Janis always knew she wanted to ‘dance and teach’ right from the early age of 5. Her experiences in dance training and teaching now reach 41 years. Janis holds many University Degrees in Dance Studies along with various other dance accredited certificates and qualifications. Workshops and training courses attended over the many years are just too numerous to mention.

After moving from Melbourne to Bairnsdale in 1980 with husband and then young son, her initiatives as an early dance pioneer in Bairnsdale was to expose local children to quality dance tuition and experiences, and of course this has certainly been achieved.

Janis’ initiatives have also filtrated into the Department of Education of Training for local schools where Janis initiated the Education Department’s major bi-annual performing arts event ‘Joining the Chorus’ held at Ron Laver Arena in Melbourne into Bairnsdale Secondary College and Paynesville Primary school.

Janis trained in ‘Ice-Figure Skating’ at the Ringwood Ice Skating Centre in the 1970’s, taking an ice skating exam with former Australian Olympian Companion Sharon Burley, whose father owned the rink.

Weekly Calisthenics classes in the 60’s were also a part of Janis’ early training experiences.

Since inception, Jan Pianta School of Dance or JPSD as it is now known, has had it studios in Paynesville RSL Hall,  Former C.W.A Building (now Bairnsdale Bridge Hall), Nagle College Drama Room, Rupert Street Rooms – former Bairnsdale Technical School, Picnic Point Hall and since 2003, JPSD operates out of the former Prince Albert Theatre – Cremin Hall.

During the late 1800’s and early 1900’s , Janis grandmother, Olive Hueton (street in Lucknow named after family name) performed on the stage in the old theatre building as a member of the original Bairnsdale Theatre Company, the stage now being one of JPSD studios.

Tertiary Qualifications

  • Grad. Dip of Creative Industries (Dance Teaching) – Queensland University of Technology
  • Grad. Dip of Education (Secondary Teaching) – Monash University Victoria
  • Grad. Certificate in Theology – Harvest College Melbourne
  • Bachelor General Studies (Law) – Griffiths University, Queensland
  • Diploma of Dance Teaching and Management – CUS50311 – ATOD
  • Cert. IV in Training and Assessment – TAE40110 – Livingston College W.A. (compulsory update in 2019 to TAE40116).

Further Dance Teaching Qualifications

  • SATD Associate Certificate –  Theatrical Jazz
  • SATD Junior Certificate – Theatrical Jazz
  • SFD – Teachers Certificate – Theatrical Jazz
  • GWT – Glenn Wood Tap Teachers Certificate – Tap
  • Step by Step – Classical Ballet Theory Certificate Course

Memberships / Registrations

  • Cecchetti Ballet Australia – since 2003
  • Australian Teachers of Dance – ATOD – since 2003
  • SFD – Foundation Member since 1987
  • Glenn Wood Tap – since 2003
  • ISTD – Since 2007
  • AUSDANCE – since early 80’s  –  (AusDance is a Government funding organisation that promotes dance in Australia with members having access to current information).
  • IADMS – International Association of Dance Medicine and Science
  • AICD – Australian Institute of Classical Dance
  • PBT – Progressive Ballet Technique

Awards / Recognition

  • Cecchetti Ballet Vic in conjunction with Energetiks Australia – Isolated Teachers Scholarship -2022
  • City of Sale Eisteddfod Adjudicator’s Choreographic Award for Lyrical solo performed beautifully by Chloe Moulton – 2022
  • Finalist in East Gippsland Business Awards – 2013
  • Cecchetti Ballet Isolated Teachers Scholarship – 2011
  • City of Sale Eisteddfod Adjudicator’s Choreographic Award for Contemporary solo performed beautifully by Semi Ruthford – 2009
  • Two page article about Jan Pianta’s teaching achievements in ‘Dance Australia’ Magazine 2009
  • Foundation Secretary and Member of East Gippsland / Bairnsdale First Dance Eisteddfod – 1992
  • JPSD – Best Recreational Entry in Bairnsdale Street Parades during 1990’s.
  • JPSD – Runner Up in Bairnsdale Street Parades during 1990’s.
  • Janis Pianta – Runner Up in Bairnsdale Talent Show held by former Marban Music – 1980’s.
  • Miss Blackburn Midget – 1960’s.


  • Latin, Jazz and Primitive Contemporary -Antonio Rodriquez (Company dancer with the Katherine Dunham Dance Company USA)
  • Jazz and Tap – Fayette Corlass-Brown Studios – Camberwell and Hawthorn in Melbourne (Teacher & former Channel Nine dancer and Choreographer), Eve Reddish School of Dance Bairnsdale –  SATD – Jazz and Tap.    All examinations taken from beginner level to Advanced.
  • Classical Ballet – Borovansky & SATD – Eve Reddish School of Dance Bairnsdale.  Examinations taken in Borovansky and SATD.
  • Classical Ballet – Cecchetti  –  Numerous Teachers and workshops (Victorian College of the Arts, Australian Ballet School, Queensland University)
  • Contemporary Dance – Workshops & training with: Adam Wheeler for ATOD, Graeme Murphy OBE & Janet Vernon OBE in conjunction with VCE Dance studies. Chubba McKay former dancer with Australian Ballet, and workshops at former Chunky Moves studios.

Professional Dancer / Choreographer

  • 2024 Bairnsdale Theatre Company Choreographer – Anything Goes Production
  • 2006 Bairnsdale Theatre Company Choreographer –  Oklahoma Production
  • Department of Education and Training – Joining the Chorus
  • 1978 – Tasman Talent Agency – Mr. Whytes Disco Fantasy Touring Group
  • Numerous solos/duos/troupes in all facets of dance styles for students entering competition and Eisteddfods and of course annual End of Year Performances at JPSD.

Dance Assessor / Tutor

  • 2021 – Completed Dance Eisteddfod Adjudicator Training – Transit Dance & Australian Institute of Education and Training.
  • 2021 – Certified Tutor – Progressive Ballet Technique (PBT)
  • 2016 – Australian College of Dance (ADC) in NSW.
  • 2003-2006 – Initiator of  ‘Certificate 11 in Dance (VET) in VCE at East Gippsland TAFE  (now Federation University)  for  students in  Sale and Bairnsdale campuses.