Meet Our Staff

Ms. Marcy Rodriguez
Area of expertise: All disciplines

Marcy is a member of Dance Masters of America (DMA), Dance Educators of America (DEA), and the Professional Dance Teachers Association (PDTA). She is a past Regional Director, board member and Chairperson of Mr. & Miss Dance of Florida Chapter #2 for DMA. Marcy's students have won numerous National titles and have gone on to perform on Broadway, Las Vegas and television including MTV, Miss America, Most Talented Kid in America, Star Search, Saturday night at the Apollo, and In Living Color. She has choreographed for the Washington DC Symphony Orchestra, housed in the Kennedy Center and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. In addition, she has choreographed for the cheerleaders of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, of the NFL, Tampa Bay Storm, of the USAFL, and the Tampa Bay Mutiny of Major League Soccer. Marcy is very happy to back "home" teaching and choreographing in Florida.


Mallori Cerise Rodriguez

Mallori has been studying dance since the age of 2. She studied all disciplines of dance including Tap, Jazz, Acrobatics, Ballet, Musical Theater and Hip Hop. Mallori had the opportunity of studying dance under the direction of Miss Jackie Loto, (her grandmother), Marcy Rodriguez (her mother) and the great master of Jazz Luigi. Mallori is a certified Pre-School instructor and specializes in teaching dance to that age group. Mallori has competed in dance most of her life and received numerous platinum and national awards as a soloist, and as a duet and group member. Mallori has a passion for teaching dance and loves being part of the Suncoast family.


Karin MIzell

Ms. Michele Palacios
Area of expertise: Children's Performing Arts Groups

Michele was born and raised in Tampa where she graduated from Tampa Catholic High School. She went on to the University of South Florida and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education. She is currently a first grade teacher and is the choreographer of the school’s dance team.
At the age of three, Michele began her dance instruction under the tutelage of Jackie Loto and Marcy Rodriguez at Jackie’s Dance Studio. Growing up Michele participated in fashion shows, pageants, parades, and dance competitions. She has taken master classes from dance celebrities Luigi, Danny Hoctor, and Dupree. As a member of the American All-Star Dance Drill Team, she was selected to dance at Super Bowls XXIII, XXIV, XXV, and XXVI as well as perform in Bermuda, Hawaii, Mexico, Bahamas, and Disneyland Paris. Michele was also a member of the Tampa Bay Storm cheerleaders for the ’96,’97, and ’98 seasons. For 10 years she was the director and choreographer of Tampa’s original children’s dance troupe “Just Kids” from Jackie’s Dance Studio. The last 3 years under her direction, Just Kids had the honor of performing at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom as part of Disney’s Magic Music Days Program. Michele was one of the original “Just Kids” in 1981 when it was created by Miss Marcy. Michele joined the Suncoast family upon its opening as the choreographer of “Suncoast Kids,” a children’s performing arts group. However, she took a leave of absence to pursue family needs after the first two years.
Michele is married to her high school sweet heart and has two young girls who love to dance. She is delighted to be back with Ms. Marcy adding many more fond memories.


Tanya Loto

Ms. Tanya Loto

Tanya Loto is from Manchester, New Hampshire where she began dancing at the age of five.  Tanya moved to Florida and continued her dance training throughout school.  In 1996, she was awarded a dance scholarship to Santa Fe College in Gainesville, Florida where she later became an Adjunct Professor teaching Jazz and Modern.  She received her Bachelors of Fine Arts degree from University of Florida where she graduated magna cum laude.  Tanya has performed both in the United States with several modern and jazz companies and in Europe where she performed at the World’s Fair in Seville, Spain.  In 2005, Tanya was the Rehearsal Director for the Chocolate Nutcracker at Ruth Eckerd Hall in the Richard P. Bumgardener Center for the Arts.  She has taught dance throughout the Tampa Bay area and is pleased to join Suncoast School of the Arts.  


Ms. Henderson

Ms. Cleao

Cleao began her dance journey at the age of two exposed to a variety of cultural dance styles including West African dance, Dunham technique in modern dance, hoofing styles of tap dance, and Capoeira (a Brazilian martial arts and dance form). She performed with Kuumba African Dancers & Drummers beginning at age five.  Cleao joined the Jackie’s Dance Studio family at age 11 where she studied technical dance under the instruction of Jackie Loto and Marcy Rodriguez.  She performed with Just Kids and was soon after selected for the competition team where she competed in many of Ms. Marcy’s award-winning productions and placed first as a soloist in several national competitions. 

As a Lionette at King High School, a Morganette at Morgan State University and as a member of Morgan’s Modern Dance Ensemble, Cleao further expanded her repertoire of dance as a choreographer and performer. She continued her technical training through various master classes taught by highly sought after dance technicians, including Savion Glover, Luigi, Allen Gartrell, Debbie Allen, and Chuck Davis.  Cleao’s talent for singing and dancing has afforded her the opportunity to perform in several stage musicals throughout the Tampa Bay area including The Chocolate Nutcracker, Black Nativity and the Manhattan Casino.

From 2013-2015, Cleao instructed and choreographed at Living Arts Dance Studio in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She lives the best of both worlds as she is able to pursue her passions as a systems engineer, performer, vocalist, song writer, mentor, and dance instructor. 

Ms. Marcy is someone who greatly impacted Cleao in becoming the woman she is today. She is thrilled to reunite with Ms. Marcy and join the Suncoast School of the Arts family!


Ms. Storey

Ms. Storey

Taylor Storey began her training at a young age studying all styles of dance at Erin’s Danceworks in Spring Hill. Taylor continued to train and dance competitively while she made her way to Tampa to graduate from All American Dance Factory in 2013. She recently graduated cum laude from Florida State University earning a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Dance. At FSU, Taylor's core curriculum consisted of ballet and modern dance training from faculty members such as Gerri Houlihan, Jawole Will Jo Zollar, and Anjali Austin to name a few. Taylor also took a focus in the dance sciences lead by Dr. Tom Welsh, learning how to understand the body, teach and condition dancers. During her time at FSU Taylor had the opportunity to perform at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts during the ACDA Nationals. In the summers Taylor has trained in programs like Alvin Ailey, The Broadway Experience, Broadway Dreams Foundation, and The D(N)A Xperience. Taylor spends her day as a Reading In Rhythm instructor where she uses a series of brain compatible operations/exercises sequentially to facilitate new neurological pathways in the brain of young students striving to better themselves in dance, academics, or team sports. With a desire for teaching, Taylor is looking forward to joining Suncoast School of the Arts.



Ms. Shelby

Ms. Shelby

Shelby Moore is an alumni of Suncoast School of the Arts under the direction of Ms. Marcy since 2005. Shelby received the International Baccalaureate Program Diploma in 2015 and is now attending the University of Central Florida to pursue a degree in Event Management.  Shelby was captain of the competition team for Suncoast School of the Arts and competed in both Regional and National competitions for the past 10 years.  Her team brought home High Score Awards, People's Choice Awards, and Prestigious Entertainment Awards from both in and out of state competitions.

Some of Shelby’s most memorable dance experiences took place in New York. She took classes at "Broadway Dance Center" and participated in "The Rockette Experience." Shelby has also had the great honor of attending a class with the famous Luigi Faccuito, ambassador of jazz. She has danced at many events throughout the Tampa Bay area such as, The “Gasparilla Ball” and various charity events at the “Tampa Garden Club.” In the Spring of 2017, Shelby was hired by Masquerade Dance Competition to travel throughout the United States and work various dates of the competition season. This was an incredible experience for her and she feels honored to be welcomed back for the Spring of 2018 season!

Shelby has realized her passion for dance and teaching will always be a part of who she is, as she has taught at both an intermediate and competitive level. Suncoast School of the Arts is and always will be Shelby’s home as she strives to teach her students to have an appreciation, technique, and love for dance.



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