Free To Be Performing Arts Center’s mission and purpose is to promote Confidence, Creativity, and Self-expression through the Arts. Our goal is to provide quality customer service and freedom for students to be who they are.
Meet the Founders
Ms. Leah Brown
Leah Brown, a 36-year-old Philadelphia native from Mt. Airy, began her dance and theatre training at Motion Studios at age five under Ms. Chrystie Cannon. With over 20 years of experience, she studied under notable instructors like Bonnie Bing, Henry Roy, Lisa White-Jones, Leo Dignam, Tom Dignam, Randi Thompson, and more. A 2002 graduate of The Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts, Leah majored in vocals under Mrs. Dorina Morrow and Mr. Timothy Cormier. She also spent 4 years at Young Performer's Theatre Camp (YPTC) as a musical theatre major and taught dance in the Intro to the Arts program during her 5th year. In 2015, inspired by her love for the arts and Mt. Airy's cultural richness, Leah established Free to Be Dance Academy after becoming a parent.
Christina Michelle Talley
Christina Michelle Talley, native of Philadelphia found her passion for dance from the Institute of the Arts under the direction of Cheryl G. Jenkins. Christina has been dancing for the past 32 years, studying under instructors such as Tia Jordan, Rodney “Itola” Bird, Cheryl G. Jenkins, Theresa Pelicata, Hollie Wright, Jamie Laughlin, and Roxanne Lyst to name a few. While attending the Pennsylvania State University, Christina continued her dance training under the direction of renowned Kikora Franklin and Elisha Clark. Christina graduated from Penn State University in August of 2008 with a BA in Theater Arts focusing in Performance Theater. In August of 2011, Christina received her MBA from the Philadelphia University in International Business and Marketing. Since 2007, Christina has had the opportunity to educate children in Theater, Jazz, Hip Hop, and Movement classes for various dance institutions throughout Philadelphia. In addition, she has had the pleasure of introducing dance art and its history to underprivileged children at the Police Athletic League Recreation Center in the City of Philadelphia. In January of 2011, Christina fulfilled one of her lifelong dreams by starting her own professional dance company, En ‘L’ Air Dance Company then went on to open Studio Eight Performing Arts Center. The studio has now merged with Free to Be Dance Academy and together they are now known as Free To Be Performing Arts Center.