Connie Dienner is the the founder and director of the Cavod Academy of the Arts, pulling together 30+ years of involvement in the Theatre Arts both in the United States and abroad, and the desire to foster a setting where creative people are accepted and their gifts nurtured. Connie’s undeniable passion for God, the students, and the community, is shared with a distinct vision of how excellence in the arts can be used to grow and advance the God’s Kingdom. This vision radiates through the Academy as student’s are trained and mentored to user their creative gifts in an inspiring and world-impacting way. Connie’s successful leadership was pivotal in several musicals to include the Academy’s own “[Clever Holiday Title]”, and producing Meredith Wilson’s “The Music Man”; impacting the local region for years to come. Her submissiveness to God’s direction and call, has revealed a growing Cavod Academy family. “As the student’s and staff grow also in confidence, the achievement of excellence seems almost…..contagious!”
Ashley graduated from Acts International Bible School where she received her Associates Degree in Theology. She is married to Derek Dienner who oversees the media/video of Cavod Academy. She has also been involved in organizing numerous Cavod Academy events. Ashley has always enjoyed working in administration. She has been a great asset to the Academy.
Tahnya has been dancing at various schools in the region from a very young age. Her passion for dance developed when she traveled and performed across the east coast on a mission trip at 14 years old. It was then that she discovered there was more to dance then looking good onstage… dance is a powerful tool that breaks cultural barriers and reaches the hearts of people without even saying a word. Tahnya has been with Cavod Academy of the Arts since it’s small beginnings. She has taught hip hop, modern, worship dance and ballet. She is currently focusing on ballet and her roll as Assistant Director/Artistic Director. She has been receiving much guidance from Carolyn Trythall, owner of Lancaster School of Ballet. She has been taught under the professional instruction of Paul Sutherland (Joffrey Ballet), Brunhilda Ruiz (Joffery Ballet), Emily Borthwick (Contra Costa Ballet), Raymond Lukens (American Ballet Theatre), Christopher Hird (Boston Ballet), Franco De Vita (American Ballet Theatre). Tahnya attends the Cecchetti Council of America conference every fall and spring. She is in the process of getting her Grade I teacher certification from Cecchetti Council of America. She is very excited about the potential the academy has not only to raise up dancers with beautiful technique but dancers that can dance with excellence and purity unto the Lord. She has a passion to see the Kingdom of God influence the world with dance that is modern and relevant, instead of the world influencing the Kingdom. Tahnya and her husband, Richard reside in New Holland. They have five young children.
Julie has studied dance at the academy for 5 years and started teaching Hip-Hop 3 years ago. She has been involved in productions at the Academy including “The Choice”, “[Clever Holiday Title]”, “The Music Man”, and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers”. Julie is currently employed by Sight and Sound Theatres as a hair assistant. She also works in concessions and appeared in “In the Beginning”. This past Spring, she choreographed “Seussical” for the Manheim Recreation Center.
Cara has taught numerous classes at Cavod Academy over the past 3 years including Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical/Modern, Musical Theater, and Hip Hop. She has trained under the professional instruction of Carolyn Trythall (Lancaster School of Ballet), Kristin Pontz (Susquehanna Dance Center), Christian Von Howard (Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre), LeAnn King (Cecchetti Council of America), and Lisa Kraus (Trisha Brown Dance Company). She has choreographed various musicals including, "Grease", “Little Shop of Horrors”, "Godspell", “The Choice”, “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” and "Where's Charley?" . She's is currently receiving her certification in ballet from Cecchetti Council of America. Cara is committed to helping young dancers reach their full potential and to displaying the glory of God in the studio and on stage.
Andrea is originally from Lexington, Kentucky, and holds a BFA in Performing Arts/Dance from Western Kentucky University. She has been performing professionally for the past 11 years. She was a featured dancer for five years with the award winning show Country Tonite in Pigeon Forge, TN and Branson, MO. Andrea spent the past two years, working with her husband at The Miracle Theater where she performed in The Miracle, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry. Most recently, Andrea performed with Lancaster's PRiMA Theatre Company. Andrea feels very blessed and grateful to God that she has been living out her dream of dancing. She has taught different styles of dance to all ages and loves sharing the joy of dance with others! Psalm 149:3
Derek comes to us with a variety of experience in gymnastics and tumbling. He has had 17 years of training through Positive Fitness Gymnastics. He taught there for 4 years and has been teaching at Cavod Academy for 2 years. Derek was a stunt coach for Garden Spot Varsity for 1 season. He was also a competitive cheerleader for 2 years and a tumbling coach for Synergy Elite Cheerleading. Derek is currently performing with Cavod Academy’s dance company, Infusion and is involved in many of the dance classes at the Academy.
Johnathan joined the staff of Cavod Academy in the spring of 2010 as a piano and vocal instructor. He received a bachelors degree in vocal performance from the University of Southern Maine, graduating summa cum laude, with a 4.0 GPA. Johnathan was twice selected to perform in the Honors Recital at USM, and has won 1st place three times at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competition. Before moving to PA, he performed and taught in Maine, directing shows at Greater Portland Christian School. Johnathan moved to the Lancaster area with his wife Rebecca, to work at Sight & Sound Theatre.
Brielle has been playing violin since the age of seven and has been classically trained in the Suzuki Method for violin. She recently graduated from Millersville University with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. She looks forward to combining her burning passion for violin with her love of teaching. She is currently a member of the Millersville University Community Orchestra. Brielle is very excited to be helping introduce violin to the Cavod Academy.
Diane has been inspiring young people to pursue their love of music through learning to play the piano since the early 1980s. She was educated through the teacher training program of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and at West Chester University. She is a member of the SAA as well as the Greater Philadelphia Suzuki Association and she participates in continuing education workshops annually or more. Her students are her best teachers. She has operated her studio located in West Brandywine since 1988. Diane has taught Suzuki piano since 1983 and traditional piano since 1995. She is also an assistant teacher at Preschool in the Valley, Malvern, and plays keyboard, sings in and directs Forever Endeavor, a contemporary Christian band which plays at St. James' Episcopal Church, Downingtown, and performs locally with her husband, Tom, in their band, Free Range. Diane takes a special interest in songwriting and improvisation. She has taught music and other subjects at several homeschool co-ops. Diane and Tom have two grown children who homeschooled.
George has been playing drums since 1977. He did bachelor's work in Jazz Studies with a Concentration in Percussion at the University of North Texas from 1983-86. He studied with Colin Bailey (Vince Guaraldi), Gregg Bissonnette (Woody Herman, David Lee Roth), Rick Latham (Quincy Jones), Clyde Lucas (Illinois Jacquette). George also toured as a drummer with Rhythm & Blues artists such as Little Joe Blue & Gregg Smith, and during that time shared the stage with names such as B.B. King, Johnny Taylor, Bobby Blue Bland, and host of others. George has been playing jazz, funk, blues, and sacred music in the Central Pennsylvania area for the past 20 years, working with artists such as Dave Wilson and Robin Work. His current creative musical project is a trio called The Go Particle. George has been playing and teaching guitar, bass, drums & piano for the past 20 years. He is currently the Music Director of Wheatland Presbyterian Church in Lancaster, and an adjunct professor for Lancaster Bible College. George has participated in many music training events both locally and internationally.
Jesse is currently in his Senior year at Lancaster Bible College studying Bible and Musical Theatre. Since moving to the Lancaster area he has had the privilege of performing with LBC in various productions, such as Singin' in the Rain, and has also worked with such local theatre companies as PRiMA Theatre and Cavod Community Theater. He has a passion to use the arts to teach important life lessons and also to reach those who are hurting or have no confidence and is excited to be a part of the Cavod Academy teaching team.
Darren has been part of community and professional theaters for more than 10 years. His first performance on stage was as Friedrich in The Sound of Music as a Sophomore in high school, and he's been part of more than 30 productions since that life-changing experience. He's a recent graduate of Lancaster Bible College where he studied Bible, Music Performance and Elementary Education. Ever since Darren discovered the Performing Arts, they've been a huge catalyst for growth as a Christian, as an individual, and as a member of society--He's truly honored to be sharing this passion with others.
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