Nicole Cote School of Dance
Palm Bay Location
5180 Minton Road
Palm Bay, FL 32907
Sebastian Location NEW!
250 Sebastian Blvd, Ste 7
Sebastian, FL 32958
(321) 725-6710

Meet Our Faculty

Nicole Cote

At the early age of 8, Nicole Cote started dancing in a single jazz class located in Carle Place, New York. After 4 years of studying jazz she then moved to Florida where she began taking classes in Ballet, Pointe, Tap, Hip Hop, and Lyrical with Patricia's School of Dance. Throughout her dance career Nicole has received many wonderful awards and scholarships.

Nicole began competing at the age of 14 with solos, duets, and small groups and has received many first place and high score awards. Nicole performed at local exhibits such as the "Melbourne Arts Festival" and local Florida Pageants. Nicole became a teachers assistant at age 16 and was awarded a full time teaching position shortly after with Patricia's School of Dance for 3 years and for "Kim Cole's Dance Studio for 8 years. Nicole has had the privilege of working with many dancers age 2 thru adult for over 20 years. Nicole Was the first instructor at Kim Cole's Dance Studio to begin the 2 year old creative kids program.

Nicole Cote became the director of her own program in 2005 and continues to direct, instruct, and manage "Nicole Cote School of Dance". She continues to travel to many dance conventions and competitions throughout the state of Florida and take classes from master professionals and choreographers to further her knowledge in which she can pass down to her students for years to come. Nicole Cote is recognized for her "top scores" and "top choreography" awards. Nicole Cote became a certified dance instructor in 2006 with "Florida Dance Masters", section 2 and has received her Masters In Arts Degree in Leadership & Management, from Webster University.

Briana Weissman

Briana's love of dance is deeply rooted. She started dancing practically when she began walking. Throughout her earlier education she was involved with competitive studio dance, chorus, theater, band, dance and drill, and a showcase choir. At the start of college, Briana was awarded and dance scholarship and studied modern and jazz. In 2005, at age 20, is when Briana began her teaching career while also earning her BA in Organizational/Interpersonal Communication from UCF. Since then, she has worked in numerous church dance programs, The Christian Dance Collective, and also Brevard Cultural Alliance as a teaching artist in Brevard Public Schools. Briana is currently a competitive jazz, lyrical, and contemporary teacher/choreographer at Nicole Cote School of Dance. She looks forward to continuing to discover what God has planned for her in this world of creating, teaching, worshiping, and DANCING!

Katie Carinci

Katie Carinci began dancing at the early age of 5 taking classes at Kim Coles Dance Studio. She originally began taking classes to follow in her sister's footsteps of wanting to become a dancer. After her sister decided dancing wasn't for her, Katie couldn't be pulled away from it. After taking a few years of classes Katie knew that she wanted to do more than just ballet.

Throughout the years she expanded the types of styles she studied to styles such as lyrical, contemporary, hip-hop, jazz, tap, pointe, broadway/musical theater, acro, and improv. Katie started to help in classes around age 14 helping Ms. Briana. After a year of assisting she fell in love and expanded to assisting under multiple teachers to experience different teaching styles. Ever since helping in those classes Katie knew that she wanted to be a dance instructor and was lucky enough to be giving her first class to her at the age of 16.

Katie also attended dance conventions during her years of dancing (and still loves to attend them today!) Thanks to the convention circuit Katie has had the opportunity to take classes from many well renowned choreographers such as Mia Michaels from So You Think You Can Dance.

In 2006 Katie joined the first ever Nicole Cote School of Dance competition team, then she joined it again in 2007. After taking a two year break from it, she tried out again for the 2010 year making the team once again as a senior dancer. She has performed with both groups and solos throughout her competition years. During these years Katie, or the group she was in, has won awards such as gold and platinum trophies. As well as for her solo placing 6th place overall in her division as well as being an overall grand champion in her division. She now choreographs pieces for the competition team she used to dance on. Her dances have competed in both the regional and national level placing in overalls many times, even winning 1st Overall in a 2017 Nationals!

Katie loves teaching and finds so much joy in seeing the growth in dancers of all ages! She plans to continue to grow in her knowledge of dance as well as true to explore new popular trends in the dance community.


Amaya Riquelmy

Amaya began dancing at the age of 3 and has not stopped since. She started with ballet, tap, and jazz in Connecticut and later began competing at the age of 11 before moving to Florida. She then started dancing at Nicole Cote School of Dance and automatically fell in love with the studio. Right away she began to compete with Nicole Cote, winning various awards including top scoring routine in the nation, choreography awards, and even invites to compete at world championships.

Over her years at the studio, she has had the opportunity to learn from several well-known choreographers such as Mark Meismer, Seth Robinson, Martha Grahmn and so many more. After seeing her fellow dance peers assisting in classes she began doing so as well. With assisting under the many teachers such as Ms.Nicole, Ms.Briana, Ms. Katie and many more, within a few years of assisting, Amaya was given the opportunity to become a teacher at 16. She is now working along side the amazing teachers that help her grow not only as a dancer or teacher but as a person.

Elizabeth Moran

Elizabeth is Certified in
Progressing Ballet Technique

Click on image to view certificate

Elizabeth is also
Pilates Matt Exercise Certified

Click the image to view certificate

Elizabeth started taking ballet at the age of 7 years and through high school. After high school, Elizabeth went to the University of Alabama, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Dance, with a minor in Entrepreneurship. She was a company member for Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre (ARDT), faulty choreographed performance, and was further involved in the student’s choreography show, Dance Alabama!. At one of ARDT’s performances, she performed in an eight-minute improv work called “Baldessari” set by UA’s professor, Rebecca Salzer. UA gave her opportunities to workshop with other choreographers such as Jim Cooney, Liz Burritt, George Staib, Helanius Wikins, and James Atkinson. While in college, she was involved in National Association of Contra Dancing Society, line and square dancing, and Crimson Ballroom. In spring 2016, she worked at Walt Disney World Inc., in Orlando, FL where she took part in the Disney College Program. The summer of her return, Elizabeth began apprenticing as a modern dancer at Sanspointe Dance Company in Birmingham, AL while completing her degree. After she graduated in 2017, she moved to Florida and taught dance throughout Orange County. Elizabeth has traveled nationally for Celebration Talent Dance Competition as a tabulator, awards manager, and backstage manager. Elizabeth was ask to perform as a guest artist at Discovery Church and Faith Assembly in dances called “Healing”, “MOVE”, “Those Magic Changes”, and “SOS.” These variations include styles of: ballet, contemporary, jazz, and hip-hop. Other guest work include Dawn Branch Works, “Eden” a story ballet about the Garden of Eden, in March 2020, but was cancelled a day before the performance.

Recently, Elizabeth has received her Matt Pilates certification from the Pilates Instructor Academy, and is Progressive Ballet Technique (PBT), certificated. Elizabeth also enjoys photography and videography.

Erik "Silky" Moore
Erik Moore

Erik "Silky" Moore is dancer, choreographer, instrucutor, and photographer with a passion for the arts in all its forms. From a young age, he has studied a myriad of dance styles from renowned instructors across the globe. He specializes in Tap, Hip-Hop, Contemporary, and Acrobatics.

After graduating high school, Erik began his professional career as a performer at Walt Disney World and Universal Studios. He mas made appearances on NBC and FOX Network's talent shows including seasons 5, 6 and 11 of So You Think You Can Dance making his way to the top 11 male contestants, and multiple performances on America's Got Talent with both "Masterz N Motion" dance crew and "Street Beatz", one of the nation's top urban percussion groups.

His style and choreography has won numerous awards and made him a sought after choreographer and dancer in many parts of the country. He has shared his craft with many young aspiring dancers at many conventions across the nation including: Edge National Talent Competition, Jolt, KinFigure and many more. Erik has choreographed for names such as Kodak Black, Rich Homie Quan, and WildnOut, and he considers his biggest accomplishment, a performance in "The Chocolate Nutcracker" alongside the legendary Savion Glover.

When Erik isn't dancing or teaching, he turns to creating art in other ways; he has toured with "Artists Simple Human" and "Celebration Talent" as a photgrapher and videographer, further expanding his dedication to capturing movement and art.


Jessica Cheek
Jessica Cheek

Jessica got a late start in dancing but, quickly realized she had a great passion for it. She started with one lyrical class andenjoyed it so much that the following year she signed up for six classes. She wanted to expand her knowledge and skills with lyrical, ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz and musical theater.

She joined the competition team in her third year and went to several competitions and conventions where the team placed first and second. She was also a member of a group routine that placed 1st and 4th. Since then, she has self-choreographed several solos that have placed 1st at several competitions. Her self-choreographed lyrical solo received 1st place at Streetz Nationals 2021. She found her niche in choreography and looks forward to choreographing routines for students for recitals and competitions. She was a leadership team member and a teaching assistant with Stephanie for several years and values what she has learned from her. She has participated in the yearly dance recitals and other events that showcased her dance skills. She loves to attend the conventions where they get to train with many known dancers and choreographers. She is excited to teach and watch the students grow in a variety of dancing styles.

Blake Machado
Blake Machado

Mr. Blake Machado started dancing at the age of 7 at the First Step Dance Studio in North Georgia with Tap and Acro. It was not until he started dancing at Nicole Cote School of Dance in 2017 that he learned other styles like Jazz, Musical Theatre, and Lyrical. After taking classes under Ms. Katie Carinci he knew that he had found his passion for dance.

In 2019, Blake's dance life would change as he was awarded the recipient to receive the Hannah Johnson Scholarship at Nicole Cote School of Dance. This scholarship empowers dancers to further their dance education while keeping the memory of Miss Hannah Johnson alive. Blake would also join the competition team this year competing all over the state of Florida. Blake also attended many conventions and performed at many local community festivals.

In 2020, Blake realized that he wanted to help others find their passion for dance and became an assistant to the instructors at the studio. Blake would assist all ages of dance from preschool to ages 16. He would assist classes in all styles of dance. In 2021 Blake was nominated to be a member of the Leadership program which is a scholarship that is given to a dancer that gives them the opportunity to be a leader to other dancers by offering responsibilities within the studio such as assisting more classes, birthday parties, promotional venues, and substituting if need. He was honored to be a part of that program for a year.

Blake became an instructor at Nicole Cote School of Dance in 2022. Now he has a personal mission to help as many dancers as possible become the best dancer they can be. Blake is thankful for the opportunities that has been given to him to begin his new chapter as an instructor with Nicole Cote School of Dance.

Kendal Cote
Kendal Cote

For the last 18 years, Kendal Cote has had an inspiring amount of love for the art of dance. She started her dance journey at the young age of two years old and continued to have love and passion for dance ever since. Kendal started her training throughout the years as a recreational dancer at Nicole Cote School of Dance. At the age of seven years old she then joined the competition team at Nicole Cote School of Dance. Kendal’s few classes then turned into several hours of training, practices, competing at travel competitions, and even taking classes from professional choreographers at dance conventions helping her become the best dancer she has ever been. Kendal became apart of the NCSD family and created strong bonds with other dancers and even instructors. NSCD turned into her second home. Later down the road Kendal joined the high school dance team known as the Melbourne Miracles at Melbourne High School her freshman year. On top of training and competing with Nicole Cote School of Dance she was also training and competing with the Melbourne Miracles. Being apart of the high school dance team took Kendal to amazing opportunities to show off her skills with being able to compete at Regional and National dance competitions in Florida and also had 4 years of training at summer intensive dance camps with the Universal Dance Association. At the age of 16 years old Kendal started her teaching career with Nicole Cote School of Dance. For the next four years Kendal continued to dance and teach about 6 days a week on top of being a student at Melbourne High School. Kendal’s love and passion for dance has forever been so strong

JoAnn Richter

After moving to Florida from Pennsylvania in 2002, JoAnn has worked in various jobs including physical therapy and an elementary school cafeteria. She brings with her a widely varied customer service skill set. She understands both sides, as prior to her employment with Nicole Cote School of Dance, JoAnn was a dance mom for 10 years. JoAnn is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the office and ensuring that all office procedures are followed. JoAnn is a highly organized person with wonderful interpersonal communication skills. Ms. JoAnn is a valuable asset to Nicole Cote School of Dance.

Samantha Blanchard

Samantha Blanchard’s early dance training was in Denishawn Dance and Cecchetti Ballet until she attended the University of Massachusetts, Amherst as a dance major. She received a BFA in Dance in 1991. In 2014, Blanchard received her MFA in Creative Inquiry and Interdisciplinary Arts from California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. Blanchard taught at various colleges, studios and public schools on both the east and west coasts and has twenty plus years of coordinating, teaching and choreographing for collegiate and youth dance and theatre productions. Samantha Trained in Ballroom Dance for one year at Dance Arts Studio with Allan Parish in San Rafael California. Here she taught beginning and intermediate foxtrot, waltz, swing, tango and salsa to adults. While in San Francisco, Blanchard choreographed for Linda Bulgo's Musical Productions. Bulgo’s claim to fame is her performance of Snow White in SF’s notorious Beach Blanket Babylon for 20 years. Samantha worked on the youth musical“The Wizard of Oz,” and taught musical theater summer camp. She also taught a summer of musical theater at Danspace for the advanced dancers and choreographed a stunning vignette of CATS. Currently, Blanchard is working with the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center adjudicating high school musicals for the Applause Awards. Winners of Central Florida will be invited to compete in the Jimmy Awards in New York City to work with professionals and get a chance to perform on Broadway. Blanchard performed professionally with various companies on the East and West coasts until she formed her own company; Eclipse Dance Theater. Eclipse’s mission aims to collide dance and the spoken word to create cutting-edge feminine perspectives of theatrical experience, reflecting the views and experiences of modern women. As Artistic Director of Eclipse Dance Theater, she presented, selfproduced and toured twelve evening-length works both nationally and internationally. Eclipse was the resident company for 5 years in San Francisco for Dancers’ Group Studio Theater where they taught company class, rehearsed and performed. Eclipse was the recipient of numerous awards including grants from The Zellerbach Family Fund. The company has been quoted by the San Francisco Bay Guardian for their “…simple genuineness,” by the East Bay Express “…that inherited wisdom-whether folk or esoteric-can offer us direction for a more authentic future,” and by the World Dance Review as “Stunning!”

Ava Hurlbert

Ava Hurlbert began dancing in the creative kids program at Nicole Cote’s School of Dance at the young age of 2 and hasn’t stopped since. As her family always says she danced before she walked. She continued dancing throughout her childhood, taking classes from Ms. Stephanie. She attended ballet, tap, and hip hop classes, but it wasn’t until the age of 6 that she started taking jazz, acro, and lyrical classes that she truly fell in love with dancing. She now takes classes under Ms. Nicole Cote and Mr. Erik Moore.

In the fall of 2020, as a seventh grader, Ava joined the West Shore Purrfections, a nationally ranked dance team at West Shore Jr./Sr. High School in Melbourne, FL. She would then go on to make the varsity team in her 8th grade year and plans to continue with the team throughout her high school career. She has also attended professional training under the Universal Dance Association at their summer camp intensives. Ava, with the West Shore Purrfections, has won many awards at these summer intensives, including a special recognition award from her coaches and an invitation to UDA’s national competition in Orlando, FL.

Ava’s dance life would take a turn for the better. In 2021, at her 11th dance recital, she was awarded the Hannah Johnson Scholarship at NCSD. This scholarship gave her the wonderful opportunity to continue her dance education. This scholarship also gave her the opportunity to assist many dance classes. In the summer of 2021, she began assisting summer classes under Ms. Katie Carinci and Ms. Stephanie Vanhorn with all age groups and styles. This was when she found her true passion- teaching dance classes and sharing her love of dance with the world. She then began helping with dance classes under Ms. Elizabeth Moran, Ms. Stephanie Vanhorn, and Ms. Jessica Cheek. During this time, Ava began working on her first solo with Ms. Stephanie as a part of receiving the Hannah Johnson Scholarship.

Ava is currently continuing to assist with dance classes under Ms. Nicole Cote and Ms. Elizabeth Moran. She is extremely grateful for every opportunity that NCSD has given to her and she can’t wait to see what the future holds for her and her dance career.


- back to top of page -

Nicole Cote School of Dance
 5180 Minton Road  •  Palm Bay, FL 32907
NEW! 250 Sebastian Blvd. Ste. 7 Sebastian FL 32958
 (321) 725-6710  •
Facebook Instagram