Meet your instructors for Summer Dance 2021 at Goh Main in Vancouver.
Jessica Edgley Instructor, PDTD R.A.D, RTS, ARAD
Jessica Edgley was born in British Columbia, Canada and started dancing from a young age under the direction of Gwen Grant. Jessica began her full time vocational training at the Vancouver Goh Ballet Academy and by the age of sixteen received the Royal Academy of Dance Solo Seal Award. She was awarded the British Columbia Arts Council Senior Scholarship and Vancouver Ballet Society Senior Scholarship then went on to earn a prestigious scholarship at America’s Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Where she also danced with Pacific Northwest Ballet Company before embarking on an international career. In her 12 years as a professional dancer, she danced leading, soloist roles such as Sugar Plum Fairy (Nutcracker), Aurora, Lilac Fairy (Sleeping Beauty), Polyhymnia (Apollo), Waltz couple (Serenade). As well as performed in all the companies repertoire at English National Ballet, National Ballet of Ireland and the Norwegian National Ballet where she also choreographed for their Ballet Lab. During this time she worked with many leading figures in the ballet world, performed extensively in UK, across Europe, Australia and Asia.
Jessica then went on to receive her Professional Dancer Teachers Diploma from the Royal Academy of Dance in 2009. In 2010 Jessica was invited to tutor on the Academy’s BA (Hons) Ballet Education Degree programme in London UK and in 2016 she joined the faculty of the Dance School at RAD. In her time at the Royal Academy she has also taught, coached, intensive vocational courses, exam syllabus, workshops and summer schools.
From 2012 to 2018 she was Ballet Mistress and choreographed for the New English Ballet Theatre in London UK. As Ballet Mistress for NEBT, she has worked closely with a variety of choreographers such as Wayne Eagling, Michael Corder, Ernst Meisner, Kirsty McNally, Andrew McNicol, Daniela Cardim, Jenna Lee, and Valentino Zucchetti amongst others.
Jessica has also taught at the North London Ballet Academy, Central School of Ballet and London Studio Centre. She has also appeared as a guest teacher for workshops, summer schools in Switzerland, Greece, UK and Canada.
Lauren Ritchie Mental Skills Trainer, (MEd, BA, ESFCC)
Lauren Ritchie has been studying, researching, and educating dancers on the physical, emotional and mental intricacies of dance. Lauren has made it her life’s work to support dancers to be their best – mind, body and spirit. Recognizing the lack of mental skills training in dance, Lauren has created programs and exercises dedicated to educating and empowering dancers mental health and fitness to optimize their training. From her MEd in Coaching Studies to a BA in Professional Communications, to multiple Yoga certifications and an accredited Art & Science of Coaching Certification, Lauren has a unique blend of education and resources that offer a holistic training approach for dancers.
Lauren has firsthand knowledge of the attributes required to achieve and sustain peak performance. She was a highly competitive and decorated dancer having classically trained in ballet, jazz, tap and lyrical.
After completing her A.R.A.D, Lauren knew she “wanted to dance” but had little guidance and awareness of the true process of transitioning into a professional dance career. This is why Lauren has created and hosts The Dance Podcast; an invaluable resource dedicated to inspire and educate dancers, teachers, and parents through candid conversations with industry professionals.
Lauren is an established facilitator and speaker, delivering workshops to prestigious schools and training programs like the Alberta Ballet School and Harbour Dance Centre. She is the co-founder of the Dance Teacher reTREAT AND has also facilitated and contributed to the DTRC’s on the Move workshops speaking to aspiring dancers in Calgary. Her career achievements had also been recognized as she was a recipient of the Edmontonian’s Top 20 under 30.
Lauren’s engaging and encouraging teaching style has inspired dance teachers and students across the country to use dance as a practice of high-performance living and an exploration of their unique self.
Fiona Smith Associate Director of the Junior School, Instructor, N.B.S DIP. & A.R.A.D
Fiona Smith has provided guidance and leadership for the Goh Ballet’s Junior Division for over a decade, choreographing award-winning pieces, providing coaching for international competitions, and leading preparations for all levels of RAD examinations in the Academy
A graduate of the National Ballet School’s Teacher Training Program and the London Studio Centre in London, England, Fiona Smith has taught ballet in Japan, Toronto and Vancouver as well as in Missouri, Montana for the VIBE Competition. Her formal training began at Goh Ballet Academy, where she performed and toured throughout B.C., France and China with the Goh Ballet Youth Company. She then toured England with London Studio Centre’s Images of Dance working with choreographers such as Geoffrey Cauley, Michael Corder and Harold King.
Returning to Canada, Ms. Smith continued her education at the National Ballet School and earned her Advanced R.A.D., Advanced Cecchetti and Advanced National Dance examinations. She also received her teaching certificates in both the R.A.D. Teacher’s Exam and ISTD National Dance exam. Ms. Smith returned to the Goh Ballet Academy in 2001, bringing her international experience and love of ballet as the Associate Director to the Junior School.
Tanya Phelps Associate Director of Special Projects, Instructor, R.A.D., RTS, ABT® PRIMARY – LEVEL 3
Tanya Phelps has an extensive background in classical ballet as well as jazz, tap, modern, hip hop and flamenco. She received her professional training at Kirov Academy of Ballet, Goh Ballet Academy and Les Ballet Jazz de Montreal before joining the Goh Ballet Company in 2001. Having completed examinations with honours in the Royal Academy of Dance and the Ukrainian Academy of Dance, Ms. Phelps has also toured throughout Asia and Canada with Goh Ballet’s Youth Company performing in varied repertoire such as: Giselle, Nutcracker, Don Quixote, Fairy Doll, Balanchine’s Serenade, La Fille Mal Gardee and numerous neo-classical pieces. In 2005 she was part of Guangdong TV’s reality show “Future Stars of Tomorrow”, where she performed as an actress and dancer as well as choreographed pieces for them while touring throughout Asia and Europe.
Ms. Phelps has choreographed award-winning dances in a variety of styles for competitions, performances and musicals. Her many accolades extend to a wide array of genres, including: dance, body conditioning, rhythmic gymnastics, musical theatre and drama.
Ms. Phelps has been a teacher at the Goh Ballet Academy for over 10 years and is Associate Director of Goh Ballet’s Outreach & Special programs. Ms Phelps completed her ballet teacher training with Goh Ballet’s 3-year certificate teacher’s course working closely with Mrs. Lin Yee Goh and Professor Xu Ding Zhong of Beijing Dance Academy, where she studied the Vaganova teaching methods and syllabus. Ms. Phelps is also is an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Primary through Level 3 of the American Ballet Theatre® National Training Curriculum. As well she is a certified teacher with England’s Royal Academy of Dance.
Isabel Yuan Instructor, R.A.D Dual Examiner & Solo Seal Examiner
Isabel Yuan was born in China where she studied classical Ballet at the Beijing Dance Academy (the National Ballet of China), and graduated with distinction in all subjects. Ms. Yuan danced professionally as a principal ballet dancer for 15 years with the Tani Ballet Company in Tokyo, Japan and performed internationally in the most famous classical ballets such as Don Quixote, La Sylphide, Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, La Fille Mal Gardee, Coppelia, Cinderella and Swan Lake among others. After sustaining dance injuries, Ms. Yuan retired from dancing and came to Canada to study at the National Ballet School of Canada to obtain her professional dance teacher training in Toronto. She has over two decades of teaching experience and this includes guest teaching at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School of Canada, the Beijing National Ballet School, and the National Ballet School of New Zealand.
Ms. Yuan’s teaching credentials include: the National Ballet Professional Dancer Teaching Certification (NBS. P.D.T.C.), Imperial Society Teachers of Dancing, Advanced Certification and Associate Certification (A.I.S.T.D.), Royal Academy of Dance Teaching Certification (R.A.D. TC.). Ms. Yuan was appointed as a Vocational Examiner for the Royal Academy of Dance in 2005, and has been a Dual Examiner since 2011.
Reid Cuming Instructor
Reid Cuming believes in living life with creativity, passion, and humour. He grew up studying jazz, tap, hip-hop, ballet and contemporary in his hometown of Vancouver, British Columbia. After graduating from the Goh Ballet Academy, the young Canadian moved to The Netherlands to immerse himself in the modern dance scene. He went on to receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Codarts University for the Arts in Rotterdam after completing a four year program. He then joined the 73 year old prestigious dance company Scapino Ballet Rotterdam, and spent 8 years touring numerous cities across Europe, Isreal, and the United States. During his career he’s worked and created with internationally acclaimed choreographers such as Jiří Kylián, Mauro Bigonzetti, Nacho Duato, Ed Wuube, Marco Goecke, Felix Landerer, Itamar Serussi, Gentian Doda, Joeri Dubbe, and Marcos Morau. These years of being inspired by different artistic visions has fuelled Reids drive to encourage young talent by sharing his experience as a working professional dancer. He aims to provide guidance to todays up and coming dancers, with the hope of developing trust in their ability to express themselves as individuals.
Monica Proenca Contemporary Instructor
Monica was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She began her dance training at an early age and went on to graduate from the San Francisco School of the Arts in the United States. As a professional dancer Monica has worked in international dance companies and had the pleasure of working in many independent productions with world class choreographers, both Classical and Contemporary.
She is an accomplished choreographer and teacher that has taught in and choreographed in renowned institutions such as San Francisco, USA for Lines Contemporary Ballet Program, for Germany's - Nordhousen Ballet Company and Schewerin Ballet . Canada 's Arts Umbrella Youth Company, Kayzer Ballet - Portugal , Brazil's Divina Dança and in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Japan, Germany all over Brazil and Canada within her eighteen years of teaching experience. Her choreography has been awarded in Brazil, USA, Canada, Belgium, Switzerland , Austria, France, Spain, Japan, Czech Republic, Australia and Korea.
Monica was commissioned to choreograph pieces for the opening gala of the 60th Anniversary of the Beijing Dance Academy in China (Goh Ballet Youth Company) and a special piece to be presented at the opening of Tanzart Festival in Nordhausen, Germany.
She was a nominee for the 4th Annual Inspirational Latin American Awards for Arts and Culture in Vancouver. Monica was a guest choreographer for the closing gala of Brasilia’s acclaimed International Dance Seminar for 4 years partnering with conductor Claudio Cohen with pieces from Tchaikovsky, Claudio Santoro, Villa Lobos and Piazzola.
In film Ms Proenca produced "Strings for 2" a short dance film for Bravofact Canada. She was the choreographer for "Dance First" a short film produced by Dunbar Underground Productions and Center Stage On Pointe, produced by Sony Pictures for Life network and Directed by Director X.
She has been recognized also in the dance competitions stages receiving best choreographer awards in competitions such as: Global Dance Challenge 2017, World Ballet Art Competition 2017 and 2018. She was the choreographer for the winner of the YAGP Toronto 2018 grand prix. Best Choreographer award for Synergy Vancouver 2019.
As an adjudicator she has set in the Jury of the Brasilia international dance seminar (2004 -2016 - Brazil), CoreDance (2018 - Canada) Global Dance Challenge (2018 and 2020 Canada), Valentina koslova international ballet competition (2019 - Paraguay), View Dance Challenge (2020)
Monica currently attends The Palucca Schule University in Dresden Germany for her Teacher's Masters degree in Modern and Contemporary Dance. In Canada she continues to choreograph, produce, dance, teach, coach and inspire others with passion, strength and elegant technique combined with her own Brazilian flair.
Tyra Sergeant Tyra Sergeant
With an extensive background of professional teaching experience, Tyra has been recognized for her dancing, choreography, and teaching throughout her career. She began training extensively in classical ballet at the age of three, and later complimented this with modern, jazz, and musical theatre. Tyra has been passionate about teaching from a very young age. After graduating, she pursued her Teaching Certificate at Simon Fraser University while continuing to teach ballet.
Shortly before finishing university, Tyra realized she could not leave her classical ballet roots behind and formally pursued her Royal Academy of Dance teaching certificate. After over 2 decades of teaching, Tyra still remains passionate about progressing this special art form and looks forward to sharing her expertise with the dance community. She is celebrated for her attention to detail and performance quality, as well as her ability to push students to achieve their personal best. Tyra lives locally and finds daily inspiration from her students as well as her three daughters who each love to dance.
Makayla Moore Musical Theatre Instructor
Makayla is a professional dancer, actor and educator. She grew up in Calgary where she trained competitively at Drewitz Dance Productions. After receiving a scholarship to Harbour Dance Center, Makayla moved to Vancouver to join The Source Dance Company while enrolled in Capilano University’s Musical Theatre Program.
Since graduating in 2014, she has had the pleasure of performing on both stage and screen, across Canada, and throughout the world. Credits include Beauty and the Beast, Spamalot (The Arts Club), The Marvelous Wonderettes, Grease, Footloose (Chemainus Theatre Festival), Evita (Vancouver Opera), James and the Giant Peach (CTYP), Yellowpoint Christmas Spectacular, Crazy for You (Citadel/Theatre Calgary), Shout (Magnus Theatre) and The Ross Petty Panto (The Elgin - Toronto).
Makayla has also been contracted with the Toronto Raptors Dance Pak (NBA/MLSE) and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines as featured dancer in the take out cast of Sequins and Feathers(Quantum of the Seas). Next up, she will be the assistant choreographer to the brilliant Julie Tomaino in The Arts Club’s upcoming production of Kinky Boots.
Katrina Leppanen Pilates Instructor
Katrina grew up dancing in North Vancouver. After an injury took her away from a professional dance career, she discovered and fell in love with other forms of movement. Katrina now teaches Lagree, ballet, barre, and pilates mat/reformer. With a welcoming approach to all styles of teaching, Kat believes that movement is for everyone. Her fulfillment teaching comes from helping her students get to know their unique bodies and what they need and are capable of. Katrina loves teaching dancers and is knowledgeable about how to effectively condition their bodies to support their art.
Arielle Opler Yoga Instructor (Goh Get Ready Workshop)
Arielle Opler is a registered yoga teacher with additional certification for children's yoga. She found yoga eight years ago during transitionary period of her life and strives to fully embody yoga in the way she carries it with her off the mat and into her life. As an experienced children’s yoga educator, Arielle is excited to be able to merge her passion for yoga with nurturing the growth and evolution of children. Her classes aim to empower children to use the skills learned in yoga as a way to learn about their feelings, emotions and physical sensations both on and off the mat. Arielle believes that yoga is a powerful tool for children and adults alike to gain greater awareness of the way they relate to their bodies, minds, breathing, the world around them and most importantly, themselves. Through relevant, fun and thematic classes, it is Arielle’s hope to encourage her students to grow to be the very best version of themselves.