tmmedia_01335-Edit-Caitlin Lee

We offer classes in a variety of styles.

Ballet – Ballet has its roots in the Renaissance period, when European courts would feature concert-style performances featuring graceful and athletic dancers. Over time, a highly-technical vocabulary was developed and the movements were codified into a set curriculum.

Our instructors are certified to teach both the R.A.D. and I.S.T.D. syllabus. Both the Royal Academy of Dance (R.A.D.) and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance (I.S.T.D) syllabuses are internationally recognized and considered to be among the best training programs in the world.

Dancers will build a strong technical foundation, learn proper alignment, and develop their strength and flexibility. Classes feature barre work (exercises at the barre), adagio (slow and graceful strengthening sequences), and center and across-the-floor combinations.

Angelina Ballerina Ballet

(3 to 6 years old)

Angelina Ballerina, the world-famous dance character from the beloved children’s book series, is a little star with big dreams of becoming a prima ballerina. When little girls share in Angelina’s experiences, they are inspired to go after their big dreams too.

This ballet program is geared towards the recreational ballet dancer who LOVES Angelina Ballerina.  It features the Angelina Ballerina course syllabus and is full of fun extras like completion certificates, interactive iPhone and iPad apps, and even life character appearances!

Jazz – Jazz dance originated in the late 19th century, and was greatly influenced by jazz music and traditional Caribbean dances. Choreographer Bob Fosse modernized jazz dance and catapulted it into the mainstream where it was featured in Broadway musicals such as Chicago and Cabaret. Today, contemporary jazz has evolved into a very expressive and broad art form, often accompanied by pop music, and is seen in music videos, movies, and live theatre. Though the style of jazz dance is continually evolving, the fundamental technical areas (kicks, turns, jumps and footwork) remain consistent.

Jazz classes at VAD feature a follow-along warm up, centre or across-the-floor exercises, and combinations.

Lyrical- Lyrical dance is a hybrid style which has developed over the last 30 years, and is heavily influenced by ballet and jazz technique. The distinguishing feature of lyrical dance is that the dancers must emote or interpret the lyrics of the music with their movement and facial expressions. The emotions expressed through lyrical dance can include sadness, joy, heart break, anger, and pain.

At VAD, each lyrical class will include a follow-along warm up, center or across-the-floor exercises, combinations, and emotive exercises (exercises designed to help dancers convey emotion with their facial expressions and bodies.)

Tap – Tap has its roots in traditional African American dances, as well as Irish stepping/clogging. It was popularized in the 1800’s with the emergence of minstrel shows and the Vaudeville performance scene. Today, tap dancers wear leather shoes with metal plates called ‘taps’ on the soles and heels, which they strike on the floor to create complex rhythms.

Our classes start with a follow-along warm up, followed by across-the-floor exercises, technical drills and choreography combinations. An emphasis is placed on teaching the technical names of each step. Once a solid foundation is established, the basic steps are combined into increasingly more challenging sequences while rhythm, speed, and clarity are developed.

Hip Hop – Hip hop dance originated in the 1970’s and is derived from one of the four pillars of hip hop culture, which include MCing, DJing, graffiti writing and B-boying/breakdancing. Traditionally hip hop dance was restricted to breakdancing (see below) only. Over time however, hip hop dance has evolved to encompass a broader range movements and has developed into an independent genre in its own right. Modern-day hip hop dance is done to a variety of music styles, however rap, hip hop, funk, pop and R and B tend to be the most common.

At VAD, hip hop classes start with a follow-along warm up and may include technical drills (waving, popping, locking, or footwork for example) and across the floor exercises. The majority of class time will be spent developing combinations (sequences of movements) in the centre.

Breakdancing/Breaking – Breakdance, or ‘breaking’ originated in the African and Hispanic communities of New York City during the 1970’s. It is one of the four pillars of hip hop culture (the others being MCing, DJing and graffiti writing), and started out as a street art form practiced in ‘crews’ or tight-knit groups of dancers such as the Rock Steady Crew or The New York City Breakers. Today many breakers learn to dance in a studio-setting as opposed to the street, however many crews still do practise in public spaces.

Our breaking classes feature a follow-along warm up, with great emphasis placed on properly warming up the wrists, shoulders and upper body. Class time is spent learning the fundamental technical areas which include: top rock (standing footwork), down rock (floor work), power moves (explosive acrobatic moves requiring strength and agility) and freezes (holding the body in a controlled position).

KPOP- KPOP dance is inspired by the dance moves made famous in the music videos of Korea’s KPOP stars (Psy, 2NE1, Big Bang, Girl’s Generation, G-Dragon, F(x) etc.)

Our classes feature a ‘follow along’ warm up, sit ups, and stretching followed by original choreography (no dance covers!).

Chinese – Chinese dance is a venerable and respected art form, which originated from religious and cultural ceremonies and was praised for its ability to connect the mind and body. Over time, Chinese dance expanded into the royal courts and theatres, and was used to celebrate military victories and promote political ideology. Despite being banned during the Cultural Revolution, Chinese dance has proved a resilient art form and still survives today.

At VAD, the cultural integrity of Chinese dance is preserved. We teach classical, folk and national minority dances, which are highly athletic and visual in nature. Classes feature a follow-along warm up, and exercises for physical conditioning and flexibility. An emphasis is placed on traditional choreography, stage presentation and prop work (such as ribbons, fans, chopsticks and baskets).

Musical Theatre – Musical theatre combines dancing, acting and singing into one discipline. It is thought to have originated in the 19th century with the works of Gilbert and Sullivan. It quickly gained popularity in North America, where distinctly American interpretations were performed on New York City’s now-famous Broadway strip. Contemporary musical theatre has been expanded to include virtually all styles of music and dance, and has been featured on television and movies (I.e. Glee, Grease, and Rent) in addition to live theatre.

Our classes focus on basic singing technique, a broad variety of dance steps, and acting. Class structure varies depending on the classes’ progress, however students can generally expect to learn a song and choreography to go with it.

Acrobatics/Flexibility/Contortion – Acro/flexibility/contortion is combination of gymnastics and dance technique. It is an excellent conditioning class where students will learn to develop their extensions and flexibility beyond conventional norms.

Each class will begin with a warm up, followed by training exercises. Special equipment such as mats or supports is often used to ensure a safe working environment. We find students who start young and continue into adolescence have the best results, which carry over into their other dance classes.

Stretch & Strength – Stretch & strength is primarily a conditioning class meant to supplement other training. Students will perform a variety of low impact strengthening and resistance exercises. They will also focus on improving their flexibility and extensions.

Ballroom Dance –Ballroom dance originated in the Renaissance period as a social art form, where people would meet in grand ballrooms to dance in pairs. Over time, the genre has been expanded to refer to a variety of styles, all originating from different countries and regions. Contemporary ballroom dance is not always performed in pairs, as modern practitioners have recognized the need for solo or group choreography.

At VAD, you can expect to learn two basic styles: Standard (slow waltz, foxtrot, quickstep, tango and Viennese Waltz) and Latin (Cha Cha, Samba, Rumba, and Jive). The classes are predominately footwork based, and incorporate both paired and solo/group choreography. No partner is necessary to join our ballroom classes!