involved in countless projects from then till now. She continues to own and direct Essex Dance Academy, employing the finest teachers in the area for EDA's recreational and competitive classes, guest teachers from around the country, and outstanding choreographers for EDA's competitive program.  She is committed to every student who attends EDA, making sure they have a positive learning experience and an opportunity to perform in a fun and creative end-of the-year recital.  

Suzy Fischbach

Artistic Director, Instructor, Choreographer
Suzy Fischbach

Suzy Fischbach is the Artistic Director at Essex Dance Academy. She has been choreographing and teaching contemporary and jazz for 7 years, and is managing the creative vision of the company. Suzy has performed in many events including, The Ace Awards, Sybarite, and Peridance Faculty Show. She has had pieces selected to perform in many events including, AIM Invitational, Dancin’ Downtown at the Joyce Theater, and many more. Working with competition dancers is what Suzy loves to do, but above all, making them into artists and creators is her main goal.

Lindsay Pergola Guarini

Instructor, Choreographer
Lindsay Guarini

Lindsay Pergola Guarini is from Totowa, New Jersey. She began her dance training at the age of two at For Dancers Only under the direction of Kelly Allen and Ed Phelan. Lindsay grew up in the competitive dance world and received numerous accolades winning many regional and national titles. She has worked with many renowned choreographers in New York, New Jersey and California. In 2005, she was accepted into California State University, Long Beach where she was the captain of the dance team which was ranked second in the nation under her leadership.

After graduating college, Lindsay went on to continue her love for dance by becoming a winning choreographer and teacher. As a member of the Essex Dance Academy faculty she continues to share her talent and love of dance. Lindsay is very excited to share her knowledge with children on a daily basis!

Steven Blandino

Instructor, Choroeographer
Steven Blandino

Steven Blandino has a BFA in Commercial Dance from Pace University, with a focus in Choreography. Steven is on Faculty at Broadway Dance Center, Peridance, and Steps on Broadway in various styles. His choreography credits include 2020 Capezio ACE Awards Finalist, Bridesmaids: A Dance Narrative (Writer, Director, Choreographer) Ludo's Broken Bride at the New York Musical Festival (The Duke on 42nd St), Rebel Rebel: The Many Lives of David Bowie (Canada, National Tour 2017), Burlesque to Broadway (Canada), The Steps Beyond Foundation Performance Lab, Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP - Peridance), 2015, Young Choreographer's Festival 2015/14, Choreographer's Canvas 2015, Jared Grimes' "Run the Night", Hero Awards: honoring Jerry Mitchell, the Alvin Ailey Dance Soirée, to name a few. 

Dancer/Performer: West Side Story (Houston Grand Opera. Weston Playhouse), Sleeping Beauty Dreams (The Beacon Theatre/The Artsch Center), NewsiesMamma Mia!Shrek (Tuacahn Center of the Arts), Johnson & Johnson, Carnegie Hall, and many more.

Steven has been featured in The New York Times, Front Row Center, TheaterMania, and was recently featured in an issue of Dance Magazine as an Emerging Young Choreographer. He has received numerous awards and recognition for his choreographic works. 

Michele Micholas

Instructor, Choreographer

Michele grew up training with some of the finest teachers and choreographers in the industry. She excelled in all areas of dance and, while competing, held titles at both the regional and national level in the United States and Canada including American Dance Award’s Junior and Teen Dancer of the Year, Dance Masters of America’s Junior and Teen Miss Dance of America, and the coveted Miss Dance of America. After graduating high school, Michele went on to a successful career in the in the industry. Her Television and commercial credits include: Video Music Awards, Alanis Morrisette music video, Cinema Summer Screen, One Life to Live, and the Body Rock Workout video. Michele's theatrical credits include “Wicked” 1st National Tour, “We Will Rock You”, “Contact” 1st National Tour, "Saturday Night Fever" 1st National Tour, Radio City Christmas Spectacular, and “Club Indigo” at the Taj Majal in Atlantic City.

Dina Servidio

Instructor, Choreographer
Dina Servidio

Dina Servidio is a New Jersey based dance instructor.  She graduated from DeSales University in 2013 with a B.A. in Dance.  While at DeSales, Dina studied Ballet, Modern, Tap and Jazz, as well as Kinesiology, Dance Pedagogy, and Composition.  She was fortunate enough to have studied with professors who inspired her love for dance education.  Mentors such as Trinette Singleton (former Joffrey Ballet principal) and Tara Madsen Robbins (Philadelphia based dancer/choreographer) are just some of the influential people in her professional life.  Since her graduation, Dina has been teaching full-time, and feels grateful to have found a career that combines her passion for the art of dance and education. 

Jakob Karr

Instructor, Choreographer
Jakob Karr

CATS on Broadway (Mistoffelees Understudy); Cirque Du Soleil’s VOLTA; So You Think You Can Dance Season 6 - Runner Up; The RADIO CITY New York Spectacular (Mia Michaels); Rock the Ballet; VIVA ELVIS by Cirque Du Soleil; Kiss Me Kate at Barrington Stage; The 82nd Annual Academy Awards; America’s Got Talent; GLEE; Company XIV

Vanessa Figueroa

Instructor
Vanessa Figueroa

Vanessa Figueroa was born and raised in Little Falls, NJ, where she trained seriously in dance at a young age. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance with a minor in Public Relations and Advertising at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, PA in April 2019. Her training and explorations have allowed her to perform in works created by Jennifer Archibald, Tyce Diorio, Christopher Huggins, Jason McDole, Kiesha Lalama, Garfield Lemonius and more. She is also proud to be the former President of "Impulse", the hip-hop club at Point Park University, where she cultivated a safe space for dancers to freely express themselves through Hip-Hop and Jazz funk forms. Vanessa is honored to have experienced opportunities such as performing “Kinex”choreographed by Kiesha Lalama at the Joyce Theatre for the NYC Dance Alliance Foundation in 2018. As well as being accepted into the Cirque Du Soleil dancer database this past Spring 2019! Figueroa continues to dedicate all of her time and energy within in a variety of artistic areas in her life. She is currently performing for Nickelodeon at their newest amusement park inside the American Dream Center. Vanessa is extremely excited about her first season working with the Essex Dance Academy Family!

Melissa Bonaguide

Instructor, Choreographer
Melissa Bonaguide

Samantha Sonzogni

Instructor, Choreographer
Samantha Sonzogni

Samantha Sonzogni is an award winning choreographer who has been dancing since age three. She has been trained extensively in all genres of dance under names such as Michael Minery (Director of Jump, Director of American Tap Festival, Slide, Tapaholics) and Ray Leeper (So You Think You Can Dance, Director of Nuvo, Choreographer). Samantha also works with companies such as Capezio to help move the dance world forward with new dance wear products. From 2003 until 2010 Samantha was a part of the New Jersey Tap Ensemble where she performed in many theaters, such as NJPAC, alongside notable tappers Maurice Chestnut, Karen Callaway and Deborah Mitchell. Samantha is not only a dance teacher, but also graduated from Montclair State University with a Bachelors degree in English. In the competitive world, Samantha has had multiple national winning pieces and has been recognized for her choreography by many competitions including the American Dance Awards, Starquest and Starpower. Samantha has traveled around the United States teaching aspiring new artists and hopes to continue to do so for a very long time.

 

Sarah Frasch

Instructor, Choreographer

Rachel Pieroni

Instructor
Rachel Pieroni

Rachel began her dance studies at age two. At age six, she began singing in her church choir, and at age nine, she performed in her first professional NYC production, the opera, Norma. In middle and high school she performed with county and regional choirs, as well as musical productions  including Guys & Dolls, and Les Miserables. She attended Bergen County Academies HS for Visual and Performing Arts, vocal focus and graduated cum laude from Hofstra University in May 2011, with a B.A. in Dance, minor in music. She studied modern, ballet, tap, hip hop, musical theater, contemporary, modern, and jazz in Danceworks Productions, a student-run dance club, which she held the Presidency for in her senior year. Rachel was able to work with and perform pieces of Anita Feldman, Amy Marshall, Niles Ford, Maxine Steinman, Karla Wolfangle, Dina Denis and Stormy Brandenburger while at Hofstra. Since graduation she has performed with Undertoe Dance Project, directed by Dana Fisch, and MAD About Dance Company, directed by Michiyo Tanaka. and has received her Zumba certification. Rachel is a flourishing choreographer and dance teacher who works with many studios in the area. Rachel is a certified NASM Personal Trainer and  a certified Pure Barre instructor, teaching in Wyckoff, NJ. 

Victoria Ann Fiore

Instructor

Victoria Ann Fiore is a graduate of Pace University’s BFA Commercial Dance Program whose versatility and vocabulary are product of work in classical, commercial and theatrical arenas. Under massive influence of the choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler, Victoria fell hard for theater and has since pursued it as primary; receiving credits in a number of exciting projects–

Television: “FOSSE/VERDON” (FX), Theater: Only Gold (NY Workshop) and most presently, dir. Jeffrey Seller’s new Peter Pan-inspired musical, Fly (La Jolla Playhouse).

Live stage credits include: dancer & u/s Misty Copeland in excerpts from On the Town (WOLFTRAP theater), Bridesmaids: A Dance Narrative (Dixon Place NYC), Martha Graham’s ACTS OF LIGHT (The Joyce Theater) and countless showcases at venues such as: Peridance Capezio Center, Ailey Citigroup Theater, Symphony Space, Webster Hall, and the Highline Ballroom.

As passionate an educator as a performer, Victoria is privileged to have hours left in her days to spend teaching. To her, there is nothing quite like fueling the minds and muscles of the future!

Eric Decaminada

Instructor, Choreographer
Eric Decaminada

Eric Decaminada started dancing when he was 5 years old, and since then, has never been able to stop. He started at his local dance studio, The Pulse Performing Arts Studio, in Bedford Hills, New York, under the direction of Jennifer Dell. At age 8, however, he found his teacher and mentor that he still has today, Dexter Jones. Currently, Eric is based out of Queens, New York and studies with Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Charles Renato, and Vikas Arun, but in the past has also worked with Jason Janas, Derick K. Grant, Sarah Reich, and Jason Samuels Smith.

Eric is a part of two companies based out of New York City: CHR Project, a Tap Dance company ran by Charles Renato, and Project Convergence, a company that fuses Tap Dance and classical Indian Dance that is ran by Vikas Arun and Ramita Ravi. His performance credits include Tap Kids, CHR Project, Project Convergence, Tap Family Reunion, and many more. Eric has performed in locations such as Dizzy’s Jazz Club at Lincoln Center, the Rainbow Room at Rockefeller Center, and a variety of Tap Dance Festivals (Rhythm in Motion, Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Tap Family Reunion). He currently is attending St. John’s University with a major in Business and still continues to dance as much as humanly possible.

Julia Kohles

Instructor

Manasi Joshi

Instructor