TERESA HESENER, TCRG

Owner and Director

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Teresa Hesener is the owner and director of Aisling Mor Academy of Irish Dance. She started dancing at the age of 10 and quickly moved through the levels of competitive Irish dancing. She achieved the status of Open Champion at the age of 15. Among her competitive achievements include a Regional (Oireachtas) Championship title, 9th place at the World Championships, 6th place at the British Nationals, several top 10 placements at the North American Nationals, and several recalls at the All Ireland Championships. 


Teresa passed her TCRG exam to be a registered and vetted teacher with An Coimisiun Le Rinci Gaelacha (CLRG) in August 2012. She has been an active teacher ever since and has taught students of all levels from beginner through world qualifier. 


In addition to her TCRG, Teresa also has a Bachelor of Science degree from the Pennsylvania State University. She majored in Business Management with a minor in Business Law.

 

ASSISTANT TEACHERS

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Emily Simanton

Assistant Teacher

Emily has been dancing for 14 years, since the age of 4. At age 13, she achieved the status of Open Champion. She has competed in both solo and team competitions at the regional, national, and world championship levels. She has completed grades 1-10, and is on track to complete 11 and 12 in the next year. Emily has been a teaching assistant for 4 years, and has experience teaching with ages 3-14. She loves to share her passion with others and help children reach their goals. Along with competing and teaching, she loves to perform for her community, especially during St. Patrick’s Day. Emily attends Monmouth University where she is studying Marketing.

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Mairin McDonnell

Assistant Teacher

Mairin has been dancing for 14 years and has been training with Miss Teresa for six. She achieved the status of Open Championship at a young age, and has since competed with top-ranked dancers all throughout the world. Mairin has qualified for the world championships 6 times throughout her dance career. She has completed grades 1-6 and is looking forward to continuing preparing for the TCRG exam. Irish dance has always been a huge part of her life, and she has loved every second of teaching. In the future, she hopes to become a TCRG and expand the dance school.

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Caitlin Giagnacova

Assistant Teacher

Caitlin began her dance journey at the age of 3.  After 9 years of ballet, tap, and jazz, she took her first Irish Dance class and quickly fell in love.  Since then, Caitlin has competed in both solo and team competitions at the regional, national and world championship levels. She has been ranked in the top 20 nationally and internationally and is a 2-time World Qualifier. In addition to her competitive achievements, Caitlin’s love of dance has always been performing and she aspires to one day tour with a show. She is a 3 year participant of the Riverdance Summer Program and most recently participated in the Hammerstep Quarantine collaboration.  In addition to being a dancer, Caitlin is also a classically trained flautist.  In 2015, she earned her B.S. in Fashion Merchandising with minors in Product Development and Entrepreneurship from Immaculata University.  She currently works full time as a Technical Apparel Designer.  Caitlin began assistant teaching in 2012 and after a 5 year hiatus she is excited to return to teaching and share her love of dance with the next generation of dancers.  As of March 2021 Caitlin has completed all 12 CLRG grade exams and hopes to take the TCRG exam upon retiring from competition.