MARK McCleese

Mark holds a Bachelors in Musical Theatre with a minor in Dance Education from Oakland University. Mark spent 7 years along the coast of California working professionally with Tony N’ Tina’s Wedding (San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Reno), Toured with Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat (West Coast), Performed in several Music Videos, fitness videos, and 2 feature films “I Am Jesus Christ”, and “Deadly Famous”.  Mark has also choreographed countless musicals across the country including “Urinetown” for Culver City High School sponsored by Sony Pictures. Currently Mark resides in Michigan where he is the owner and artistic director of MDM Dance Project in Shelby Township.  MDM Dance Project is the host studio for Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker at the Fox Theatre where his students have performed for the past 5 years. Besides running a competitive dance studio, he is a substitute dance teacher at Oakland University, he choreographs musicals for Eisenhower High School, Roeper Summer Stock Theatre, Judges for National Dance Competitions, and sets routines for studios across the country.  Today’s Mark’s students have appeared on Broadway in Annie, The King and I, and Newsies. They are also in feature films, and have worked as professional models. Mark is Thrilled to be back working with Pontiac Theatre IV, the same theatre company he started performing with in the mid 1990’s.  Merde Everyone!


RACHEL Deratany

Rachel has been dancing since the young age of 3! She grew up training and competing with Mary Skiba’s School of Dance in Clinton Township, MI as well as Elegance in Motion Ballroom Studio in Auburn Hills, MI. She’s taught dance at several studios and absolutely loves what she does! Miss Rachel holds degrees in both Dance and Elementary Education from Oakland University. She is trained in a wide variety of dance styles, even ballroom! At MDM, you can find her teaching everything from Russian ballet technique to modern improvisation to musical theater. Her favorite thing is to incorporate Disney into every class she teaches! Miss Rachel loves to get to know each and every one of her students to personally help them grow as dancers in their own unique way!



Shayna has been dancing since she was three years old and now enjoys teaching and choreographing at MDM Dance Project.  Ballet/Pointe and Contemporary are her favorite to teach but she also loves teaching Jazz, Tap, and Musical Theatre. She enjoys working with MDM’s award winning company. She feels blessed to work with hard working, talented young girls every week. Shayna graduated with honors from Michigan State University with a dual degree in Elementary Education and Spanish, along with a minor in mathematics and a specialization in dance.  She worked for Artsbridge of America where she incorporated dance into elementary curriculum. She has performed with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Rockers Soccer Team, Shock Basketball team, in the Rochester Christmas Parade, Troy Daze Family Fair, many shows at MSU, and musicals in high school.  Along with teaching dance, Shayna is a 5th grade teacher at Harwood Elementary School. Shayna was recently named Warren Consolidated Schools 2018 Elementary Teacher of the Year. She truly enjoys combining her passions of dance and teaching both at school and at the dance studio!



Brianna started dancing at a young age and has been teaching for 7 years. Growing up she participated in an award-winning dance company that travelled around the country for competitions and performances. Brianna continued her education at Hope College where she earned degrees in Dance Performance/Choreography and Communication. While at Hope, she was exposed to many great teachers through classes, as a member of the college's jazz and tap company iDt, and while working with her peers for student concerts. Brianna is excited to pass that knowledge on to the next generation of dancers.



Jennie has danced her entire life starting at Deborah's Stage Door, Andrea Redmans Dance Academy and finishing her studio years at MDM Dance Project. While in High School she was on the Stoney Creek Dance Team acting as Captain of the JV Team and Varsity Team. She is now in the School of Business at Oakland University pursuing a degree in Marketing and Advertising with a minor in entrepreneurship. While at Oakland University she was on Oakland University's Dance Team for three years, acting as the Choreography Leader. Oakland University's Dance Team has brought her many neat experiences that include: dancing at the Palace, Joe Louis Arena, Tigers Stadium, and ESPN field house in Florida. She has attended multiple UDA camps and Nationals receiving the All- American Award at UDA camp, along with an invitation to be a UDA Instructor. While on the Oakland Dance Team she was selected to dance with the Pistons and Lions Dancers for Brett Micheal's Halftime show. She is currently the Coach for Notre Dame Preparatory's Dance Team and has choreographed local High Schools competition routines. She has worked at MDM Dance Project for 4 years going on her 5th. MDM has brought her many great opportunities! She has worked as Mark McCleese's assistant for the JCC Dance Intensive, taught and Choreographed many competition and recital routines, and is continuing to grow and learn from her peers here at MDM. If you were to ask her what her favorite style of dance is she would tell you either hip hop, lyrical, jazz, or Pom depending on the day : )



Peyton has been dancing since she was 3, and continued for the next 18 years at studios including Bravo Dance Center, Deborah’s Stage Door, and Dancers Edge Dance Studio. She started being a teacher’s assistant in the 6th grade, and after graduation began teaching competitive and recreational classes in jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, hip-hop, and ballet. After High school, she furthered her dancing at Oakland University, where she studies Psychology and was a member of their Athletics Dance Team. As a member of this team, she was choreography lead, team organizer, and the Co-Captain. Peyton has had the opportunity to perform at Comerica Park, Joe Louis Arena, and The Palace. She looks forward to working with students and teaching them the art that she grew to learn and love throughout the years. 



Noelle also known as "Happy Feet" has been dancing her way through life since her very first dance class at Center Stage Dance Company in Oxford, Michigan at the age of two. Here she trained in tap, jazz, contemporary, ballet, pointe, hip hop, musical theatre and was a member of their competitive team for 16 years. During her time at Center Stage she received many scholarships, regional/national titles, and was a member of their elite team. Noelle's passion for dance led her to take her dance career to the next level and attend Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan where she would pursue a degree in dance. Here she was a member of Oakland Dance Theatre, Oakland University's Repertory Dance Company and Patterson Rhythm Pace and got to work with choreographers from around the world. During her time with the Repertory Dance Company, she had the opportunity to not only work and perform along side two professional companies, but also work within multiple outreach programs for children. In 2017, Noelle graduated from Oakland University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and was the "Distinguished Dance Student" MaTilDa award recipient. She is now a teacher at Eisenhower Dance Center, Center Stage Dance Company, and is a choreographer and performer at Dance North Summer Dance Intensive. She is also part of a creative team for a children's program with the professional dance company Take Root and is working towards her own dreams of becoming a professional dancer.


EMILY Matteson

Dance has been a huge part of Emily’s life since she was 5. She grew up studying many styles including tap, ballet, jazz, acro, clogging, and poms/hip hop at Kathy’s School of Dance in Durand, Michigan where she was a part of the competitive team travelling regionally and nationally. She also studied and competed for a short while with Big City Dance in Wixom. Naturally, she had to continue on and began college at Oakland University studying Health Science and Dance. Oakland opened her up to a new style; modern dance. She was accepted into the Oakland Repertory Dance Company where she had the opportunity to learn and work with national and international artists including Brian Strimple, Pascal Merighi, Kendra Portier, Ron DeJesus, Laurie Eisenhower, Chien-Ying Wang, and Twyla Tharp. She received the opportunity to dance with Eisenhower Dance at the Detroit Opera House and other venues for multiple performances. She also ventured to Berlin, Germany for one month to study modern dance at Tanz Fabrik and perform at Ufer Studios. Emily graduated from OU in 2016 With a B.A. in Dance and a B.S. in Health Science and a minor in Exercise science. Emily now loves to teach acro, jazz, and contemporary/ modern. She also works at Orthopedic Spine and Sports Therapy and Nannies for 2 wonderful little girls. She is currently back in school pursuing her Doctorate of Physical Therapy at Oakland University. She hopes to work with dancers and athletes not only healing but preventing injury by teaching better technique and healthy habits. Emily’s main goals when it comes to teaching is helping girls feel strong and confident in themselves and their art.