Dancing long before she could walk, Stephanie began her classical ballet training and performance experience at the spritely age of 3. She trained primarily in Cecchetti ballet, completing her Grade exams up to and including Grade 6 by age 14, having also begun her training en pointe at 10 years old. She competed in the Muskoka Ballet Gala for many years in ballet and modern (Martha Graham method) as both a dancer and choreographer. There, she entered her first ballet choreographies, which won “Most Original Classical Choreography” each year. Not long after her first competition, she also began performing at weddings.
Stephanie auditioned for the Arts York Dance Program at Unionville High School and was accepted, but ultimately decided to continue in the French Immersion High School Program. With the new adventure of high school, Stephanie simultaneously followed a different dance path by attending a new studio where her eyes were opened to the worlds of lyrical, jazz, tap, hip hop, belly dance, and Latin social dance. As a teen she competed in lyrical, and has attended dance conventions with award winning dancers and choreographers such as Tyce Diorio and Travis Wall, also performed in weddings, festivals and charity events through the studio. Stephanie began teaching summer camps and afterschool programs at Montessori schools in York Region, which furthered her interest in the possibility of teaching dance as a career. She soon began her BATD studies and completed her BATD Grade 5 Jazz & Tap exams, her BATD Elementary Jazz & Tap exams, and ultimately achieved her BATD “Stage” Associates diploma right after high school graduation.
The following September, Stephanie entered Glendon College of York University where she was offered a spot in the Direct Entry B.Ed. program. Over the next five years she completed her Concurrent Bachelor of Education degree, graduating with a B.Ed. (French), Hons. B.A. in Linguistics and Language Studies, and Bilingual certificate. At the same time as beginning her university education, she also immediately began teaching and choreographing at a studio in York Region, where she helped grow a recreational ballet, jazz and tap program for toddlers. With a deep passion for sharing her love of dance with the world, she has also taught these programs to students up to 18 years old, preparing her aspiring dancers for their performances over the years. She choreographs for recreational recitals and enters competitive ballet pieces that have received Special Judges Awards. Continually adding to her dance education, Stephanie also completed the 3 year ADAPT Teacher Training Program for Jazz & Tap in 2014.
From her 2nd year of university until present, Stephanie has been part of a professional Latin dance company as well as a professional dance and entertainment company. Within these companies, she has been a lead performer, lead instructor, choreographer, competitor, studio manager, and more. Styles include Latin (Salsa, Merengue, Bachata, Cha Cha, Cumbia, etc.), Brazilian Samba, Bollywood, Belly dance, Soca, Dancehall, Hula, Highland...to name a handful. Having performed on the main stage of several large events such as Salsa on St. Clair, Toronto Pan Am Games, and Canada 150 celebrations, she has taught lessons in a variety of settings from studios to festivals to nightclubs (such as Toronto’s well-known Lula Lounge). She has been and is still hired for numerous events (charity fundraisers and benefits, corporate events, New Year’s Eve galas, weddings, festivals, restaurant special events, proms, birthday parties, seniors’ events, audience involvement and participation, etc.) as well as choreographing event performance pieces and first dance wedding choreographies.
Over the years, Stephanie has developed a passion for making the hard things feel achievable, and has completed her certifications for Zumba® Basic and Zumba® Gold, and is looking forward to bringing the joys of music, dance, learning and laughter to parents and tots with her latest certification for the Zumbini® program. She enjoys exploring various styles of dance within each class, and helping her Zumba® enthusiasts build cardio stamina, coordination, and self-confidence as she takes them through a fun, sassy, sweaty dance party.
Stephanie is very excited to have just returned from attending the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School’s ‘Teacher’s Summer Workshop’, where she auditioned and was accepted to their three year fulltime Teacher Training Program and offered a spot within their school. Stephanie is ever grateful to have been presented with such an honour, but has decided to complete her training privately in Toronto. She accomplished her Cecchetti Intermediate exam with Honours in 2018, and is working determinedly to complete the remaining exams and achieve her Cecchetti Associates Diploma.
Loving, passionate and energetic, Stephanie is looking forward to sharing her knowledge, experience and creativity with you, and is beyond excited to join the iDance family this season!