2019-2020 Dance Faculty and Programs Announced

Professional Training Program

It is with immense pleasure that Pro Arté Centre proudly announces the dance faculty and programs for the 2019-2020 Dance Year. 

While we are still adding to our Faculty/Workshop/Adjunct Team (stay tuned for future news!), our full-time faculty includes:

Beverley Bagg (Protégé Program Director),

Jocelyn Wozencroft (Protégé Program Associate),

Roxane McConnachie (Senior Associate),

Amber Funk Barton (Contemporary),

Dr. Gina Oh (Musical Theatre/Voice),

Dawn Kozol (Ballet, Preschool),

Sophia Curalli (Ballet, Modern, Broadway Jazz),

Alisha Ahmadi (Ballet, Modern, Contemporary, Acro, Tap),

Montana Moore (Industry: Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip Hop),

Rosie Lewis (Modern, Jazz, Lyrical),

Alex Christian (Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip Hop),

Jaden Turner (Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Street Jazz). 

Astrid Sherman will continue as Adjunct Faculty. 

Programs offered at Pro Arté Centre for the 2019-2020 year include:

Half-Day Program:

Protégé Program.  Intensive classical/contemporary training in small class format.  Different levels offered in a Half-day or Condensed Week format.  These programs are by audition/placement only with limited enrollment in each class.  Students in these programs are offered international competition opportunities, local performance opportunities as well as collaborative events with other arts groups and an individualized training strategy that is unique to their personal goals and objectives.  Please contact protege@proarte.ca for more information and to set up an interview for placement.  Students must be training at an Intermediate Foundation level or have the permission of the Protégé Program Director.  Weekly hourly commitment:  14+ hours (Condensed) to 20+ hours  Prospective candidates are encourage to attend the Parent Meeting on Friday, May 17th at 7:30 to hear more about the program’s options and placement levels.

After School Programs:

Pro Arté Centre offers a wide variety of training options for students who are interested in a once-a-week class as well as planned programs that offer competition/festival and performance possibilities.  The 2019-2020 Schedule will be released shortly but here is a “snapshot” of the streamed programs (class combinations) for the new year:

Pre-Protégé Program: An afterschool program for students who express a keen interest in technical training who have not yet reached the Intermediate Foundation level.  This program has limited enrolment and is by application and invitation only.  Competition and performance opportunities are offered as part of the program.  Please contact pre-protege@proarte.ca for more information or application.  Weekly hourly commitment:  8+ hours 

Industry Program:  For those students (ages 11+) who are interested in commercial dance, this program provides training specifically focused on styles of dance including jazz, lyrical contemporary, acro, hip hop, street jazz supported by the best of technical ballet training.   Competition and performance opportunities are optional.  Weekly hourly commitment for competition/performances:  Minimum 4 hours

Junior/Intermediate Programs:  After school programs for students ages 6-11 that offer training in ballet, modern, contemporary, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, acrobatics, tap, musical theatre, voice and acting.  Competition and performance opportunities are optional.  Weekly hourly commitment for competition/performances:  Minimum 4 hours

Future Stars Program:  For young students (Ages 5-6) who are keen to dance and experience a variety of dance styles offered by faculty that are passionate about sharing their love of dance!  Competition and performance opportunities are optional. Weekly hourly commitment for competition/performances:  Minimum 4 hours

Preschool Program:  Parents who are interested in giving their children opportunity to explore creative movement will find these classes are perfect for laying the foundations for any future dance or athletic efforts.  (Remember – even football players take ballet classes!)

We welcome your questions about our programs and are excited to share our new schedule next week!  A Parent Meeting for our Streamed Programs (Including our Protégé Program) will be held on Friday, May 17th at 7:30

Sarah R. Ahmadi – Executive Director, Pro Arté Centre

Youth 4 Yule

Pro Arté Centre is proud to present the annual Youth 4 Yule featuring members of the Protégé, Pre-Protégé and Accelerated Programs.  With Special Guests Lions Gate Youth Orchestra, members of CatchingART Contemporary Ballet Theatre and Dr. Gina Oh Studios, the evening is going to be a joyful celebration of the festive season.  Y4Y

With the exquisite choreography and staging of Astrid Sherman and Beverley Bagg, the audience will be entertained by exciting excerpts of the Nutcracker and other favorites – both old and new! 

Held at the lovely Roundhouse Theatre at the corner of Davie and Pacific (parking just around the corner), tickets are available at:

          https://www.eventbrite.com/e/youth-4-yule-2018-tickets-52697128530

  • General Entry:                       $20.00
  • Students (13 and under):     $15.00

 Here are more details:

 When:            

  • Monday, December 10, 2018
  • 7:30 pm

 Where:          

  • Roundhouse Theatre
  • 181 Roundhouse Mews

We look forward to seeing you there and celebrating the wonder of the Season through the talents of the new generation of performing arts leaders!

Why Pro Arte? Kara Chan – Pro Arte Grad 2011

I feel grateful to have been a student of Astrid Sherman for the 8 years I trained at Pro Arte Centre. I have known Ms. Astrid since I was 9 years old and I can say her devotion, generosity, and care as a teacher is what allowed me to blossom over those years. While there, I also had the privilege of being coached and taught by the incredible Beverley Bagg.  I am lucky to have had both of these teachers because their expertise, passion, and mentorship is what helped shape me into the dancer I am today. Pro Arte is where I built my strong foundation of technique and to this day, the excellent, holistic training I received is recognized in the professional world. After my time at Pro Arte, I was able to continue my training and move forward to attend one of the top dance conservatories in the world—The Juilliard School. I graduated with my BFA in 2015 and since then have worked for numerous classical, contemporary ballet, and modern companies/ choreographers. Currently, I am working with Twyla Tharp Dance in New York City. Ms. Astrid and Ms. Bev are wonderful teachers who develop dancers with the training, artistry, and intellect to meet the demands of the dance world. It was there at Pro Arte where I discovered my love of movement and dance. With the tools I learnt there, I realized my dancing dreams and that it was possible to pursue dance professionally.

kara 3

Pro Arté: Leaders in Safe Dance Training

IADMS in SAAll levels of dance instruction at Pro Arté are supported by the latest in dance and sport science.  Astrid Sherman, who is on the Education Committee for the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science (IADMS), recently returned from South Africa where she organized, and lectured at, regional meetings for dance teachers and professionals in both cities of Johannesburg and Cape Town as well as the internationally renowned Joburg Ballet Company and the Cape Academy of Performing Arts, one of the foremost training institutions in South Africa. 

This October, Ms. Astrid will be presenting with Erika Mayall (MPT, HBSc(Kin), CAFCI, FCAMPT) at the Healthy Dancer Canada Conference in Toronto. Pro Arté is unique in having an on-site physiotherapy office with registered physiotherapist, Ms. Erika, who trained in ballet under Astrid Sherman as a student as well as a well-equipped Pilates Studio.  Ms. Astrid, Ms. Erika and a team of highly trained, professional dance educators work together to create the optimal training environment for the emerging professional as well as the youngest of students in their very first dance experience.

Pro Arté’s commitment is to be on the leading edge in implementing the best of training that allows each student to safely excel.  Ms. Astrid, Ms. Erika and the faculty at the Centre are leaders in working with high performance dancers wishing to prevent injuries or for any student who is in recovery from impairment stemming from injury or poor training habits.  Pro Arte is proud to be committed to a holistic approach to teaching dance and using the most recent updated science to create healthier and stronger dancers of tomorrow.    

Pearls from Pro Arte: Conditioning Specialist, Susie Higgins, on the common “threads” of dance injuries

Pilates Pearl picThe Professional Program students at Pro Arte Centre are well and truly spoiled with their weekly Pilates and Yoga training in amongst their daily dance specific and foot conditioning. Aside from classical and modified mat work we teach Pilates using small equipment with balls of various sizes, foam rollers, fit rings, rotary discs and resistance bands. We are also fortunate enough to offer the oh so important resistance work using reformers, towers, chair, ladder barrel and small barrel in our spacious and well equipped studio.

With their vigorous training and performance schedule the demands on these talented
growing bodies are high which is the reason we are actively seeking out a preventative
program which will address the common weaknesses , asymmetries and overload injuries we often observe in these aspiring dancers. At Pro Arte,  Pilates is also used as part of the dance screening students received each year, to be on top of growth related weaknesses and any injuries.

The common threads we see with a lot of  injuries can usually be identified from the following and can be easily addressed with holistic ballet training and conditioning classes:
● Standing with the pelvis tilted too far forward and the lower back too arched (used by students who turn their feet out too much and don’t use turnout correctly from the hip and due to the next point…)
● Weak abdominals (hard to believe but sadly true!)
● Tight as well as weak muscles in the spine, pelvis and hips leading to
(amongst lots of other conditions) snapping hips, IT Band Syndrome, Patellar
tendinitis
● Incorrect use of turnout and weak abdominals  – snapping hips, psoas tendinitis
● Weak foot and ankle – leading to rolling over on ankles whether on pointe or
landing from a jump or overuse injuries such as stress fractures in the foot ,
sesamoiditis.
● Poor static as well as dynamic alignment of hips, knees and feet especially in
weight-bearing which affects centre work, turns and jumps.
● Breathholding – often due to a rounded upper back posture (smart phone
generation!), leading to a stiff ribcage and upper back – this often makes the
dancer look stiff and awkward in their movements especially their port de bras, épaulement and facial expressions.

 

Holistic Ballet Training: Yoga for dancers

YogaPro Arte Half Day Pre-Professional students take Iyengar yoga every 2nd week with Pro Arte’s Yoga Instructor & Nutritionist,  Dhana Musil. Today, our Intermediate group did a walking meditation to the river (no speaking) and yoga riverside.

We at Pro Arte feel that the Iyenga  philosophy is a wonderful fit with serious dance training for the following of reasons:

  • Their teachers are very carefully trained and thus we can be assured and confident when handing over our precious young ballet dancers:  Iyengar yoga is one of the few yoga disciplines requiring a minimum of five years of training, the last 3-5 focused directly on the certification process and assessment. The average length of time before certification is eight years because at least two years of study at an advanced level is required before being accepted into the teacher training program. Candidates for certification undergo an assessment process which includes recommendations by mentoring teachers, a review of study and teaching experience, and a comprehensive three part examination.
  • The Iyengar style of teaching is marked by precision of alignment in the body, just as classical ballet.
  • In addition, Iyengar Yoga is both an art and a science and is at the forefront of research on its use with medical conditions and injuries. Stability, mobility, strength and alignment are combined with  the concepts of relaxation and restoration of the nervous system.