The Martha Mayer School of Dance was first founded by Martha Mayer in 1961. She was formally trained under Rosa Spilka, her aunt. Ms. Martha was an active member of Dance Masters of Louisiana and Dance Masters of America.
After her passing in 2008, Ms. Martha left her studio to longtime teacher and Associate, Gina Iserman. Gina Iserman also brought on Michelle Sciavicco as co-owner of the studio. Together they formed MMSOD, LLC. The fabulous faculty and staff of MMSOD are geared to providing the best dance education for your child in the metro area. With innovative classes and small class instruction, we pride ourselves in providing a dynamic and evolving dance class for students that are interested in basic dance classes all the way to turning into dance professionals in our community.
Gina started dancing at the Martha Mayer School of Dance at age 3, graduating in 1981 and began teaching for Mrs. Martha in 1982. While attending Grace King High School, she was a member of the Kolleens Dance Team, serving as Captain during her senior year. In 1979, she was chosen to represent the New Orleans Saints during their Monday night match up against the Oakland Raiders in the Louisiana Superdome. From 1998-2004 Gina directed the St. Francis Xavier School's Cheerleading squad. In 2004 Mrs. Martha named Gina an Associate Teacher. Upon her passing in 2008, Gina became Owner/Principal Director of the Martha Mayer School of Dance. She trained very closely under the direction of Martha Mayer, to one day operate a successful studio of her own. Gina directed the Jesuit High School Jayette Dance Team from 2004-2011, being named the Louisiana High School Director of the Year in boy 2006 and 2008. Under her tutelage, several young women have followed onto collegiate and professional dance teams. Gina is currently the Christian Brothers Mini Stars Dance team Coach.
Michelle began dancing at the Martha Mayer School of Dance in 1981 and graduated in 1995, beginning her teaching here in 1997. A graduate of Mount Carmel Academy, Michelle spent three years dancing with the Jesuit High School Jayettes Dance Team. She graduated from Our Lady of Holy Cross College, earning a Bachelor of Science in Humanities, and her alternative certification in elementary education in 2005. She is currently teaching at Bridgedale Elementary, where she has been for the past seven years. In 2014 she was nominated as the Achievement Network Teacher of the Year, along with being nominated as the Bridgedale State Teacher Leader. In 2016, Michelle was nominated by her peers as the Teacher of the Year. Recently, at the 2014 "Dancing with the Stars, the Good Shepherd Way", Michelle and her team were void Fan Favorite by the guests. Her primary focus for student learning is to scaffold beginner and intermediate students through the foundations of technical skills, so that they may excel at the advanced level. Working closely with Ms. Martha, Michelle began to learn the business aspects of the studio. After her passing in 2008 she joined with Gina Iserman to form MMSOD, LLC.
Instructor Early Childhood
Kate is a native of New Orleans, and a graduate of the Martha Mayer School of Dance, teaching here for the past 21 years. She enjoys giving young children a strong foundation in the art of movement, along with self awareness and confidence. Kate graduated from Archbishop Chapelle High School, continuing her education at LSU and Delgado Community College. While in high school, she was a member of the Archbishop Rummel High School Chapellettes Dance Team and the Genesian Platers, developing a love for musical theatre under the direction of Mr. Chuck Guajardo. She went on to perform with the Rivertown Repertory Theater for several seasons. Kate is a licensed Physical Therapist Assistant, as well as a Massage Therapist and works in an out-patient orthopedics. Kate has many advanced certifications in manual therapy and enjoys practicing Pilates and yoga in her spare time.
Ashley Iserman Gervais
MMSOD Company Director/Choreographer
Instructor Lyrical/Contemporary, Ballet, Jazz, Hip-Hop, Acro
Ashley has been teaching at the Martha Mayer School of Dance for the past 12 years. She is a 2006 graduate of MMSOD and is the founder and head instructor/choreographer of the MMSOD Company Competition team. Ashley is a graduate of St. Mary’s Dominican High School and former Jesuit Jayette serving as Captain her senior year. She then continued her passion of dance and was selected as a member of the New Orleans Saintsations, where she was a member for four years, serving as line Captain her fourth year. During her time as a Saintsation, Ashley was able to perform and choreograph the halftime show in the NFL London Series Saints vs Chargers game featuring Ne-Yo, assist in choreography for the Super Bowl XLI halftime show in Arizona, as well as travel, represent, and promote the Saints organization and the NFL in Mexico City. After completing her tenure on the Saintsations, Ashley went on to serve as a member of the New Orleans Hornets Honeybees for two years also traveling to Mexico City to represent the Hornets and NBA in an NBA matchup game. Ashley is currently entering her eighth year as the Head Coach/Choreographer for Tulane University’s Shockwave Dance Team. She is a graduate of Our Lady of Holy Cross College with two Bachelor’s degrees, Health Sciences and Nursing. She has recently completed her certification for Elementary Education and is a Kindergarten teacher at Bridgedale Elementary. Ashley’s favorite classes to teach at the studio are jazz, lyrical, and hip-hop. She hopes that by teaching dance it will in turn touch one of her students the way it touched her from our founder, Martha Mayer.
Instructor Jazz, Lyrical, Tap
Amal has been dancing with the Martha Mayer School of Dance since 1994. This is her 23rd year of dance and 8th year of teaching. While attending St. Mary's Dominican High School, Amal was a member of the Jesuit Jayettes Dance Team for three years. Her senior year, she was an officer and held the title of Lieutenant. After graduating in 2009, Amal went on to attend the Aveda Institute getting her cosmetology license. She currently owns Root Salon and Spa. Ms. Amal enjoys watching the students grow and improve throughout the year. Her favorite class to teach is jazz and technique.
Instructor Tap, Jazz, Lyrical, Hip-Hop
Taylor originally from New Orleans, started dancing at 2 years of age. Taylor attended Ursuline Academy, and was a member of the Jesuit High School Jayettes Dance team under the direction of Mrs. Gina Iserman from 2007 until 2011. As a Jayette, Taylor held the offices of Lieutenant and Co-Captain, and was awarded "Senior of the Year" in 2011. Taylor originally started her collegiate career at the Louisiana State University, although in December 2015, she received her bachelors degree from the University of New Orleansin Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Child & Family Development. Taylor has choreographed for "Dancing With The Stars, The Good Shepherd Way" in both 2014 and 2015. She plans to be involved in the 2016 fund raising event as well. She has also choreographed award winning dances in 2015 and 2016 for the Riverdale Middle School Dance team. In January 2016, Taylor tookoff to Chicago to audition for a summer intensive program hosted by the Rockettes in New York City. Taylor received a place in the program and headed to the big apple to train with the world famous Radio City Rockettes at their annual Summer Intensive Program performed at the showcase following the intensive. Taylor is an on premise site sales representative for Republic National Distributing Company.
Instructor Jazz, Lyrical, Tap, Hip-Hop, Acro
Eleni a 2015 Teacher graduate, started dancing at Martha Mayer School of Dance at age 3. She graduated from Grace King High School and was a four-year member of the Grace King Kolleens Dance Team, serving as Captain her Senior year. Eleni is active in her church, serving four years as Recording Secretary for the Greek Organization Youth of America. Eleni attends the University of New Orleans, majoring in Early Childhood Education Continuing her dance into college, she is a member of the Tulane University Shockwave Dance Team.
Instructor Early Childhood
Picture and bio coming soon!