Meet Our Instructors

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Suzanne Mall

President & Executive Director

Miss Sue began her training under Bolshoi dancer Hella Schmidt and also studied the Vaganova Ballet Syllabus under mentor Bernadine De Mike. She received a certificate in the Vaganova Method on a summer scholarship at Western Michigan University and taught ballet for several years at many studios in the Buffalo area. She was a soloist with the Royale Dance Theater, performing the lead role of Gerta in the Snow Queen at Shea’s Buffalo Theater in 1984, and ministered in dance at many churches and women’s fellowship groups. Miss Sue was also a founding member of the Buffalo Inner City Ballet Performing Company. Miss Sue started her business in the Hamburg village in 1990. In 2008, as Performing Arts continued to grow, she retired from teaching to focus on business operations and open Studio B Dancewear. She is the mother of three children and a proud Nonnie of five grandchildren. She resides in Hamburg, New York and has been married to her husband Tom since 1996.

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Kristen Weigel

Vice President & Artistic Director

Miss Kiki studied ballet under her mother, Suzanne Mall, whom she credits for instilling in her a love for the art. She is a 2002 graduate of the University at Buffalo, where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology. Miss Kiki performed with the University’s Zodiaque Dance Company while studying ballet, jazz and contemporary dance. She also performed in The Nutcracker with the Buffalo City Ballet and is recognized as a gifted contemporary ballet choreographer. Miss Kiki has been teaching ballet and pointe at Performing Arts for over 18 years, and also teaches jazz and hip-hop. She completed training in New York City in a dance therapy program that focuses on working with patients with Parkinson’s Disease. Miss Kiki resides in East Aurora, New York with her husband Justin, sons Henry and Leo, and daughter Carmen.

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Kerri Paufler

Partner & Artistic Director

Miss Kerri started her dancing career at Performing Arts under the direction of her mother, Suzanne Mall. She is a 2002 graduate of the American Music and Dramatic Academy in New York and studied Music Theater on a scholarship at Mercyhurst College in Erie, PA. Miss Kerri is proud to have performed in regional theater as well as in the national tour of CATS. She danced in The Nutcracker with the Buffalo City Ballet and the Pittsburg Ballet Theater. In high school, she was a member of the “Spirit of Youth” performing company and was awarded their first ever Artistic Achievement Award for her outstanding showmanship. She sang locally with the DIVA SHOWBAND and released her first album My Life in 2008. Kerri also wrote and produced a Christian album in 2017, Broken to Beautiful. She is a worship leader at the Wesleyan Church in Hamburg. Miss Kerri has been teaching jazz, tap and musical theater at Performing Arts for 13 years. She resides in Hamburg with her husband Joshua and children Gwendolynn and Noah.

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Charity Carrig

Miss Charity is from Lapeer, Michigan, and studied at the Rochester School of Ballet. She has performed in The Nutcracker with the Boston Ballet, and opened for the Detroit Pistons as one of the youngest members of the WNBA’s Detroit Shock Dance Team. She earned her bachelor’s degree in performing arts/dance from Oakland University and was a guest artist with the Eisenhower Dance Ensemble and the Greg Patterson Rhythm Pace Dance Company. Miss Charity also earned the prestigious Matilda Award in 2008 as an outstanding performer. She moved to Buffalo in 2009 to work and travel with Lehrer Dance and overseas with Images in Dance. Since then, she has taught hip-hop, acro and contemporary classes at Performing Arts for over 11 years. She has also taught at other studios and schools. Miss Charity is a NYS licensed massage therapist and is also the owner of her own company, Bibbit Designs and Keepsakes. Charity lives in Hamburg, New York with her husband Tim and sons Jackson, Hawksley and Finnley.

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Molly Vine

Miss Molly is from Bemus Point, New York. She trained with Jill Keating at Pointe Chautauqua Dance and Monika Alch at the Chautauqua Regional Youth Ballet. Molly dances professionally with, and teaches at, Buffalo’s Configuration Dance Theater. She also performs with the Greater Niagara Ballet Company and Neglia Ballet Artists. Molly has been a staff member at Performing Arts for over 7 years and teaches classical ballet and pointe classes. She is a certified Pilates Instructor and is owner/director of the Buffalo Dance Ensemble. Molly also teaches dance at the Elmwood Village Charter School. Molly lives in the city of Buffalo, New York and is the mother of son Jude and daughter Jaycee.

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Austin Aungst

Mr. Austin began dancing at age three and received most of his training from Darlene Ceglia. He was a varsity gymnast for Williamsville South High School between seventh and twelfth grades. In 2010, he was awarded DANCEAMERICA’s “Most Promising Performer,” and years later was a runner-up in the 2014 Dancer of the Year competition in Orlando, Florida. In Buffalo, he’s worked with Roswell’s “How Big is Your Heart” campaign, dancing in several live performances, commercials and music videos. He also performed with The American Academy of Ballet’s The Nutcracker for several years. Mr. Austin has been teaching jazz & hip-hop at Performing Arts for over 5 years. He is an audience favorite and has been choreographing our popular “dad’s dances” over the last several years.

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Amanda Karaszewski

Miss Amanda trained for 18 years at Darlene Ceglia’s Dance Project, studying in the styles of tap, jazz, ballet and contemporary. She has been a part of Roswell’s “How Big is Your Heart” campaign since 2009. Miss Amanda was a part of Niagara University’s Dance Crew while completing a minor in dance. She is also completing her undergraduate degree in early childhood and special education at Niagara University and plans to get a graduate degree in literacy. Miss Amanda teaches tap and lyrical classes at Performing Arts and has been with the studio for over 5 years. She currently resides in Grand Island, New York.

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LauRen Alaimo

Miss LauRen graduated from SUNY Geneseo with a degree in Musical Theater with minors in Dance & Psychology. She has performed in many productions across the country. Her favorite credits include the national tour of A CHORUS LINE (Diana Morales/us Cassie), Albany Park Playhouse CABARET (Lulu), and SecondGeneration Theatre’s THE WILD PARTY (Kate). Miss LauRen’s passion for performing is rivaled by her joy of spreading said passion through teaching. She is on the faculty of Mount Saint Mary Academy as their dance, musical theater, and fitness instructor. At Performing Arts, LauRen teaches ballet technique. She resides in North Buffalo with her husband Michael.

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Julia Murphy

Miss Julia is studying Musical Theatre at the University of Buffalo. She studied ballet at the Royal Academy of Ballet and performed in Coppelia, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Firebird with the Greater Buffalo Youth Ballet. She has also studied modern, lyrical, pointe, hip-hop, jazz & tap. Julia has also danced with Darlene Ceglia’s Dance Project as well as Classical Ballet of Western New York. Julia as participated in multiple area dance competitions. Her new found love for teaching and working with children has brought her to Performing Arts where she teaches young ballet & jazz.

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Rebekah Emerling

Miss Rebekah has been a part of Performing Arts Dance Academy since 2001. After high school graduation she started working part time at Studio B Dancewear. Miss Rebekah is also currently attending college at Buffalo State Teachers College where she is majoring in Early Childhood Education/Special Education. She is a natural teacher and enjoys working with young children. She loves that she has been able to mix her love for teaching with her love for dance. Miss Rebekah teaches combo, and beginner ballet here at Performing Arts.

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Sara Golic

Born and raised in Serbia, Europe, Sara completed her State education in classical ballet. She also studied contemporary, historical and contemporary dancing. She later studied at Belgrade University receiving a Master’s Degree in Theology. Sara taught both classical ballet as well as religious studies for 11 years before her family moved to Buffalo New York in 2015. As our guest volunteer instructor, Sara feels very blessed to be teaching ballet and character dance at Performing Arts. Her husband Vladislav is the Pastor of St. Stephens Serbian Orthodox Church in Lackawanna. They have 2 sons, Natan and Amos.

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Natalie Foster

Natalie has been dancing for the last 23 years and has danced competitively. She has been teaching at Kip Tom Dance Center and Darlene Ceglia’s Dance Project for the last 6 years. Her disciplines are in jazz, tap, ballet, lyrical and hip-hop. She is also a licensed Zumba and Zumba Gold Instructor. Natalie earned her B.A. from the University at Buffalo in communication and psychology and is currently pursuing an M.A. in higher education administration at Stony Brook University.

Staff Photography Compliments of Robert A. Caldwell Photography