Meet Our Teachers

Our Teachers

The artistic faculty at CSD come from many diverse, professional backgrounds.  The aim of our teachers is to provide a positive and caring atmosphere as a background for learning the discipline of dance.  Every student will feel welcome and will be encouraged to explore their own potential in the world of dance.  In addition to our teachers, many of our younger students’ classes have Teaching Assistants who aid the teacher in demonstrating steps and technique as well as helping to provide useful feedback for the students.

MEET OUR DIRECTOR

Christine Parker-Reid, B.A. Hons (Dance), RAD RTS, AISTD

— OWNER/ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

ChristineChristine is the owner and Artistic Director of Contemporary School of Dance Ltd. She is a Registered Teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and holds her RAD Teaching Diploma, with written papers in Anatomy and Dance History, as well as the Elementary Executant exam in Benesh notation. She has served as a Mentor for the Royal Academy of Dance CBTS program.  She is also a Registered Teacher with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) and has attained Associate status in the Modern Theatre Dance branch. In her teen years, Christine trained professionally full-time at the Quinte Ballet School and also attended summer schools at Royal Winnipeg Ballet school.  Christine graduated from the University of Waterloo with a B.A. Honours (Dance) and the Departmental Award for Academic Achievement. Throughout university, she taught at and directed the dance school associated with the university. In September of 1997, Christine opened her own school, the Contemporary School of Dance. The school started with two teachers and approximately 75 students. Through love, dedication, hard work and with the help of her excellent faculty, Christine has built one of the most reputable schools in the K-W area. CSD has been voted K-W’s Best Dance Studio many times in both the Waterloo Chronicle and The Record, and Christine was also honoured to be voted K-W’s favourite teacher in The Record’s Reader’s Select Awards!    Christine continues to pursue her dance education through professional development and has attended many teachers’ workshops and seminars, including Canada’s National Ballet School and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School teachers’ summer schools and courses.  This summer, she will be attending the DanceLife Teacher Conference in Atlantic City.  In 2016, she attended the En Avant Dance Teacher Conference in Toronto and completed her Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT) certification with Marie Walton-Mahon. She has also attended the DanceLife Retreat Centre in Taunton, MA, where she took part in the Dance Studio Business Owner Intensive conference with Rhee Gold and is a proud member of the International Dance Entrepreneurs Association (I.D.E.A.).  Christine is extremely proud to have established such a meaningful dance presence in the K-W community and looks forward to another wonderful season of dance with all of our CSD dance families!

MEET OUR FACULTY

  • Jonathan Arsenault

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    Jonathan Arsenault, a dedicated and passionate dancer, teacher and choreographer was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario.  After many years in sports, he came to realize dance was where his heart thrived. Jonathan started training at the age of 14, and following several years of dancing competitively, he made the decision to take the next steps towards a career in dance.  With love and support from friends and family, Jonathan began his career at Canada’s Wonderland. From there he danced around the world on Holland America Line’s World Cruise 2003.  Jonathan’s dancing then led to roles in musicals like Wizard of Oz,  Anne of Green Gables, and Canadian tour of Aladdin. He has also had the honor of performing with the Canadian Opera Company.  His talent has landed him principal roles in commercials for Baskin Robbins, Toyota, Gap, Joe Fresh Style and the movie Shark Tale.  Jonathan’s most recent Canadian appearance was as a Top 12 finalist on So You Think You Can Dance Canada Season 3.  Jonathan has spent the last 10 years performing on the Las Vegas strip for the likes of Cirque du Soleil, Frank Marino and Donny & Marie Osmond. 

    The high demands and elevated competitive nature of the dance industry has led Jonathan to continually train and hone his abilities.  He has had the opportunity to train with some of the best teachers and choreographers from around the world, including training in New York City at Broadway Dance Center, and also in Los Angeles at Edge Performing Arts Center, Millennium Dance Complex and Debbie Reynolds Studio.   Jonathan is looking forward to teaching hip hop classes at CSD this year. 

    Be here now, dance from the heart and the whole world will see you shine. Boom Bam…

  • Kennedy Dale-Johnson, TTP Dip. (NBS), RAD RTS, AISTD

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    Kennedy Dale-Johnson grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan and began her classical ballet training in the RAD syllabus at the age of 4. She has studied the advanced R.A.D and Cecchetti levels and danced with The Youth Ballet Company of Saskatchewan for six seasons finishing as a featured soloist. Kennedy developed a keen passion for dance and decided to pursue that passion through a teaching career.  In June of 2018, Kennedy graduated from the Teacher Training Program at Canada’s National Ballet School with a focus on R.A.D. pedagogy and National Dance.  She is now a registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and an associate with the ISTD (National Branch).  She looks forward to attending the Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT) course this summer in Toronto. In her recent years in Toronto, Kennedy has enjoyed teaching with the Sharing Dance program at Canada’s National Ballet School as an outreach teacher, working within public schools to bring dance into the classroom. She also had the opportunity to work at a variety of dance schools within Toronto, with a focus on ballet. Kennedy is passionate about the importance of dance and the positive influence it has on people of all ages and walks of life. She is excited to start her second year on the Contemporary School of Dance team and looks forward to sharing her love of dance and knowledge with her students.
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    Linda DePass, B.A. Hons (Dance), B.Ed., OCT, TTP Dip. (NBS), RAD RTS, ARAD, AISTD

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    Linda is a Registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and holds the R.A.D. Teaching Diploma with written papers in Anatomy and Dance History.  She is a Registered teacher with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and has attained Associate status in both the Cecchetti Ballet branch and Modern Theatre dance branch. She also achieved the Elementary Executant exam in benesh notation. Linda graduated from the University of Waterloo Dance Program in 1994 with a B.A. Honours. Concurrently, she was awarded her Teacher Training Diploma with Distinction from The National Ballet School as part of the joint degree program. In 1997, she graduated from Brock University with a Bachelor of Education and is currently a teacher with the Waterloo Region District School Board.   A passionately curious educator, she continues her journey of life-long learning through attendance at workshops and seminars presented by professional organizations with which she is affiliated.  Linda is thrilled to be on staff for her seventeenth year and will be teaching the senior levels of the ballet program.

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    Denise Fung, FISTD

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    Denise is a registered teacher and Fellow of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD), Modern Theatre Faculty.  She has been studying dance for most of her life, and teaching for over a decade.  As a dancer she trained mainly in modern theatre/jazz, ballet, and contemporary, and passed both her ISTD Advanced 2 Modern and Gold Jazz Award exams with Honours. She was also once a national level ice dancer, competing at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships on several occasions.  Skating gave her the opportunity to learn about fitness at an elite level, as well as different styles of ballroom dance.

    In 2013, Denise acted as demonstrator at an ISTD teachers’ course for the revised Advanced 1 Modern syllabus, and has since had opportunities to work with other teachers to review the syllabus.  She has successfully prepared many students for their ISTD exams, at all levels up to and including the initial teaching Associate qualification.  She loves expressing music and telling stories through movement, and her choreography has been well received by examiners, peers, and dance families.

    Believing in the importance of always learning and growing, she continues to attend classes and courses to increase and refresh her knowledge of dance and teaching.  Some courses of note have been RAD Canada’s En Avant Dance Teacher Conference in Toronto, Teaching Modern Theatre Technique in Vancouver with ISTD Modern Chair Tereza Theodoulou, and the ISTD Teachers’ Residential Summer School in Chichester, England.  She also completed certification in Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT) with founder Marie Walton-Mahon in 2018.

    This is Denise’s seventh year at CSD, and she is so happy to be part of this wonderful faculty!  She is teaching most of the jazz program, as well as the new ISTD Contemporary. Denise is always dedicated and excited to help each student work to the best of their ability and share their love of dance! 

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    Angela Joyce

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     Angela Joyce studied at Canada’s National Ballet School, and then was a part of an apprentice program with Ballet BC that went on tour with Nord Nederland Dans company in Europe. Angela then came back to Toronto and attended the prestigious dance program at Ryerson University. 

    Since then, she has danced along side artists like The Weekend, Belly, Alice Glass, Featurette, Sickick and made appearances on tv shows like Reign, Cineplex preshow and the lead in the tv series Bizarre Murders.   She has modeled and danced for companies like Uniqlo, Joe Fresh and Urban Outfitters.

    As a choreographer, she has worked on music videos for Canadian artists and has also choreographed musicals and works for festivals such as Toronto’s Fresh Blood, and The New Blue Dance Festival. Angela runs her own media dance company, Femme Forward, which features motivational dance works created by women for women.  Angela has won awards for her work in the community and her choreography including the Audience Choice award from Fresh Blood Festival and the Jack Brown Institute Award from Ryerson University.

    Angela is grateful for this opportunity to continue to share her passion with the students at Contemporary School of Dance for a second year.  She will be teaching the contemporary and musical theatre classes this year.

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    Elyse Letts, AISTD

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    Elyse completed her dance training for over 10 years at the Contemporary School of Dance, where she studied many styles of dance including tap, jazz, ballet, and pointe.  In her years at CSD, Elyse completed all of her ISTD Tap examinations from the Primary level through to the Advanced 2 level, receiving ‘Distinction’ on all of her Vocational level tap exams.  Elyse also completed the ISTD Advanced 2 Modern Theatre jazz exam and Intermediate and Grade 8 ballet exams through the Royal Academy of Dance. Elyse participated in the Assistant Teacher Training program for many years, assisting in numerous classes and summer camps.  Elyse achieved Associate status with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and is a registered ISTD teacher.   She is also our Birthday Party Director.  Outside of CSD, Elyse has experience in coaching sports with children, and has studied karate for over 10 years.  She is excited to continue her studies in the Kinesiology program at the University of Waterloo in September.  Elyse is looking forward to her fifth year teaching at CSD and is very excited to share her love of dance with tap students!

  • Carly  

    Carly Psutka, BFA (Dance), AISTD

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    Carly has been dancing for over nineteen years, studying Jazz, Tap, Contemporary, Hip Hop and Ballet. Carly was born in Waterloo Ontario and completed her early dance training at  Contemporary School of Dance (CSD).  While at CSD, she completed many exams with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) and Royal Academy of Dance (RAD), and eventually achieved her Associate teaching status with the ISTD in Modern Theatre (Jazz).  For three years, Carly taught Contemporary, Jazz and Tap classes and ran summer dance camps and intensives at CSD before heading to university.  During this time, she was also a Co-Director of CSD Dance Company and choreographed numerous dances for the Company. 

    Carly has recently finished the BFA (Dance) program at York University, where she performed in several works and choreographed a piece for York’s Dance Innovations shows.  She was also a part of the York Dance Ensemble (YDE), and had the wonderful opportunity to perform in a piece for Dancemakers in 2011, and in a short film by TiltedArts in 2015.  She has attended the summer intensive at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and this past summer, Carly completed certification in Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT).  Carly is extremely excited to be returning to teach at CSD this year!

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    Katrina Rockwell, BA (Therapeutic Recreation), RAD RTS

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      Katrina (Kate) has been a student of classical ballet for over 20 years, studying the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus. She has studied in advanced RAD levels and has completed her Certificate of Ballet Teaching Studies through the RAD’s Faculty of Education. Kate extends her growth as a teacher by continuing professional development through various dance and education courses, and is certified in Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT).  She is looking forward to attending a course on the Royal Academy of Dance’s Silver Swans adult ballet program this summer. Kate holds a BA in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Waterloo, which informs her teaching vision and practice, striving to holistically teach and care for each student as a unique, valued, and respected individual. She continues further education in social services and trauma care through Wilfrid Laurier University’s professional development in social work program.  Kate is looking forward to her seventh year on staff with Contemporary School of Dance, where she will be working with students in the Graded Ballet and conditioning classes, as well as Adult Ballet programs again this year. 

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    Georgina Rombough, AISTD

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    Georgina has been dancing for more than 30 years, studying in jazz, tap, ballet and contemporary dance. Georgina was born in the UK where she studied extensively with the ISTD up to the vocational levels. She is a registered teacher with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) with over 10 years of teaching experience.  She has attained Associate Diploma status in Modern Theatre Dance and Associate status in Tap. Georgina graduated from DeMontfort University in England, with a BA Honors in Contemporary Dance and Performing Arts. Following her university education she was co-founder, choreographer and dancer with UK based contemporary dance company ‘Fervent Defacto’ and also spent two years dancing professionally in the Bahamas and also in Mexico, where she was choreographer and Evening Entertainment Co-coordinator for Robinson Club hotel. Fitness and well-being play a key part in Georgina’s life. She is a certified Pilates instructor with the international PhysicalMind Institute and the Ontario Fitness Council. Further certifications and training include YMCA Exercise to Music, Resistance training and Cardio-Vascular training, BodyFlow, Step Aerobics, Stability Ball and Strength Training for Women. Georgina has also been a certified instructor with Salsa Babies and enjoyed teaching this program for 4 years! Georgina returned to CSD after a 3 year period living in Georgia, USA. She is really excited to be teaching at CSD for her fourteenth year! She looks forward to teaching in the tap programs, and is thrilled to be directing the CSD Dance Company again this year!

  • Nomi   

    Nomi Wiersma, BFA (Hons) Dance Theatre, AISTD

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    Nomi (Naomi) Wiersma is a dance artist, choreographer, and teacher now based in Southwestern Ontario after 5 years studying and working abroad. Her early training was at CSD, where she completed many ISTD and RAD examinations.  She then attended Bird College for the Performing Arts in London, England, as well as the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York City and Los Angeles, where she graduated with her BFA (Hons) in Dance Theatre.  Nomi has danced and choreographed professionally in NYC, Toronto, and Kitchener. Credits include: Baker’s Wife (The Gallery Players), NY We Love You (Duplex Cabaret), SumBody (Ailey Extension/ Chor. Max Stone), 6 Degrees…Process (Dir. Cecly Placenti). Nowhere Ontario and Kitchener; Ich Liebe Dich (Backyard Theatre), Hooked (Pepper Dance Projects).  Nomi recently completed her associate teaching exams with the Imperial Soceity of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) in Modern Theatre and Tap, and works as a freelance dance teacher in the GTA while continuing work on her personal dance projects. She is thrilled to be back with her CSD family (did she ever really leave?) this time, as a faculty member!

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    GUEST TEACHERS – to be announced!

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    CSD believes in offering our students as many great dance experiences as possible!  We hold workshops throughout the year to expose our students to different dance genres and guest teachers/choreographers, and our Dance Company has had the opportunity to work with guest choreographers as well!  These are just some of our previous guest teachers: Julia Aplin, Jonathan Arsenault, Peggy Baker, Company Blonde, Tara Butler, Shawn Byfield, Michelle DeBrouwer, Pamela Eddleston, Taylor Gill, Stephanie Graham, Danny Grossman, Evelyn Hart, D.A. Hoskins, Karen Kaeja, Gabby Kamino, Sylvanus Klotz, Michael Moore, Malgorzata Nowacka, Jenna Oxley, Samantha Radley, Lucy Rupert, Hiroto Saito, Georgia Simms, Meredith Thompson, and Michael Trent.

We danced with CSD for over ten years, because of the philosophy of Christine Parker-Reid, the studio’s Artistic Director, which pervades both the studio and its teachers. As dancers first, the teachers have a passion for dance which they enthusiastically share with each of their students, in every class, regardless of the level. The attention paid to the syllabus for each course, in addition to the concern for proper technique, as well as the general health and well-being of each dancer, is admirable. The studio employs dancer/educators who are professional people. We love “CSD” and are constantly “pumping it up” in the community. At CSD everyone is made to feel welcome and as though they have a “right” to be there – in fact, as though they are part of a big family! We love the teachers, the warm “feel” of the studio and all of the amazingly creative, fun, innovative ideas that augment the dance programs. CSD is not only training dancers – CSD is training respectful, caring, civic-minded individuals who share a passion for dance to share their giftedness! – Dee Sproule