Ms. Darla began studying dance in Los Angeles, Ca. in 1961. She received her Cecchetti ballet training with Mona Francis School of Ballet studying under Lucille McClure, one of the founders of the Cecchetti Council of the U.S.A. Her early jazz and tap training was with Dennis Wayne Day, one of the original Disney Mouseketeers and many other teachers and performers in the Los Angeles area. She became an assistant teacher while receiving her fine arts degree at Cerritos College and while attending Cal. State University of Long Beach. Darla opened her first dance school in Orange County Ca. in 1989 teaching ballet, tap, jazz and ballroom. She also taught 'Ballet on Ice" for Junior Olympic ice skaters in Orange County. Several of Ms. Darla's students have gone on to dance professionally in Los Angeles, New York and throughout the world. Many have become dance teachers themselves.
Darla currently serves as choreographer for Storyteller Productions and is a member of the production team. She served as Assistant Director for the 2016 production of White Christmas.
Since locating in North Georgia she has choreographed stage productions including Seussical the Musical, Goodnight Moon, Pippin, Fiddler on the Roof, Babes in Toyland, It's A Wonderful Life, Annie, Narnia, White Christmas, James and the Giant Peach, and Little Women. She is truly grateful for all the opportunities that Storyteller Productions, The Colonnade Players and other production groups in the area have given her; allowing her to be a part of this wonderful theater life, family and friends.
She currently owns The Tempo Dance Center LLC located in Fort Oglethorpe, GA. A beautiful space is under construction for a new location that will include The Tempo Dancewear Store located in Ringgold Ga. The studio will bring classes including dance, tumbling, musical theater, vocal training, painting and other visual arts to the community soon.
Let them praise His name with dancing Psalm 149:3
Ms. Kristin has spent most of her life in theater, dancing. Kristin has been trained at the Atlanta Ballet, Birmingham-Southern College, Gainesville Ballet and Chattanooga Ballet. She has training in ballet, modern, jazz and pointe. She also has spent time developing her skills in New York City and with Dance Educators of America. Kristin has recently received her certification in Progressing Ballet Technique, to improve the technique of the students. Kristin has danced in such performances as A Midsummer Night Dream, Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet, Narnia, the musical, and White Christmas. Kristin has also spent time choreographing for local community theatre and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Kristin is the mother of 2 amazing boys and has a wonderful husband.
Imara Young discovered her love for dance when taking dance classes for three years at Contra Costa Christian High School in Walnut Creek, California. Miss Young began choreographing and teaching hip hop around 1999. She took initiative in forming a hip-hop squad at Covenant College and kept it going from 2003-2006.
Miss Young proceeded to move to Atlanta, GA in 2007 and since then has not only been training in various styles, but has been part of different dance companies, crews, dance productions, music videos, and performed behind several Atlanta artists. Some projects included being a member of dance crew Dragon House, dance company The Purple Elephant Society, and being signed by DDO Nashville/Atlanta. Miss Young now resides in Chattanooga, TN as an ACE certified personal trainer and plans to continue sharing her love for dance with others through performing with her crew COMMIX and teaching various dance & dance fitness classes.
Assistant Dance Instructor
Miss Sydney is over the moon to teach the Tiny Toes class this year. She has been assisting the Tiny Toes and Pre-level classes at The Tempo since 2015. Sydney loves sharing her knowledge with this group of Tempo Dancers. She has also been filling in as a substitute teacher for the last few years for the other teachers as needed. Sydney has been with the Tempo since the summer of 2012. Miss Darla has taken Sydney under her wing to help mold her into the dancer and teacher she is today.
Sydney started dancing when she was just two years old with ballet, adding on a new style of dance each year. Today she continues her training in ballet, tap, jazz, tumble, hip hop, pointe, PBT, musical theatre, vocal, lyrical and contemporary. Sydney is also a part of the Tempo Stars Competition Dance Team. She enjoys participating in community performances in dance and musical theatre as well as being apart of her school’s band, chorus/drama, academic quiz bowl team, yearbook committee, and National JR BETA Club President.
Jordan Whitfield is a sophomore at Kennesaw State University. She is a double major in Dance with a concentration in Modern and Early Childhood Education. She is a part of the Kennesaw State University Dance Company appearing in pieces, “Unearthing” choreographed by Andrea Knowlton and “Authorship Accepted” choreographed by Jordan Silas. Jordan has been dancing for 14 years. She spent many years as a company member at Starmaker Dance Company where she has attended various competitions and conventions including; Encore DCS, Tremain, West Coast Dance Explosion, KAR, and Radix. She has achieved numerous elite 1st place solo awards and convention scholarships. In years 2017-2018 Jordan was a dance instructor at First Step Dance Studio in Rock Spring up until she started college at KSU. In 2017 Jordan was honored to be awarded as the 2017 Encore DCS cover model where she was featured in regional and national programs as well as Dance Magazines. In 2018 Jordan was awarded Miss Northwest Georgia Teen USA, where she went on to compete for the state title of Miss Georgia Teen USA. Jordan trains in all forms of dance but especially loves contemporary, jazz, and ballet.
Meet Our Teachers
Miss Laney is heading up the pre-level classes at the Tempo this season and is looking forward to teaching some of the Dance Center's youngest students! As well as our tumblers!
Laney started her young dance career under the leadership of the Mrs. Darla Toker at the ripe young age of 7. After a brief stint away from dance, Laney added several more tools to her already full tool bag of tricks. She has been dancing for 8 years and has spent the last 5 years with Tempo. She has 3 years of gymnastic training, which includes 2 years of intense team competition. She has been teaching tumbling for 5 years. She enjoys working with rising dance stars to help them improve their skills and knowledge of dance. Laney performs and/or teaches ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, PBT, acro, tumble, and hip hop.
Laney has recently received her Progressing Ballet Technique certification.