Annamaria Diamant (she/her)

Annamaria is an experienced dancer and educator with over 10 years of experience working in dance studios, NYC public schools, after-school programs and early childhood movement classes.

Annamaria Diamant (she/her)

Program Manager

Annamaria Diamant earned her BA in Theater Arts from the University of South Florida. Following graduation she performed with Sarasota Contemporary Dance Company as a dancer and choreographer. She’s had the opportunity to work with dance teams and young individuals from around the country as a dance instructor for MA Dance and the Capital One Bowl HalfTime Show. Annamaria loves to create; she’s produced and showcased her choreographic works throughout NYC.

In 2020 Annamaria graduated from Baruch College with a Masters in Arts Administration. Most recently, she served as the Children’s Program Manager for WR Arts where she helped implement after-school performing arts programming in NYC public schools and managed their Brooklyn studio. In early 2022 she joined Dancing Classrooms as a Teaching Artist before becoming a Program Manager.

Ieshia Henry (she/her)

Ieshia gaduated from CUNY Hunter College with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. Fun fact about me is that I did tap, jazz, and ballet from 4 years old through high school!

Ieshia Henry (she/her)

Operations Coordinator

I am from Brooklyn, NY born and raised. My husband and I together have an 11 month old daughter named Nola whose birthday is Juneteenth! I have worked in education operations for the last four years primarily in charter schools. Before that I graduated from CUNY Hunter College with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. Fun fact about me is that I did tap, jazz, and ballet from 4 years old through high school. I love traveling to the Caribbean and all things food. I am excited to continue my operations career with Dancing Classrooms!

Dance Day at the Farm

Dance Day at the Farm
Saturday, June 18, 2022 from 10am – 1pm
Free and open to all!

Dance into summer at this fun-filled, family-friendly day at the Queens County Farm Museum! Enjoy interactive dance workshops, student demonstrations, and special guest performances. Plus spend a beautiful day on the farm with hayrides, animals, a scavenger hunt, and more!

Honoring Alumni Kevin Heredia

Celebrating the Life
of Alumni Kevin Heredia

We are deeply saddened by the passing of our Alumni Kevin Heredia, who was featured in Mad Hot Ballroom while attending P.S. 115 in Washington Heights. Among his artistic accomplishments, Kevin won Best Cinematography for his work on A Sorrowful Birthday at the Virgin Spring Cinefest in February 2021. We wish his family and friends healing and love. We’re honored to have shared our Ballroom journey with Kevin. He will forever remain in our hearts.

Pictured Top Left in Mad Hot Ballroom Image

Swing Uptown! A Celebration of Dancing Classrooms and the Roaring 2020s

Join us for a memorable swing dance masterclass with our senior teaching artists and swing pros, Akemi Kinukawa and Felix Pitre. Featuring live music by a six-piece collective of jazz phenoms, The Summer Camargo Swing Band!

Friday, January 28, 2022
7 – 8:30 pm


Virtual Ticket: $25 suggested donation
Streaming link will be shared via email.

LIMITED In-Person Livestream Ticket: $50 suggested donation
Prefer to dance in-person and have the special experience of being in the livestream? We will cap our in-person guests at 20 and Covid vaccination, masks, and social distancing will be strictly enforced.

A mid-winter night swing dance party that will be the cat’s meow and get you shaking and grooving, safely, to celebrate 2022.

ALL proceeds support our work in bringing the joy and power of dance (including swing!) to K-12 students in NYC and beyond. Make a donation and join the fun on January 28th!

Read about our Featured Guests and Covid Safety Protocols!

Swing Uptown Event Host Committee: 

Carrie Shea Steinmetz, Chair

Patrice Tanaka, Vice Chair

Harry Chung, Treasurer

Hilary Wolf Bayer

John J. Entwistle

Sheila A. Hoerle

Tyrone Bazelaire

Patricia Koyce

Slava Takhalov

Akemi Kinukawa (she/her)

Watch to learn more about Ms. Akemi:

Akemi Kinukawa (she/her)

Senior Teaching Artist

Akemi Kinukawa began working for Dancing Classrooms in 2011 and by the end of the year was nominated “Rookie of the Year.” She is originally from Japan where she didn’t have any chance to explore the art of social dancing. It was when she was welcomed into the Lindy Hop dance community in Washington, D.C. that her life changed dramatically. For this reason, she is passionate about sharing social dancing with children. She also works as a Lindy Hop choreographer and instructor. Her work, from dance pieces to dance theater, champions Lindy Hop’s spirit by educating on its history and cultural context, furthering the legacy of inclusivity. Highlights of her career include performing at the opening night of Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing in 2017 as well as performing with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis in 2016.

Dance Break!

Covid Vaccination & Safety Policy


Dancing Classrooms requires that all employees be fully vaccinated* and encourages staying up to date** with COVID-19 boosters, unless a reasonable medical condition or sincerely held religious beliefs prevents them from safe vaccination. 


Request for Vaccination Exemption:

The process of granting exemptions will be considered, analyzed, and determined on a case-by-case basis by the HR Department. Employees that are granted exemption will be required to provide a negative PCR test weekly, wear a mask, and keep a 6-feet social distance during meetings, any in-person events, or activities. Because most of our partners have similar or stricter policies, non-vaccinated teaching artists will only be assigned virtual residencies, if available, and like all DC teaching artists, are not guaranteed work.


Safety Practices:

All employees, regardless of vaccine status, are highly encouraged to wear masks when teaching or visiting DC programs in-person. In addition, all employees, regardless of vaccination status, are required to follow any and all COVID-19 safety policies of the spaces in which classes or meetings are taking place, such as the Department of Education, Riverside Church, etc., including but not limited to presenting proof of COVID-19 vaccination, proof of negative COVID-19 test, social distancing, etc.


We recommend visiting the CDC’s page about COVID-19 Vaccines for more information, and NYC Vaccine Finder to find out more about vaccine sites available to all New Yorkers.


*Fully vaccinated is defined as two weeks after your final vaccine dose.

**One is up to date if they have completed a COVID-19 vaccine primary series and received the most recent booster dose recommended for them by the CDC.

Yvonne Winborne (she/her)

Yvonne is a passionate educator, dancer, choreographer, teaching artist, and mental health advocate.

Yvonne Winborne (she/her)

Education Director

Yvonne Winborne is originally from Philadelphia, PA, and is currently based in Brooklyn, NY. Yvonne obtained her B.S. in Childhood and Early Adolescent Education and Dance Minor from The Pennsylvania State University and her M.A. in Dance Education from New York University. She is trained in ballet, modern, hip-hop, West and East African dances, step, heels, and street jazz and has danced internationally in Ireland and Uganda. After starting the dance curriculum at New Bridges Elementary School in 2015, Yvonne transitioned to the field of teaching artistry. For the past several years she has worked as a teaching artist for Urban Arts Partnership and Lincoln Center Education, along with freelancing at several camps and studios. Her journey led her to Dancing Classrooms in 2021, where she started as one of the Associate Directors of Curriculum and Professional Development and has now transitioned to become the Education Director. Yvonne believes that dance should be accessible to all and approaches her teaching practice with a focus on cultural responsiveness and mental health awareness.

FREE Summer Social Dance

Free Summer Social Dance with Dancing Classrooms!

Join us online through Zoom and outdoors at parks across NYC for free summer social dance classes in July and August!

Summer Dancing with Rhythm & Stories
for ages 4 – 8 (Rising K-3rd grade)

A Journey Through Dance Around the World
for 4th grade – Adult

Learn more below!
Email with any questions.

*Locations are subject to change and local safety guidelines will be followed.

Summer Dancing with Rhythm & Stories


Recommended Ages: 4 – 8 (Rising K-3rd grade)
Duration: Weekly Drop-In Class, 45 min.
Days/Time: Tuesdays @ 12pm EST July 13, 20, 27 and August 3 Location: Virtual (Zoom) Class

Summer Dancing with Rhythm Stories is a creative interdisciplinary course, combining fundamental elements of social dance with creative movement and storytelling. Each week students will explore a different social dance style from around the world using creative movement, rhythm making, and storytelling. This inclusive class, open to students with various learning needs and abilities, is designed to engage participants by sparking the imagination, building confidence, encouraging selfexpression, and strengthening coordination and communication skills. A great way for little ones to stay active during hot summer days.

A Journey Through Dance Around the World

Recommended Ages: 4th grade – Adult
Duration: Weekly Drop-In Class, 1.5 hrs.
Days/Time: Thursdays @ 4pm July 22, 29, and August 5
Location: Outdoor Parks Across NYC (See Below)

Dance Around the World is an inclusive, multicultural and global dance program, designed to develop knowledge, appreciation and understanding of social dance styles across the globe. Each class will focus on a particular continent or region, exploring the history, rhythms, and movements of various social dances. No experience necessary! Participants can learn a short dance routine and show off their skills, or enjoy dancing with their fellow New Yorkers with an interactive “dance party” at the end of each class.

Week 1: July 22nd @ 4pm East Coast Swing at East River Park*, Manhattan

Jump & Jive along the East River at the Amphitheatre on the LES at this fun and family friendly workshop!

Week 2: July 29th @ 4pm Boogie Down in the Bronx, Woodlawn Playground in Van Cortlandt Park*
CANCELLED due to severe storm watch in NYC. Rain date to be announced!

Continue your dance journey with us at the birthplace of Hip-Hop, the Bronx! Pop, lock and groove in a fun Hip-Hop fusion workshop!

Week 3: August 5th @ 4pm Salsa and Samba in Sunset Park* , Brooklyn

In the final workshop of our free summer dance series, shake and sway the afternoon away with us with some Salsa and Samba in Sunset Park in Brooklyn at the paved plaza area around the flagpole near 41st Street and 6th Avenue.

Dancing Classrooms 2021 Social Dance Showcase

Dancing Classrooms 2021 Social Dance Showcase:
An Online Community Celebration of Defiant Joy!

Livestreamed Awards Announcement and Community Celebration

Saturday, June 12, 2021

11am – 12pm EST on Zoom


Join Dancing Classrooms as we celebrate the accomplishments of our community and of students all across the metro area! Thank you to everyone who submitted videos demonstrating their “Defiant Joy” through Social Dance. The livestreamed online Zoom celebration will include select submission performance videos, awards announcements, and a fun dance break!

So, please join us on June 12 as we celebrate the power of dance in our 2021 Social Dance Showcase. Students, families, friends, teachers and all those who helped our students share their Defiant Joy this year are welcome to join this special Zoom event.

What IS Defiant Joy?
Defiant joy is actively pursuing happiness and self-expression in the face of great grief and challenge. It describes the work that Dancing Classrooms has done for the past 26 years and dance teachers across NYC and the globe have been cultivating everyday online: using movement and culture as tools to develop resilience, connection, community, and pride. Through dance and the arts, young people have talked back to the world this year and we loved hearing what you had to say!

Who should I contact with any questions?
Please feel free to contact Mary McCatty with any questions about the festival and your submission content. Contact Marielle Young with any technical questions.

Please note:
*By submitting for the Dancing Classrooms 2021 Social Dance Showcase: An Online Community Celebration of Defiant Joy, you agree to adhere to all rules and instructions, and any others explicitly stated by the event organizers during all stages of the event. The event organizers may also change or remove certain rules or stipulations depending on their collective assessment of situations, should they merit review. Submissions must be appropriate (no hate speech, inappropriate dance moves, inappropriate music, etc.) and adhere to all rules to be featured on the Dancing Classrooms Showcase webpage. This is at the discretion of the Dancing Classrooms staff.

All participants also acknowledge and understand that their provided names, videos, statement, image, and likeness of image, may be used on Dancing Classrooms social media and/or the Dancing Classrooms website in perpetuity. Participants will maintain sole copyright of the created materials and may use and reproduce the project materials as they desire.