Providing Lessons For:

Infants through Adults Beginners through Advanced Fitness , Professional Dance Training & Martial Arts Training.

Location :

81 Fairmount Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19123

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Great FREE street parking available in

front of our studios.

Public Transportation:

Northern Liberties location one block from Septa El Spring Garden Street Station and all Septa Spring Garden Street Buses.

Child Watch:

Bring your little ones for a class or free child watch while you are taking your class, infants welcomed.

Events & Bookings

Call 888.257.9991 to check our availability for your event.

Personal Training & Lessons:

Call today to schedule your private lesson or free Personal training consultation today. We have experts ready to work with you on your time.

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Living Arts Dance & Fitness Studios Mission

Our mission is to provide affordable professional performing arts programs for all. Exposing children to the arts is so beneficial. Not only does it create cultured well-rounded individuals, but studies have shown a link between young children who learn music and later go on to excel in math and science. Most importantly we want to give our youth an outlet of self-expression and a great enriching diversion from the streets/city life. Through dance, music, theater, and art we can began to teach young children self-awareness, decision-making, managing feelings, handling stress, communication, group dynamics, and conflict resolution.

During the past 20 years, obesity among adults & children has risen significantly in the United States. The latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics show that 30 percent of U.S. Adults 20 years of age and older (over 60 million people) are obese. The percentage of young people who are overweight has more than tripled since 1980. Among children and teens age 6–19, 16 percent (over 9 million young people) are considered overweight. These increasing rates raise concern because of their implications for Americans’ health.

At Living Arts Dance & Fitness Studios you can dance and burn the calories away! Keep your children physically fit as well as culturally aware by exposing them to the performing arts. Dance is the most natural and fun work out on the planet. So we ask you, "What better way is there to get in shape while having fun than Dance?"

Kareema joined Living Arts Dance & Fitness Studios in 2006 as a student, became a student- intern in 2007 and to 17. May 16, 2011 Kareema received her in Criminology at Immaculata University with a minor in French language. While attending Immaculate Kareema was president of the Immaculata dance team and a member of the Double S Hip-Hop dance team. Kareema is currently continuing her studies to receive a master’s degree in Forensic Science. Kareema is a vital asset and blessing to the Living Arts Dance Family she teaches many classes, manages the studio, and substitutes any classes when needed.

Kareema Nelson

Jazz, Hip-Hop Instructor

Jaquetta Colson began her studies as a dancer at the Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. While attending Duke Ellington, Jaquetta traveled to X’ian, China and Holland representing the United States as a Youth Ambassador in the 1994 and 1995 International Arts Competitions. Jaquetta won several community service awards for her volunteer outreach work in the performing arts while in high school, she was also a member of local performance groups in the Washington, DC area. Jaquetta studied at the prestigious Alvin Ailey Dance Theater School and attended three summer intensive programs in New York City. In 1996, Jaquetta received the Presidential Merit and Achievement Full Scholarship to attend the University of the Arts, in Philadelpha, PA, where she earned a B.F.A. in Dance Education. During her college career she entered the Miss America Scholarship Pageant and won Miss Eastern PA 1997. After graduation Jaquetta became a personal trainer, fitness model and began teaching performing arts, dance, physical fitness, and yoga throughout the Philadelphia area and surrounding suburbs. Jaquetta also used her degree to teach early childhood education and Kindergarten classes. In 2006 Jaquetta opened the Living Arts Dance & Fitness Studios, as owner and director, she is determined to provide affordable professional performing arts and fitness programs to all. From 2009 through 2013 Jaquetta was Dance Professor at Girard College, Guest Lecturer at Immaculata University and Program Director at St. Mary’s Hospital Wellness Center. Jaquetta is currently a dance teaching artist and choreographer for the Education Department at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. Jaquetta proclaims that out of all her achievements, that her biggest accomplishment is being a full-time mother of two wonderful children.

Jaquetta Colson

Owner & Director

Living Arts is a training program for dance and fitness educators, students from University of the Arts, Temple University and various dance studios come to Living Arts to learn the fundamentals of dance education using the Living Arts curriculum, outlines and lessons. We are excited about the opportunity to create new artist, instructors and continue growth in the performing arts

Student Teachers & Interns

Stephanie Stevens

Originally from California, Stephanie moved to Philadelphia to receive her dance degree from The University of The Arts, BFA 2012. Since then she has worked with renowned choreographers such as Ronen Koresh and Seven time Blackpool Latin Champion Charles Danza. A recent performance highlight includesCherchez La Femme- An all female art collective in the Philadelphia area. It was through her love of dance, she discovered the benefits of Yoga. Certified in Vinyasa Flow from Dhyana Yoga, her classes aim to inspire mindfulness and good health for ALL levels! Come breathe and relieve the stress from corporate life, or enjoy dance lessons in Jazz, Modern, Hip-Hop, Ballet and Ballroom /Latin dance!

Sally Marsh

As an alumna of Temple University, Sally Marsh pursued dance as her major. Post-modern was the emphasized style of the Boyer College of Music and Dance, but she learned other styles such as Jazz, West-African, Ballet, and Improvisation among others. She has also acquired knowledge in Zumba and the art of pole dance and fitness. In her earlier years, Sally studied with Philadanco for a year where the company emphasized Horton and Graham technique. She performed with Messiah Dance Works, a Christian based Modern dance company initiated out of South Philadelphia. One of the pieces she help choreograph was "Saviors" performed at an Odunde festival. Before the "Jesterz" project with Underground Dance Works, she went on to start teaching. Through Darlington Arts Center she started teaching Hip-Hop, Creative Movement, Modern, West African, and Jazz styles in their Chester outreach program. She simultaneously pursued a personal training career through Bally and La Fitness. Receiving training on the anatomy, yoga, and flexibility, she additionally taught strengthening and STRIDE courses (combination of dance and fitness). Sally has since worked with Philadelphia Arts Education Partnership (PAEP) constructing her own lesson plans and integrating dance with a middle school Math and Science and curriculum. One of her latest projects Sally choreographed was in working with the Wissahickon Charter School's After School Program where a single stream video was recorded of the kids performing "Get up Offa that Thang" by James Brown. Wanting to pursue more performing art outreach she has been working with Living Arts Dance and Fitness Studios for the passed couple of years bringing more dance to the youth and Philadelphia communities.

Zaria Leonard-White

Zaria Leonard-White has been singing since the age of 8, she attended Grover Washington Jr. Middle School where she took voice lessons, sang soprano in choir, played violin in orchestra, piano in band, and solidified her choice in singing. She attended the Creative and Performing Arts High School where she participated in "All City Choir" for 4 years in the “Verizon Hall”, performed in every CAPA musical, and was apart of the"Showstoppers" program in the “Perelman Theater” at the Kimmel Center, while interning her 3rd year in the program. Joining Living Arts family she was given the opportunity of both administrator, musical theater, and conducting voice lessons. She graduated class of 2014 at CAPA as a vocal major and now attends University of the arts (Uarts) where she Performs in recitals, shows, and at gigs. She is in her sophomore year pursuing her Masters in Music Education and a Bachelors in Voice Performance.

Dayna DeFilippis

Known as a passionate educator and innovative choreographer, dance professional Dayna DeFilippis is a graduate of The University of Arizona, where she attended on scholarship, having earned her Master of Fine Arts Dance degree with an emphasis in choreography (2013). She completed both her Bachelor of Fine Arts Dance degree and Bachelor of Business Administration degree at The University of Iowa (2003). Her most recent professional endeavors include performing with Tobacco Road Dance Productions in Durhma, NC as well as teaching throughout the Triangle Area this past year. Dayna also choreographed for Crane River Theater’s productions of Wizard of Oz and Oklahoma! In Kearney, NE last summer. Other Crane River pursuits include choreographing Shrek The Musical and Footloose The Musical as well as serving on the Board of Directors. Dayna was the Dance Director at the University of Nebraska, Kearney for three years, where she taught dance appreciation, jazz, tap, ballet and modern. While there, she directed the experimental and conceptual concerts, It’s Essential, Art IN Motion, When Planets Align,(Dis) Connected and Synergy with two touring performances to Wayne State College in Wayne, NE. Dayna is also an active member of the National Dance Education Organization, where she recently presented two research projects in Washington, DC. She has also presented workshops at Region V of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival and the North Central Regional Conference of the American College Dance Association. Prior to pursuing graduate studies, Dayna worked in the industry as a teacher at private studios throughout the Midwest and director of youth performance companies and public outreach programs. Dayna is excited to join the Living Arts family and share her expertise and love of movement.

Kalayah Curry

Kalayah Curry is a 21-year-old dancer and choreographer from Hartford, Connecticut. At the age of three, she found her passion for dance and later on continued her dance education, studying ballet, modern/contemporary dance, jazz, hip-hop and West African dance with Jolet Creary and Kyle McHargh. She is an original member of Hartford's successful hip-hop dance team, Team860 and has intensively trained at Earl Mosley’s Institute of the Arts and DCNS Summer Intensive. Curry has worked and trained with artists, Rennie Harris, Heidi Cruz, Aubrey Lynch II, Robert Moore, Robin Dunn, Kim Bears-Bailey and many others. During her collegiate career, she has also had the pleasure of working closely with Ali Willingham, Dara StevensMeredith, Laceda Nelson and Kariamu Welsh to create, perform and re-stage work all the while, building upon her own foundation. Aside from her movement studies, Curry is also an award recipient of multiple academic scholarships and graduated with her BFA in dance from Temple University. She is now sharing all of her expertise at Living Arts Dance, Inc.

Rashan Kenyatta Jackson

Rashan Kenyatta Jackson, is a native of Philadelphia, PA where he began his dance training at age 13 at the Philadelphia Dance Company (Philadanco) in the training program. He would later join Philadano II, their training component to their first company, Philadanco. Rashan is a graduate of the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, where he served and Dance Captain and Choreographer of the schools Dance Company. He later received training from the University of the Arts and the Ailey School. He was also asked to perform with the Bermuda Dance Company in Bermuda that same year. After studying at the University of the Arts, he performed with various companies such as, Lula Washington Dance Theatre, (Los Angeles, CA), Donald Byrd/The Group, (New York, NY), Washington Reflections Contemporary Dance Company, (Washington D.C.), and Dallas Black Dance Theatre, (Dallas, TX). While dancing with these companies he had the pleasure of performing works by premiere choreographers, past and present such as: Alvin Ailey, Alonzo King, Paul Taylor, Donald McKayle, Donald Byrd, Gene Hill Saigon, Milton Myers, Hope Boykin, Jessica Lang, Nathan Trice, Troy Powell, Christopher Huggins, Ray Mercer. While touring with these companies he was able to share his gift of dance with students across the country through various outreach programs, he finds that work inspirational and rewarding. Since returning to Philadelphia Rashan has choreographed and taught at The Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, Delaware Contemporary Dance Theatre, DANCE4LIFE School of the Arts and Training Institute, Grace Dance Theatre 2 and most recently X-Press Yourself: Creative and Performing Arts Center. We are so happy to now have him as a part of the Living Arts Dance Family!

Yattah Jones

Yattah Jones, born and raised in Brooklyn, New York has been dancing and performing for over 20 years. Her training started in Brooklyn at house parties where she developed a movement style heavily influenced by her African and Caribbean roots. In 2002, Jones co-founded and co-led the Rhythm and Beats Step Team at George School in Newtown, PA which is still a practicing step team to this day. After receiving her BA in Sociology from American University located in Washington D.C, she continued to teach dance throughout the East Coast. In 2012, Jones began performing with Introspective Movement Project and has recently performed at the Koresh Artists Showcase (2013 & 2014), Performance Garage and the African American Art Museum. Jones’ dance credits include Kariamu and Company: Traditions (2013) and Temple University Endings: Jouvert (2014), Camden’s Festival of Dance: That Which Connects (2015). In addition to her performance credits Jones is now a licensed Zumba instructor, where she fulfills her hope to motivate people of all ages and backgrounds to develop an appetite for exercise through dance and fitness.