Jo-Mé Dance Theatre Members



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Naoko Brown is a native of Nagoya, Japan. At the age of six, she was introduced to the world of classical ballet by Michiko Matsumoto. She continued her training with Barbara Banaskowski Smith in Lansing, MI. While there she performed with the students of the National Ballet School of Gdansk in Poland, as well as students from Vaganova Ballet School in St. Pertersburg, Russia. Naoko received her B.F.A. in Dance form the Boston Conservatory. While there she performed works by Daniel Pelzig, Sean Curran, Lar Lubovitch and Jose Limon. She attended summer programs such as Boston Ballet Summer Dance Program, Ballet Intensive from Moscow and also she was a full scholarship recipient of Summer Stages Dance at Concord Academy in 2012. She performed for Urban Nutcracker and dances with Prometheus Dance and Zoé Dance. Brown is an original member of Jo-Mé Dance Theatre since joining the company in October 2012.




Courtney Epps was born and raised in Boston, Mass where she was a dance major graduate from the Boston Arts Academy. She started her training at the age of 7 at the Roxbury Center for the Performing Arts. Epps became an Original Member of Jo-Mé Dance in 2011 when the 2nd company was first founded and is currently a member of the 1st company. Courtney develops her passion for dance and has continued her training at Dean College as a dance major and currently is attending the Ailey School's B.A. certificate program. Courtney seeks to press forward as a professional performer and shearing her expression through her art.


Diaman-Victoria Wood started her dance journey at the young age of five at Jeanette Neil where she took ballet, jazz, tap and African dance. She started going to the Reggie Lewis Center where she took both African dance and traditional Chinese dance. In 2004 she joined the hip-hop group Golden Kidz she was also accepted to Boston Arts Academy where she studied ballet, tap as well as a plethora of different modern techniques such as Horton, Limon, and Dunham. She also had the honor of working with choreographers Bill T. Jones, Nathan Trice, Ronald K. Brown, Robert Battle, Gloria Van Scott and many more. During the summer of 2007 she attended the Jose Mateo summer intensive program focusing on ballet, pointe, African and flamenco dancing. After graduating she went on to dance at Dean College, there she was able to work with New York hip-hop instructor Kelly Peters. An original member of Jo-Mé Dance Theatre (1st company), Diaman continues her work as a performer, choreographer, and Associate Artistic Director for the entire organization of Jo-Mé Dance Arts Inc.

Jenna Nippert was three years old when she began dancing at Ms. Cindy's Dance School in Mansfield, studying ballet and tap. At the age of five, Nippert joined New England Dance Academy in Attleboro Ma, attending many competitions and nationals with the competition team, studying acrobats, Ballet, Tap, Jazz, and Lyrical. At the start of Jenna's high school years she joined Art in Motion Academy of Dance and joined the dance team within the first year. Having the opportunity to take class with some of the dancers on So You Think You Can Dance, Jenna has grown as an artist and performer. Receiving her Associates Degree in Performing Arts from Dean College, Jenna has performed in some of the dance concerts at Dean College. Also attending Alvin Ailey Summer Program, where she had the chance to experience other dance techniques such as Horton and Dunham. Nippert has explored the art community in Boston, thus becoming an original member of Jo-Mé Dance Theatre in October 2012.



Jon Marcus Shaw-Mays Started off at the Toff Center and began his first foot steps as an upcoming dancer under the teachings of a young woman named Diana at the age of two. From there on continued his passion for dance under her supervision. After the Toff Center closed down Jon Marcus attended Ailey Camp in the summer of 2006, he then attended an extended program that Ailey Camp offered entitled ACT 2. The program continued on for two years and Jon Marcus auditioned for a company named Boston Youth Moves. He had finally realized the potential that he had and strived to better himself in the passion of dance. He found the art of dance not only gave him a sense of nobility, but an escape from the anger he with held. It was always hard for him to communicate how he felt because he didn't want to be shunned by anyone. He remained invulnerable and guarded when it came to expressing himself. Dance creates a way for him to discard the negativity and apply his nobility. After 5 years of being in Boston Youth Moves he left the company his sophomore year of high school and focused more on learning a different experience at Boston Arts Academy. He discovered more than just technical devisions of dance but how to actually make the movement his own. He found his own way to take movements he observes and recreate them as his own. While learning the different technical aspects of dance he was asked to become a dance teacher his sophomore year by a woman named Andrea at the Roxbury Dance Performing Arts Center. After teaching for a year he decided that the experience was definitely a challenge but needed to tend to his commitment to school. After graduating from Boston Arts Academy in the year of 2014 then joining Jo-Mé Dance and has learned the company not only has strengthened his technique but has given him more of a purpose to continue his profession as a dancer.



Amanda Edwards is from Mount Vernon, NY. She began her training at The Dance Theatre of Harlem. She has since attended Earl Mosely Institute of the Arts and graduated from The University of the Arts with honors in May 2015. Amanda also participated in the Nomad Express Choreography Lab for three weeks in Burkina Faso, West Africa. She is a recent dancer with Dancespora Contemporary Ballet Company and has worked with choreographers such as Iquail Shaheed, Jen McGinn, Olivier Tarpaga, Esther Baker-Tarpaga, Kim Bears-Bailey and Meredith Rainey. Amanda is currently a dancer with Putty Dance Project and Lela Aisha Jones | FlyGround. Joining in 2017, this  is her first season with Jo-Mé Dance Theater.

Mikaela Fenton, native to Southern New Jersey began dancing at the age of four. Her training with Chez Dance Studio under the direction of Roseann Mastrogiacamo Gatto sculpted her during her early stages of dance. She later was apart of the performing arts program with Paul VI Highschool under the direction of Courtney Daniels, receiving a scholarship in dance to further her education. Attending The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Summer Program, she had the opportunity of performing in a work set by Jonathan Lee. Mikaela, under scholarship, earned a BFA in Dance at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. During this time she has performed in works choreographed by Katie Swords- Thurman, Jesse Zaritt, Sidra Bell, Tommie Waheed-Evans, Kyle and Dinita Clark, Milton Myers and Meredith Rainey. Apart from her schooling Mikaela is currently an Apprentice with Philadanco! a modern based company in Philadelphia, as well as a member of Philadanco's Second Company under the direction of Donald T. Lunsford. This is Mikaela's 1st season with Jo-Mé Dance Theatre.



Danielle Bates has been dancing since she was very young; exploring genres such as ballet, pointe, modern, tap, jazz, hip hop, and even bellydancing. She has performed in several musicals, parades, and shows with Brockton High School’s Dance Team. Her passion led her to Dean College where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Dance and Psychology. Since 2009, she has taught at Unique Steps Dance Academy in North Attleboro, MA, where she was recently named Associate Director of Dance. For the past several years, Danielle has danced with a local nonprofit group called Dance2Save, which raises funds for various charities through the art of dance. Recently, she has performed several roles in Tony William’s Urban Nutcracker and is excited to continue in her 2nd season with Jo-Me Dance Theatre!




Kayana Guity (Visiting Artist) Born and raised in Boston Mass, Kayana is a Graduate of the Boston Arts Academy as a music vocal performer. Kayana is currently attending University of the Arts to continue her music, coming out of participating in the Berkeley College Intensive. Guity has been dancing with Joe Gonzalez and May-Lisa Chandler for over 3 Years at Bird St Community Center, before becoming an original member of Jo-Mé Dance's only company at the time. Music and dance has developed her as an artist and looks to accomplish artistic enlighten in her artistic work.




Tamara Washington (Visiting Artist & Stage Manger)  Born and raised in Boston Ma, an emerging choreographer and teacher, Tamari Started dance at he age of 12 at a summer program under Bird Street Community Center. Developing her learning in styles such as hip-hop, modern, ballet, afro-jazz, and African. Washington became an original member of Jo-Mé Dance's only company in 2011 and continues her artistic work with the company as well as choreographing on the youth and 2nd company.