OUR FACULTY

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MELISSA CONNICK

Owner/Director/Instructor/Choreographer

Melissa began her love for dance at the young age of 2.5 in Hamilton, Ontario. By the age of 8 she was competing throughout Ontario and the US, as well as performing with artists on Much Music and Canada's Wonderland. When she moved to Nova Scotia in 1996 she continued her dance training in the HRM where she danced with performance groups and as a member of the Halifax Weather Girls. She has studied Anatomy, Pedagogy, and Dance Kinesiology through the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts. Melissa has been teaching for over 20 years and continues her training by taking workshops at local conventions, attending seminars, and has even had the honor of taking classes at Broadway Dance Centre (NY) from jazz legend Frank Hatchett, among many others. Melissa's goal is to inspire her dancers to reach their full potential in a happy, safe, and positive environment.

 

Melissa is an Associate Member of the Canadian Dance Teacher's Association in Ballet, Tap, Jazz, and Acro and is a module one certified teacher for the Acrobatic Arts and well as having her certification in the Progressive Ballet Technique.

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HANNAH FAITH

Instructor/Choreographer

Raised in Hammonds Plains, Nova Scotia, Hannah Faith is a third year student at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre where she aims to advance her career as a contemporary/modern dancer and teacher. She began her training 11 years ago at the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts (MCPA). Also a Provincial Champion gymnast at that time, she made the difficult decision in 2013 to turn down an opportunity to train with the Canada Summer Games team to pursue dance. She enrolled in the Professional Program at the MCPA where she was heavily influenced and inspired by her teachers, notably Kathleen Doherty and Diana Rutherford. During her studies at the school, she completed her R.A.D and Cecchetti exams with highly commendable marks. She graduated from the Professional Training Program in 2018 and their Post-Secondary Program in 2019. Over the years Faith has built a strong network in the Halifax dance community, participating in other programs including Halifax Dance’s Young Company, Votive Dance’s Jazz Initiative Program, and Melissa Connick’s School of Dance. These experiences allowed her to diversify her dance training in ballet, character, contemporary, jazz, and modern. She later obtained professional work as an apprentice in the company of Votive Dance. Faith continues to enjoy teaching at various Halifax studios, and has coordinated the summer dance camps at the MCPA for the past two years. She hopes to inspire the next generation while contributing to the dance community. In the future she wants to share her love of musicality and artistry through her dance and creative work

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KAITLIN JAZIC
Instructor

Kaitlin (Katie) has always had a passion for dance. She began dancing at the young age of two, competing with Melissa’s team by the age of seven, student teaching by twelve, and teaching ages 3+ by the age of fourteen. Katie has studied various styles of dance including Tap, Jazz, Contemporary, Hip-Hop, Acro, and her most favourite, Ballet. 

Katie is always looking to improve her dance technique. She has taken many workshops and classes including attending classes at The House Of Eights Dance Studio, training at the Maritime Conservatory Of Performing Arts, participating in Canada’s Ballet Jörgen virtual program and even travelled to New York City to attend classes at the Broadway Dance Centre this summer.

 

Katie most recently was chosen to participate in Symphony Nova Scotia's Ballet Production of the Nutcracker for 2022 and is so excited for this opportunity that she has graciously been working so hard for. She plans to continue her dance education during High School and would like to study the fine arts in University with a focus in Ballet in the future.

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GRACIE MATHESON

Instructor

BIO COMING SOON

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ROSE GRIMMITT

Artistic Director/Instructor/Choreographer

Rose started her dance education at the young age of 3 in Dorchester, England were she trained in Ballet, Tap, and Modern. Once she moved to Market Deeping, England, she continued her dance training at "Ministry of Dance". At the age of 13 she started her student teacher training and by the age of 15 she was teaching her own classes for ages 3+ in many different styles. In 2012, Rose and her family were relocated to Canada and this is when she joined Melissa Connick's studio, dancing in Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop and Contemporary. As well as her regular dance education, Rose was on the competitive team and still continuing her teaching training.

 

Rose is now a full time dance teacher and the Artistic Director here at Melissa Connick School of Dance. Whenever she has spare time, she loves to take classes from others including participating in workshops at House of Eights located in Downtown Halifax. This summer, she had the opportunity of travelling to New York to take classes at the famous Broadway Dance Centre which only sparked her love for all things dance even more! 

 

Rose has her certification in the Progressive Ballet Technique and hopes to continue training and developing her teaching techniques as time goes on, to continue inspiring all of her students with her exuberant personality and teaching style. 

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ISABELLA COOKE

Instructor/Choreographer

Isabella found her love for dance at the age of two when she began her dance education. Once she reached the age of 10, she decided to follow Melissa from where she previously taught her and joined her new self owned studio Melissa Connick School of Dance. Once joining, she began to train in styles such as Ballet, Tap, Contemporary, Jazz, Modern and found her passion with Hip Hop and Musical Theatre.

 

Isabella joined the competitive team in 2016 and has continued ever since. She’s won numerous awards for her solos in Musical Theatre, Hip Hop and Contemporary such as scholarships, stand out awards and Overalls. 

At the age of 12, Isabella began student teaching where she learnt how to instruct and train dancers from her teachers. At the age of 15 Isabella became an instructor herself teaching Contemporary, Hip Hop, Jazz and Ballet. She is excited to have also choreographed for the studio this season as this is where her passion truly comes alive.

 

Isabella continues to take classes and workshops in various styles to broaden her knowledge and dance training. Most proudly she has previously trained at the Broadway Dance Center in New York City with a focus on Musical Theater and Hip Hop, taking classes from amazing individuals such as Sue Samuels, Chio and many others. She truly has found her passion and safe place with dance and can’t wait to continue sharing it with her students, peers and other members in the Dance community.

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TARA ROACH 

Fitness Instructor

Tara grew up in Newfoundland but has been in Nova Scotia for over 20 years. She has had a passion for fitness since she was just a teenager, practicing both Gymnastics and Volleyball. Her daughter Emma Roach danced at Melissa Connick School of Dance and with her involvment on the competitive team, this is where the connection and love for this studio began. 

 

Tara has many qualifications/credentials including SMU BA Pyschology/Criminology and CanFitPro Certified Fitness Instructor Specialist along with Speciality Certificates in Barre, Spin, Strong by Zumba, BodySHRED, Children's Fitness Coach and Healthy Eating and Weight Loss Coach.

Tara has been teaching fitness for over 10 years and this will be her third season with us at MCSOD. When she is not teaching Fitness classes, she works as a Legal Assistant at a law firm in St. Margaret's Bay. She hopes to continue to work with our dancers by using her bubby, uplifting and encourgaing style of instructing. 

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MOLLY CHIPPER

Instructor

BIO COMING SOON

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ASHLYN LESKIW

Student Teacher

ADRIENNE JUDGE

Student Teacher

PAIGE HURSHMAN

Student Teacher

OLIVIA MACDONALD

Student Teacher

LAINEY CONRAD
Student Teacher

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KATIE MCLELLAN

Student Teacher

ISABELLE SMITH
Student Teacher

ELLA MATHESON

Student Teacher

BRYNN MYKIETIUK

Student Teacher

DIANA MAGARVEY

Student Teacher