Danielle J Rayley, known to most as DJ, began studying dance with Shanon Barker at the early age of three. Shanon mentored DJ in Hula, Tap, Jazz, and Baton. DJ's early enthusiasm and talent lead to entry in local pageant shows such as, The Paper Doll, in which she won first place, and the title "Miss Paper Doll", with her baton skills.
During her adolescent years, DJ participated in the Jefferson High School Out-reach Arts Program where she was introduced to theater, and continued her studies in dance. In the spring of 1987, DJ auditioned and was accepted into Jefferson High School full-time and began to participate in the Performing Arts Program five days a week. The program gave dancers top-notch foundations in Tap, Jazz, Ballet, Modern, and African dance. DJ not only committed to the rigorous dance schedule, but also pushed forward in her theater studies.
During her many years in dance and theater, DJ has been involved in a myriad of performances: Starry Night, Cora Smith's Fashion Shows, Off the Streets kids dance programs, summer camps, Hip Hop club competitions, Woodburn High School Dance Team, Relay for Breast Cancer, Portland Parks and Recreations, local high school talent shows, and Portland Cable Access shows. She also performed a solo in Sanctuary (directed by Keith V. Goodman), and directed open house performance programs and the award winning choreography for On The Edge, an inline skate dance team.
DJ's theater and dance career have given her the opportunity to do what
she loves most... to choreography and to instruct up-and-coming artists.
She is currently involved in a variety of dance institutes: Sellwood Community
Center, Laurelhurst Studio, Mt. Scott Community Center, Dishman Community
Center, Woodburn Parks and Recs., Innovative Dance Studio, Woodburn High
School Dance Team, Reed College, Eastside Dance Studio, and right here
at the Stites Performing Arts Center.
In April of 2002, DJ took her career one step further and became the director of her own dance company, SNAP!, incorporating her vast background and unique styles in Hip Hop, Funk Tap, and theater.