Business & Finance

Grand Opening of Studio J in Montville

6df5a39ffe7ce79fbe83_IMG_7032.jpg
Studio J Dance Studio celebrates grand opening with friends and family. Credits: Courtesy Jessica Mellace
47dd708d31751e2e9b6b_IMG_7045.jpg
Roahan Padmanabahan and Isabelle Belenky perform Baby It's Cold Outside. Credits: Courtesy Jessica Mellace
71560e0d827589b324cb_IMG_7043.JPG
Studio J Dance Academy's Performance Team. Bottom from left: Isabelle Belenky, Angelina Hahn. Middle: Arianna DeMaio, Roahan Padmanabhan. Top: Lisa LoPinto, Santa Claus, Nina DaCosta. Credits: Courtesy Jessica Mellace
632d4b351765cf075295_40c9d808f9d28d63574f_IMG_5578.JPG
The Padmanabhan family celebrates the grand opening of Studio J. From left: Anju, Krishna, Roahan and Meghan Padmanabhan. Credits: Gail Bottone
a93db0f65a58644174c9_IMG_5574.JPG
Jessica Mellace, owner and artistic director of Studio J Dance Academy, is with her 99 year old grandmother, Josephine Mellace, at the studio's grand opening. Credits: Gail Bottone
bb03e28736dbdeccc935_IMG_5572.JPG
Studio J's Performance Team. Credits: Gail Bottone
62861da6d53849a4daa1_IMG_5517.JPG
Courtney Serpone and Anthony Marchitto, instructors at Studio J Dance Academy, join owner, Jessica Mellace, and student, Avery Veneziano, for the studio's grand opening party. Credits: Gail Bottone
ac6b829d03f836c2bc63_0e9357600a9a8ef1e586_IMG_5542.JPG
Isabelle Belenky and Roahan Padmanabhan perform "Baby It's Cold Outside" at Studio J's grand opening party. Credits: Gail Bottone
c1f96749db7c20c10408_IMG_5587.JPG
Keira, Gia and Glen Petersen enjoy the buffet at Studio J's grand opening. Credits: Gail Bottone
e1aa1c60d5650703d49f_adcf013049f4f40504bd_IMG_5511.JPG
Jessica Mellace, owner and artistic director of Studio J Dance Academy, welcomes guests to the studio's grand opening party. Credits: Gail Bottone
bb18a3ca26a0f555e1f1_36033d89b752d4c806a8_IMG_5525.JPG
Keli Eason comes to support Jessica Mellace, owner of Studio J Dance Academy, at the studio's grand opening. Credits: Gail Bottone
e06b090eeea536ac005d_IMG_5523.JPG
Natalie Santangelo and Alyssa De Rogatis come to support their friend, Roahan Padmanabhan, who is part of the Studio J Dance Academy's Performance Team. Credits: Gail Bottone
544842b140d24c3e9bb5_8216d7deb4dd3cac14fb_IMG_5520.JPG
Angelina Hahn, Studio J Dance Academy student, and Donna Hahn, her mother, are excited about the grand opening party. Credits: Gail Bottone
7b228b5218df0b606f1e_114ce8dadccda2007f16_IMG_5513.JPG
Jessica Mellace, owner of Studio J Dance Academy, with one of her youngest students, Avery Veneziano. Credits: Gail Bottone
6df5a39ffe7ce79fbe83_IMG_7032.jpg

MONTVILLE, NJ - It was quite obvious that at the grand opening of Montville Township’s Studio J Dance Academy, everyone acquainted with Jessica Mellace, owner and artistic director, admired her for her ability to have a dream and make it come true. But more importantly, they admired her for her welcoming, loving and caring nature, as was demonstrated at the event last Saturday night. 

The grand opening not only included great entertainment and food, but a fundraiser for St. Barnabas Burn Unit. Mellace explained, “St. Barnabas has been part of my life since I began working professionally as an x-ray tech in 2011. It was one of the first jobs I took in my field, so it holds a special place in my heart. Additionally, and the reason I chose to do my grand opening in December was because in 1992 Michael, my brother,was admitted to the St. Barnabas Pediatric Burn Unit on Christmas. He was there for a month, and the nurses and doctors took such great care of him. I wanted to give back to the organization that has provided me and my family with so much.”

Her brother, Michael, said, “I am so proud my sister is following her dream. If anyone is meant to do this, it’s Jessica. I know Studio J will be a huge success! My sister, choosing to help St. Barnabas Pediatric Burn Unit, means a lot to me because I was admitted there on Christmas 1992. I was 14 months old and was there for a month. Even though I don’t remember the experience all too well, my parents told me how amazing the nurses and doctors were with me. I am truly grateful for all the people at St. Barnabas who assisted in my recovery, and I am happy my family and I can give back.”

Sign Up for E-News

Anthony Marchitto, acting teacher, stated, “Studio J is a place of nurturing and support, so having the grand opening benefit the pediatric burn unit was the perfect way to start the holiday season. I had so much fun singing carols with some of our students, and I think the event was a success.”

Mellace explained, "Opening up a dance studio has always been a dream of mine. I wanted my studio to be a place where students can find who they are and express their individuality. I am so lucky that I get to share my passion for the arts and can’t believe my dream has finally come true. None of this would have been possible without the love and support from my wonderful family, staff and students."   

Mellace was honored and happy to have her almost 100 year old grandmother present at this dream come true event. Josephine Mellace will be 100 years old in three months. Josephine said she “always encouraged Jessica” to pursue her ambitions.

Mellace’s parents, Anna Marie and Joseph Mellace, said that they are so very proud of their daughter who “had a dream and did it.” They also recognized Dr. Hani Mansour and Dr. Sylvia Petrone for their dedication to the St. Barnabas Burn Unit. Hot coffee had spilled on their son on Christmas 1992 and caused severe burns. Anna Marie admits they took their son to St. Barnabas because it was the closest hospital, but they were so thankful when they found out that the hospital had a special burn unit. All the doctors and nurses gave so much of themselves, and the entire family is very grateful.

Studio J opened its doors in September at 2 Changebridge Road and currently has 36 students and is growing weekly. The studio offers classes starting from 15 months to adult. Classes are offered in acting, acro, ballet, contemporary/lyrical, hip-hop, Irish step, jazz, mommy and me, musical theatre, tap and voice.Starting in January, there will be adult classes in ballet, tap, jazz and hip-hop.

Donna Hahn, mother of Studio J student, Angelina Hahn, said the studio is a “triple threat” by offering dance, acting, and voice. “Her new business represents what Jessica is all about. She believes in giving back to the community. Jessica is not only talented but keeps kids focused so that they can learn a lot. She is a great teacher,” added Hahn.

The parents of student, Isabelle Belenky, Angela and Stan, were happy to be at the performance saying, “This is such a good activity for the kids, and they love to be here.”

The night of entertainment included the singing of Deck the Halls, Hanukkah O Hanukkah, Let It Snow, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, O Holy Night, It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas, and a duet of Baby, It’s Cold Outside. 

The performance team danced to My Only Wish, Rockin’ around the Christmas Tree, Hanukkah O Hanukkah, Let It Snow and Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays.

When asked why she chose Montville for her new studio, Mellace said, “Although I didn’t grow up in town, my hometown of East Hanover is just a short drive away. I’ve always attended iconic Montville events like the 4th of July celebration and fireworks, and the community always made me feel welcomed. When I decided to open up Studio J, I knew that Montville would be the perfect fit because it aligns with my values as a business owner.” 

Dance instructor, Alfonse Napolitano, stated, "Studio J is not your typical dance studio. We are a tight-knit family. We care for and love each other, and I am so happy to be a part of this amazing dance family. In addition to this, we spread our love and passion to everyone around us and are so excited to be a part of the Montville community." 

Courtney Serpone, dance and vocal teacher, added, "I think Montville is the perfect fit for Jessica and Studio J. Jessica prides herself on the studio being a place where everyone feels welcomed and successful. She has built a team of staff members that are so diverse, but all work together seamlessly. She is always driven to delivering the best final product, as you will see tonight. Jessica values discipline and hard work. I know this is the beginning of a wonderful partnership!”  

Lisa LoPinto, dance teacher, added, "Studio J has become like a second home to me. Teaching acrobatics here is always the highlight of my week. The students and staff are all such wonderful people. Jessica has done an incredible job of turning the dance studio into a positive, fun and educational environment."​                   

Dance teacher, Dana DelGrosso, is very proud of the studio’s students. “They performed beyond our expectations and really made the night something we will never forget! We also were able to give back this year and raise money to bring happiness and cheer to some of the children in the pediatric burn unit at St. Barnabas Hospital. It has been an all-around amazing evening,and I’m very proud of my Studio J family," said DelGrosso.

Students like Roahan Padmanabahan expressed support. Padmanabahan said, “Studio J is a safe and welcoming place for dancers and performers everywhere. It has given me, along with my team, a place to do what we love with our art. Miss Jess and all of my other teachers have created an environment where everyone can express themselves and reach their full potential. Studio J will forever be a home away from home for me, and I can’t wait to see what the future brings!”

Padmanabahan’s parents, Anju and Krishnan, expressed their happiness for Miss Jess and the group. Anju said her son goes to Studio J classes five days a week and loves it. “He enjoys every minute,” she said.

Another student, Angelina Hahn stated, “Studio J is a great school with great people who actually want you to succeed and help you achieve all of your goals. I am happy to be a part of this amazing family!” Hahn was accepted to Morris County School of Technology for dance and theater being one of 16 accepted out of 120 applications.

Former student, Nina DaCosta, also had praises. “Studio J is an accepting, loving and judge-free studio that has brought new people in with open arms. I have known Miss Jess since I was 12, and she helped me in ways that I did not know were possible," explained DaCosta.

Keli Eason, a former teacher, who worked with Mellace in the past, also came to “support Jess.” Eason said, “This is something Jess wanted to do for a while now.”

Parents, Keira and Glen Pedersen, of one of the youngest children at the studio, two year old Gia Pedersen, also extended their best wishes and stated that their little girl “loves it” at Studio J.

Success is what these performers/students strive to achieve, and most of the students, who performed on this night, have aspirations to perform on Broadway. Following in Miss Jessica’s footsteps, one can say, “Dreams Do Come True!”

Cover photo: Back row from left: Jennifer Dent, Keli Eason, Lisa LoPinto, Alfonse Napolitano, AnnaMarie Mellace, Jessica Mellace, Santa Claus (Joseph Mellace), Anthony Marchitto, Courtney Serpone. Front row from left: Keira Pedersen holding Gia Pedersen, Isabelle Belenky, Angelina Hahn, Roahan Padmanabahan holding Avery Veneziano, Arianna DeMaio, Nina DaCosta holding Maya Ciccone, Dana DelGrosso holding Stella Kokoszka, Jessica Brody.

 

                                                        

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Montville

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_593d3996a52e793d3917_scott_kelly

Fri, May 25, 6:15 AM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Last Day to buy Baseball Fundraiser Tix

Education Giving Back Sports

Carousel_image_3f9e1d46bda413aee0fe_pyramid_mountain_sign_watermark

Sun, May 27, 2:00 PM

Pyramid Mountain, Montville Township

Woodland Tree Walk: Moderate

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_aa295fc6005d625aee04_mini_magick20180507-110570-11z5yr6

Mon, May 28

Montville Township, Montville

Memorial Day

Giving Back

Tue, May 29, 10:00 AM

Montville Township Public Library, Montville

Storytime

Education

Carousel_image_e0e7d0a5a9b140835150_trinity_christian_school_students_commemorate_veterans_day_2016__2018_tapinto_montville

Wed, May 30, 11:00 AM

Montville Township Community Park - VFW Post 5481, Montville

Memorial Day Commemoration by VFW

Giving Back

JCP&L to Attend Montville Township Committee Meeting

May 21, 2018

MONTVILLE, NJ – Montville Township administration announced that a representative from JCP&L will attend the Tuesday, May 22 Montville Township Committee meeting to discuss the company’s response to the recent storm events as well as answer questions from the public.  The meeting will take place at Montville Township Town Hall, 195 Changebridge Road, Montville, at ...

1000+ Luminaries Glowed for Inclusion Throughout Montville Twp on 3rd Annual OneMontville Green In Day

May 23, 2018

MONTVILLE, NJ - On Friday, May 18, OneMontville, a non-profit in Montville Township, New Jersey dedicated to raising awareness for Acceptance, Respect and Kindness, hosted the 3rd Annual Green In Day. Elected officials, township employees, students, teachers, business owners and others wore green in support of the organization's mission to promote inclusion for all residents.

In ...

Cedar Hill 5th Grader Gets Pied for a Purpose

May 20, 2018

MONTVILLE, NJ – Joe Signorella, a fifth grader at Cedar Hill Elementary School in Towaco, wanted to come up with a great idea for his Treps marketplace booth. Treps is an afterschool program that teaches the students how to run a business: advertising, pricing, financing. But first you have to come up with your product or service.

Joe had some ideas, like selling soccer balls since he ...

10-Year Old Boy Battling Cancer Receives Generous Donation From Randolph Hockey Family

May 20, 2018

RANDOLPH, NJ- While the inter-town hockey battles on the ice between Randolph and Roxbury are fierce at every age level, when it comes to real life battles off the ice there is no hesitation to offer help to their neighbor.

Such is the case with a recent gesture of unity and support from the Randolph Varsity hockey team, when they came together to deliver good wishes and ...

Tour of Somerville Weekend: Quarter-Mile Sprints Add High-Speed Dynamic

May 22, 2018

SOMERVILLE, NJ  - The grand daddy of ‘em  all, the 75-year-old Tour of Somerville 50-mile bicycle race, anchors a weekend of world class cycling in Bound Brook and downtown Somerville May 24-28, with a new event added Sunday night to draw more spectators downtown.

Spectators this year will see an additional day of racing beginning with the Bound Brook Criterium on ...

Host an International Exchange Student

May 24, 2018

EF High School Exchange Year announces annual search for student exchange host families in communities across the New Jersey

EF High School Exchange Year—a division of EF Education First, the World Leader in International Education—has kicked off its annual nationwide search for caring host families to welcome exchange students into their homes. Last year EF connected over 3,000 ...

Columns

OPEN HOUSES this weekend 5/19-5/20 2018

The following homes have OPEN HOUSES presented by RE/MAX Neighborhood Properties this weekend.

SATURDAY, MAY 19, 2018:

  From 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

  44 Union Street, C0008, Montclair

  Click HERE to see Full Listing.

  

SUNDAY, MAY 20, 2018:

  From 1 - 4 p.m.

  9 Condit Road, Mountain Lakes

   Click HERE to see Full ...

Open Houses This Weekend 5/12-5/13 2018

The following homes have Open Houses presented by RE/MAX Neighborhood Properties this weekend.

SATURDAY, MAY 12, 2018:

  From 1 - 4 p.m.

  34 Brittany Road, Montville.

  Click HERE to see the full listing.

 

  From 1 - 3 p.m.

  15 Linda Court, Montville.

  Click HERE to see the full listing.

 

  From 2 - 4 p.m.

  7 ...

SURVIVING A STROKE: Quick Medical Response Gives Mom Her Life Back

Carotid artery dissection. It’s one of the most common causes of stroke in younger adults.

And while you might not associate the word “stroke” with younger patients, the condition – if not treated immediately – could lead to paralysis and even death.

Lindsey Singh can attest to the importance of immediacy. The 31-year-old mother of two from Flanders experienced ...

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast: Episode 15

On this week’s AtlantiCast, learn some important tips for controlling and avoiding diabetes from an Atlantic Health System expert, see how Atlantic Health is advancing cutting-edge research, hear what’s being done to keep health care environmentally friendly and much more!

 

'Turning Off the Morning News' brings comic twist

‘Turning Off the Morning News’ tackles today’s issues with a comic twist

By Liz Keill

PRINCETON, N J – Despite the late night comics, no one quite captures the insanity of the political/social status world like Christopher Durang.

His latest play, “Turning off the Morning News” hit the ground running.  John Pankow as Jimmy addresses the audience, ...

'To Kill a Mockingbird' Sustains Timeless Appeal

SUMMIT, NJ – The Summit Playhouse provides a stellar production of a much loved classic, “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

The Harper Lee novel, later a Gregory Peck film and now a stage production, retains all the warmth, intensity and integrity that made it such an appealing hit in the 1960s. And there will be a new production on Broadway in December with a script by Aaron Sorkin ...

Pet Corner