The Neighborhood School of Dance was founded in 1976 by Michelle Marks. Mrs. Marks’ goal was to offer dance lessons to local residents, specializing in jazz, tap, and ballet. It started by offering classes on Mondays and Tuesdays to children, and even one class for adults. The total number of classes NSD offered in the beginning was nine. Each year NSD has grown, offering a recital every spring. The NSD recital showcases what the students have learned over the course of the year, along with student pieces being submitted through the annual choreography contest. The Recital has been held every year at the Olean High School Auditorium.

In 2001 Sue Chohan took over as the Owner and Director. She continued to grow the business by introducing new classes like Hip-Hop and “Twinkle Twos”. Since its beginning days NSD has tripled the classes offered. These classes range by age and type of dance. From the “Twinkle Twos” class, offered to children ages 2-3, a hip hop class offered to all ages and an adult ballroom class, NSD has a wide range of classes to suit the needs of any type of dancer. The various classes offered each year include: ballroom, tap, ballet, pointe, jazz, hip-hop, tumbling, and aerobic.

Today, Brittany Thierman (Stevens) is the new owner of NSD calling it her own in July 2013. Brittany is very excited to continue to grow the business and teach. Brittany has been dancing at NSD since she was in Kindergarten. She continued dancing as she attended Elmira College for a bachelor’s degree in Accounting. While there, she was a member of the EC Tap Ensemble and the Orchesis Dance Club. She became an officer of the Tap Ensemble her sophomore year and was elected President her senior year. She lead the club by choreographing dances, selecting music, and scheduling the annual tap show. Brittany has taken classes in Ballet, Jazz, Hip Hop, Modern, Contemporary, Theatre, Pointe, and Tap. She has continued her education by taking classes at Center Stage Dance Studio in Buffalo, NY, Broadway Dance Center & Steps on Broadway in NYC, and even a class in Rome, Italy. She has completed the Dance Master’s of America Teacher Training School in Buffalo, New York.

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