Adela Cleverley has been training in ballet and highland dance since the age of 9. She has performed in many shows with Ann Milne and the Owen Sound Academy of Performing Arts, including Dancing for Life and Dancing for Life... Because You Can. Adela is a competitive highland dancer and has been teaching competitive and recreational highland since 2008. In 2012, she became a fully qualified Member of the BATD for highland, and she is now a Member of the SDTA (Scottish Dance Teachers Alliance). Adela has also been teaching Ballet and Contemporary since 2012, and Adult Dance since 2015. In 2019, Adela also completed her Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies with the RAD (Royal Academy of Dance), which qualifies the Owen Sound Dance Academy as an RAD registered school.
Adela graduated in 2016 after five years of training in the Dance program at York University in Toronto, having received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance, as well as a concurrent Bachelor of Education at the Primary-Junior level. At York, Adela studied classical and contemporary ballet, improvisation and Skinner Release Technique, and a range of modern dance techniques including Graham and Limón. She was able to expand and enrich her dance background with studies in choreography, conditioning, dance history, and dance kinesiology, as well as courses in early child development
and motor learning for dance. In her time at York University, Adela also had the opportunity to perform twice in the school’s annual production of York Dances, and has been inspired by the countless professional modern dance and ballet shows she was able to attend each year.
Adela has had the pleasure of training under many notable Dance Artists, including Julia Sasso, John Ottman, Carol Anderson, Tracey Norman, and Helen Jones.
Until 2017, Adela taught Highland, Ballet and Contemporary at the Owen Sound Academy of Performing Arts, and she was honoured to become the owner and Artistic Director of the new Academy in August 2017. Since then, Adela has continued to train dancers in these styles as well as teaching Preschool, Adult Dance, and Parent & Tot. She has put three full dance recitals on stage, including The Nutcracker in 2018. Through her years of training at the OSAPA and York, Adela discovered a real passion for teaching and creating dance and is honoured to be able to continue sharing her art with this community.
Photo Credit: Candra Schank
Michele Hopkins is an award-winning dance artist who has been dancing, teaching, choreographing and directing for over 25 years. Michele has performed extensively throughout her career in both classical and contemporary formats across Ontario and the United States. She engages both her students and the community in dance in a variety of dance projects and performances.
Michele has had experience dancing and choreographing for numerous classical ballets including The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, and Don Quixote, as well as various contemporary dance productions throughout her career with the Niagara Ballet Company, In Company of Dance, and as an independent dance artist.
Michele completed ballet teacher training at the National Ballet School in Toronto and the American Ballet Theatre curriculum in New York City. Michele is also a certified yoga and pilates instructor and mind-body therapy practitioner. She was the Artist in Residence at the Cambridge Centre for the Arts and has been recognized with a Mayor’s Cultural Award, Bernice Adams Award and as a YWCA Woman of Distinction. She has been involved in numerous Arts and Culture organizations and committees and regularly attends workshops and training in Toronto and NYC.
Michele recently moved into Grey Bruce with her family and is excited to immerse herself in the arts and culture of our area. The Owen Sound Dance Academy is delighted to welcome Michele into our faculty and the community!
Maggie Armstrong grew up in Owen Sound where she began her dance training under the direction of Ann Milne. There, she studied ballet, ballroom, contemporary, cross training highland, and jazz.
Maggie had the joy of dancing in Dancing for Life, an event that raised over $80,000 for eight local charities as well as the Intensive Care Nursery in Owen Sound. At the age of 15, she had the pleasure of working with Helen Jones. Helen choreographed a piece for her which she performed at high schools all around Grey Bruce to raise awareness for Canadian Mental Health.
It was Helen Jones who opened the door to contemporary dance for Maggie, and led her to The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, which she graduated from in the spring. She has danced in many of the student-run productions, has been a part of the fundraising teams, and taken on the role of assistant stage manager. She has traveled to New York, where she studied at the Martha Graham Summer School for three weeks. Maggie has also studied at the Kenny Pearl Emerging Artists Intensive where she learned and performed two works by Robert Glumbek and Apolonia Velasquez.
Maggie’s teaching experiences started in Owen Sound where she taught ballet, contemporary, cross training, highland and jazz. She also has experience assisting with Michelle Silagy as a part of the Young Dancers’ Program (YDP) in Toronto. Maggie’s professional performance experience outside of the school includes “The Hidden Revealed” choreographed by Haley Dimeck, through Unwrap Theatre.
Maggie is thrilled to be back in Owen Sound where her journey began, and share her passion with the students at Owen Sound Dance Academy.
Photo Credit: Cylla von Tiedemann
Maya Ostrom was born and raised in Owen Sound and has been dancing since the age of 3. She started in ballet, but at the age of 7 was convinced by her teacher, Ann Milne, to try a week of summer highland classes. She fell in love with highland and began to compete. Maya has trained in both highland and ballet since then and is working towards taking her Associate’s Exam in Highland Dance (to become a certified teacher with the SDTA). She has been nominated for the North American Highland Dance Scholarships for the past 4 years. Highland dance competitions and championships have taken Maya all over Canada and eventually to Scotland in 2016. What an experience! Maya has assisted with many highland and ballet classes since 2017, and began teaching on her own in 2019, including private lessons. She has also participated in many performances with the Owen Sound Dance Academy and the Owen Sound Academy of Performing Arts. Maya is looking forward to sharing her love of dance with her students again this year.
Alexis Lovell has been dancing since the age of 6 across several studios. She has had experience in jazz, tap, musical theatre, lyrical, hip hop, acro, contemporary and ballet. Alexis has had the opportunity to attend multiple auditions for both ballet and contemporary and has even stayed at the National Ballet of Canada for a week. She has taken classes from former dancers from Canada's National Ballet and Russia's National Ballet. She has participated in workshops with a variety of well-known dance artists including Helen Jones and Carol Anderson. Alexis has had experience assisting for several years and began teaching her own class in 2019. She loves teaching students and watching them grow and improve throughout her classes. Alexis has been dancing with the Owen Sound Dance Academy since 2017 and has enjoyed learning, growing and performing with such an amazing group of dancers.
Lauren McKibbon has been dancing at Owen Sound Academy for since the age of 3 and has been trained in a variety of styles including contemporary, ballet, jazz, highland, and musical theatre. Lauren has performed in many shows with the Owen Sound Academy of Performing Arts such as Dancing For Life, Just Delete (a musical about cyber bullying), and the Owen Sound Dance Academy’s 2018 production of The Nutcracker, in which she danced the role of the Nutcracker. She has also participated in workshops with brilliant dance artists, such as Mateo Galindo Torres and Carol Anderson, and Helen Jones. Lauren has also had the opportunity to audition for preprofessional intensives in Toronto.
Lauren has been assisting in dance classes since 2018 and began teaching her own class at the beginning of 2020. She feels very fortunate that she gets to share all the knowledge she’s gained about dance with the next generation of the studio and is looking forward to seeing all of the dancers back in the studio once again!