ASHLEY DEFOREST-GOLETZ grew up in Lombard, Illinois. She began her dance training at the age of two at Art Linkletter Dance Studio under the direction of Paula Brandl and Donna Johnson. Ashley went on to become a member of the “Steppin’ Out Dance Company” where she and her team mates won numerous awards at local and national competitions.
After graduating from high school, Ashley moved to New York to continue her education. She attended Fordham University where she was a member and choreographer for the University Dance Team. While living in New York, Ashley trained with top dance choreographers in both tap and jazz at Broadway Dance Center and Steps on Broadway. Ashley had the privilege of training with tap masters Savion Glover, Dianne Walker, Jimmy Slyde, Prince Spencer, and Buster Brown among others. Ashley trained with jazz and hip hop dancers Brian Friedman, Wade Robeson, Dan Karaty and Mia Michaels from the television show “So You Think You Can Dance”.
During her college years, Ashley would return frequently to Chicago and had the opportunity to appear in television productions of WTTW Arts Across Illinois Centerstage where she danced with Earnest “Brownie” Brown, the only living, dancing “Copasetic”. She also appeared in the television program “Chicago Dance Project” produced for WTTW by HMS Media. Ashley was featured with Chicago’s Madd Rhythms on ABC7’s “Someone You Should Know” presented by Harry Porterfield.
In New York, Ashley worked with Tap Dog, Gil Stroming and assisted as a teacher at “Jump” and “Break the Floor” conventions. She also performed in various dance shows for Tea and Jam Productions in New York and Orlando, Florida.
In 2004, Savion Glover asked Ashley to perform with him. A few months later, Mr. Glover formed the group, Chapter IV, with Ashley as the sole female dancer. The group performed alongside Savion in the national tour of “Improvography”, appearing in venues like the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles and the famed Apollo Theater in New York. Ashley went on to perform in “Tap Legends” with Savion Glover, Dianne Walker and Jimmy Slyde at the Crossroads Theater and Jacob’s Pillow. She acted and danced in the Broadway Workshop, “Timmy the Great” written by Sandra Hochman. Ashley performed with Savion and Chapter IV in “Live From London” and was seen on BBC television throughout the United Kingdom; and she performed with Savion Glover on ABC Television's hit show, Dancing With The Stars. Ashley was voted a “2006 It Girl” by Dance Magazine readers.
Lululemon Athletica, an apparel company that makes clothing for yoga, dancing and fitness training, chose Ashley to be an Ambassador for the company. As an Ambassador, she represented this nationally-known company and was involved in promotions that highlighted the importance of exercise and well-being... www.lululemon.com.
Ashley is the owner and director of DeForest Dance Academy in Elmhurst, Illinois and Glen Ellyn, Illinois. She looks forward to sharing her knowledge and experience with her students!