• School of CCDT

Archive: School of CCDT Teacher Featurer

Updated: May 11

Here are the School of Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre, we are truly fortunate to have the most amazing, warm-hearted, highly-trained dance instructors. We can't help but boast about them a just a little, so for our very first blog post we wanted to feature on our incredible faculty. The school would not be the same without all of their hard work, loyalty, and commitment to the students.

Carmen Cairns - Associate Artistic Director, School of CCDT - Dip RBS (TC), BA Hons Dance Education, CBMN

Miss Carmen has been teaching ballet with us since 2007. Born in England, she began her training at Tring Arts Educational School, continuing on to the Royal Ballet School, London to gain her teaching qualifications. From there she proceeded to teach internationally, and can now be found teaching courses for the Royal Academy of Dance across Canada and the USA. Her passion and dedication to her art form is driven by the students who cross her path, and her wish to see them reach their potential.

Andrea Downie - Adult Contemporary, Creative Movement, Conditioning

HonBFA, Dance Performance, MS, Dance Studies (York University)

Miss Andrea completed her professional training at Dance New Amsterdam in New York City, and performed with Jody Oberfelder Dance Projects while there. She is the Founder and Director of EnhaceDance, an initiative established to share evidence-based best practices in dance teaching, training and performance. She is a Founder and the President of Healthy Dancer Canada, a non-profit organization established to enhance the health, well-being and performance of all dancers. She is also a third party teacher tutor for RAD Canada. She works actively as a guest dance instructor, teacher tutor, choreographer and speaker across Canada, enthusiastically sharing her passion for dance with teachers and dancers of all ages, levels and abilities.

Megan Nadain - Director CCDT Core Apprentices - Creative Movement, Ballet, Modern

Graduate, The School of Toronto Dance Theatre

Ms. Megan, a native of North Vancouver, British Columbia, is a Toronto-based dancer, choreographer and dance educator. She is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, for which she received scholarships from the School, the Hnatyshyn Foundation and the BC Arts Council. She is a company member with Dancetheatre David Earle, and has worked independently with Darryl Tracy, inDANCE, Toronto Heritage Dance and Event Horizon Dance. ​As a choreographer, her work has been presented across Canada. She also teaches and rehearsal directs at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and teaches in several high schools in Toronto.

Nicole Nigro - Director CCDT Young Apprentices - Creative Movement, Ballet, Modern

HonBFA, Dance, RAD (UK)

Nicole Nigro is a dance-theatre artist currently based in both Canada & Italy. She was a faculty member of the School and the Director of CCDT Company’s Core Apprentices for many years before relocating to Europe. She has returned for a short time and will be with us until the end of first term. She is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre (CA) where she was also a long-time faculty member, and she holds an Honours BFA from York University (CA), a Diploma in Dance Teaching Studies with The Royal Academy of Dance (UK), and is an MFA candidate at Accademia dell’Arte (IT). Nicole is a member of Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists and the Dancer Transition Resource Centre. She has had the privilege of interpreting as a guest artist with many companies and independent choreographers. Her work has been presented in Canada, the United States, Europe, and Mexico.

Natasha Poon Woo - Associate Artistic Director, Rehearsal Director - CCDT Company.

SCCDT Modern - BFA, Dance

Ms. Natasha began her training with CCDT and is now the Associate Artistic Director of the Company, and the Limón Modern instructor for the School. She completed her studies at the SUNY Purchase College Conservatory of Dance in New York, where she graduated summa cum laude with a BFA in Dance in 2012, receiving the President’s Award for Achievement. Natasha has had the opportunity to work with some of Canada's leading dance artists. She has also danced throughout Holland, in Switzerland, France, New York and China. She continues to collaborate and perform with companies in Toronto and is a founding member of The Garage dance collective and an instructor of The Extension Method™. She is also the Managing and Rehearsal Director for Human Body Expression (Hanna Kiel, Artistic Director). Through her ongoing experiences, Natasha strives to cultivate and foster her love for creation, performance, teaching, and exploring all things related to dance, movement, and the arts.

Kailey Sanford - Creative Movement, Ballet

Ms. Kailey is from Middle Sackville Nova Scotia where she started dancing at the age of 5 and grew a passion and love for the art form. She has trained in various styles at Maritime Dance Academy and Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts, a private career college where she graduated with a diploma in their teacher training program. There she became certified in The Canadian Dance Teachers Association in Ballet, Tap and Jazz. Currently she is studying and training at Canada’s National Ballet School teacher training program.

Ryan Scheel - Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre

Ryan is a graduate of the Sheridan Musical Theatre Performance Program with extensive training in Singing, Dance and Acting. He has appeared in numerous stage productions such as Peter Pan, Annie, HSM2, Mary Poppins & Hairspray to name a few, and has performed around the world on Norwegian and Celebrity Cruise Lines. Ryan has worked with many artists including Madonna, Ariana Grande, Ed Sheeran, Julia Michaels, and Sting. He has worked extensively in television and has choreographed for many international events. He is also a reputable International Adjudicator certified under I.A.D.A (International Academy of Dance Adjudicators). Ryan is one of our head faculty members training dancers in Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop and Musical Theatre. He is honoured to be working with each & every student sharing his knowledge & passion.

Stephanie Violin - Advanced & Intermediate Ballet

Ms. Stephanie's love of Ballet began at the age of four. After competing across Canada and the US, she was accepted into NBS’ Teacher Training Program. There, she completed her National Dance Associate Examination through the ISTD as well as all of her advanced examinations with the Royal Academy of Dance, graduating with distinction and becoming a registered teaching member. After graduating, Stephanie went on to teach pre-professional and recreational students at The Quinte Ballet School, where she completed her Cecchetti Associate Examination. She spent many summers in New York as the Directors Assistant to the late Mignon Furman, later becoming a ballet teacher at the program. During this time she also taught at different schools across the GTA and performed with Toronto International Ballet Theatre. Toronto is now her home where she loves teaching the students of CCDT.

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