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Faculty

Rochelle Mapes, MA - Director of Dance

Rochelle Mapes grew up in the Bay Area before moving to Southern California to pursue dance.  With a lifelong desire to learn, she earned both a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Arts in Dance from Cal State University, Long Beach. Her career has always been comprised of equal parts educator, choreographer, and dancer, and she finds fulfillment and balance by working in all three avenues.

 

As a performer, she has danced with such musical artists as Gladys Knight and Wayne Brady and performed on the FX television show Nip/Tuck.   She was an original company member of the bi-coastal (NY/CA) contemporary BARE Dance Company under the direction of Mike Esperanza and spent almost a decade as a dancer, choreographer, and rehearsal director for Long Beach-based RhetOracle Dance Company with Nate Hodges.

 

Rochelle’s versatile choreographic works span across many movement genres and venues. Her concert work has been presented in the MashUp Contemporary Dance Company’s ‘Balance for Better’ Festival, the Southern California Dance Invitational, Fuse Dance Company’s Synthesis Festival, The Carpenter Center’s Arts for Life program, RhetOracle Dance Company repertory shows, several college dance departments, and annually at the Halo: Dance for Autism Benefit Concert.  She has created hundreds of competition dances for high school dance teams and studios throughout California, Texas, Washington, Utah, Colorado, and Idaho.  For the last decade, Rochelle has created movement for 3-time WGI World Champion, Pulse Percussion, creating a strong visual style for the ensemble, contributing to the evolution of visual design within the percussion activity.​ 

 

​​Rochelle Mapes is often described as a ‘true dance educator’ and has trained thousands of dancers in contemporary dance and jazz technique.  She is on faculty at the American Ballet Theater Gillespie School and spent 18 years training elite dancers at the Orange County School of the Arts, Commercial Dance Conservatory.  Master class opportunities have taken her as far as Japan and include notable events like the Dizzy Feet Foundations National Dance Day, Dance aTAK conventions, KAR conventions, Texas Dance Educator Association convention, and numerous elite dance team camps for the United Spirit Association.   Throughout the pandemic, Rochelle freelanced with virtual master classes and choreography for dancers around the world working with groups from Brazil, England, Australia, South Africa, and throughout the US.  In 2021, Rochelle became the Director of Dance at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, CA.

 

 

Shannon Zimmerman - Dance & Yoga Electives Teacher/Assistant

Ms. Zimmerman graduated from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County receiving a dual degree in dance and adolescent psychology. With a passion for yoga and mental health, she received her 200 HR Yoga Teacher Training in 2014 followed by a Yin Yoga Certification. Since then, she has continued her education by becoming a Southbath and Breathwork Practitioner in 2019 and 2021.

 

Professionally, Ms. Zimmerman co-founded the LA Follies, a dance company inspired by classic Hollywood films and musicals, which she continues to choreograph for and co-manage. Throughout the past 10 years, the LA Follies have performed at the Dorothy Chandler, the US Grand Prix, the Carpenter Center, Fox Studios, and The Grammy's, among others. They have residences at Hyde on Sunset and the W Hotel in Hollywood.

 

As an educator, Ms. Zimmerman has spent the last decade teaching dance and yoga at the Orange County School of the Arts for the Elective program as well as the Integrates Arts, Commercial Dance, and Acting Conservatories. She created her own course, Well-Being of the Artist, for the Integrated Arts Conservatory that combines her broad scope of knowledge about health and self-care. In addition, Ms. Zimmerman has taught at Marymount College (PLS) and Pacific Dance Center.

 

 

Aubrey Price, MA - Song Team Head Coach 

Aubrey Catherine Price is an alumna of California State University, Long Beach where she graduated with honors with a Masters of Arts degree in Dance Education and holds a BA in Psychology from California State University, Fullerton. Before taking over the Song program at Mater Dei in 2013 she was an adjunct faculty member of the Theater and Dance Departments at Cypress College and Fullerton College where she taught modern, jazz, and hip hop classes. Mrs. Price has over twenty years experience coaching at the high school and collegiate level. Since taking over the program at Mater Dei, Mrs. Price has received both USA and NDA National titles for the program at the JV and Varsity level.

Her choreography has been performed locally and internationally at the International school of Bangkok and multiple American College Dance Festivals across the country. Over the past twenty years, Mrs. Price has been a judge for multiple dance events at the high school, collegiate and professional level. During college, she performed and competed with Team Millennia, Coast All Stars and her college dance company across the country. She is also a member of the Varsity Dance Cast, where she meets yearly with other high school and collegiate dance team coaches from around the country to provide consultation for all Varsity dance brands in regards to scoresheets, summer camps, event venues, etc.

 

 

Kai Cameron - Hip Hop Team Head Coach

Born and raised in Orange County, Kai started training in hip hop at the age of 12. Getting most of his training from the Poreotics, season 5 winners of America’s Best Dance Crew, he has spent most of his 10-year career within the competitive dance world. He has shared choreography with worldwide competitive teams such as Poreotics, Miniotics, Chapkis Dance Family, VMO, Supremacy Dance Family, and LFG Crew.  Kai is the founder of Project Hypen that has performed at World of Dance, Maxt Out, and gigs throughout California.

 

 

Jia Huang, Dance Conservatory Jazz Teacher: Jia Huang graduated from the University of California Irvine with a BA in dance. While attending UCI, she also joined one of Southern California most cutting edge hip hop teams, Kaba Modern, which she directed in 2003-2005. In 2007-2008 she appeared on television shows such as Dirty Dancing and America’s Best Dance Crew. She spent 2009 on The Circus Tour starring Britney Spears as one for four female principle dancers. She was a founding member, choreographer and dancer for the professional Contemporary Jazz company RhetOracle, Mischief Makers and KM Legacy. She has been a dancer in multiple music videos, award shows including the VMAs, commercials and choreographed a promo video for the 2017 Grammys. In 2020, she celebrated her 10th year on dance staff for the United Spirit Association and has been awarded Rookie of the Year, hardest working, MVP for 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016 and the Leadership Award for 2018.

 

She is a seasoned judge, having judged competitions such as World of Dance, USA High School Dance Nationals, UDA College Dance Nationals, Japan Dance Nationals and Dance Worlds. She is also a faculty member at the prestigious Orange County School of the Arts, but spends most of her time teaching and choreographing for high school teams and studios in California. She has taught master classes in places such as Canada, Australia, Norway, China, Mexico, Japan and continues to teach all over the US.

 

 

Mary Tarpley, Dance Conservatory Ballet Teacher:  Mary Tarpley began dancing under the tutelage of Frances Taylor in Durango, Colorado. She continued her training nationally at Interlochen Arts Academy and internationally at The Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance in London. After graduating, Mary danced with Compagnia Zappala in Sicily, Italy before moving to Paris, France. Upon returning to the US, Mary danced with State Street Ballet, as a Soloist for Santa Barbara Ballet, a Principal for City Ballet of L.A. and a member of Invertigo Dance Theatre. In Chicago, Mary has been a First Company member of Chicago Dance Crash, danced for Civic Ballet of Chicago, Chicago Repertory Ballet, Be The Groove, and Dance For Life, to name a few. Mary has also done an extensive amount of print and video work for dance, including Jordan Matter’s Dancers Among Us and Dancers After Dark and continues to explore various ways in which dance and movement can be expressed. Mrs. Tarpley has taught in Chicago at Hubbard Street Youth Dance Program, as a Company Director for Lake Forest Dance Academy, and as a Ballet Mistress at OYT. She is on summer faculty for Ballet Durango in Colorado, coaches for Youth American Grand Prix, and teaches master classes around the country and abroad. She recently returned from teaching and setting choreography in Cambodia at The Central School of Ballet Phnom Penh. She has produced several of her own shows and her choreography has received numerous awards. Additionally, she tours the country as a competition judge, including Dance Worlds. Mary recently graduated Magna Cum Laude from DePaul University where she received dual degrees in Mathematics and Physics. Now back in Los Angeles, Mary continues to teach, choreograph and perform. 

 

 

Julia Rudge, Hip Hop Asst Coach & Dance Conservatory Rehearsal Assistant: Julia Rudge, an OCSA Alumni, has been dancing for 18 years and has trained in tap, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, lyrical, modern and other dance styles. She trained at HBP Dance Extreme, under Huggy Ford, in her early dance years and then added OCSA training in 2012.  Ms. Rudge received the honor of being Co-Valedictorian for the Commercial Dance Conservatory under the direction of Jim Kolb.

She was a traveling assistant for LA Dance Magic Dance Convention for many years during high school and early college years. Her performing credits include OCSA's annual Gala for four years, KTLA Morning News-Discovery Science Center Coverage, Rochelle Mapes Master Thesis Concert at CSULB, Palm Desert Under the Stars Choreography Festival, and the ASN Conference. In 2020, Julia graduated from Cal State University, Fullerton with her B.A. in Business Administration with an emphasis in Entertainment and Hospitality Management. She currently teaches, choreographs and coaches at Orange County School of the Arts, OC Music and Dance, and Mater Dei High School. She hopes to continue to share her passion of dance with the next generations.

 

Payton Rice - Dance Conservatory Rehearsal Assistant - Payton Rice was born and raised in Orange County, California where she currently resides. Payton was a member of the nationally ranked Orange Coast College dance team and also danced with Pace Elite where she and her team brought home the 2017 Open Coed Pom World Championship at USASF Dance Worlds. Payton spends her summers teaching dance all along the west coast with the United Spirit Association where she was named Rookie of the Year in 2017.  After spending 4 years assistant coaching the Pacifica High School Dance Team, she is thrilled to be working with the dancers of Mater Dei High School.