Jennalee Desjardins   Program Coordinator Hip Hop Instructor   Jennalee is as a passionate and fun-loving teacher and mentor. She grew up studying many forms of dance, including Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre, Acadian and Highland, but fell in love with Hip Hop the most. She landed many roles for stage, print and television, including a national television campaign for YTV.  Jennalee has been fortunate enough to perform in WOD Toronto, the East Coast Dance Concert in Washington D.C., and the Culture Shock International Showcase in L.A. (2011) and San Diego (2012). Since joining City Dance Corps in 2013, Jennalee has won the hearts of all her students, from young to old and her classes are always infused with a deep connection to the roots of Hip Hip while maintaining fun and energy.

Jennalee Desjardins
Program Coordinator
Hip Hop Instructor

Jennalee is as a passionate and fun-loving teacher and mentor. She grew up studying many forms of dance, including Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre, Acadian and Highland, but fell in love with Hip Hop the most. She landed many roles for stage, print and television, including a national television campaign for YTV.

Jennalee has been fortunate enough to perform in WOD Toronto, the East Coast Dance Concert in Washington D.C., and the Culture Shock International Showcase in L.A. (2011) and San Diego (2012). Since joining City Dance Corps in 2013, Jennalee has won the hearts of all her students, from young to old and her classes are always infused with a deep connection to the roots of Hip Hip while maintaining fun and energy.

Christopher Knowles   Contemporary   Born in Miramichi, New Brunswick. Chris is a graduate of the George Brown Dance College. After graduating he became the artistic director of Precision Dance Company and co-created a Canadian East Coast event called “The Entity Tour” that inspired and trained students every summer since 2014.  Christopher has had the opportunity to choreograph for George Brown College students for their graduation show “Unleashed” as well as their summer commercial dance program performance. He was also honored to create work at “Toronto’s Choreographers Ball ” ,“Fever After Dark “ as well as “Dance Weekend” for Dance Ontario! All events showcasing Toronto’s professional working talent in the industry.

Christopher Knowles
Contemporary

Born in Miramichi, New Brunswick. Chris is a graduate of the George Brown Dance College. After graduating he became the artistic director of Precision Dance Company and co-created a Canadian East Coast event called “The Entity Tour” that inspired and trained students every summer since 2014.

Christopher has had the opportunity to choreograph for George Brown College students for their graduation show “Unleashed” as well as their summer commercial dance program performance. He was also honored to create work at “Toronto’s Choreographers Ball ” ,“Fever After Dark “ as well as “Dance Weekend” for Dance Ontario! All events showcasing Toronto’s professional working talent in the industry.

Natalie Chung   Acro, Jazz Funk, Flexibility   Natalie Chung is a dancer, teacher and emerging choreographer based in Toronto, Canada. She trained for eleven years at Denise Lester Dance Academy in ballet, modern, jazz, tap, hip-hop, contemporary and musical theatre. After receiving her British Association of Teacher of Dancing certification, she went to further her education at Rosedale Heights School of the Arts in Toronto, performing and training under an intensive dance curriculum as well as within the select Rosedale Heights Dance Company. An Honours graduate from York University’s School of Art, Media, Performance and Design in 2016, she trained in modern and ballet styles at York University in the Choreographic and Performance stream in their BFA Dance program. Throughout her intensive training and studies, Chung trained among ballet experts and modern dance pioneers such as Tracy Norman, Susan Lee, Helen Jones, Candice Helm, Julia Sasso, Carol Anderson, Holly Small and John Ottmann. Keeping up her training she recently has, trained in contemporary under Allison Bradley and the ommercial program with Hollywood Jade with the DARK Dance Company. As an evolving artist her goals in life are to perform and dance worldwide.

Natalie Chung
Acro, Jazz Funk, Flexibility

Natalie Chung is a dancer, teacher and emerging choreographer based in Toronto, Canada. She trained for eleven years at Denise Lester Dance Academy in ballet, modern, jazz, tap, hip-hop, contemporary and musical theatre. After receiving her British Association of Teacher of Dancing certification, she went to further her education at Rosedale Heights School of the Arts in Toronto, performing and training under an intensive dance curriculum as well as within the select Rosedale Heights Dance Company. An Honours graduate from York University’s School of Art, Media, Performance and Design in 2016, she trained in modern and ballet styles at York University in the Choreographic and Performance stream in their BFA Dance program. Throughout her intensive training and studies, Chung trained among ballet experts and modern dance pioneers such as Tracy Norman, Susan Lee, Helen Jones, Candice Helm, Julia Sasso, Carol Anderson, Holly Small and John Ottmann. Keeping up her training she recently has, trained in contemporary under Allison Bradley and the ommercial program with Hollywood Jade with the DARK Dance Company. As an evolving artist her goals in life are to perform and dance worldwide.

 
Esra Leia    RAD Ballet   From a young age, Esra has been passionate about sharing her love for dance with others. With a background in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, and Contemporary dance, she has had the opportunity to perform recreationally and competitively for over a decade. Esra studied ballet throughout her childhood and adolescence through the Royal Academy of Dance, completing all the graded and vocational examinations up to Solo Seal. After training at the Ontario School of Ballet and Related Arts for 10 years, she began her studies at Ryerson University in the Early Childhood Studies program. Esra has simultaneously been working to complete the Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies programme through the Royal Academy of Dance in order to become a certified ballet teacher with the RAD. The combination of these two programs has shaped Esra’s philosophy of teaching; through inclusion and differentiated instruction, her goal is to create a playful and safe atmosphere for children to physically explore their bodies and express their emotions.

Esra Leia

RAD Ballet

From a young age, Esra has been passionate about sharing her love for dance with others. With a background in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, and Contemporary dance, she has had the opportunity to perform recreationally and competitively for over a decade. Esra studied ballet throughout her childhood and adolescence through the Royal Academy of Dance, completing all the graded and vocational examinations up to Solo Seal. After training at the Ontario School of Ballet and Related Arts for 10 years, she began her studies at Ryerson University in the Early Childhood Studies program. Esra has simultaneously been working to complete the Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies programme through the Royal Academy of Dance in order to become a certified ballet teacher with the RAD. The combination of these two programs has shaped Esra’s philosophy of teaching; through inclusion and differentiated instruction, her goal is to create a playful and safe atmosphere for children to physically explore their bodies and express their emotions.

Sarah Schmidt    Ballet   Sarah is an experienced dancer and an avid academic of the art of dance and science. Having graduated from the Carousel Dance Centre, where she studied Ballet, Jazz, Modern, as well as Composition, lyrical, contemporary, african dance, ballroom and countless others. Sarah completed several RAD exams from the children’s exams to the Advanced Two level as well as participating in the Carousel Dance Company and Touring Company for a number of years. Sarah has also had the honour of attending two Dance and the Child International conferences (DaCI) in Taipei, Taiwan 2012 as well as Copenhagen, Denmark 2015 where she had the opportunity to work with choreographers, professionals and academics from around the globe. Recently, Sarah completed an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology with a focus on injuries, children and exercise, and the biomechanics and physiology of exercise and has expanded her knowledge of dance at any opportunity, including adding Tap to her arsenal of styles. Teaching dance since 2012, she loves to inspire others to push their limits and is so excited to be a part of the CDC Youth Teachers team!

Sarah Schmidt

Ballet

Sarah is an experienced dancer and an avid academic of the art of dance and science. Having graduated from the Carousel Dance Centre, where she studied Ballet, Jazz, Modern, as well as Composition, lyrical, contemporary, african dance, ballroom and countless others. Sarah completed several RAD exams from the children’s exams to the Advanced Two level as well as participating in the Carousel Dance Company and Touring Company for a number of years. Sarah has also had the honour of attending two Dance and the Child International conferences (DaCI) in Taipei, Taiwan 2012 as well as Copenhagen, Denmark 2015 where she had the opportunity to work with choreographers, professionals and academics from around the globe. Recently, Sarah completed an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology with a focus on injuries, children and exercise, and the biomechanics and physiology of exercise and has expanded her knowledge of dance at any opportunity, including adding Tap to her arsenal of styles. Teaching dance since 2012, she loves to inspire others to push their limits and is so excited to be a part of the CDC Youth Teachers team!

Samantha Varona    Intro to Dance, Parent & Tot, Hip Hop   Samantha has been fortunate enough to train in various styles over the years! Growing up, Samantha, was a competitive dancer, which helped cement her technical foundations. After high school, she attended Ryerson University for Performance Dance. Having completed a year, she decided to further her craft at Broadway Dance Center in New York City. Samantha, then started teaching in the United Kingdom, but her plans were cut short when she was accepted to do an internship in Los Angeles with Dana Foglia Dance. Armed with new information and ongoing inspiration, this Toronto native is back and is constantly spreading her gift with those around her.

Samantha Varona

Intro to Dance, Parent & Tot, Hip Hop

Samantha has been fortunate enough to train in various styles over the years! Growing up, Samantha, was a competitive dancer, which helped cement her technical foundations. After high school, she attended Ryerson University for Performance Dance. Having completed a year, she decided to further her craft at Broadway Dance Center in New York City. Samantha, then started teaching in the United Kingdom, but her plans were cut short when she was accepted to do an internship in Los Angeles with Dana Foglia Dance. Armed with new information and ongoing inspiration, this Toronto native is back and is constantly spreading her gift with those around her.

 
Dorian Grant    Tap   Dorian Grant has been actively training in dance for 24 year­s in Tap, Jazz, Ballet, Modern, Hip-Hop, Contemporary and Musical Theatre styles. He has also been teaching and choreog­raphing for over 10 years. It started at the age of 3 when he beg­an Tap dancing. This was after his mother caught him attempt­ing to reenact Shirl­ey Temple movies on the living room coff­ee table. He spent much of his childhood training and in dance studios for different compe­titions around the GTA and the United State­s. At 14, he was acc­epted into Cawthra Park Secondary School­’s Regional Arts Pro­gram for Dance. Over the years, he has performed on li­ve television (TSN, Roger’s, YTV), and at various venues in North America (St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, Canadian St­age, and Disney Worl­d). Dorian has train­ed with many successful choreographers and chore­ographed hip-hop, tap and musical theatre shows and classes for all ages includi­ng the Fringe Kids Festival, numerous da­nce studio recitals in Toron­to, and various thea­tre productions including with his dance ensemble, Good Job Sally.

Dorian Grant

Tap

Dorian Grant has been actively training in dance for 24 year­s in Tap, Jazz, Ballet, Modern, Hip-Hop, Contemporary and Musical Theatre styles. He has also been teaching and choreog­raphing for over 10 years. It started at the age of 3 when he beg­an Tap dancing. This was after his mother caught him attempt­ing to reenact Shirl­ey Temple movies on the living room coff­ee table. He spent much of his childhood training and in dance studios for different compe­titions around the GTA and the United State­s. At 14, he was acc­epted into Cawthra Park Secondary School­’s Regional Arts Pro­gram for Dance. Over the years, he has performed on li­ve television (TSN, Roger’s, YTV), and at various venues in North America (St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, Canadian St­age, and Disney Worl­d). Dorian has train­ed with many successful choreographers and chore­ographed hip-hop, tap and musical theatre shows and classes for all ages includi­ng the Fringe Kids Festival, numerous da­nce studio recitals in Toron­to, and various thea­tre productions including with his dance ensemble, Good Job Sally.

Emily%27s+headshot-5.jpg

Emily Rapley

Jazz, Contemporary

Emily Rapley, from Simcoe Ontario has been studying dance with a focus on contemporary, modern and ballet. She has had the privilege to train and perform with Ballet Jorgen, and ProArteDanza, and has performed in original works by, Carol Anderson, Susan Lee, Michael Greyeyes, Allison McCaughy, Jasmyn Fyffe and Roberto Campanella. Emily graduated from York University with a BFA in dance, specializing in choreography and performance. Currently she is working on original work as well as  practicing and performing in the Toronto dance community.