- KSD NEWS!
- ABOUT US
- OUR FACULTY
- STUDIO SCHEDULES 2016-2017
- OUR CLASSES
- INFORMATION FOR DANCERS
- GALLERY (studio/stage)
- FOR EDUCATORS
Introducing our staff…
Contemporary, Sr. Company and Early Arts Exposure
Sasha French spent her formative years in the Florida Keys studying classical piano and working in the local hospital on a pre-nursing track. During University, French continued her work in hospitals, but found herself drawn back to the arts. While pursuing a BFA in Dance at the University of Florida, she worked and created with arts in medicine programming at Shands Hospital, in Parkinson’s movement therapy research, and founded her touring company. After university, French toured with Moving Current Dance Collective, performed with professional theatre, worked as faculty at a college and as a guest artist in museums and schools. Continuing to create and perform work with her dancers, French went to Duke University to work for the American Dance Festival in arts management and finally returned to the University of Florida as an Artist in Residence. An international move brought her to Kingston in 2014 where she currently runs the advanced contemporary and company classes as well as the early arts education program at the Kingston School of Dance. French is also a teaching artist at the Tett Centre for school and group programming.
Mini-Dance 1 & 2, Tap 1
Misia Lin has been a dance student at Kingston School of Dance for five years now. She started with taking contemporary and ballet classes and was later introduced to senior company and Latin Jazz. Misia has also been a tapper for several years and as of the end of June, she will have been teaching the mini dance program for 2 years. Misia has been awarded her bronze level in jazz associated with British Association of Teachers of Dancing (BATD) as well as her bronze, silver, grade 2, gold and grade 3 levels in tap. Misia will be graduating at École Secondaire catholique Marie-Rivier in a couple months and will be pursuing her post secondary education studying life science with hope to become a child psychologist.
Young Dancers Program, Ballet (Ballet Tech & Ballet Company), Pointe, Broadway Jazz, World Beat
Melissa Mahady Wilton holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from Queen’s University, where she was awarded the W.R. Thompson Prize; Medal In Psychology; Ontario Graduate Scholarship; Queen’s University Graduate Award; A.Z. Arthur Prize; Queen’s University Graduate Fellowship; R. Samuel McLaughlin Fellowship; and Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Fellowship. Her research has been published in scholarly journals. Ms. Mahady Wilton is formally trained in classical ballet (Vaganova, Cecchetti), ballroom (international, social), Latin (international, social), wheelchair dance, flamenco, Spanish classical, tap, jazz, Afro Cuban and numerous cultural dances. Melissa is a Master Teacher of wheelchair ballroom dance; the only teacher in Canada certified by the American DanceWheels Foundation. She has completed dance medicine certificates in foot and ankle function, injury prevention and assessment, pointe readiness and shoe fitting, and adolescent dancer health with the Harkness Centre for Dance Injuries, at NYU’s School of Medicine. In 2006, drawing upon her clinical and dance training and commitment to therapeutic arts, Melissa founded ConCorpsDance Inclusive Dance Programs, a Kingston organization devoted to dance for people of all abilities. Her expertise in inclusive dance has been recognized by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Community Foundation of Greater Kingston, the Kingston Arts Council, the Ontario Communities in Action Fund, Exceptional Families Magazine and Queen’s Alumni Review. She has presented master workshops to Variety Village, Bloorview Kids’ Rehabilitation Centre, the Canadian Paraplegic Association, and Queen’s University. She is the Choreographer for Peerless Productions, a production company she founded with Kathryn Mackay and David Archibald, dedicated to the presentation of professional theatre for all abilities, whose works been supported by the Kingston Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts. At the Kingston School of Dance, Melissa directs the Ballet Company, and teaches classical ballet, pre-pointe, pointe, Broadway Jazz, World Beat, and the Young Dancers Program. Melissa is the City of Kingston’s Dance Engagement Coordinator, liaising with professional dance artists to present residencies, master classes, education and outreach events, under the Ontario Dances Program. She was appointed by Ontario Dances to implement an inaugural dance outreach project in four Northern Ontario communities, and has been invited by the Ontario Arts Council to sit on its grant review juries for dance. She is the former Chairperson of Canada DanceSport, host of the 2009 World Senior Standard Championships in Kingston, and former Zumba® instructor and Lululemon Community Dance Ambassador. It is her great privilege to share the joy of dance with people of all ages and abilities.
Ballet & Repertoire
Raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, she was trained in classical and Iberian dance traditions. Professionally, she danced with the National Ballet of Canada for seven years with such luminaries as Karen Kain, Rudolf Nureyev, and Mikhail Baryshnikov. She also danced with the Royal Ballet Covent Garden, Ballet Jorgen Canada and the Canadian Opera Company. During those years, she performed at The Met, Kennedy Center, the National Arts Centre, and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Classically, she trained in the Vaganova/Russian method with Irine Fokine (Mikhail Fokine’s niece and Anna Pavlova’s goddaughter) and with Luba Gulyaeva (soloist with the Kirov/Mariinski.) After retiring from the National, she taught flamenco for Esmeralda Enrique’s Academy of Spanish Dance in Toronto. In 2001 she founded 1000 Islands Flamenco, the region’s first Flamenco dance company and school.
In sharing the beauty and fluidity of movement that the Vaganova style encompasses as well as the diversity of styles she experienced as a professional dancer (Danish, English, French, Spanish, Balanchine…), she hopes to inspire technical clarity and joy of dance.