Faculty

Emotions Dance prides itself on the professionalism and artistry of our faculty.
Our instructors have numerous years of dance training, education, and professional performance experience.

 
 

LARISSA HUMISTON
Owner/Artistic Director

Larissa Humiston’s background in dance began in 1987 where she was a student of ballet and jazz in Syracuse, NY at The Bennett Conservatory for the Arts. Once in college at Stetson University (BA 2004), Larissa began her love for modern, lyrical and contemporary dance and continued with ballet jazz, tap and hip hop.

Ms. Humiston has been teaching and choreographing all ages since 2000. She coached two high school dance teams and choreographed for many theatre groups while in NY studying for her Masters in Social Work from Syracuse University (MSW, 2006).

Ms. Humiston relocated to Central Florida in May of 2007 and founded Emotions Dance in August of 2007, a professional 501c3 non -profit dance company. She has won numerous dance awards, attended countless dance conferences, and has collaborated with many artists throughout her time in Orlando. Ms. Humiston’s work is locally and nationally recognized has been seen throughout Orlando and the Central Florida area.

Ms. Humiston spends her days as a therapist at her own private practice and countless hours after work choreographing, producing, and directing Emotions Dance Company. Ms. Humiston also teaches classes, master classes and workshops throughout the Central Florida and Central New York areas.

She is thrilled to continue this next chapter of her dance career by merging the non profit company and the studio and will continue to teach a variety of classes including Contemporary & Ballet. She is also the head choreographer for Emotions Dance Company II, the studio's youth performance company.

 
 

TARA MCGUGIN
Office Manager/ Faculty

Tara McGugin has been a professional in the dance industry for eighteen years. She has performed and choreographed for several Central Florida dance companies, including Emotions Dance Company, Blushhh Productions, and DRIP. She has also lent her skills to events for companies such as M.A.C. Make-up, Paul Mitchell, and Saco Hair. She even did a stint as a magician’s assistant for illusionist David Davinci, who currently has his own theater show. Tara really loves the teaching process and the student/teacher relationship. Being a dance instructor/choreographer has been her main focus for fourteen years, and she has taken many dancers on the journey from beginner to professional. She hopes to see many more! However, in the past five years Tara has branched out into talent judging, casting, and management for various projects and companies. Always continue to grow!

 
 
 

COURTNEY LUTON
Faculty/ Competition Director

Courtney Luton has grown up as a part of the Central Florida Dance community. After graduating from Lake Mary High School, Courtney was a member of the University of Tennessee Dance Team, and graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Sociology from UCF. Courtney is also a current senior company member of Emotions Dance Company and teaches dance at Indian Trails Middle School.

 
 

Leeanna Shelton

Faculty/ Competition Staff

Leeanna is 20 years old and grew up in the Central Florida dance community and started dancing at the age of 5. Leeanna competed all throughout Florida and has won numerous titles, awards, and scholarships. Leeanna graduated from Umatilla High School and is now currently attending Seminole State College for a degree in Health Science. Leeanna is also a part of Emotions Dance professional contemporary company.

 

Kasey Purdom

Faculty

Kasey has over twenty years of classical ballet training with over a decade of pointework experience and has performed various lead ballet roles such as the Sugar Plum Fairy, Snow Queen, Dew Drop Fairy, Paquita, the White Swan, Swanilda, and many more. She was published for her accomplishments in dance in The Dallas Morning News, The Dance Council of North Texas catalog, and several Living magazines. She was a winner of the 2013 Natalie Skelton Award of Promise for exceptional potential in professional dancing and has trained with many instructors including Tom Nicholson, Norbert Norwicz, and Lisa Hess who is a former New York City Ballet company member under George Balanchine.

Currently, Kasey is an actress, model, and professional dancer having acting training from various instructors including Christian Kaplan, Barry Shapiro, and more. She has danced with multiple professional ballet and contemporary dance companies including Contemporary Ballet Dallas, Epiphany Dance Arts, and Dallas Neo-Classical Ballet. Additionally, she is a certified personal trainer having discovered a passion for health and fitness and is represented as a performer by Naturally Fit Agency. She has had acting work on several national television shows as well as principal, national commercial work and she has a collective 115K views on her Freedrama.net monologues on YouTube. She has also modeled for Onnit fitness apparel amongst other modeling opportunities. She continues to train in acting, modeling, dance, and voice to further her technique as well as performing as opportunities arise. She could not be more blessed by the gifts God has given her to use in the arts and entertainment and she believes that the best is still yet to come.”

 
 
 

Elaine Hoxie

Faculty

Elaine “Lanie” Hoxie grew up in the Midwest and earned her BA in dance from Western Michigan University. Some key moments from her early days are dancing at the American Dance Festival at Duke University and performing in a "Modern Innovators" concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Upon graduation, she danced with a collaborative group of musicians and dancers, known as Separations. In Orlando, she danced and choreographed for DRIP, danced and acted as rehearsal director for VisualEFX Productions, danced for CineDance (Orlando's first concert jazz dance company), assisted and performed as guest artist for Nao Dance, danced for visual artist Perego, danced for the Orlando Opera, and performed in local favorite, BlueStar Productions' VarieTEASE.
From Michigan to Florida, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and back to Florida, Lanie has performed the works of Paul Taylor, Gus Giordano, Frank Chavez, Cris Judd, Shane Sparks, and Oth’than; danced in music videos for Wisin, Daddy Yankee, Robin Thicke, Limp Bizkit, Colette Carr, Dawn Richards, 21 Pilots, KT Turnstall, Erika Jayne, to name a few; and has had the opportunity to stand in and double the one and only, Pink. She has also created a company, Live In Love, which uses movement as a tool for women to love themselves from the inside out. Lanie is also a spin instructor and when she has any free time, she spends it with her rescue dogs or at the beach.