Catherine Taylor is now in her 6th year as Artistic Director of the Quinte Ballet School of Canada, having joined the faculty in 2012. Born in Toronto, Catherine received her dance education at the National Ballet School of Canada. Following her graduation, she moved to Winnipeg to study with David Moroni at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School. Prior to joining the teaching staff of the RWB School, Catherine danced as a member of the RWB corps de ballet, performing in ballets by Sir Frederick Ashton, John Neumeier, Kurt Jooss, Oscar Araiz and John Butler. At the invitation of Arnold Spohr, Catherine joined the artistic staff of the RWB. As the Assistant to the Artistic Director, a position that she held for over 20 years, she worked with many international choreographers, such as Van Manen, Van Dantzig, Sir Peter Wright, Jiri Kylian and works by Balanchine. Along with teaching company class she was responsible for staging much of the Company’s repertoire. Catherine also returned to the stage as a character artist in roles, including; Juliet’s Nurse in van Dantzig’s Romeo & Juliet, Berthe in Sir Wright’s Giselle, Lead Hungarian and Queen Mother in Swan Lake and Queen in Sleeping Beauty.
After moving to Ottawa in 2000 with her family, Catherine continued to work as a guest teacher and rehearsal director with Ballet Jorgen, Ballet British Columbia and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. During this time, she has been a guest faculty member with the RWB’s Professional Summer School and Dance Intensive, Banff Centre’s summer dance program, Arts Umbrella in Vancouver and Cedar Lake Dance, New York. Also during this time she was on the faculty of The School of Dance, Ottawa. Cathy has served as a jury member for Manitoba Arts Council, Canada Council for the Arts, Heritage Canada and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. She is an alumnus of both the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and National Ballet School.
Gizella Witkowsky – Ballet, Pointe, Repertoire
Born in Toronto, Ontario, Gizella Witkowsky graduated from the National Ballet School and joined the National Ballet of Canada in 1975 and enjoyed an illustrious 20-year career with the company. During that time she performed lead roles in all of the major classical ballets, and has worked with many world renowned choreographers and had the honour of performing with some of the world’s greatest dancers. Ms. Witkowsky also has extensive experience in theatre and dance productions both in Canada and abroad. She has taught master classes at numerous Ontario dance festivals. Ms. Witkowsky continues to help develop and inspire future generations in the world of arts.
Alina Adjemian, A.I.S.T.D. (Cecchetti), T.T.P., P.A.E.C. (Ballet, Pointe, Variations)
Ballet, Contemporary Ballet, Pointe, Modern Basic
After dancing professionally for many years with Ottawa Ballet, P.M. Jazz, Les Grands Ballet Canadiens, Ontario Ballet Theatre and Atlantic Ballet Company, Alina Adjemian transitioned to choreography and teaching through The National Ballet School. An instructor for over 17 years, she taught and acted as Dance Department Head at Toronto’s Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts, Jaymor School of Dance and High Points Dance Academy. Alina has trained many young professionals that have gone on to join professional ballet companies across Canada and Europe or have joined productions such as Mama Mia, The Producers and Chicago.
Kristina McIntosh trained at the Pia Bouman School for Ballet and Creative Movement, Quinte Ballet School of Canada and dance intensives at Banff Centre for the Performing Arts, Pittsburgh Ballet School and Princeton Ballet School. Upon graduation, she attended Ryerson University, graduating with a Theatre Diploma and Royal Academy of Dance teaching certificate.
Kristina performed with the Paula Moreno Spanish Dance company before starting her teaching career with the Pia Bouman School for Ballet and Creative Movement and in 2000, the Quinte Ballet School of Canada for both the Professional and Recreation divisions. She also has a teaching certificate from the Cecchetti Society.
Desirée started her professional dance training at the Quinte Ballet School of Canada under the direction of founding Artistic Director, Brian Scott. After graduating from the Professional Training Program, she completed the Cecchetti teacher training program. She has performed with the Cuballet de Vernon in Havana, and Toronto’s Desrosiers Dance Theatre. Desiree has been with the Quinte Ballet School of Canada for over fifteen years as an instructor within both the professional and recreation divisions, and also acts as the Assistant to the Artistic Director for the professional division.
Henning Albrechtsen – Guest Teacher, Ballet
Born in Denmark, Henning Albrechtsen was engaged as dancer at Royal Danish Ballet in 1985. Since 1997, he has been on the faculty at the Royal Danish Ballet School. In his career as a professional dancer he has danced a variety of soloist and principal roles in classical and neo-classical repertoire ranging from Bournonville to Balanchine. From 2000 to 2007, he was the Deputy Artistic Director of Royal Danish Ballet. In 2007, he enrolled in the Teachers Training Program for former professional dancers at the National Ballet School of Canada where he completed the one-year educational program and in 2008 was invited back to the Royal Danish Ballet School as a full-time member of the faculty. Henning Albrechtsen has taught at various schools throughout the world including, among others, the National Ballet School of Cuba and the National Ballet School of Canada. In addition, he has taught the Bournonville technique in Australia, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Sweden, Norway, and Spain.
Emma graduated from The School of Toronto Dance Theatre in 2011 where she now teaches in the School’s Young Dancers’ Program and is their Summer Dance Camp Co-Director. She has recently taught workshops via the Toronto District School Board, Tarragon Theatre and DanceWorks. Primarily Toronto-based, Emma has danced for Toronto Heritage Dance, Walk Run Dance, Kemi Contemporary Dance Projects, Niagara Dance Company, Menaka Thakkar Dance Company and Dancetheatre, in addition to working with numerous high profile dance artists. Her own choreography works have been presented throughout Alberta, Ontario, and the Maritimes.
Kareem has been an instructor with QBSC for over several years and is disciplined in Hip Hop, Tap, Street Jazz and Modern. With over 20 years of teaching and choreography experience as well as being a qualified adjudicator across Canada, he is co-owner of Dance with KB and JKS Entertainment. Show credits include Solitude of my Mind, I Can’t Wait, The 4th Creation, Physical Graffiti, Must be the Shoes and Say Something! Kareem has choreographed music videos and made live appearances for shows in Canada, Australia, India and on Rogers Television, YTV and City TV.
Wayne Corinaldi has over 23 years of experience as a Hip Hop dancer and choreographer. He has performed at many venues and events including the Much Music Video Awards, Nathan Phillips Square, and the Millennium Celebration in Niagara Falls. Wayne has been a choreographer for the DLM Dance and Entertainment Company, the Harbourfront Centre, and he is currently choreographer with the PSB Dance Academy, Interplay, and the London School of Dance. He has been a Hip Hop instructor and choreographer with the Quinte Ballet School of Canada for over several years in both the professional and recreation divisions.
Crystal Whyte-Rhode, R.A.D. (TC), A.I.S.T.D N.B.S TTP (Dip)
Recreation Division – Ballet, Jazz, Tap
Crystal is an accomplished performer, instructor and adjudicator of dance who has been teaching and adjudicating for over a decade. She is a graduate of The National Ballet School of Canada and Quinte Ballet School of Canada Teacher Training Programs, holds a teaching diploma with the Royal Academy of Dancing, holds associate status with the National and Cecchetti branches of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing, and is an accredited instructor with the ADAPT organization.
Tracy Mitchell, Recreation Division R.A.D. RTS
A graduate of the Ryerson University Theatre Dance program (under the direction of Program Director Nadia Potts, former prima ballerina with National Ballet of Canada), Tracy has taught professionally for over twenty years in London, ON, and is a fully registered RAD (Royal Academy of Dance) instructor, a certified Pilates and Yoga instructor.
Tracy has appeared in several professional dance productions in Toronto before moving to Stuttgart, Germany to join the Pforzheimer Ballet under ballet master, Anthony Sterago. Her performance credits include roles in Coppelia, Cinderella, Die Fledermaus, Kiss Me, Kate, and Jesus Christ Superstar, as well as an original ballet/modern dance adaptation of Pink Floyd – The Wall, with the Pforzheimer Ballet.
Talia is a graduating student from the professional training program at QBSC and is currently being mentored as an instructor by Artistic Director Catherine Taylor. She has studied with the professional division for the past 4 years, and has been instructing the Jazz 1, Junior Lyrical and Adult Beginner Ballet since September 2018. Talia grew up in the Trenton area and began dancing at the age of 3, eventually becoming a part of Team Canada Dance. Talia does professional modelling and music videos and will be graduating in June to pursue a full-time career in the dance industry.
Rebecca Funari – Recreation Division
weeDance, Junior Dance, Primary
Rebecca began her training in Winnipeg, Manitoba at Studio One School of Performing Arts where she discovered her passion and love for dance. At age 11 she won first place in the 11-13 year old Lyrical solo division at the Canadian National Dance Convention. That same year she auditioned for the professional training program at QBSC. At 12 years old, she moved from Winnipeg to Belleville and began her professional training career. In 2014 she had achieved her Advanced 1 in Cecchetti, and a 2nd High School Diploma with an arts certificate. Currently, Rebecca is studying the four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) at St. Lawrence College. She is thrilled to be teaching at QBSC, a place that she will always consider home.
Marq Frerichs – Boy’s Work, Classical Ballet
Valerie Scannura – Flamenco
Gioconda Barbuto – Guest Choreographer
Drew Berry – Dance Improv
Rock Bottom Movement – Modern Workshop