Our faculty

Separator

We welcome you to browse this page to learn about our instructors who comprise the faculty at Vancouver Academy of Dance. We are also always looking for talented, enthusiastic and creative professional artists to join our team! If you would like to pursue a career opportunity at VAD, please email us your full CV, including cover letter and portfolio.

ALEX CLANCY - Tap Instructor

Alexandra Clancy is an emerging performer and choreographer in Vancouver with a love of dance and passion for tap. Growing up, she trained at Danzmode and the Vancouver Tap Dance Society’s youth company – Tap Co, developing her skills in all genres of dance. She was an apprentice/understudy for the prestigious Tapestry Dance Company’s 25th season performing and touring across North America.

She has attended and performed at multiple tap festivals such as DC, LA, NY, Chicago, and Vancouver. Alexandra was privileged to train extensively, learning from tap masters such as Dianne Walker, Jason Samuels Smith, Derick Grant, Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Chloe Arnold and many more. Alexandra is a proud alumna of the first tap program held at the iconic Jacobs Pillow, and auditioned and returned for a second time for another intensive two weeks.

Alexandra had a role in ‘A Chronological Life Story of a Few Tap Dancers’ directed by Matt Sheilds, and was grateful to dance in Lisa La Touche’s tap dance show titled ‘Hold On’. She was given the opportunity to perform in a Tri-Tone Productions show, founded by Tasha Lawson, as both a solo artist and in an ensemble working closely with musicians. She performed a piece at the Kennedy Centre in DC as part of the inaugural first full-length tap show. She is thankful to have danced in many of Danny Nielsen’s shows, most recently at the Scotia Dance Centre in the Discover Dance Series. Alexandra has a unique voice blending both tap and contemporary dance and looks forward to continuing to share her adoration of dance while teaching and performing both locally and internationally.

AMANDA WILD - Hip Hop Instructor

Amanda Wild was born in Calgary AB, where her first tumbling, tap and ballet classes sparked a fire in her for the performing arts. After originally training in gymnastics, Amanda moved forward to discover her love for movement in multiple dance disciplines including ballet, modern, contemporary, lyrical, jazz and her passion: hip-hop. After moving to Victoria, Amanda began teaching at multiple studios and high schools for over 5 years. She then re-located to Vancouver to extend her training under Moe Brody of Harbour Dance Centre and their Intensive Training Program. There, Wild was invited to be the closing act of the Vancouver Spring show at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, as well as dance back-up for the artist, Michael Bernard Fitzgerald during the Vancouver stop on his Canadian tour. Following ITP, Amanda continued to train in Vancouver with companies such as Two Four Seven Co. SOULdiers Co. and Illustrative Society’s Mentorship Program where she honed her technique in popping, house, locking, breaking, hip-hop and freestyle. Due to her strong passion for teaching, as well as her unique choreography, Amanda has continued to work in Vancouver dance scene, choreographing for names such as Dancing with the Stars B.C, SO LOKI, and The Harlem Globetrotters. Providing quality dance lessons and instruction for every level, Amanda continues to dazzle the dance world not only as a dancer, but a leader and an artist of her generation.

ANABEL HO - Principal ARAD, RAD RTS, AISTD, AAC

Ms. Ho has taught and choreographed for the past twenty-five years. Her training spans the globe and covers the full-spectrum of dance styles with emphasis in classical ballet and Chinese dance. Ms. Ho has trained with internationally noted artists in North America and abroad.

She is widely recognized by her many achievements around the world. Anabel has performed, taught, and choreographed throughout Canada and other regions including the U.S.A, China, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Greece, Netherlands, Poland, and Taiwan. Ms. Ho’s credentials include: Associate and Advanced Executant of the Royal Academy of Dance, Fully Registered Teacher of the Royal Academy of Dance, Associate of the Imperial Society Teachers of Dance (London, England) and Acrobatic Arts Certified.

Ms. Ho has presented command performances for her Majesty the Queen, Governor General and Prime Minister of Canada, as well as royalties and Heads of State of many countries. She has been invited to adjudicate dance competitions throughout North America and has been commissioned to choreograph for several productions including: Rick Hansen’s 100th Anniversary TV special on CBC, Nissan Go 2000 Dealership Convention, APEC Conference, International Dragon Boat Festival, Chinese Cultural Centre’s Millennium Project “Gold, Maple, Dreams” Dance Production, CBC’s Gung Haggis Fat Choy, and various other large events.


Anabel has also acted as a choreography consultant for National Ice Dancing Champions Meaghan Wing, and Erin Lowe. Ms. Ho produced dance performances for the movie “Deep Risings” and Buena Vista’s Vancouver promotions of the Disney movie “Mulan”. Ms. Ho was invited to choreograph for the Queen’s Royal Visit to B.C., the 2010 Sea to Sky Bid for the International Olympic Committee, the United Nations World Urban Forum Closing Ceremonies, CCTV’s New Year Special “The Same Song”, and for all the Premiers of Canada for the launch of the Canadian Pavilion at the Beijing’s Olympics. Anabel was also selected as an advisor to the Opening Ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and Paralympics. She directed and choreographed works presented to the International Olympic Committee, Governor General Michelle Jean, and the Premier Gordon Campbell for the IOC “Red Lanterns” was performed for Prime Minister Stephen Harper during his visit to Vancouver in celebrating of Chinese New Year 2010.

ANGELA KING - Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Tap Instructor

Angela is a Biological Science graduate from SFU and also has her 2nd bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education. Angela started dancing at a young age and has extensively trained in ballet, jazz, lyrical, tap, stage and musical theatre, and is also an accomplished pianist and vocalist. Angela is a recipient of various scholarships and awards of merit and has competed in many local dance competitions as well as attending various dance conventions and workshops throughout the Lower Mainland and in the States. She teaches multiple dance disciplines to all ages and has choreographed for various competitive groups, solos, and duos. Her accomplishments include performing in the opening ceremonies for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games. She has also appeared in many musical theatre productions. Selected credits include: High School Musical 2 (URP); Grease and the Wizard of Oz (FOOTLIGHT); Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen (Famous Artists); Will Rogers Follies, Holly Dolly, and Oklahoma! (RCMT); Singin’ in the Rain, Anything Goes, The Music Man, How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying, and Legally Blonde (TUTS).

ANGELA WU - Qing Li Wu, DanceFit Instructor

Originally from Wenzhou, China, Ms. Qing Li Wu brings her expertise to us in Chinese Folk and Classical dance as well as classical ballet and K-Pop styles.


She received her dancer and teacher training degrees in Hangzhou, China and was later accepted into the Wenzhou Song and Dance Troupe.


Upon arriving to Canada, Ms. Wu was also a dance instructor Wenzhou Children’s Art Centre.

ELIZABETH LEFOR - Ballet Instructor

Born in Toronto and raised in Vancouver, Elizabeth has been dancing since the age of 3. Growing up, her love of dance led to extensive training under a variety of teachers locally and internationally.


Elizabeth has trained and performed competitively in classical ballet with her focus shifting toward teaching in past years. With a developing passion for teaching, Elizabeth completed her BA Honours in Dance Education and Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Teachers Certification through the University of Surrey in London, England in 2006.


Elizabeth has held her Registered Teachers status with the RAD for the past 8 years. Elizabeth is excited to be a part of the VAD team.

JAMIE HAWKE - Ballet Instructor

Jamie has been teaching in the Vancouver area for the past seven years. In 2009, Jamie graduated from the University of Utah with a Master of Fine Arts in Ballet - Emphasis in Teaching and Choreography.


Prior to this, she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Dance from the University of Calgary where she specialized in ballet. Jamie also holds her Associate Diploma in Imperial Ballet from the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing.


Jamie has completed her Bachelor of Kinesiology at the University of British Columbia.

JENNY DUFFY - Hip Hop and K-Pop Instructor

Jenny has danced since the age of 4, training in New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, and China with The Source Dance Co. and Harbour Dance Center.


Her live performance credits include Disneyland Magic Music Days, The BC Lions Felions, The Vancouver Ravens Fly Girls, CFL Grey Cup Half, Smallville, Fashion TV, MTV Canada, Urban Rush, VTV Breakfast, the Black Eyed Peas, Young MC, and Nearly Neil.


Jenny is an avid proponent of Vancouver’s Performing Arts community.

JUNIE HENG - Ballet Instructor

Trained in RAD and ISTD methods, Junie has danced with renowned facilities across Canada as well as New York, Los Angeles, and Beijing.


Her performance experience has brought her to stages worldwide and she brings to the Academy outstanding artistic and technical abilities.

KOSTYA KESHYSHEV - Ballet Instructor

Born in Odessa, Ukraine, Kostya began his ballet training at the age of 11 with Odessa's Ballet Academy. In 2003 he moved to Vancouver, Canada where he continued his training with The Goh Ballet Academy until the year 2007 when he won a silver medal at the Genee International Ballet Competition. At the age of 19, Kostya had joined The Hong Kong Ballet. His first principal role was the Nutcracker Prince which he received when he was 21 years old. Since then he has done roles such as Prince Desire in Sleeping Beauty, Albrecht in Giselle and Siegfried in Swan Lake. In 2015, Kostya moved to Winnipeg, Canada and started working with The Royal Winnipeg Ballet where he performed the roles of Dracula, Gordon in Going Home Star, and many more. In 2017, he moved back to Vancouver and started pursuing a career in teaching and participated in Vaganova's Teachers Training course which was held in Riga, Latvia the same year.

LISA HO - Advisor and Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, and Contemporary Instructor

Lisa is a well sought after professional dancer, choreographer, and dance educator well versed in ballet, contemporary, jazz, lyrical, and Chinese dance. Lisa led a successful career in New York City where she appeared in the Broadway production of Shrek the Musical, A Chorus Line, The 63rd Annual Tony Awards, and regional productions of the King and I and High School Musical. Other credits include Mamma Mia! (Toronto), ABC’s Once Upon a Mattress, and City TV’s Package Deal.


Recently, Lisa was part of the creative team, led by choreographer Paul Becker, to stage the musical episode of ABC’s Once Upon a Time. Lisa holds a bachelor of Kinesiology from SFU. She is also full certified in all levels of the American Ballet Theatre National Ballet Training Curriculum and Marie Whalton-Mahon’s Progressing Ballet Technique. Her immense knowledge and scientific approach to movement allows her to get the most from her students.


Lisa Frequently travels to guest choreograph and adjudicate across the country.

MIN SO - Preschool Dance Instructor

Min has been dancing for almost 20 years in many different types of dances including k-pop, hip hop, jazz and traditional Korean dance.


As summer camp leader, ESL teacher, children’s librarian, and now dance teacher, she has extensive experiences working with children and enjoys inspiring them to be their best selves.


She has performed in Korea and Vancouver with such groups as Vancouver Korean Dance Society and Harbour Dance Centre’s Endangered Species and Onyxx performance groups at different events and venues.

REBEKAH ASSELSTINE - Contemporary Style Jazz Instructor

With a background in acting, dancing, and singing, Rebekah is a triple threat who’s mastered the art of performance on and off stage at an early start. After years of successes with roles in many shows, and running her own dance studio before joining Modus Operandi, a successful small-town studio at only 18 years old, she set out to excel at everything she does. Releasing her first single in 2012 “A Night to Forget,” Rebekah envisioned her break out into the music scene as a solo artist. After recording a number of tracks in Los Angeles, her music has exploded with elements of underground electronic, hip hop, and pop – giving her music a fresh, new, and original sound. Her ability to express herself vocally and emotionally has been the foundation on which she’s built her success.

As a dancer, Rebekah has established how the dance scene works. Starting as a late bloomer at the age of 12, dance took off for her. Rebekah began assisting at age 14 and then continued to teach and do full-time choreography at age 16. At age 18 she received her CDTA Certified Teachers Certificate in JAZZ. She proceeded to further her dancing ability and moved to Vancouver. There she trained with Tiffany Tregarthen and David Raymond with local dance training company Modus Operandi, Industry Dance, and apprenticed with Amber Funk Barton at The Response. She has worked with dancers such as Wen Wei, Deanna Peters, Danielle Gardner, Amber Funk Barton, Edmond Kilpatrick, and many more. Working on several high profile music videos and commercials, it was obvious she was getting closer to what completed her. Continuing to teach, do workshops, and choreography, she discovered that this is what brought her the most joy and ignited her idea of a Young Dancers Outreach travelling workshop she and her partners named MOTIVATE. The workshop goes to rural cities across Canada to teach the real world what dancing and acting is like in the big cities, and how to prepare for the unexpected. Teaching kids and watching them grow is her passion. Music, dancing, and acting has brought her a wide range of opportunities and experiences and has made her dreams come to life. Never taking no for an answer, she’s worked in all three areas as a performer to achieve the dream of entertaining the world around her. She hopes to teach and inspire the next generation.

REGAN CALICETTO - Acrobatics Instructor

For 19 years, Regan has enjoyed training and performing in a variety of styles such as Acrobatics, Contemporary, Ballet, Hip Hop, Jazz and Tap. Training and performing with professionals such as Michelle Smith, Moses Asher Christian, Tiffany Tregarthen, Tara-Jean Popowich, to name a few, has helped Regan create her own unique style that is sought after by dancers and studio owners around the globe. Regan has taken her love of dance around the world, performing and training in the United Kingdom, Thailand, Australia and all over North America. Working with companies such as Modus Operandi, Sweett Moves, The Underground Circus, and Lux Dance Company has been an asset to her versatility. Landing principle roles in performances such as The Lover’s Cabaret, “Lovers of Hendrix” and “Lovers of Zeppelin” as well as Sweett Moves’ “Bated Breath” have been some influential highlights in her career. As an instructor, Regan has received her Acrobatic Arts Certification, allowing her to safely guide students through acrobatic training and examinations. The versatility in Regan's training has allowed her to push the boundaries of basic dance routines and create a unique art that she can share with her community. Regan is currently teaching dance as well as acrobatic workshops and classes throughout British Columbia. Regan continues to train and perform regularly around the West Coast.

ROBERT POLICARPIO - Ballet Instructor

Robert hails from Manila, Philippines. He danced professionally with Philippine Ballet Theatre and Ballet Philippines where he performed soloist roles from the classical repertory and in works of international choreographers such as Robert Barnet, Tom Pazik, Paul de Masson, Jan Linkens, Agnes Locsin, and George Balanchine, just to name a few. Robert also works as a ballet re-stager: he had the opportunity to travel China to restage the ballet “La Granita” for the Central Ballet of China and the ballet “Camille” for the Beijing Dance Academy. Upon retiring from the dance scene, Robert moved to Brunei Darussalam to become the resident ballet teacher/Director of the Panaga Dance Center for 17 years until his migration to Canada in 2010. Robert is a certified Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) teacher and Stott Pilates instructor.

RYAN WILLIAMS - Hip Hop and Breaking Instructor

Ryan Williams, born in Surrey BC, is trained in street dance styles and commercial hip hop. His training includes SOULdiers Dance Company, directed by Kim Sato, Harbour Dance Centre’s MYM and KTL.


After training in Las Vegas for an Elite Locking Camp, Ryan made top 16 in locking at Canada’s largest street dance event: Bust a Move 2014.


Other credits include: Sonic Radio 104.9, TV’s Witches of East End Season 2 directed by Debbie Allen, Surrey School District, Jess Dance Co.

SARAH PO TING YEUNG - Ballet Instructor

Born in Hong Kong, Sarah started her ballet training at the Jean M. Wong School of Ballet at the age of 3. In 2005, while she trained there, Sarah received the Dame Margot Fonteyn Award from the Tsinforn C. Wong Memorial Scholarship to attend the Hamburg Ballet School in Germany. After she graduated, she danced with Dresden Semperoper Ballet, Germany and Dutch National Ballet, Holland and returned to Hong Kong in 2010 to complete further study at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. She joined The Hong Kong Ballet in 2010 and in 2015 she joined the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in Canada.

Over her 10-year professional experience, she performed in many national theaters, including China, England, Germany, Holland, Spain, Italy, France, US and Canada and she was featured in major roles in classical productions. Sarah also collaborates on music videos, fashion events, advertisements, concerts and projects with photographers.

Sarah has been sharing her passion for dance and movement with students since 2010. She has experience teaching a wide variety of styles to students of all ages. She believes dance is for everyone, and she hopes to offer the students dance techniques to master their own body and confidence. Her goal is to support her students so they will shine while experiencing the joy of dance.

SIMON LALONDE - Advisor and Ballet Instructor

Born in Montreal, Simon Sylvain Lalonde trained as a classical ballet dancer at Les Grands Ballet Canadiens and the National Ballet School. He has performed leading roles with numerous companies in North America and abroad. He has toured extensively across Canada, the United States, South America, Asia, and Europe. Simon’s expertise lies in teaching Ballet Class, Pointe, Variations, and Pas de Deux. The strength of his teachings lies in offering a broad range of technical impendent in the learning of Classical Ballet. For over 20 years he has been invited as a guest Ballet teacher in various schools such as Fuji Ballet Academy in Sapporo, the Cardinal Carter Academy for the Arts in Toronto, and also for professional companies such as the Guangzhou Ballet in China, Toronto’s Xing Dance Theatre, the Canadian Pacific Ballet in Victoria, and the Empire State Ballet in New York. Simon Sylvain expanded the breadth of his teaching in 1998 when he began to coach competitive figure skaters, designing classes specifically geared for skaters to help them improve their lines, movement, and musicality. His students have continued on to become international and Canadian junior and senior champions in pairs, singles, ice dancing, and synchronized skating categories.

SNOW LI - Guest Teacher and Chinese Dance Instructor

Snow Li, born in Jiangxi China, is trained as a dancer at Jiangxi Dance Academy and Guangxi University. Her expertise includes Chinese Dance, Classical Dance and Choreography.


Snow has competed and won first and second prizes in many professional dancing competitions in China. She is also a receipt of various scholarships for merit in the university.


As well as dance, she also teaches Choreography in various dancing schools. Snow is an energetic and creative professional dancer and teacher.

TYLER AYRES - Director of Acrobatics and Acrobatics Instructor

Internationally acclaimed and recognized choreographer and entertainer from Australia, Tyler is an expert in aerial arts, acrobatics, hand balancing, tumbling and hand-to-hand. Tyler was the youngest person ever to be funded by the Australian government ARTS ACT fund and has been working professionally in the entertainment industry since the age of 9. Companies that have benefited from Tyler’s performance and instruction include names from Cirque du Soleil and the Australia Institute of Sport to BLOCH and IADMS. In 2009, Tyler toured Central America with the International Ballet Theatre, raising much needed funds for a foundation for youth diagnosed with HIV.

Tyler furthered his profession and expertise, in the cruise industry, sailing the world as an entertainer and contributor in performance conception. In 2013, Tyler moved to Canada where he was instrumental in the beginning stages of Acrobatic Arts, one of the largest acrobatics curriculums in the world, by constructing a large portion of the hand balancing syllabus. He also drove the design and launch of a new centre for high level and aspiring athletes while based in Calgary. Tyler now calls Vancouver home and is the Founding Director of TADA, Tyler Ayres Dance and Aerial, which develops and represents top level performers and publishes a training curriculum for hand balancing, suitable for athletes, aerialists, dancers and acrobats.

VAL HO - Advisor and Hip Hop Guest Instructor

Valerie Ho, also known as “Ms. Vee” is a multi-faceted dancer and performer whose movement background includes Hip Hop (Freestyle, Breaking, Popping, and Locking), House, Chinese, Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Modern, Swing, Salsa, Chinese Martial Arts (Wushu), Capoeria, Street Dance, and Hip-Hop culture. Vee has studied with such greats as Mr. Wiggles, Skeeter Rabbit, Poppin’ Pete, Greg Camplerock Jr, Ken Swift, and Buddha Stretch, to name a few. Performance highlights include dancing for Queen Elizabeth II and in the Broadway and touring productions of Reenie Harris’ Legends of Hip Hop, performing with the renowned Hip-Hop companies MotopMusic and Movement and The Groovaloos, and touring the world with Strathcona Chinese Dance Company. As a dance instructor, she has a Bachelor’s of Education, a Bachelor’s of Human Kinetics, and over 18 years of teaching with all levels and all ages, creating fun, challenging, and informative classes and workshops across North America and Asia.

CONTACT US

If you’d like to learn more about our dance academy, our faculty or our programs, give us a call

Created by

Legal notice