Gel was born in South East London, England. She started dancing at the age of 7 at "Stewart Stagers" dance studio. At the age of 11 she had performed in two 6 weeks running London stage shows at the Wimbledon Theatre in Central London. At age 13 she moved to Swansea South Wales and attended "Stages 2" dance academy.Gel was taught with the B.B.O. and R.A.D syllabus (British Ballet Organization and Royal Academy of Dance) She moved to the U.S. at the age of 16 where she joined the West Virginia Dance Theatre in Charleston, WV. Gel credits a lot of her technique and formal dance training to Newton Cole the schools Artistic director. Newton created a loving enviroment for his students allowing them to study with Rebecca Wright (Lead dancer with The Joffrey Ballet, American Ballet Theater and then Ballet Mistress for the Washington School Of Ballet) and faculty from The Paul Taylor modern dance Company and was also under the direction of Ballet master James Debolt. At age 16 Gel was offered to join the West Virginia Dance Theatres Faculty and taught the schools elite tap program. Shortly after that she joined the faculty at Kelly School of Dance in Parkersburg, WV. In 1983 she opened the doors to her Marietta Studio which is now Gel's Dance Centre. Along with Kelly they produced nationally recognized Jr & Sr companies. Many of Gel's former students have gone on to perform in professional dance companies, college teams or have opened studios of their own. Gel brings a mixture of fun, discipline and correct technique to all of her classes while instilling the true joy and respect for dance.
Gel resides in Vienna, WV with her husband Russ and son Cameron.
Michele Hamilton began dancing with Miss Kathren Cunningham at age three and joined Gel's in 1991. She was a member of the Sr. Company and the Competition Group "Mag 7". She became a studio assistant in 1994 and joined the faculty in 1998. Michele has studied Dance at The
Michele is the director for our
Michele Lives in
Katrina Ray started off at Popovich Dance Studio at the age of three and continued there through the age of 15 when she moved to Spotlight Dance Academy in Ohio. There she attended classes till the age of 18 as well as taught and choreographed for many of the studios competitive pieces. She also choreographed for school musicals and dance and cheer teams as well as show choirs at Marlington High School in Alliance, Ohio. Katrina brings a strong ballet background to the studio as well as phenomenial legs and leaps! Katrina is the director of the ELITE Team , "Petiete Elite" and the NEW" Jr Xtreme Team "She is lso the C0-Director of the GEL'S JUNIOR JAZZ team and is also the studios solo director for the teens and Juniors and also offers Private classes for all interested..
Beth started taking class at the Marietta studio with Gel in 1987. At age 6 she was one of the youngest students that started competing with the schools award winning competitive team and continued her dance education till she graduated from Marietta High School in 2002. Beth teaches our youngest dancers at both the Vienna and Marietta studios and teaches at our Affliate studio "Micheles One Step Up Studio" in St Mary's WV.
Beth is also an assistant director of Gel,s Junior Jazz team and recently the Director of the NEW competitive Tiny Tot Team for students ages 3-6. She is very happy to nuture our upcoming Stars.... Beth-Anne is married and resides in Marietta with her Husband Jason and two son's Lucas and Jackson.
Lisa started Dance classes with Gel at the Marietta studio at age 3. She has continued off and on and now has recently come back to assist and teach at both our Marietta and Vienna studios. Lisa is very active in her community. She is president of the Beverly-Waterford Area chamber of Commerce and also runs the Beverly-Waterford Area Junior Chamber of Commerce. Lisa is currently head of the studios tap program as we continue to educate and form a competitive tap team!. We are very excited for her return and know she will make a wonderful fit with our growing dance family.
Cassie is a former student of Gel Tracewell & Kelly Coulson of Kelly's School of Dance where she was a member of the National Championship winning, Kelly's Dance Company. She continued her dance education at WVU as well as many other studios throughout West Virginia, including 5th Street Dance Company in Fairmont, WV. Throughout her career, Cassie has been director and choreographer for the Pizazz Dance Academy competition teams and, most recently, owned and operated Caz & Co Dance in Sistersville, WV. She lives in Williamstown with her husband Chris and her two children, Alex and Daphne.