Miss Diana R. Tepe

Owner / Director


Miss Diana started her professional dance training at the age of four.  She is professionally trained in ballet, lyrical ballet, jazz, tap, and acrobatics.  She is a past member of a professional performing and competing dance company which received several national titles. Miss Diana performed as part of the dance ensemble in several St. Louis Dauphin Player musical theater productions including “42nd Street”, “The Music Man”, “Grease”, and “Once Upon a Mattress”.  Miss Diana began teaching ballet, jazz, and tap at the age of 14.  After teaching dance for several years, she decided to pursue her formal education and received a B.A. in communications from Bradley University in Peoria, IL.  Miss Diana moved to Boulder in 1997 and worked in consumer and business-to-business marketing, rising to top management roles in leading companies. Although her role at a multinational company took her abroad frequently, Miss Diana completed her Executive MBA from Colorado State University in 2005.  Subsequently, she successfully built two technology start-up companies.  She believes that the formal dance training she received as she was growing up contributed to the self-confidence and ambition that allowed her to be a successful businesswoman. As a result of these achievements, she realized it was time to take a different path and decided to pursue her dream and her happiness by combining her favorite things in life: dancing, kids, and business. In May of 2008 she slowly started to assemble the pieces of her dream, letting everything happen out of love directly from her heart, and ultimately for the benefit of the children who are a part of Studio D. Studio D is a vessel for positively affecting the lives of children while allowing her to live her true passion and source of strength, dancing! 

Miss Diana, owner/director and teacher, is professional, compassionate, enthusiastic and very skilled. She is extremely patient and a natural with children, which is why her students, my daughter especially, not only take to her, but listen, learn and have a blast! Wednesdays are the highlight of my daughter’s week, and mine too! I have 2 year old twin boys who can’t wait to turn 3 so they start having fun at Studio D too! What more can we say - The Clarkson Family LOVES Studio D!
— Kathryn Clarkson

Miss Emma Decalo



Emma is a University of Colorado graduate, with a minor in Dance, a Bachelor's in Linguistics, and a license in Elementary Education. She has been a part of the Boulder dance community for six years. Her background is in Hip Hop social dances, Modern dance, and West African social dance. She has been dancing professionally with Logo Ligi West African dance troupe for four years. Emma also stays connected to the Boulder dance community by dancing for different modern-dance productions throughout the year. Imagination is inspiration in dance class, and Emma believes in giving the proper movement vocabulary to the dancers so they can create, express and map their own feelings and emotions to music and choreography. THANKS FOR DANCING!

Miss Emma is also responsible for the development of Studio D Academy of Dance through outside programs and fresh ideas to bring our studio to the communities around us.

Miss Stephanie Winter


Stephanie started dancing at age 6, at Studio 1 Dance Studio in Washington state. She continued her training there and became a member of the competitive dance team. Her dance team traveled many different places and provided many different opportunities. Stephanie is now studying for her Bachelors in Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences with a minor in Dance and hopes to use the degrees to do dance therapy in her future. She is very excited to be a part of the Studio D team and can't wait for more opportunities to come!

Miss Leslie Merril 



Leslie Merrill is a dancer, choreographer, writer, teacher, and video artist with an MFA in Dance from the University of Colorado. She has 14 years of teaching experience in a variety of dance forms, including ballet, tap, jazz, modern, composition and dance history.  In Colorado, Leslie has enjoyed performing with Louder than Words Dancetheatre, Haan Dances, Open Door Dance Theatre, and Interweave Dance Theatre. She is currently working as a dancer and choreographer for Ascential Dance Theatre Colorado and is a co-director of Peekaboo Sole Productions. Leslie has presented her video and choreographic work nationally and internationally in places such as British Columbia, Mexico, and Germany. In her spare time, she enjoys working as a writer, Newsletter Editor, and Website Administrator for the Colorado Dance Alliance. 

Miss Nichole Polivka



Miss Nichole Polivka has enjoyed a life long-love of dance! Beginning at age three, she studied Tap, Ballet, Pointe, Jazz, Contemporary, Modern, Hip Hop and Funk. Miss Nichole participated in dance all through high school, as well, earning the title of Lieutenant Officer on the Cavalette Dance Team in Austin, an apprenticeship at the Dance Centre, and a full teaching schedule. Although Miss Nichole received a dance scholarship for college, she decided to go to Massage Therapy School and continue teaching. She has practiced massage for twelve years, is a Holistic Health Practitioner and believes her knowledge of anatomy and physiology gives her a unique view of a body in motion. Recently adding Yoga Teacher Training in 2013, Nichole is enjoying combining yet another facet of movement into dance and healing. She believes the incorporation of bodily awareness and expressive movement, makes for a well-rounded dancer.

Miss Taylor Tolibas



Miss Taylor Tolibas started dancing at age 12 in competition dance styles including, Jazz, Hip-Hop and Contemporary. She soon discovered that dance was her purpose. After graduating high school, she moved to Los Angeles, California to train professionally. She spent one year in LA, then decided to enroll at the University of Colorado, working towards a minor in Dance, and a BA in Communication. She has been a part of the Boulder dance community for three years now, most recently performing and showcasing at the American College Dance Festival in Missoula, Minnesota. Since being in Boulder she has trained in Modern, Ballet and Tribal Fusion. Dance has been her passion since the moment she began and she hopes she can share that with her students