membership_btn links_btn accolades_btn contactus_btn



All of our courses are taught by working artists &
educators using quality materials in our climate controlled
art studio spaces at the Belle Levine Art Center. In all instances, we emphasize personal instruction and limited enrollment.
Our peforming arts courses will be offered in our gallery space
which features a Marley dance floor.

a note about registration:
To register please print out form available by link below and return to us via:
mail, hand deliver, scan and email, call
OR for after hours drop off, we have a locked drop box
available which is attached to the building and located
just to the right of our main entrance.

Advance registration is strongly recommended
as classes fill quickly. Please note that we do NOT pro-rate tuition.

Scroll down for details.

Click here for 2015 registration form





Drawing Fundamentals & Techniques with James Sparks
This course will improve confidence and ability in observational drawing and will explore textures, patterns and imaginative abstract forms. Work will be in charcoal, graphite & conte crayon with some projects on toned paper. One class will have a live model to enhance the figure drawing session. Materials list provided upon registration.
6 Tuesdays, 6:30-8:30pm
4/21, 4/28, 5/5, 5/12, 5/19, 5/26
$150/$145 PAC members


Driven to Abstraction with Jeanne Demotses
For students with some experience in painting in oil or acrylic.
In this workshop, students will explore strategies enabling them to observe, analyze, simplify and interpret the landscape. Using photographic sources and focusing on line, shape, color, scale and movement, students will develop abstract imagery to produce paintings in oil or acrylic.
3 Wednesdays from 9:30am-12:30pm
4/22, 4/29, 5/6

$130/$125 PAC members

Oil/Acrylic with Jeanne Demotses
This course will cover still life and photographic sources and focus on composition as well as the use and care of painting materials. The instructor will demonstrate various painting techniques and also offer critiques in a supportive atmosphere. This class is for students with some experience in painting in oils or acrylics. Materials list provided upon registration - easels will be provided. Register early, enrollment limited to 12.
6 Tuesdays from 1– 3:30 pm
4/21, 4/28, 5/5, 5/12, 5/19, 5/26
$180/$175 PAC members

Watercolor Beginner/Intermediate with Jeanne Demotses

Course covers principles of watercolor. Students will develop skills necessary to produce finished paintings. Demonstrations in composition, focal point and design will be covered Bring any watercolors, brushes and paper you have. Materials list provided by instructor at the first class. Register early, enrollment limited to 12.
6 Thursday’s from 1-3 pm   
4/23, 4/30, 5/7, 5/14, 5/21, 5/28
$150/$145 PAC members

Watercolor Intermediate/Advanced with Jeanne Demotses
Course will focus on still life and photographic resources, and explore the use of gouache and inks, and is designed for students with watercolor experience. Materials List provided upon registration. Register early, enrollment limited to 12.
6 Fridays 1-3 pm  
4/24, 5/1, 5/8, 5/15, 5/22, 5/29
$150/$145 PAC members

Exercising Your Creativity - A Workshop with Jeanne & Joann
This workshop is for you if you feel you have no time for art or can't draw a straight line. Using a variety of approaches and techniques, such as 1 minute sketches, with several familiar media, this is a workshop that will help you loosen up and expand your creativity.
Materials: One HB or #2 office pencil and a smile. All other materials will be provided by instructors, Jeanne Demotses and Joann Zwolski
Wednesday, May 13, 1-4pm
$80/$75 PAC members

Introduction To Painting Technique and Theory with Jim Sparks
Understanding and perceiving the nuance of color in still life, landscape and portrait painting - important component for understanding form and composition. This informative class will cultivate personal approaches to painting technique, color mixing and design. Work will be in acrylic or oil and will emphasize both traditional and contemporary attitudes towards subject matter.
6 Wednesdays, 7:30-9:30pm
4/24, 4/29, 5/6, 5/13, 5/20, 5/27
$150/$145 PAC members


• • • • •


PHOTOGRAPHY with Dr. Bernie Kessler
Personal Individual Instruction You Can Afford – Taught in the Artist’s Studio

Join Dr. Kessler in his studio in Yorktown to learn about any phase of digital photography that interests you, from buying a camera to printing, and everything in-between. Receive clear, uncomplicated instruction. Your creative journey begins with a two hour session in the photographer’s studio which is equipped with 4 printers, a 24" iMac and 2 PC laptops.
Private instruction available from Monday - Friday, 2-6pm;
Please call the office to register, Tues-Fri from 10-4pm at 845.803.8622
Small groups (max of 4) can be accommodated - rates would differ.
Payment is due in advance of the class.
Single Private Session @ $50; Three Private Sessions @ $135

• • • • •


Learn something new and polish your skills at one of the following 6-week clay course offerings. Classes provide personalized instruction and weekly demonstrations of projects and techniques. Personal exploration always encouraged.

Wheel Class from Beginner to Practiced Michael Cole
This 3-hour course provides a concentration on wheel throwing and is limited to 6 students so each has access to a wheel. Glazing techniques will also be developed. Hand building is always an option.
6 Tuesdays, 6:30- 9:30 pm
4/21, 4/28, 5/5, 5/12, 5/19, 5/26

$205/$200 PAC members plus 4 cents per cubic inch in materials/firing fees.

General Class from Beginner to Practiced with Michael Cole
In this course, all techniques will be explored including wheel throwing, hand-building and lead-free glazing; open to all levels and limited to 8 students.
6 Wednesdays, 7-9pm  
4/22, 4/29, 5/6, 5/13, 5/20, 5/27
$150/$145 PAC members plus 4 cents per cubic inch for materials/firing fees.

General Class from Beginner to Practiced with Maaike Hoekstra

In this course, all techniques will be explored including wheel throwing, hand-building and lead-free glazing; open to all levels and limited to 8 students.
6 Saturdays, 11am-1pm
4/25, 5/2, 5/9, 5/16, 5/23, 5/30
$150/$145 PAC members plus 4 cents per cubic inch for materials/firing fees.


Special offer
for $20 try one day/evening class without committing to a whole session. If you decide to continue with that offering, your $20 will be applied to the tuition. An affordable way to try something new!

• • • • •


• • • • •
Teen offerings in the Visual Arts:

Fundamentals of Drawing with Rosalie Marcus

Ages 11-14
This class will focus on building mind/eye/hand/body coordination, opening up to different ways of seeing, and applying those abilities to drawing.  The 6 basic drawing techniques of line, shape, volume, gesture, texture, and composition will be covered.  One of the main goals of this class will be to find the connection between what you see and imagine and the ability to express that on paper.   Beginners and more advanced students will be able to apply these skills at their own level, as the class will not be limited by group projects, but rather will focus on each student's personal development.
6 Wednesdays 6:00 – 7:00pm
4/29, 5/6, 5/13, 5/20, 5/27, 6/3
$100/$95 PAC member ($10 materials fee included

Portfolio Development with Jeanne Demotses
Ages 16 and over.
A preliminary assessment will be made covering past art courses taken, work done independently, student's strengths, weaknesses, and aspirations, as well as a review of  quantity and quality of work needed to prepare a portfolio for presentation to colleges and art schools. A series of exercises and projects will be designed to assist the student with the development of pieces needed for portfolio presentation for individual colleges.  Work will be done one-on-one with the instructor as well as independently.
$65 for a one hour private session. Call to schedule (845.803.8622)




peforming arts classes

& workshops for 16 to adult

private piano for ages

2nd grade through adult



Basic Ballet - Olenna Truskett
Ages 16-Adult
The perfect class for you if you have no ballet experience and always wanted to learn, or if you have not done apliéin some time! Come learn — or relearn — the basics of this exquisite art form, which is not only fun, but good for you, your posture, flexibility and strength. Classes will be taught in a comfortable and supportive environment, by the talented and experienced Olenna Truskett. Leotards and tights are not necessary; however, students should dress to be able to move with hair tied back. Ballet slippers are a must!
6 Wednesdays 6-7pm - 5/6, 5/13, 5/20, 5/27, 6/3 & 6/10
$130/$115 PAC members

Intermediate Tap with Mary Jane Houdina
Ages 16 - Adult
Start off your week the right way, with a high energy, exciting tap class with Mary Jane. Tap technique is taught to the experienced tapper, involving the entire body and utilizing light, quick footwork. There is a focus on attitude and quick study of combinations and details, where students are encouraged to put their own unique signature on movements.
Requirements: Four years of previous tap experience necessary.
Low heeled character shoes preferred.
6 Mondays 6 -7 pm - 5/4, 5/11, 5/18 (no class 5/25), 6/1, 6/8 and 6/15
$130/$115 for PAC members

Group Cabaret with Marci Elyn Schein (limited enrollment)
Ages 16-Adult
Explore your vocal range as you prepare your own songs to perform, cabaret style! Marci has amazing skills and vast training, and will bring out talents you never knew existed! Come with your own song choices, or have Marci choose a song that best matches your style! Course will culminate in a performance TBD.
6 Thursdays 7-8pm - 4/30, 5/7, 5/14, 5/21, 5/28 and 6/4
$130/$115 PAC members

Ages: 2nd grade through adult.
Private PIANO lessons with Mark Snyder
Learn piano from Jilliard trained Mark Snyder, an educator and performer whose innovative teaching syle enhances the learning experience and encourages positive results.
30 minute lessons, after school, evenings and weekends.
$50/hour. Call to schedule.


• • • • •


Audition Prep for Teen & Adults with Marci Elyn Schein
Prepare for that next theater audition, college audition or your next High School Musical
with Marci’s expertise as she assists you in developing your song (including NYSSMA songs) and monologue choice, and gives you pointers on how to best succeed in your audition.
$75.00 for one hour private session-Call 845.803.8622 to schedule lessons @ PAC.

Private Voice and Acting Lessons for ages 8 to 80 with Marci Elyn Schein
Join Marci and get personal, hands-on performance instruction, in either voice or acting, or both! Marci’s students have performed in Broadway, Off Broadway and Regional productions.
$75.00 for one hour instruction Call to schedule 845.803.8622 lessons @ PAC



Registration Hours: Tuesday - Friday from 11am-3pm



Click here for registration form.

Advance registration is required for ALL classes & workshops. Classes are registration driven and can only take place with sufficient enrollment. Please register early so that we do not cancel a class. Do not appear for a class if you have not already registered with the office.

REGISTRATION can be done in person, by mail, by email or phone. Please access our registration form and get it to our office when completed with your payment. Payment forms accepted include cash, MC/Visa, personal check or money order along with the form and can be hand-delivered, mailed, scanned & emailed or call.

We attempt to accommodate everyone but we:

REFUND POLICY: NO REFUNDS WILL BE GRANTED AFTER THE FIRST CLASS MEETING, without a doctor's note. Full refunds are issued for classes cancelled by the Putnam Arts Council.

ABOUT MATERIALS: Adult Classes may require materials and a list will be provided upon registration. Youth classes include all materials unless stated.

CLOSINGS/CANCELLATIONS: It is the policy of the Putnam Arts Council to follow the Mahopac Schools for weather delays/closings. This information is available at WHUD, 100.7 FM and on their website, and

Our Faculty of Teaching Artists - adult offerings


Monica Cioffi
Monica is a student at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy, and has been dancing since age three. She began her studies with ballet, but continued her extensive training by adding tap, jazz and modern. She has trained at Logrea Dance Academy, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Ellison Ballet, and American Ballet Theater. She loves the performing arts and is excited to join the Putnam Arts Council team of instructors!

Michael Cole
Michael, a resident of Mahopac since 1997, took a pottery class in August 2011 and has quickly developed a new passion for throwing pottery on the wheel. A “Recovering Actor” (having performed in musical theatre productions in New York and across the country), he makes his living as personal assistant to Stephen Schwartz, composer and lyricist of the Broadway shows GODSPELL, PIPPIN and WICKED (among others). Mr. Cole’s voice can be heard on the soundtracks of the DreamWorks animated feature Prince of Egypt, the Wonderful World of Disney television special Geppetto and Disney’s live-action feature Enchanted. Other passions include home improvement and waterskiing. On pottery: "I'm particularly drawn to the idea of altering the basic wheel-thrown form, the sculptural aspects of pottery and juxtaposing finer elements with the more 'earthy' bisque-ware."

Jeanne Demotses
Jeanne's primary medium is oil. She also often works in watercolor, acrylic, pastel, monotype and collage. She experiments in making her own paper to use as a ground for her pastel work, and uses the paper as a collage element. Her work ranges from the figurative to the abstract and often combines aspects of both. Jeanne's paintings are in many collections in the U.S. and in Europe. She maintains a studio in Peekskill and is a member of that community's growing artist district. In addition to her classes at the Putnam Arts Council, she also teaches oil and watercolor painting at other schools, and portrait painting in her studio. Jeanne studied art at Hunter College, the Art Students League and the Westchester Art Workshop.

Karen Herbst
An artist-educator and workshop instructor, her interests include children’s book illustration, painting, printmaking, mixed media collage and exploring the image-word connection in her art journals. She encourages experimentation with many art forms and believes there are no mistakes in the creative process, only opportunities to learn and grow. She received her BS in Art Education from Kuztown State University and her MA in Studio Art from the College of New Rochelle and has recently retired after teaching art for 32 years in the Pleasantville school district.

Mary Jane Houdina
Mary Jane has had a varied and prolific past in the performing arts. She was associate choreographer for the movie THE GREAT GATSBY and tap consultant for Peter Allen at Radio City Music Hall. On Broadway, she was associate choreographer for the original ANNIE, and choreographer for INTO THE LIGHT. Regional theatre productions have seen her work in a myriad of musicals, including OKLAHOMA! star Jean Stapleton, FOLLIES star Juliette Prowse, and SHOWBOAT star Gavin MacLeod. She is the 1998 Barrymore Award recipient for her choreography for CRAZY FOR YOU at the Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia, and Barrymore nominee in 2001 for SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN, and in 2006 for 42nd ST. On TV shechoreographed The ADVENTURES of SLIM GOODBODY IN NUTI-CITY for Captain

Gina Keidong
A practicing artist and art teacher, formally trained at SUNY New Paltz in Art Education with a focus in ceramics, she currently teaches in Croton-Harmon High School. Gina has been working with clay as a medium for over 10 years. From throwing to hand building Gina takes a holistic approach to teaching ceramics reaching out to her students individually, taking them from the point they are at to the next stage in creating.

Dr. Bernie Kessler
Bernie Kessler has been an award winning photographer for over 50 years, exploring and celebrating the beauty of nature, including human nature. His images have been exhibited internationally and are in corporate and private collections. He is recognized as an outstanding teacher. His ease of style creates a non-threatening learning environment. Students have fun and feel very personally inspired as they improve their photographic skills.

Deb Lecce
In 1971, while still in high school, she first embraced clay. As she wandered the halls searching for the stone carving room, she stumbled upon the clay studio. Looking back at it now, this was and is the only time that she had ever been grateful for her lack of directional skills. She observed the students at their wheels, and the hand builders shaping expression into developing forms. She was enamored. From this moment on she knew that clay was my passion. The potter’s wheel is her primary tool. It allows her to create a canvas for embellishment while also challenging the physical boundaries of the medium. Wavering rims, darted forms, and paddled surfaces help her discover which direction a piece will go. She has attended Alfred University, Penland, Haystack, as well as Peters Valley. She co-created Clayworks on Columbia, Brooklyn, NY.

Rosalie Marcus
Rosalie is a painter, illustrator, and graphic designer.  She has exhibited her paintings in New York, New Jersey, Colorado, Nova Scotia, and California.  Her art work has been reviewed in many newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, The Bergen Record (NJ), and ArtNews Magazine.  Rosalie has also designed books, fabric, housewares, brochures and corporate logos for such clients as Warner Communications, King Features, Bloomingdales, and The National Organization of Women.  She was also an art director for a housewares company.  She attended Cornell University, got her BFA from Nova Scotia College of Art & Design, and her MFA from California Institute of the Arts.  Locally, Rosalie has taught art workshops at the Mahopac Public Library, at the after school program at Fulmar Road School, and is presently teaching drawing at PAC.

Marci Elyn Schein
Marci is a performer in jazz and classical vocal music and all disciplines of musical theatre, as well as a producer, director, musical director, vocal coach and proud member of Actors Equity Association. She most recently played the Adult Female and was the Musical Director for the Garage Theatre Group's production of Spring Awakening. She currently concertizes and records for composer Philip Springer (Santa Baby, How Little We Know). She has entertained audiences of over 14,000 at Tavern on the Green for the NYC Marathon multiple times. Marci has been featured on numerous CD’s: HOT MAMAS LIVE, HOMEWARD BOUND (Philip Springer) and THE HOPELESS ROMANTIC COLLECTION CD (Michael Ficocelli ) and many more. Marci has originated many roles off Broadway and regionally including the role of Selena Peake in SO BIG (based on the Pulitzer Prize winning book by Edna Ferber), sharing the stage with Broadway veterans such as J. Mark McVey, Loni Ackerman, Joe Kolinsky, Bruce Sabbath and more. Regionally, she has performed in such shows as FOOTLOOSE, THE KING AND I, COMPANY, SIDE BY SIDE BY SONDHEIM and many others as well as performing her Cabaret show in Atlantic City, Foxwoods Resorts and numerous venues throughout the east coast. She holds a Bachelor of Music in voice (classical and jazz) and theatre. As a jazz vocalist Marci has performed with an array of jazz greats some of which include, Jeremy Wall (Spyro Gyra), Joel Rosenblatt (Spyro Gyra) and Dave Weckl (Chic Corea), to name a few. Please visit for more info.

James Sparks
Jim is a prolific painter and photographer whose work has been shown and collected country-wide. His special talent and energetic style as a teaching artist is widely known. His experience ranges from elementary level on up, with particular emphasis on college level instruction in art history, drawing, photography and painting (College of Mt. Saint Vincent, Bronx Community College, Connecticut Institute of Art and others). His BFA in Painting is from Washington University and MFA from the University of Southern California.

Christopher Staples
An award-winning mixed media artist and workshop leader, Staples cross pollinates collage and printmaking with painting and drawing in her abstract works. Combining words and images is of specific interest. She has a passion for bringing new and rich creative experiences to people of all levels of artistic ability, opening and pushing the boundaries for the creative voice she believes is inherent in all of us. She has a studio in a converted barn, is Executive Director of LOOK | ART, and exhibits regionally. Further information is available at

Olenna Truskett
Olenna Truskett has enjoyed many artistic endeavors as a dancer and choreographer. As a child, she relished ballet classes in the US, Japan, the Philippines, and Iran. As a teenager, she trained with Mary Marshall in Virginia, and at the Harkness and Joffrey schools in New York. At the College of William and Mary, she studied modern dance and worked summers at Busch Gardens, clogging and being cut in half 5 times a day during a magic show! Settling into an engineering career, she moonlighted for many years, dancing and choreographing for the Fairfax Ballet in Virginia and Lee Harper & Dancers in Georgia. She later taught dance at Northern Westchester Center for the Arts, helped incorporate and run Prelude Ballet Ensemble, a nonprofit youth company in Putnam Co., and served as faculty at several William and Mary summer dance intensives. Currently, she indulges in dance classes at Union Hall Studio in North Salem with other dance enthusiasts and serves on the Board of the Southeast Cultural Arts Coalition with the mission to renovate and open a performing arts theater above the Studio Around the Corner at the Old Town Hall in Brewster.

Joann Zwolski
Joann works with a wide variety of mediums. Her work visually expresses a passion for line and color. Her palette is full of brilliant hues from a wide spectrum. She combines both abstract and thematic elements in her "works on paper". She has exhibited through solo and group shows in the tri-state area and Delaware. Joann received her BFA from Pratt Institute and her MA from the College of New Rochelle. She has taught art for over thirty-five years to students from kindergarten to high school and has been teaching adults drawing for the past several years in a variety of places.


What's going on in our

features PAC member artists

Find us here too!facebook

Watch For Additional Visual Arts Classes And Workshops To Be Announced Soon - For Adults And Children.


Sign up for a one-on-one hour long portfolio review with one of our teaching artists.

Student rate $50, all others $100

Call for additional information


PAC’s programs and services are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and NY State Legislature. Public support is also provided by Putnam County Government. 
Additional revenue is generated by the Putnam Arts Council through membership, educational and creative programs, fundraising efforts and through donations from the public and private sectors.



Web Design by Tabitha Pearson Marshall | Web Development by HowCreative Design Group | ©2012 Putnam Arts Council