Dale Cooper

Guest teacher Sassy Jazz

Originally from Montreal, where she began her dance training, Dale has been teaching dance, musical theatre and drama for over 25 years. She has taught in various cities across the country such as Toronto, Victoria, Saskatoon, Dawson City, Vancouver and Whitehorse.
Dale has spent many years teaching at the Northern Lights School of Dance in Whitehorse, and recently has added the adult classes at Leaping Feats Creative Works to her resume. She was resident dance teacher/choreographer for the FH Collins High School Music Art and Drama program (MAD).
Dale has performed in several northern tourist industry shows, including Gaslight Follies, and Diamond Tooth Gerties in Dawson City, and the Frantic Follies Vaudeville Revue in Whitehorse – where she spent many years gracing the stage as leading lady. She has performed in, and choreographed many, community productions, including Sweet Charity, Dames At Sea, and Rocky Horror Show, just to name a few.
Dale can’t think of life without dance, and is thrilled to be guest teaching Sassy Jazz this Fall at Driftwood Dance Academy.

Miss Sarah Gallos

Miss Sarah dances for the love of it and all her teaching stems from that love.
Her earliest training was a creative dance class at the YMCA in Montreal. Through practice, commitment and the help of her teachers she continued dancing, studying at many institutions including Halifax Dance, CCPA, Modus Operandi, TDT and EDAM.
Over 10 years ago, she began her professional dancing career, appearing in a Can-can dancing review in historic, Dawson City, YT. She then boarded the Marco Polo, world cruising ship, to perform on their stage. She’s danced for Jen Cole’s GMB and continues to practice and perform in Vancouver, BC.
For the past 8 years she has also taught Pilates and Personal Training. This knowledge fuels her classes, teaching students how to dance safely and in a way that will allow their bodies to carry them through life gracefully and with strength.


getimg.aspMaryana Dudchenko

Ballroom Dance Workshop and Private Lesson Instructor

Maryana began her dancing career in Ukraine at four years old. For over sixteen years, she has trained in the style of Ballroom Dancing, traveling all over the world, visiting several parts of Canada, the United States, Ukraine, Poland, England, Italy, Germany, and the Czech Republic.  Maryana has represented Canada in numerous international competitions, coached by world-renowned dance instructors.
In 2010, Maryana became a highly commended instructor herself, teaching individuals of all ages and levels.
Maryana’s movement education also includes rhythmic gymnastics, ballet, and jazz.  She has completed syllabi from Royal Conservatory of Music for piano, and been involved in musical theatre productions.  She is also fluent in English, Russian, and Ukrainian.
Maryana currently studies Criminology, Psychology and Business.
RAD mentor at Driftwood Dance Academy

RAD mentor at Driftwood Dance Academy

Mariah-Jane Thies

Workshop presenter for Brain Dance and CBTS Mentor

Mariah-Jane is a dance educator, choreographer, writer and speaker with 25 years of experience in the field of dance.  Her teen years prepared her for a professional music career and introduced her to her greater passion: teaching, although it began as a music teacher.
As a studio accompanist, she discovered her love of ballet and transferred from the music world into the dance world with great enthusiasm.
She is a certified teacher of the Evans Laban Based Modern Technique and through this has immersed herself in the study of Laban and Bartenieff Movement Fundamentals for the past 13 years, and works tirelessly to introduce these concepts into the ballet world.
Mariah-Jane has extended her studies beyond the dance field into the complimentary work of Brain Gym, Rhythmic Movement Training (primitive reflexes) and Movement Exploration, and is currently working towards full certification in all of these areas.
carolynCarolyn Schmidt

Independent Dance Artist and Young Choreographers Workshop leader

Carolyn is a dance artist originally from Vancouver Island, Canada.  She has trained at The School of Alberta Ballet, University of Calgary and The Ailey School in New York City.
While at Ailey, Carolyn trained intensely in Horton and Graham technique and had the opportunity to work with master teachers including Milton Myers, Kazuko Hirabayashi, Dudley Williams and Denise Jefferson.
As a performer, Carolyn has appeared in work by Jen Cole (Vancouver), Amaury Lebrun (Spain), Kevin Wynn, Earl Mosely, Camille A. Brown and with The Movement Workshop Group (NYC). As a choreographer, Carolyn has created many works for 49th Parallel Dance Company, which she co-directs, and as an independent artist.
Miss LarissaMiss Larissa Rog

Guest Choreographer and Master Class Teacher

Miss Larissa Rog began her ballet studies at 5 years of age at the Ballet Studio of the City of Tallinn in Estonia.  In 1969, she was accepted into the Tallinn State Choreographic School.  At the same time, she studied at the Tallinn State Music School and graduated in 1976 in piano.
After graduating from the Tallinn State Choreographic School in 1977, Larissa, as the most promising graduate, was taken into the Vaganova Choreographic Institute in St. Petersburg where she was a pupil of Natalia Dudinskaya and Konstantin Sergeev.
She graduated with the rank of Prima Ballerina, Ballet Teacher and Choreographer.  She appeared in performances at the Kirov Theatre (Maryinsky) in 1977 and 1978.
In 1977, she was invited by “Lenfilm” to appear in the leading role of Tamara Samsonova in “We Looked Death in the Face”, directed by the famous Naum Birman.  The film was received with great success and ran in the many Soviet movie theatres and was shown on National Television.
In 1979, the Estonian Ballet toured to Moscow where Larissa danced at the Bolshoi Theatre and the Kremlin Palace of Congress and was acclaimed by the press as “the miracle of 20th century ballet…”
Miss Kelly UrquhartMiss Kelly Urquhart


Miss Kelly stumbled into yoga from a life as a dancer and teacher in Vancouver.  Yoga seemed to fit her body, healing old injuries and giving her new strengths.
Ashtanga became Kelly’s passion, and after being certified to teach by Yogaworks in 2007, she travelled to India for a year to study at the KPJ Ashtanga Institute with Sharath Rangaswamy and with Ashtanga masters Rolf and Marci Naujokat.In Vancouver, Kelly’s teachers include Fiona Stang, Greg Nardi and Kevin Grodesky.
In class, she emphasizes breath work and alignment to get energy moving freely toward a longer, stronger body, and an overall calmer state of being.Kelly believes the practice is the best teacher, so she loves nothing more than getting on her mat and being a student again!