At Joanne's Dance Extension; we stick to our traditional teaching methods. We are known for our age appropriate music, costuming, and choreography. We also make sure to have family-based activities for our dancers. We can be "hip, chic, and trendy" if needed, but we won't compromise giving our students what they need to be learning for their age and length of study. With a philosophy that respects the individuality of each student, your children will flourish.

Joanne's Dance Extension is proud to be affiliated with Dance Masters of America, Cecchetti Council of America, Dance Educators of America, and USA Gymnastics.

Our dedicated faculty is full of highly trained dance and acrobatic instructors.

At Joanne's Dance Extension, we strive to give everyone the opportunity to express themselves through dance. We have additional credentials to offer classes for those with special needs, and have been recognized for the success we have with our programs. 

About Our Legacy
OUR DANCERS HAVE GONE ON TO....

Deanna (Flores) Sycko
Kinderdance, Primary Ballet, Primary Tap, and Primary Jazz Instructor 

Miss Deanna began her dance training at the age of four with Miss Joanne.  She studied ballet, tap, jazz and lyrical throughout her student career. Deanna was also a Company member and had the opportunity to travel across the United States and Canada to workshops and competitions sponsored by Dance Masters of America.  During her years as a student, she assisted with student classes. After certification by Great Lakes Regional Dance Masters and Dance Masters of America, Deanna became a staff member! Deanna contributed many hours to the development of the current Joanne's Dance Extension primary and Pre-Competitive program for over 15 years. 

Although Miss Deanna lives in Macomb Township, she drives many times a week so her own three children can be trained by the best at Joanne’s Dance Extension!

Our students have gone on to have multiple successful careers, taking the lessons they've learned within our studio walls with them to their professional careers. Many of our students have:

  • Attend many four-year universities on numerous dance scholarships
  • ​Danced in many touring companies, including Wicked and Cats
  • ​Danced with ballet companies including the Dayton Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, and Grand Rapids Ballet 
  • Danced on contract at Disney World in Orlando, and Tokyo Disney in Japan

To learn more about our legacy, follow us on social media to see our Monthly Legacy posts featuring a new alumni each month! 

About Our Studio
OUR STATE OF THE ART FACILITY IS LOCATED IN CANTON, MI

Julie (Furr) Knakal
Intermediate Ballet, Advanced Ballet, and Cecchetti Ballet Method Instructor

Julie (Miss Julie) has been dancing since the age of three; when she was first enrolled at Joanne's Dance Extension.  She joined our staff in 1999 as a ballet instructor.  Miss Julie is a certified member of Great Lakes Regional Dance Masters (GLRDM) Chapter 46. She currently holds the title of GLRDM Past President and has been on the Board of Directors for the chapter since its forming in 2000.  Julie has been the GLRDM Solo Title Scholarship Director since 2000.  Miss Julie is certified to teach Grade I-V by the Cecchetti Council of America, and has been a member of that organization since 1999.   Julie attended the University of Michigan on a dance scholarship initially, but chose to pursue academics formally and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Aerospace Engineering in 2001.  She graduated from the University of Michigan again in 2007 with a Master's Degree in Business Administration.  Miss Julie delights in using her academic education in the classroom, especially when explaining dance moves in terms of physics.  

Julie is dedicated to excellence in ballet training, a fact that is exemplified by her students' remarkable success in their Cecchetti examinations.  

Sharon Richardson
Gymnastics and Acrobatics Instructor

Miss Sharon began her teaching career at the Downriver YMCA instructing swimming, diving, and gymnastics. She taught in the downriver area for many years before branching out to Joanne's Dance Extension eight years ago. In addition to her popular gymnastic classes at Joanne's Dance Extension, Miss Sharon is a certified judge for the National Association of Women’s Gymnastics.  She travels throughout the state of Michigan and Canada judging various levels of gymnastic meets.  She has taught workshops  throughout Southeastern Michigan for Dance Masters of America and various gyms. She is certified with the United States Gymnastics Association, Dance Masters of America, Great Lakes Regional Dance Masters, and also holds a gymnastic safety certification.

Her award winning students compete in acrobatic dance for local, regional, and national competitions.  

Tiffani Stewart
Contemporary, Hip Hop, Jazz, Tap, and Lyrical Instructor

Miss Tiffani has been teaching in the Canton area for the past 20 years. She owned and directed her own studio before joining Joanne's Dance Extension's esteemed staff. She is a certified member of Dance Masters of America, Dance Educators of America, and Great Lakes Regional Dance Masters.  In addition to teaching for Joanne's Dance Extension, Tiffani teaches at several other organizations including Dance Masters of America. She is a frequent judge for American Dance Awards all throughout the United States and Canada. 

Tiffani's students have won local, regional, and national overall awards for their performances. Tiffani has also won numerous choreography awards at several competitions. 

Molly Morton
Kinderdance, Primary Tap, Primary Ballet, and Primary Jazz Instructor

After begging her parents ceaselessly, Molly began her dance training at the age of nine at Dancin’ Feet in Canton, and instantly fell in love. Throughout her childhood, she found any opportunity to perform (school theater, choir, forcing her parent to endure self-choreographed “dance recitals” in the basement, etc.) and study dance, including the dance workshops at Joanne’s Dance Extension that she always looked forward to in the summers.

When it was time for her daughters to start dancing, she brought them to JDE because of the dancers’ lovely quality of movement, the studio’s family-friendly environment, the teachers’ obvious care for each student, and those amazing dance yearbooks she always envied growing up. Molly enjoys using her background in dance, music, and theater when teaching the studio’s younger students, and watching their natural creativity, musicality, and delightful silliness shine through as they dance. When she is not teaching dance, she is serving lattes to sleepy commuters, telling stories/singing with her preschool Sunday School class, falling asleep on top of books she fully intends to read some day, and eating anything with cheese in it.

Joanne Zavisa
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

Joanne (Miss Joanne) founded Joanne's Dance Extension in September of 1984 in Canton, Michigan.  She is currently serving as Dance Masters of America's Immediate National Past President.  She is the founding President of Great Lakes Regional Dance Masters Chapter 46.   She is a graduate of Teacher's Training School and is currently an Administrator of that program.  She held the title of Executive Director of Dance Masters of Michigan, Chapter 4, for many years before the Great Lakes Chapter was formed.  She has been active in the Plymouth-Canton community for her entire career, including sponsoring and organizing a dance & gymnastic program for Speech and Language Systems' sensory challenged students. Joanne has also been recognized for choreography on both the regional and national levels.

Joanne's students have gone on to perform in ballet and modern companies, musical theatre, and cruise line productions.  Joanne has had many students pursue dance degrees from colleges and universities including University of Michigan, State University of New York at Buffalo, Wayne State University, Marymount Manhattan, NYU, Southern Methodist University, Marygrove College, and more.  Joanne's students have been awarded scholarships for furthering their dance education at all levels.

Specializing in young dancers, Joanne's Dance Extension instills a love and appreciation for the art of dance on the simplest of terms: Joy. Our students are always happy to come to class, and

Parents can rest assured that their child's long-term health is not being compromised during each class. Their child is learning skills that will help them to be successful in all aspects of life. 

Become a part of our legacy: Call us now! ​​

Frequent Guest Faculty 

  • Larraine Susa 
         Pennsylvania
  • Tina Banchero 
         California
  • Laura Dysarczyk 
         California, Michigan
  • Sara Carrigan 
         Connecticut
  • Jacquelyn Bickle 
         New York
  • ​Carie Jurcak 
         Nevada

  • ​Olivia Lovsin 
         Michigan, New York
  • Alex Martin
         Michigan, New York

At Joanne's Dance Extension; we stick to our traditional teaching methods. We are known for our age appropriate music, costuming, and choreography. We also make sure to have family-based activities for our dancers. We can be "hip, chic, and trendy" if needed, but we won't compromise giving our students what they need to be learning for their age and length of study. With a philosophy that respects the individuality of each student, your children will flourish.

Joanne's Dance Extension is proud to be affiliated with Dance Masters of America, Cecchetti Council of America, and USA Gymnastics.

Our dedicated faculty is full of highly trained dance and acrobatic instructors.

At Joanne's Dance Extension, we strive to give everyone the opportunity to express themselves through dance. We have additional credentials to offer classes for those with special needs, and have been recognized for the success we have with our programs. 

About Our Staff
​PROFESSIONALLY EDUCATING DANCERS IN MICHIGAN SINCE 1984

Christine Denstedt
Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Acrobatics, Cecchetti Ballet Method, and Zumba Instructor

Christine (Miss Chrissie) started dancing with Miss Joanne at the age of four. Her training in ballet, tap, jazz, and acrobatics continued on all through high school. As a student, Christine had a very successful competitive career and was always seen assisting classes and mentoring young dancers. Christine participated in numerous summer programs including Dance Masters of America’s Student Honors Intensive Program. Once she turned 18, she attended DMA’s Teacher Training School. She graduated from T.T.S. in 2008 and was awarded the Bachna Scholarship, the highest award presented at DMA’s Training School. In addition to her TTS certifications, she is certified to teach Grade I-V by the Cecchetti Council of America. Christine has judged for Dance Masters of America chapters, and she currently serves as the DMA National Performing Arts Competition director. Chrissie is a Nationally Certified examiner by Dance Masters of America, and the Zumba Master at Joanne’s Dance Extension! 

Miss Chrissie’s students have continued her path and have been very successful both Regionally and Nationally in competition.