The Premier Dance Studio in Statesville, NC, Since 1987
The Premier Dance Studio in Statesville, NC, Since 1987

About Us

Denise Tilley LeVan with Tilley's Dance Academy staff
Lauren Dixon (Instructor), Denise LeVan (Owner/Instructor), Cortney Toothaker (Studio Manager), Amy Brookshire (Instructor) and Madison Deal (Instructor)


At Tilley’s Dance Academy, we’ve celebrated dance excellence since 1987. Our team has built generations of creativity and confidence at our facility, and we continually strive to help our students grow and blossom through the art of dance every day.

Owner Denise Tilley LeVan has danced her entire life. When she first opened the studio, Denise set out to create a safe and fun space for people to learn how to dance. For the past 32 years, she’s enjoyed watching young dancers grow up in her studio and helping them nurture a love for dance.

Denise and her staff believe dancing has the power to positively impact people’s lives. Whether you’re looking for competitive classes, adult dancing, or kids dance lessons in Statesville, NC, there’s something for everybody at Tilley’s Dance Academy!

Need leotards, tutus, or a pair of tap shoes?
Come see us at our Dance Shop, and we’ll help you find what you’re looking for!
To find out what we have in stock or to ask about our hours, contact us today!

Meet Our Award-Winning Staff of Passionate Dancers & Teachers

Tilley’s Dance Academy dance instructors

Our staff of dancers and teachers have trained, competed, and worked in the dance industry for over 30 years. We’ve garnered a long line of teaching and dancing awards, and we’ve helped put Tilley’s Dance Academy on the map as a premier dance company.

Nothing satisfies us more than helping dancers of all ages and skill levels grow through the beautiful art of dance. Whether you’re signing up for kids dance lessons, adult classes, or want your child to audition for our dance company, call us at 704-872-6438.

We look forward to dancing with you!

Meet Cortney Toothaker

My name is Cortney and I have been the studio manager at Tilley’s Dance Academy since 2013. After graduating high school in 2007, I attended Mitchell Community College taking accounting courses. I also taught a few dance classes here at the studio, but soon realized as much as I love dancing, teaching wasn’t as much of a passion for me. So, when presented with the opportunity to become studio manager, I quickly accepted. I grew up in the studio, with my mom teaching when I was younger, so I absolutely love being here! I love seeing the kids each week, and at the end of the year recital getting to see all they have accomplished and see everything we have worked for all year come together is amazing!! I also love that I get to work with such an amazing group of women! There is truly nowhere else I’d rather be.

Meet Amy Brookshire

Hello everyone! My name is Amy Brookshire and I have been a dance instructor at TDA for 26 years!! WOW-seems like yesterday! My love for dance started at the young age of 3. By age 10, I was hooked and competing with the first ever Jr. Dance Co. for Tilley’s. Throughout my years here I have been able to train under many notable instructors and choreographers. I have also performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, at Disney World, Disneyland, Universal Studios and many cruise line companies. I have been awarded several “Top Choreography”, “1st place Grand National Overall Champion” and “Top Teacher” awards in my career. I love teaching and helping to mold these beautiful dancers that we have here today. I absolutely love the excitement and energy they bring to my class everyday. They are the reason I teach! When I’m not dancing I love spending time with my husband, Britt and my two beautiful children, Jay and Bella.

Meet Lauren Dixon

I’m Lauren Dixon and this is my 6th year as a dance instructor for Tilley’s Dance Academy. I graduated from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte with a BA in Dance with a concentration in performance, choreography, and theory. I studied with the Martha Graham Dance company and performed at The Joyce Theatre in NYC and the Knight Theatre in Charlotte performing a restaged work of the Martha Graham Dance Company. I was also a performer in the Tony Award winner George Faison’s Suite Otis and a dancer in the rapper Remi’s music video for his single “Smile”. I was a founder and President of the dance organization Range of Motion at UNCC and held multiple leadership positions. I am so passionate about dance and even more passionate about seeing your amazing children grow their love of dance in my class and on the stage. I am home grown and grew up dancing at Tilley’s since I was 3 years old. That makes it even more special to be apart of this amazing faculty. I look forward to continuing to help teach and mold these amazing young dancers!

Meet Tori Tavares

Hello my name is Tori Tavares. I have been a dancer at Tilley’s for 16 years, starting at the age of 2! I have just graduated recently from North Iredell High School and am attending Mitchell Community College to get my business degree. I have traveled to several competitions out of state and in state with my studio, and have had the most amazing times doing so. While lyrical and contemporary are my favorite genre of dance, teaching kids of any age is something I’ve loved doing for a very long time! I love building relationships with students, inspiring others, and to make dancers flourish! I hope to continue to inspire others and to teach students for as long as possible!! I cant wait for this opportunity to grow as a person and as a dance teacher!!

Meet Jessica Hedrick

Hi, My name is Jessica Hedrick.  I have been teaching dance for 10 years. While Clogging is my specialty, I love teaching every genre. I started competing at the age of 9, and I was named to the America’s Clogging Hall of Fame team in 1994. I am married with a daughter who is 11 and also dances competitively. My husband & I are the 2015 & 2019 America’s Clogging Hall of Fame OVERALL GRAND CHAMPION DUO/DUET winners. I have traveled throughout the United States winning many solo, duo/duet, and team titles. During my career of teaching, I have been awarded 7 Overall Choreography awards. Teaching Dance brings me such joy. I love the kids, and I enjoy the relationship we develop while being together. I always find a great balance of being their friend and their instructor. We are heavily involved with our church, and I am so grateful that God blessed me with a talent that I can share with the kids. I love competing with my husband, Darren, and my daughter, Teagan. Competing In the Clogging World is what we do as a family in our spare time..

Meet Terri Crider

Hi My name is Terri Crider and I am so excited to be the new STARS Dance program teacher! I graduated from Western Carolina University in 2013 with my bachelors degree in special education; I am currently in my 11th year of teaching in a classroom for individuals with special needs in a public school. This is my 18th year of dance at Tilley’s Dance Academy and the new STARS dance program combines my love of dance with my love of individuals with special needs! I believe all individuals should have opportunities to chase their dreams and I am so blessed to have the opportunity to chase dreams with my dance STARS!

Tilley’s Dance Academy

401 N Center St
Statesville, NC 28677


Monday: 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday: 1:00 PM - 6:30 PM
Wednesday: 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Thursday: 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Closed Friday, Saturday, & Sunday