Isabella Rector
Dance Instructor

Isabella has been dancing for sixteen years studying genres of dance such as tap, jazz, ballet, contemporary, point, and acrobatics. Through dancing competitively for 9 years she was awarded several scholarships including faculty assistant at NRG and Hollywood Dance Jams, both as a dance protege. She is now attending the University of Alabama in Birmingham and is a member of the UAB Golden Girl dance team. Isabella has a history of choreographing for a multitude of competitive teams as well as several musical theater productions.  She enjoys assisting the growth of children through dance, and looks forward to sharing her knowledge and experience with her students at Birmingham Academy of Dance! 

Copyright Birmingham Academy of Dance. All rights reserved.

Autumn Armstrong
Studio Director

Autumn began her dance education at the age of two.  She studied in the genres of tap, ballet, jazz, contemporary, and hip-hop, and started choreographing and teaching at the age of fourteen.  Autumn has competed in both dance and cheerleading, and pursued hip-hop and gymnastics into adulthood, privileged to have been a member of several national championship teams.  She completed her B.S. in Accounting from the University of Alabama in 2000.  Twelve years ago, Autumn began her most important role in the dance world as a parent of a multiple title winning dancer, and this only expanded her affinity for all genres of dance.  Her experience as a dance student, instructor, choreographer, and parent has developed not only an understanding of the dancer’s mind, but also of the expectations of the dance consumer.  It is her objective at Birmingham Academy of Dance to provide top-notch instruction, impeccable customer service, and an all around enjoyable and unforgettable dance experience that will be cherished by both student and family.


Birmingham Academy of Dance is proud to introduce our talented group of instructors!  Our team members are devoted to your student’s success and individual needs.  Each has  top-notch training and  an unparalleled ability to provide unique and dynamic choreography, as well as a positive and motivated teaching style.  Meet the B.A.D crew!

Karina Barone
Dance Instructor

Received her BFA from the Institute of Professional Arts in Mar del Plata, Argentina. As a dance teacher she work with different schools in  Argentina, Venezuela, Miami, West Palm Beach, and Iowa. As a dancer she works for “New Century Dance Co.” winner of Event Solutions Spotlight award as Best Entertainment Company  in South Florida 2003-2007,from his foundation in 1999 until 2006 when she moved to Iowa. As a professional dancer she  was fortunate to share stages with  many international artist like Boy George, John Secada, Jackie Velazques, Celia Cruz,Juan Gabriel  and  many others , she was also selected to go to London to dance for Andrew Lloyd Webber. As a Choreographer she works for Iowa Shakespeare Experience since 2006 to 2011, working with dancers as well as non-dancers. Des Moines metro Opera production of Carmen in 2007, and Iowa Art Alliance Foundation bringing dance to elementary schools , helping to expose  kids to the arts  and sharing her love for dancing. As a dance teacher she works with many dance Studios  like : “That’s dancing”, Florida 2004-2006 “School of Classical Ballet and dance”  “creative Movement Dance Co.”  “Westside dance”, Iowa, 2006-2010. 

Ethan Epstein
Dance Instructor
Ethan Epstein is from Boston, Massachusetts. He trained at Boston Ballet School, under the direction of Margaret Tracey, and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, under the direction of Marcia Dale Weary. As a student, Ethan’s repertoire included principal and soloist roles in ballets by George Balanchine, Price Suddarth, Alan Hineline, and Matthew Powell. He has also performed as with Oklahoma City Ballet, where he appeared in ballets by Robert Mills and Agnes de Mille. Ethan is currently a company member with Alabama Ballet where he has performed in many corps de ballet and soloist roles. Ethan looks forward to a great season teaching with Birmingham Academy of Dance! 

Spencer Shirley
Dance Instructor
Spencer began her dance education at age 2, and has been training in all genres including ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary, clogging, and hip hop for over 12 years.  Spencer has won many accolades and titles as a competitive dancer including Miss Platinum, Miss Thunderstruck, Miss Masquerade, Miss Inspire, Miss Elite Teen Dance, Dance Master’s of America Chapter 33 Miss Dance, and Miss V.I.P dance.  She was awarded the Steven Boyd Memorial scholarship award for her passion on stage, as well as numerous scholarships to world-renown programs such as the Rockettes.  She continues to compete as a senior dancer, and has been studying under multiple instructors as an assistant for many years.  Spencer has a deep love for all genres and styles of dance and music, and will continue to pursue her passion in the studio and on stage.

Sophie Barron
Dance Instructor
Sophie has over 15 years dance experience in a multitude of genres including ballet, jazz, hip hop, and contemporary.  She has danced competitively, and has had training as both a Birmingham Academy of Dance company dancer and instructor.  Sophie continues to pursue her dance education, and enjoys sharing her love of dance and talent with students of all ages and skill levels.  She is a great asset to our program as a dancer, teacher, and choreographer!

Tiffeny Roberson
Dance Instructor

Tiffeny is a graduate of Cornerstone Christian School and has studied Early Childhood Education and Kinesiology at The University of Montevallo. Tiffeny has been dancing for 27 years and teaching dance for 17 of those years. She is a member of the Southern Association of Dance Masters where she has been tested and certified to teach dance. For 8 years, she was the owner and artistic director of Dancing at Tiffeny’s Center for the Arts in Westover, Alabama. As owner of DAT, Tiffeny was able to direct an incredibly successful competitive team. They were awarded numerous state and local titles while traveling throughout the southeast. In 2012, She was awarded the Marjorie Perry Spirit Award, an award given for excellence in the field of dance instruction and as recently as 2016, she was awarded the Association of Dance Conventions and Competitions Studio of Excellence Award. Tiffeny has had the honor of studying dance from some of the greats. She has studied under the late greats Frank Hatchett and Steven Boyd and has thoroughly enjoyed master classes under great choreographers and teachers such as, Dena Rizzo, Janice Barringer, Daryll Retter, Tommy Alexander, Katheryn McCormick and several others. She has had the joy of soaking up knowledge from Becca Retter on the most recent and innovative preschool and primary level dance instruction techniques on a regular basis. Tiffeny’s desire is to give children a firm foundation in the basics of dance and grow them into strong adult dancers. She is also a very successful pageant coach and has never trained a pupil that has not placed in the top 10. Tiffeny is also a superior vocalist. In 2004, she was given the opportunity to travel to New York City where she performed at the world famous, Carnegie Hall. In her days as a competitive opera singer, she received many superior awards at multiple AISA and ACSI solo competitions. Tiffeny is currently a member of Highlands Worship at Church of the Highlands in Birmingham, Alabama, one of the fastest growing churches in the country. She has the honor of serving as the Vocal Director at the churches Greystone campus, where she develops new vocalists. Tiffeny’s goal is to reach as many children as possible in her lifetime by giving them the joys of fine arts. She thanks God daily for the children He has put in her path.

Alli Neely
Dance Instructor & Co-Creative Director

Alli began dancing at the young age of two and started competing with dance at the age of eight. Throughout her dance training she trained in many aspects of dance such as jazz, ballet, tap, pointe, acrobatics, contemporary, hip-hop, and modern dance. Growing up Alli competed at various dance competitions receiving many awards and scholarships. She has performed across the country, studying under many world renowned teachers and choreographers. Alli has been student teaching and teaching dance since the age of thirteen. After graduating high school, Alli attended the University of Alabama where she got her bachelor’s degree in dance. At the university Alli trained under many admired dance teachers and really grew as an artist. Alli was accepted into the prestigious company Alabama Repertory Dance Theater at the university. She choreographed many dances for the shows at the University of Alabama such as Dance Alabama and Dance Collection. While in school she was also a member of the Dance Alabama organization. Alli had the opportunity to spend a summer as a dance camp counselor for the American Ballet Theater where she also received outstanding ballet training under esteemed ballet teachers. She has taught master classes while working on choreography for many different projects. Alli has a love for dance, choreographing, and teaching dance. She is very dedicated to her work and strives to create an upstanding atmosphere for her students.

Shaina Trumer
Dance Instructor

Shaina Trumer has been involved in the dance world for over ten years.  She has trained in all disciplines, as well as choreographed for many local organizations and special events.  Shaina has also received training and coached in the musical theater genre, as well as led many performances. She is continuing her education as a dance major at Troy University.  Shaina has a passion for working with younger children, and helping them develop an all around love for dancing and performing.

Brandon Norris
Dance Instructor

Brandon Norris was born and raised in Winfield, AL. He attended Hubbertville High School and went on to earn an Associate's Degree in Drafting and Design Technology. Brandon started clogging at the age of 3 and hasn't stopped since. Over the years he has earned numerous national titles such as 7-time CCA(Clogging Champions of America) Team National Titles, 6 CCA Duet National Titles and 7 CCA Solo National Titles. Brandon auditioned for Fox's hit show "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 3 where he made it through to the top 100 dancers and was one of only 2 dancers invited back to perform on the finale of the show. He also led his team Dynamic Edition to a Top 5 finish on Season 3 of MTV's America's Best Dance Crew. Now at the age of 30 Brandon travels all over the nation doing choreography and conventions. Brandon co-owns Dynamic Dance with his sister Shannon where they share their love for teaching others the joy of dance.