Tempe Dance West’s faculty is a group of brilliant instructors whose backgrounds provide students with a variety of artistic influences. The faculty has exceptional professional experience from dance companies, stage, film, television and higher education.


Owner and Director

Michael Cook

Michael Cook, received his dance training from the Tempe Dance Academy in Arizona and the School of American Ballet in New York City. Michael has been a member of The Suzanne Farrell Ballet since 2007. From 1999 to 2007, Michael danced with Ballet Arizona as a principal dancer. While performing with Ballet Arizona, he originated roles in Ib Andersen’s Romeo and Juliet as Romeo, Mosaik, and Swan Lake as Prince Siegfried. His repertoire includes works by Paul Taylor, Julia Adam, Twyla Tharp, Dwight Rhoden, Maurice Béjart, Jerome Robbins, and George Balanchine. As a part of The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, Michael has danced principal roles in AgonApolloProdigal SonBrahms-Schoenberg QuartetDuo Concertante, La ValseDiamondsMeditation, and Mozartiana, among others. He has also danced in Ragtime, as a part of the Balanchine Preservation Initiative. His passion for dancing extends beyond the stage to teach and inspire young students. Through the Education Department at the Kennedy Center, he teaches a series of master classes in ballet and partnering.

Michael Co-Directs the Nationally recognized Tempe Dance Company in Tempe, AZ. Many of Michael’s students have moved on to Broadway, River North, Lines Contemporary Ballet, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal, Cirque De Soliel, Prestigious Ballet Companies, The Rockettes, Las Vegas Showgirls, SYTYCD, Laker Girls and scholarships to colleges such as Juilliard, Marymount, Pace, Univ. of the Arts, Point Park, Univ. of AZ and ASU. Michael is always excited to share his love and passion in dance with all his students.




Ally Coen

Ally has been dancing since age three and began training with Tempe Dance Academy at age seven in all areas of dance including ballet, jazz, tap, acro and more. Ally graduated from Arcadia High School in the top 5% of her class and is now in the leaders academy of the W.P. Carey School of business at Arizona State University. After many years of participating in competitive dance, some of her titles are Jr. Miss Dance of Arizona 2010, Teen Miss Dance of Arizona 2013, National Teen Acrobatic Title Scholarship, and NYCDA National Sr Outstanding Dancer 4th Runner-up.



Lindsey Whiting

As a dancer growing up here in the valley, Lindsey had the opportunity to perform in an array of different venues, ranging from a yearly state fair dance performance to appearing in music videos and national commercials. She also participated in many competitions, conventions and was selected for a scholarship to dance at a renowned studio based in Los Angeles. As an adult, she continued her dance education at the University of Arizona as well as The Edge Performing Arts Center and Ballet Arizona. Lindsey began teaching dance classes early in high school and quickly developed a love for both dance instruction and choreography. She has continued to teach throughout the years and enjoys teaching all ages and an assortment of different styles. She has been the artistic director for two performing companies and choreographed numerous award winning performance pieces. Lindsey has also done the choreography for many different musical theater performances, coached pom lines, and directed professional touring stage shows. However, teaching dance remains one of her greatest passions and Lindsey is dedicated to creating a fun learning environment and sharing her love of dance.



Paige Thomason

Paige started dancing over a decade ago in Phoenix, Arizona and immediately fell in love. She danced competitively for 9 years, traveling all over the United States for national competitions and conventions. After that, she then went on to be captain of Grand Canyon University’s dance team for three years and was able to represent GCU on their first dance team to go to nationals. After graduating college, teaching dance has become one of her favorite ways to continue my love for the sport while helping others grow.



Taylor Moss

Taylor began dancing at the age of twelve. Her first love is hip-hop, but she has trained in an array of styles including: contemporary, jazz, tap, ballet, and musical theater. Taylor danced competitively with Michaela’s Dance Magic for 6 years, and then moved into teaching at Dance Magic. She attended Sandra Day O’Connor and was a member of her high school pom team. After graduation, Taylor went on dance for the Grand Canyon University Dance Team while, also competing for the team in both jazz and hip-hop. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Sports Management in May 2015. Taylor is currently on staff at Pinnacle High School as an assistant pom coach and also aides the Grand Canyon University Dance team.



Trishelle Dwyer

Bio coming soon…