Cortland Corset Factory

75 East Court Street, Cortland NY

3rd Floor

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Finding Meaning through movement 

meet TESSA

meet JO

learn more about Francesca Avani's "Why I Dance" Project at

A local to Ithaca, Tessa graduated with a B.A in Arts Education and a Minor in Dance from William Smith College. With nothing to lose after graduating Tessa uplifted and moved across the country to land in San Francisco, CA. An immense love for this art form and her adventurous and determined spirit quickly took her through the ranks, first performing with Damage Control Dance Directed by Cera Byer and then teaming up with Jill Parker "the mama of Tribal Fusion Belly Dance" working as the co-director to her company the Foxglove Sweethearts and traveling the world as an Assistant Teacher.  Tessa strives for       technical proficiency, artistic integrity and emotional strength. She is an inspirational, dynamic, gentle teacher. Experience Belly Dance from the Heart. 

Jo spent many years in both corporate training and public education. She holds a degree in Communications as well as a graduate degree in Counseling. Throughout her varied experiences she found working with young adults to help them overcome their obstacles and achieve their dreams the most fulfilling.

During Jo's career she has sought out opportunities to learn and grow in areas such as student leadership development, social justice, diversity training, growth mindset and positivity.

All the while Jo had a passion for dance, specifically bellydance, which she found as a young adult herself. Belly, Set, Go! brings together Jo's two loves: dance and helping others find meaning and purpose through self expression.