2015 Gala Program


Pro Arté Centre is best known for its

commitment to providing holistic and inspired

training to young dancers intending to pursue

a career in dance. Established 11 years ago,

its graduates have been accepted into dance

companies and graduate programs within

Canada, the United States and Europe including

to name a few: Juilliard, Les Ballets Jazz de

Montréal, Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, Ballet BC,

Ballet Jorgen, Rambert, Purchase College,

Alberta Ballet, Lines Ballet Program and Toronto

Dance Theatre. We are very fortunate to have

a vibrant staff of many of Vancouver’s most

recognized and respected teachers as well as

an on-site support team in dance physiotherapy,

academics, nutrition and pilates dance


Pro Arte’s aspirant company, CatchingART

Contemporary Ballet Theatre, had its 3rd

successful year performing with Education

without Borders, Yarilo Music, the Vancouver

Metropolitan Orchestra and The Lions Gate

Sinfonia besides their own November Season with works by guest choreographers

Megan Walker-Straight, Charla Genn and Alex Ossadnik. CatchingArt is very excited

to be performing with Yarilo music in Zurich and Sofi a later this May! They also

perform in June with members of the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra for the

Vancouver Yokohama Golden Jubilee celebration.

We are very proud of our 6 Provincial Representatives and 6 Provincial Alternates for

2015. Reps: Sophie Leone-Schultz (Inter Ballet Pacwest), Cassia Slager (Inter Ballet

Victoria), Briana Nyland (Jnr Stage Victoria), Ashley Klockow (Inter Ballet Victoria),

Lauren Middlemass (Inter Ballet Victoria ) and Laura Renstad (Snr Stage Victoria).

Alternates: Sophie Derome (Inter Modern Victoria), Kay Budworth (Inter Ballet

Chilliwack), Taylor Nepomuceno (Jnr Ballet Victoria & Pacwest), Larissa McFarlane

(Inter Modern Victoria), Ethan Ponton (Snr Modern Pacwest) and Sophie Higgins

(Inter Ballet Victoria).

Other noteworthy results from Pro Arte Upper School students: NYCDA Outstanding

Dancer Awards to Lauren Middlemass, Katrina McKinnon, Isabella Pavelescu, Asia

Sinnes, Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Laura Renstad and Ethan Ponton in Vancouver WA.

Ms Kimberly’s Choreography “Where From Here” was given a Critics Choice award

and the group is heading to New York for the Finals this summer. At YAGP in San

Diego, Sophie Higgins, Kay Budworth, Ashley Klockow and Sophie Leone-Schultz

were fi nalists with Sophie Leonie Shultz being selected for the New York Finals.

Ashley Klockow Intermediate Program, photographed by Leighton Matthews

Pro Arte Centre and CatchingART are honoured to be invited to perform with Anne

Mortiphee next November in a collaboration with Education without Borders and

Michael Conway Baker. Look for us in the local community at West Van Days June

6th in Ambleside Park, and opening the celebrations for North Vancouver’s Canada

Day at Waterfront Park on July 1st.

Thank you for joining us this evening. What an pleasure it is to be part of the

development of these talented young artists!

Astrid, Melanie & Sarah

It is our pleasure to sponsor Pro Arte Centre’s 12th year Gala Event. One of our

primary ambitions is to foster and

Encourage the emerging generation of young artists that are the future leaders in

performing arts in British Columbia.

The Gala 2015 is a demonstration of the fulfi llment of our organizational goals which

are to:

• Advance education in performing arts and the pursuit of its excellence;

• Work together with others to promote innovative forms of education in the arts in

Greater Vancouver;

• Promote interest of the general public in performing arts through community

events; and,

• Cultivate and create career development opportunities for aspiring performing arts


Together with your partnership, we take steps tonight in the direction of training and

retaining the arts leaders of tomorrow!

Through the Lion’s Gate

Music: Pro Arte’s composer-in-residence; Michael Conway Baker

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

The Rain

Choreography: Astrid Sherman

Dancers: Ethan Ponton, Maia Jadue, Kay Budworth, Savannah Stuible,

Alejandra Brossoit, Cassia Slager, Anja Fanslau

The City

Choreography: Stephana Arnold

Dancers: Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Lauren Middlemass, Iris Stewart-Bosch,

Laura Renstad, Asia Sinnes, Sophia Curalli

The Mountains

Choreography: Astrid Sherman

Dancers: Ethan Ponton with Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Maia Jadue, Geneva Frampton,

Savannah Stuible, Alejandra Brossoit, Cassia Slager, Lauren Middlemass,

Anja Fanslau, Iris Stewart-Bosch


Music: A. Piazolla / Choreography: Astrid Sherman / Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi

Dancers: Asia Sinnes, Sophia Curalli & Ethan Ponton

Up to the Mountain

Music: Patty Griffin / Choreography: Melanie Dance / Costumes: Diane Culin

Dancers: Katrina McKinnon, Lauren Middlemass, Julia Murphy,

Sophie Derome, Maya Culin

Breaking the Law

Music: Emeli Sande / Choreography: Alicia Bruce

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Laura Renstad, Robin Jory, Sophie Higgins,

Sophie Leone-Schultz, Ashley Klockow, Nya-Manet Santiago, Katja Juthans,

Adriana Bosnjak, Megan Hendricks, Larissa McFarlane, Kay Budworth

Nights in White Satin

Music: The Moody Blues / Choreography: Melanie Dance / Costume: Diane Culin

Dancer: Asia Sinnes

At Last

Music: Mack Gordon & Harry Warren / Choreography: Kimberly Dixon

Costumes: Diane Culin

Dancers: Larissa McFarlane, Katrina McKinnon, Katie McGregor, Jasmine Holmes,

Sophie Derome, Iris Stewart-Bosch, Anja Fanslau, Julia Murphy, Maya Culin,

Robin Jory, Savannah Stuible

Understudies: Danielle Lee Hogervorst and Alejandra Brossoit


Music: De Mare, Cage & Monk / Choreography: Megan Walker-Straight

Costumes: Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Maia Jadue, Robin Jory, Alejandra Brossoit,

Ethan Ponton, Laura Renstad, Asia Sinnes, Sophia Curalli,

Katie McGregor, Jasmine Holmes

Understudy: Sophie Derome

Where To From Here

Music: Balanescu Quartet / Choreography: Kimberly Dixon

Costumes: Sonia Abma & Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Micheala Moore, Sasha James, Ireland Murdock, Ally Middlemass,

Jenna Barker-Mulleder, Katie Jarvis, Isabella Pavelescu, Margot Lorette,

Kira Fanslau, Jada Hurford, Kira Dillon, Sofi a Leone, Alicia Robinson,

Taylor Nepomuceno, Hannah Tomlin- Sopcak, Emma Martino, Clare Reynolds,

Olivia Curley, Jordana Gillingham, Joeli Jarvis, Briana Nyland, Charlotte Bradley

In Her Mind

Music: Pandora’s Box by Beats Antique / Choreography: Stephana Arnold

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

Dancers: : Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Maia Jadue, Ashley Klockow, Alejandra Brossoit,

Anja Fanslau, Iris Stewart-Bosch, Laura Renstad, Asia Sinnes, Sophia Curalli

Understudy: Cassia Slager

Figlio Perduto

Music: Beethoven / Choreography: Stephana Arnold

Costumes: Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Geneva Frampton & Ethan Ponton

Sleeping Beauty; Jewels

Music: Tchaikovsky / Choreography: M.Petipa / Staged by: Stephana Arnold

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

Ruby: Anja Fanslau

Emerald: Cassia Slager

Diamond: Savannah Stuible

Sapphire: Alejandra Brossoit


Music: John Lennon / Choreography: Kimberly Dixon / Costumes: Diane Culin

Dancers: Lauren Middlemass; Sophie Derome, Julia Murphy, Maya Culin,

Laura Renstad, Robin Jory, Megan Hendricks, Sasha Slater, Larissa McFarlane,

Katie McGregor, Jasmine Holmes


Music: Karl Jenkins / Choreography: Tania Brossoit

Costumes: Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Ethan Ponton, Danielle Lee Hogervorst, Maia Jadue, Lauren Middlemas,

Alejandra Brossoit, Asia Sinnes

Excerpts from Esmeralda

Music: Pugni / Choreography: Perrot/Petipa / Staged by: Tania Brossoit

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Sasha Slater with Sophie Higgins, Sophie Leone-Schultz, Ashley Klockow,

Nya-Manet Santiago, Katja Juthans, Adriana Bosnjak, Micheala Moore,

Tristan Baidal-Riley, Megan Hendricks, Kay Budworth

Understudies: Katrina McKinnon and Margot Lorette

Orinoco Flow

Music: Enja / Choreography: Astrid Sherman

Costumes: Sarah Ahmadi & Frances Brodhead

Dancers: Tristan Baidal-Riley & Micheala Moore with Sasha James, Ireland Murdock,

Ally Middlemass, Jenna Barker-Mulleder, Katie Jarvis, Isabella Pavelescu,

Margot Lorette, Sophia Makarenko, Kira Fanslau, Jada Hurford, Kira Dillon, Sofi a

Leone, Alicia Robinson, Taylor Nepomuceno, Hannah Tomlin-Sopcak,

Emma Martino, Clare Reynolds, Briana Nyland, Charlotte Bradley

CatchingART photographed by Pam & Scott McFarlane


Leighton Matthews, Pam and Scott McFarlane

Posters, Programs

Renata Antonic, Splash Creative Services

Composer-in-Residence Michael Conway Baker

Our wonderful parent volunteers for all their help

Staff of the Kay Meek Centre

Patrons of Pro Arte for graciously hosting the Post Event Reception in the Kay Meek

Theatre foyer


Astrid Sherman (F.I.S.T.D.): Upper School & CatchingART Programs Artistic Director

ISTD Ballet, Repertoire, Contemporary & Dance Conditioning

Melanie Dance (F.I.S.T.D.): Lower School and Teacher Training Programs Artistic

Director ISTD Modern and Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Stage

Sarah Ahmadi: Director, Administration & Educational Programs Academics,

Finance, Registration, Facilities, Wardrobe/Costumes

Teaching Faculty:

Stephana Arnold: Ballet, Repertoire, Contemporary & Dance Conditioning

Tania Brossoit: RAD Ballet, Repertoire, Dance Conditioning

Alicia Bruce: Tap, Lyrical, Jazz

Kimberly Dixon: ISTD Modern, Contemporary, Contact Improv, Acrobatics

Victoria Dixon: Acrobatics

Yana Dragieva: Ballet, Dance Conditioning

Amanda Gillies: General School Jazz/Lyrical/Ballet

Sarah Hutton: General School Jazz, Hip Hop

Monique Lefebvre: Musical Theatre, Acting

Jenny Yoo: ISTD Ballet, Repertoire, Dance Conditioning

Adjunct Faculty:

Susie Higgins: Pilates

Erika Mayall: On-Site Physiotherapist

Dhana Musil: Yoga & Nutrition

Dr Susan Tasker: Dance Psychology

Academic Faculty:

Leore Anner: Mathematics/Science

Colleen Brow: Humanities

Michelle Buck: SelfDesign Mentor

Anita Gillies: Humanities

Stephen Lam: Mathematics/Science

Tim Tang: French

Chris Cheng: Mathematics/Science, SelfDesign Coordinator


Frances Brodhead: Wardrobe/Costumes

Edita Cas: Facilities

Kim Dixon: Registration

Astrid Sherman graduated from the Pretoria Technikon School for the Performing

Arts in South Africa. She went on to dance professionally with the NAPAC Ballet

Company in Durban, where she had the opportunity to work with many of the

innovators of South African modern and neo-classical dance, as well as perform in

all the traditional ballet classics. She toured extensively to local schools with various

educational productions introducing children to the world of dance. In South Africa

as a student, Astrid’s choreographic work was selected for the ”Dance Umbrella”

Choreographic Festival, and she was asked to choreograph for the professional

production of “Gracie and Vera” in Johannesburg. Since immigrating to Canada

in 1997, gaining her ISTD teaching Fellowship and opening Pro Arté Centre, she

has been able to fulfi ll her commitment of using dance to affect change through

choreography and collaboration with Cecil Hershler of Education without Borders for

the “Global Arts Festival”, “World Kindness Festivals” and ”Woza” performances as

well as working closely with Canadian composer Michael Conway Baker for various

commemorative pieces. In 2010 she was commissioned by The Cottage Farm Society

to create and choreograph a full length work depicting the agony of mental illness

in the work: “From Shadow to Light” at the Chan Theatre in Vancouver. In addition

to developing dance performances for current issues within our communities, Ms.

Sherman has choreographed for numerous “Canada Day” celebrations, the opening

of the North Vancouver Pier, and a host of community events. Ms Sherman also has

a keen interested in dance science and how this can help train healthier and stronger

dancers. She has presented at the International IADMS Conferences (2010, 2012) and

had a paper published in the Dance Medicine and Science Journal (2014) together

with Pro Arté Physiotherapist Erika Mayall and Psychologist Dr Susan Tasker. She

was also a presenter at the Johannesburg Dance Medicine conference (2008) and

at Healthy Dancer Canada (2012) with Pro Arté’s Pilates and Rehab Specialist Susie

Higgins. She is currently serving on the Education Committee for IADMS.

Melanie Dance (F.I.S.T.D.) graduated from the Northern Ballet School in

England. She studied and trained in London, New York and Miami during her

professional performing career, working as an Adage Specialist and Dance Captain,

with David Needham Productions (U.K.), Marcello Productions (Miami), Allan

Blackburn Productions (Cannes, France), Fiesta Fantastica (Monte Carlo) and Royal

Caribbean Productions (Miami). Since immigrating to Canada in 2000 and opening

Pro Arté Centre, Melanie has been recognized as a Fellow of the I.S.T.D. (Modern),

the highest level of recognition awarded by this world-renowned dance organization,

in addition to being an Associate Teacher in Ballet, Tap and National. A “teacher of

teachers,” Melanie has mentored many. Through her teacher training program she

has encouraged and fostered their successes in ISTD associate examinations. In

addition to being an extraordinary teacher of both children and adults, she is an

internationally recognized choreographer, with her choreography nominated and

awarded with numerous awards both locally and internationally.

Stephana Arnold attended the National Ballet School of Canada where

she received the prestigious Peter Dwyer Award and Honours standing on her

Intermediate and Advanced Cecchetti Ballet Examinations. Upon graduation, she

danced with several small companies before joining the National Ballet of Canada in

1992-95. In 1996, Stephana joined Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal and

quickly rose through the ranks to First Soloist. There she danced a wide and eclectic

variety of Principal and Soloist roles in Concerto Barocco, Nutcracker, Queen of

Spades, Giselle and Symphony of Songs to name a few. She was also a favourite

muse for many choreographers and worked with such names Kevin O’Day and James

Kudelka. She was invited to dance at many gala evenings such as tributes to Celia

Franca, Evelyn Hart and other prestigious dance festivals across Canada. 2003

brought Stephana to Ballet British Columbia where she danced an extensive array

of Principal roles, from the Woman in Conversation Piece, Faerie Queen, Stella in A

Streetcar Named Desire, Petite Mort and Jean Grand Maitre’s Carmen in February

2007. While still dancing she became company teacher from 2004-09, and in 2010,

she came out of retirement to dance in the Opening Ceremonies for the Vancouver

Winter Olympics. Stephana joined the staff of Pro Arté Centre in 2008.

Tania Brossoit is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dancing Teacher Training

Program. Her teachers have included Antoinette Sibley, Merle Park, Monica Mason,

Nicola Katrak, Natalia Markova, Anthony Dowell, Phyllis Bedells, Keith Lester, (the

Diaghilev method, ) Rachel Cameron, ( the Karsavina Method) Jane Dudley (Martha

Graham), and many of the RAD top examiners. Ms. Brossoit owned and operated

a highly successful dance studio on Vancouver Island from 1991 through the year

2000. She has spent the last 13 years in Vancouver, teaching at the Richmond

Academy of Dance, including those in the professional division training program.

Known for her love and passion for dance and for her exceptional work with young

dancers, Tania produces a high standard of training and exam results. She is an avid

dance science researcher, and has studied at length the physiology and biomechanics

of the body and strongly applies these principles to her teaching. Many of her students

have gone on to dance in major Companies and Theatre Productions or have

continued their training at some of the most respected institutes around the world. She

has been sought after for many years as guest teacher and adjudicator around BC

and has instructed in various summer schools within the province. Choreography is

also a passion for Tania, and her choreography is often recognized for its diversity and

annually receives honorable awards.

Kimberly Dixon (BFA (Dance), AISTD, AFSA Int) began her training in ISTD

Ballet, Tap, Modern and AFSA Acrobatics with Astrid Sherman at the age of six. She

graduated from SFU with a BFA in contemporary dance in 2010. Having studied a

wide variety of contemporary techniques, many of her choreographed pieces were

selected not only for student shows at SFU but also for a local series of shows

called Art For Impact. While at SFU, she had the opportunity to train and perform in

Ghana, Brazil and the U.S. The year following her graduation Kim spent a season

dancing with Lamon Dance, a local pre-professional contemporary dance company.

In the fall of 2011 Kimberly completed a training program, on scholarship, in contact

improvisation with Edam dance, and has loved sharing these skills with the students

at Pro Arté. She recently participated in both the summer and winter American

Dance Festival in North Carolina and New York, where she worked with many well

known contemporary teachers and dancers from around the world. Over the last

two years Kim has successfully completed all her teacher certifi cation in A.F.S.A

International at an advanced associate level and her Associate in I.S.T.D. Modern.

Alicia Bruce began her pursuit for the love of dance at 3 years and continues

to fuel her passion through teaching. Alicia trained and continues to train with many

talented and sought after teachers from all over North America keeping her up to

date within the dance world by working with highly acclaimed choreographers and

teachers. Alicia enjoys all styles of dance but focuses as a teacher in Tap, Jazz,

Lyrical, and Hip Hop. Ms. Bruce recently completed her entire Advanced Associate

in tap with the Association of International Dance Teachers (AIDT). Ms. Bruce’s

choreography and dedication has given her soloists and groups the tools to achieve

great results at numerous festivals and competitions including the BC Performing

Arts Provincial Festival. In addition, her choreography has been acknowledge with

awards from multiple adjudicators. Alicia is inspired to work with the students at Pro

Arté whose talent allows her vision to come to life on stage.

Megan Walker-Straight has performed and taught extensively both nationally

and internationally. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Dance and Film from

the University of California at Berkeley and later graduate training at New York

University in Dance Therapy. In New York City she was a principal dancer in the

Merce Cunningham Dance Company as well as in the companies of Lucinda Childs,

Douglas Dunn, and Kenneth King. She has been

teaching and choreographing contemporary

dance at Simon Fraser University in the School of

Contemporary Arts since 2000 as well as in local

studios and schools.

Michael Conway-Baker (OBC) and Pro

Arté Composer-in-Residence, has many honours

in the fi eld of music. His awards include 3 Genies

(Canadian Academy Award) for best fi lm music;

an ACTRA award for best fi lm music in a TV

series along with seven nominations. His concert

music, now over 143 works, includes symphonies,

concertos and full length ballets (National Ballet of

Canada and Royal Winnipeg Ballet). In 1992 he

received a Juno for his Piano Concerto. He is listed

in the 2005 Groves Dictionary of Music. In 1997

he was invested with the Order of British Columbia

and received the Queens Golden Jubilee Medal. In

2006 he was inducted into the BC Entertainment

Hall of Fame.

Sophie Higgins Intermediate Program

Photographed by Leighton Matthews

Susan Lepin is a local Gospel/Blues and Jazz vocalist. She has fronted a blues

band at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco, studied jazz music at CapU, and lead

music at church for many years. More recently, she has serenaded the guests at

Hollyburn Country Club and The Pinnacle Hotel here on the North Shore. Susan is

passionate about music and considers it a great honour to perform, whatever the


Jay Esplana has become one of Vancouver’s most sought after musicians.

Anything from jazz, funk, pop, rock and everything in between, Jay’s versatility as

a multi-instrumentalist has found him performing and recording with various local

and touring groups such as Speakerbox, The Airtights, Groove & Tonic, LeftCoast,

Jay Leonard Juatco Trio, No Island and Electric Ballroom. Music has always been

an integral part to Jay’s upbringing. To this, Jay by age 6 had already appeared

performed on television shows such as The Jenny Jones Show, Variety Show of

Hearts Telethon, as well as an anthem singer and halftime performer for the BC

Lions. In 2014, Jay completed his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies at Capilano

University. Alongside Jay’s musical ability and creativity, he brings an energy

and unique personality to the stage as an instrumentalist and vocalist alike. Jay

continues to develop a promising career as a session musician as a keyboard

player, bassist and drummer as well as an educator.

Doug Thordarson sings, plays violin and viola, and has been an active

member of the Vancouver music scene for the past 35 years. He is a secondgeneration

fi ddler. He began his musical career in Langruth Manitoba playing

country-dances with

his father and brothers.

Doug feels truly fortunate

to have shared his love

of music with his son in

the band Stringfever.

Doug played as the

Vancouver Canuck

fi ddler in the 1994-95

season. Most recently

Doug performed with

the Icelandic singer

songwriter Svavar Knútur

both in Iceland and in

Vancouver. He enjoys

playing many different

styles of music and loves

an opportunity to play

with vocalists.

Kay Budworth Intermediate Program

Photographed by Leighton Matthews

CatchingART 2014/15 photographed by Pam and Scott McFarlane

From Left to Right: Sophia Curalli, Asia Sinnes, Carolyn Black, Geneva Frampton, Ethan Ponton,

Maia Jadue, Alejandra Brossoit, Danielle Lee Hogervorst

CatchingART “Aspirant Company Experience” Program:

Saturday June 13, 10.00am – 12.30pm

Upper School Programs:

Advanced: Sunday June 14, 12.30pm – 2.00pm

Intermediate: Sunday June 14, 2.15pm – 3.45pm

Summer Intensive Training Programs with

Pro Arte Faculty and International Guest Teachers

3 weeks: July 13 – 31, 2015

3 weeks: August 10 – 28, 2015

RAD Major Examinations “Boot Camp”

June 29 – July 10 (2 weeks)

Intensive training and coaching for RAD Intermediate,

Advanced 1 and 2 examinations, group classes and private coaching

Planning and PE 10 Credits for all school districts within a classroom setting.

#3 1225 E Keith Rd,

North Vancouver, BC V7J 1J3

(604) 984- ARTE (2783)


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