Meet the people who help your kids shine.

Aaron Goldschmidt

Founder & Director

Aaron Goldschmidt received his BFA in acting from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts’ Experimental Theater Wing with a minor in child psychology. While maintaining a successful writing and performing career, he worked promotions for a major record label, coordinated special events for a bustling NYC hot spot, and even appeared on CBS’ The Amazing Race. True fulfillment, however, was discovered in working with children and families and he dedicated himself to teaching full-time. After a year in San Francisco apprenticing at the prominent California Street Preschool, Aaron took his newfound appreciation of the Reggio Emilia teaching philosophies and moved back to NYC. He then spent 6.5 years as the head teacher at The Educational Alliance’s Parenting and Family Center of the 14th Street/Sol Goldman Y in Manhattan’s East Village, where he developed and taught classes for children ages 1-5 and their families, as well as helped to run the department. Most notable was his popular 2×2 program, a year-long bridge class for 2 year olds, the success of which helped to solidify his reputation. Since then, Aaron has consulted and taught for a variety of businesses including the JCC of Manhattan and Citibabes, where he held the position of creative director and head teacher. Among other responsibilities, he created, implemented and ran CitiSchool, a renowned preschool program. Aaron’s multidisciplinary background directly affects his approach to early-childhood education and is evident in the classroom. His energy and passion, combined with his arts-based curriculum, have inspired both children and adults for years creating an outstanding reputation and large client following. Both his popularity and visibility in the community have lent themselves to securing him a local “celebrity status” with children, parents, and caregivers. Aaron’s stature as a respected and savvy educator has also been recognized by the global children’s publisher, Scholastic. He sits on the Teacher Advisory Board to the school Book Clubs, is an invited educator to the Scholastic Early Childhood Summit, and continues to help the company keep their finger on the pulse of what is happening in the urban early-childhood classroom. Aaron lives in Manhattan.

Emily Tafur

Operations Coordinator, NYC & Parties

Emily holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Long Island University and an MA in Communication Arts from New York Institute of Technology. Originally hailing from Colombia, Emily loves to bring her globalized and multi-cultural background and native Spanish tongue into everything she does! She has worked in theatre, multimedia production, content creating, podcasting, and as a Spanish interpreter and teacher. She has a passion for education and loves creating for and sharing with children. Emily has been with Shine since 2016 and helped create Shine’s Listillos program – Shine’s original literacy and creative-based Spanish classes. She especially loves designing custom scavenger hunts for Shine’s unparalleled parties and events.

Krissy - Shine

Krissy Feleppa

Operations Coordinator, Hamptons

Krissy is a true “Jack of all trades”. She started dancing at the age of 3 at Carol’s Academy of Dance in her hometown of Lancaster, PA. She continued to study dance throughout college at Kutztown University where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre. She performed in shows at the Fulton Opera House, Ephrata Performing Arts Center, and with the acting company of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire before moving to NYC where she pursued theatre and dance, most notably studying and performing at Broadway Dance Center. After working as a bookseller, a bartender and server, a real estate agent, and a personal assistant to pay the bills she decided to change career directions. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Veterinary Technology from Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, NY and worked as a licensed veterinary technician at some of the busiest emergency and specialty veterinary hospitals in NYC before moving to the East End. Following her time as a vet tech, Krissy began working with a local non-profit early childhood education center focusing on community outreach and special events. By chance, a friend introduced Krissy to Shine and the result was a position that allowed her to combine her love of the arts with her preternatural ability to organize and manage. Krissy lives in East Hampton with her husband and two daughters.

Laura Aronoff

Social Media Consultant

Laura is a professional dancer turned social media extraordinaire!  Laura graduated from Tulane University in 2015 with a degree in Communications. After working for a boutique marketing firm for two years and moving across the country to pursue her passion for musical theatre, Laura created her own social media business to combine her creative mind with her learned marketing and business skills. Whether it’s in the dance studio or out on the playground, Laura is forever inspired by kids and their fearless enthusiasm for fun and play.

Jayme Taylor

Social Media Consultant

Jayme’s interest in family and parenting issues took shape in college during her time as project manager on youth-related topics for the K-12 Coordinated Health Department at the Diocese of Tucson. After graduating from the University of Arizona with a MA in Near Eastern Studies, she moved to Manhattan and shortly thereafter found herself immersed in the kid-world of New York City. She worked as the marketing coordinator for a private family membership club in SoHo, where she was the editor-in-chief of their blog and bi-annual magazine prior to becoming a social media consultant for NYC children’s companies and schools like Shine, Dental Associates for Kids Only, and Green Ivy Schools. When she’s taking a break from keeping up with the latest NYC kid trends and events, you can find her at her day job – hanging out with dinosaurs at a prestigious cultural institution on the UWS.

Crystal Bock


Crystal has taught at Third Street Preschool in NYC’s East Village as a Lead Teacher for the past ten years. She is happy and proud to say she worked for  Aaron before that at Citibabes. She is the mother of two children and a dog named Snuggles. Crystal is currently pursuing her Master’s in Early Childhood at Hunter College.  She has also dabbled in acting.

Anita Boyer


Anita Boyer found a passion for dance over 25 years ago and has been pursuing it ever since. She started her career as a dance and theatre educator when she moved to the East End 10 years ago.  It was there she founded a non-profit theatre education and performance organization, Our Fabulous Variety Show, and has produced over 40 works on stages from the John Drew Theatre at Guild Hall in East Hampton to the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center, as well as site specific and virtual original pieces.

Anita originally studied dance at Opus Dance studio in Ashland, Ohio and was a founding member of their Tap Company. She has trained at Broadway Dance Center, Steps, and FlamencoVivo in NYC and currently trains with her mentor, Riverdance’s Aaron Tolson. Anita brings technique, history, and stories from these classes to her own work, spreading the joy and importance of tap to her students.

Carolina Fuentes

Musician / Educator

Carolina Fuentes is a high energy drummer, percussionist, and DJ based in New York. She is the creator of “Drumanity”, a rhythm and movement workshop for adults and children that uses positive affirmations to increase self-confidence. She performs regularly in the Hamptons, New York City and was recently a featured artist at Envision festival in Costa Rica with her project Mila Tina. She also performs regularly with Dan Bailey Tribe, Abracadabra Field Trip, and Outernational.

Lesley Gold


Lesley has been working with children for over 15 years either as an educator, tutor, coach, camp director, water sports instructor, party coordinator and babysitter.  She has a bachelors degree in Elementary Education and a masters degree in Students with Disabilities. Lesley is positive, outgoing and has a passion for watching children learn and building their self confidence. She loves the outdoors and is a strong believer that children benefit from learning, exploring and playing outside year round. She has taught and tutored children ranging from Pre-K to 6th grade over the past 15 years. Prior to taking this school year off to stay home with her newborn son, Lesley taught Pre-K for 5 years at a school in Sagaponack. Being a part of the community is important and the children enjoyed our beach and park clean ups. Lesley lives year round in Sag Harbor.

Will Leet

Musician / Educator

Will is a Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter, guitarist, and children’s musician. Originally from Connecticut, he graduated from UConn with a degree in business and music. For the past five years he has worked with multiple kids programs including Kidville, Stomp and Shout, Sunny Songsters, and most recently, Shine! Will also has his own original band under his name, and plays guitar in a few different NYC bands, including AOFine, and Imperial Cities. Will is passionate about writing music, performing for kids, and playing his guitar.

Shine Educator

Anastasia Lew


Anastasia received her Bachelor’s degree in education from Moscow State Regional University. She then moved to Shanghai and pursued a Master’s degree from Shanghai University in teaching Mandarin as a foreign language. She is very passionate about working with young learners ranging from pre-K to middle school. Anastasia has been working as an educator in Moscow, Shanghai, and New York for over six years and believes in creative and fun ways of educating children. She is passionate about language study and is fluent in English, Mandarin, and Russian. In her free time, Anastasia loves traveling, reading, playing piano, and taking her dog Moby to the park.

Nick Moran

Musician / Educator

A New York musician & singer/songwriter, Nick brings his love of great bands and legendary artists to Shine classes and parties. Kids will rock, roll, shake, and sing in his highly interactive and entertaining classes. Kids and their adults will jam along to classic artists & bands like The Rolling Stones, Journey, The Beatles, Michael Jackson, Aerosmith, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Elton John, and more.

Jess Nacinovich

Musician / Educator

Jess Nacinovich has been facilitating music and movement with children and their families in NYC as Jesse Jams for over a decade. When she’s not rocking out with her guitar at birthday parties, Jess is a board certified occupational therapist for the NYC Dept of education. She utilizes her diverse background in the performing arts and expertise in childhood development to create a unique and engaging experience for adults and children alike!

Christina Sahr


Christina Sahr has been working with children in a variety of settings for over fifteen years. After graduating from Furman University with a B.A. in Art History/Studio Art and graduate work in Museum Education at George Washington University, she worked in the art departments of Princeton University and The Parsons School of Design and as a Photo Research Editor at Redbook Magazine. It was while her son and daughter were growing up, however, that she found her true passion was working with, nurturing, and being inspired by children in creative environments. She spent countless hours as director, prop mistress, and scenic designer in their school district’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts and eventually became a teacher at a Montessori pre-school and the Long Island instructor for a mobile art studio. Presently she is an Art Specialist for The Central Queens Y where she conceives of, develops, and teaches art classes in an after-school program at various elementary schools throughout NYC. Chris credits growing up in the Hamptons, surrounded by the stunning landscape and beautiful natural light, for instilling in her at a young age an innate connection to the arts and is thrilled to begin her association with Shine as an instructor in the summer Hamptons pop-up camp.

Emilie Stoll


Emilie Stoll received her Bachelor of Arts in Dance at Connecticut College in 2017. Though the focus of her studies was in dance, Emilie found interest in Human Development and French, both deepening her passion for people and culture. Emilie took a semester off from school in the Fall of her Junior year to live on her own and dance in Paris, France. She credits those few months as the most rewarding and adventurous experience of her life. Her time away also taught her how the arts bring people together in such welcoming and open-minded ways. More recently, Emilie became a certified children’s yoga instructor, giving her the opportunity to teach and spread her love of movement to the next generation. On her free time, Emilie loves being outdoors, whether walking through scenic Central Park, or the serene beaches in East Hampton, NY.

Meredith Wright


Meredith Wright is a creative play specialist and focuses on movement and music in early childhood programs. For over ten years she has taught, developed curriculum, and served as a consultant for play programs throughout New York City. Meredith received her BA in Theatre Arts at Barnard College/Columbia University. In addition to teaching, Meredith partners with the PJ Library Foundation to promote early literacy through a storytelling program and also writes and performs original music with her family project Sweetbeatz: soulful songs for city kids.

Meredith is a dance enthusiast and studies Caribbean Dance and culture in NYC. She is a featured vocalist with Oyu Oro Experimental Dance Ensemble.

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