With over 40 years’ experience as a dance educator Melanie has an extensive knowledge of the Performing Arts. Trained first as an actor, Melanie appeared in many plays with Waterdown’s Village theatre. Melanie is a graduate of the theatre program at Sheridan College where she was encouraged by her mentors to pursue dance.
She began an intense study with teachers as diverse as Roland and Romaine, Brian Foley (Toronto), Luigi, Jerry Ames (NYC), Gus Giordano, Charles Kelly and more in several dance intensives in Buffalo.
Melanie has performed in nightclub revues, industrial shows and on television. In 1986 she toured with The June Sweeney Dancers and was a featured performer at Expo '86.
In 1987 Melanie established Rising Star Performing Arts – Waterdown’s first original dance studio. Now in its 30th year Melanie has taught thousands of students in the Waterdown area.
Melanie has been honoured with several awards throughout her career for her performances as well as numerous choreography awards for her entertaining Musical theatre pieces. Rising Star students have won many regional and national titles, Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals at the World Tap and Show Dance Championships. Others have attended the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Canada’s National Ballet School, Quinte School of ballet and The Joffrey School.
Many of Melanie’s students have appeared in films, stage, commercials and videos and Melanie coached Vita Chambers for one of her music videos. With a strong speaking voice Melanie was chosen by audition to narrate a major documentary.
Melanie is an associate member of the Canadian Dance Teachers Association and Dance Educators of America. Melanie is also a certified judge with The Professional Adjudicators Alliance and travels across Canada to critique and educate upcoming dancers.
Melanie continues to teach focusing primarily on musical theatre, song & dance and acting.