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The Qualifications That Make Your Dance Teacher Stand Out

The Qualifications That Make Your Dance Teacher Stand Out

Tiger Lily - Young Competitive Acro Dancer

One of the most important aspects of a good dance school is having an outstanding selection of dance teachers. A dance teacher acts as a reflection of the school as a whole, and as main support for students and parents. At KaliAndrews Dance Company, our dance teachers are highly regarded and qualified teachers that we are proud to support. There are many qualities we look for in a dance teacher, many of which are the same qualities you look for as well.

BATD Standards

The British Association of Teachers of Dancing is a professional organization that examines the qualifications of dance teachers and students internationally and sets recognized industry standards. The BATD was officially formed in 1892, and has been the industry leader for over 100 years. Most dance teachers at KaliAndrews Dance Company have their BATD associate certification in the genre that they teach, a guarantee of their excellence.

A True Love of Dance

An outstanding dance teacher will not only want to teach choreography to students, but truly love the art itself. Many dance teachers at KADC are professionals in their field who remain attached to the industry through teaching.

Strong Teaching Skills

A dance teacher is as committed and well-rounded with their students as they are with choreography. When a teacher is able to place themselves into the role of a student, they’re able to better train their students. By being patient and understanding, teachers are able to bring out the full potential of their students without pressuring them or making them uncomfortable.

Patience and Support

One of the most important qualities in a dance teacher is the ability to be supportive. All students have different levels of athleticism, memory and learning capabilities and will vary in the time it takes to pick up on techniques. Supportive teachers are able to gauge when it’s best to push their students and when to give them the time to practice. Supportive teachers are able to recognize the different skill levels within the class and are able to alter their training methods to suit.

Here at KaliAndrews Dance Company, we pride ourselves in having one of the best instructor selection in the greater Ottawa area. We know that our dance teachers provide students with a welcoming and supportive environment, and encourage their students to dance their best. To learn more about our dance teachers and classes, contact us today!

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About BATD Dance Examinations

About BATD Dance Examinations

Every year, each of our dancers has the opportunity to take a dance examination at his/her grade level. Exams are mandatory for members of KADC's Competitive Team but are optional for recreational dancers. Examination days at KADC take place each year during the first week of February.

What is BATD?

Founded in 1892, the British Association of Teachers of Dancing (BATD) was the world’s first dance association. The association’s purpose is to promote the art of dancing, to assist with proper training of young dancers as well as their teachers and to give dancers an opportunity to build a future with their growing passion for dance.

What are dance exams and what are the benefits?

Dance examinations are much like any other exam that you would take. Dancers prepare during their weekly classes by learning the syllabus for their current level. Each exam generally consists of a three sections: at the barre, in the centre and floor work. Dancers also learn routines to present at the end of the exam. The dancers are tested not only on their technical movement, but also on their general knowledge of dance. They must know some music theory, such as counting beats and rhythm, as well as anatomy and the progression of the grades. Dancers learn proper etiquette, improve their self-esteem and experience life lessons as they progress through the syllabus.

Dancers can start taking exams as young as age six and can progress well into their adult years, either as teachers or as professional performers. BATD is a nationally recognized association. It is represented on the central council for physical education and is a corporate member of the council for dance education and training.

What will my child receive after doing an exam?

Each successful candidate will receive a certificate assessing their performance in the exam. Students taking exams in Grade 3 and higher may be nominated to attend the BATD Scholarship Competitions, which are held annually in Toronto. Dancers who continue into the higher grades will be eligible to complete their Professional Degree, which will provide them with teacher qualifications. Candidates must complete the exams in the grade order.

Exam Fees

Please note that exam fees are NOT included in your tuition.

A few more important things to note:

Dancers MUST meet the minimum age requirements for each level to be eligible to take the test. Dancers cannot attempt the exam if they have not reached the required age by February 1st..

Examinations take place at our facility once a year. Dancers will not have the opportunity to complete another examination until the following season.

Instructors commence examination training in our weekly classes beginning in September. All dancers will learn the syllabus as part of our curriculum, regardless of their intention to take the exam. Examinations are available for all Acro, Ballet and Jazz students.

But Why Should a Dancer Take an Exam??

The Unique Skill and Training of Aerial Silks and Aerial Hoop

The Unique Skill and Training of Aerial Silks and Aerial Hoop

Professional circus-style instruction, choreography, competitive coaching and event performances!

If you’re interested in learning circus style aerial acrobatics, then it’s important to learn from the best. Aerial Arts is a unique and modern style of dance that requires performers to be exceptionally strong and flexible. Whether you’re new to the style or already have previous training, turn to KaliAndrews Dance Company for your Ottawa aerial apparatus classes. We have the only facility in Ottawa that offers circus-style aerial arts classes at a ceiling height of 20 feet. With both silks and hoop classes, you’ll find an aerial style that suits you best. Coming soon – Aerial Everything classes! Discover your preferred Aerial Apparatus by signing up for the new class this fall! Participants can move from Silks to Hoop, then onto Chain, Cube, Double Point Hoop or even Hammock Silks. Check back soon for more info!

Dancing From the Ceiling

Aerial Arts is a sub-genre of modern dance that was first recognized as in the 1970s. It involves moves that are made using an apparatus that is attached to a prop during performances or to the ceiling. Dancing using horizontal and vertical space while suspended makes it possible to have choreography that is very creative and fluid. This art form has attracted significant recognition and interest over the years, particularly with the growth of Cirque du Soleil.

Aerial Silks and Aerial Hoop Classes

Aerial Silks obtained its name from the silk fabrics that are used to help perform and support the body. It involves spinning, climbing, twisting, contorting and dropping the body in and on the fabrics hanging from the ceiling. This is one of the newer and most challenging forms of Aerial Arts. Suspense is built as the dancers move in complex sequences that utilizes the suspension height to drop and list themselves.

With Aerial Hoop, dancing is done using a metal hoop or cerceau, a circular fixture suspended from the ceiling. This apparatus showcases flexibility and strength as dancers roll, flip, turn, hold poses and change positions. Students learn the different techniques that are used to enter and exit the hoop in fluid, choreographed sequences. This is combined with exercises for strengthening and conditioning the body as well as flexibility training.

KADC is known for the advanced training techniques in both Aerial Hoop and Silks. Commencing Fall 2016 we will be hosting classes for participants to gain experience using multiple circus style Aerial Apparatus and props. Check back soon for these new Aerial classes!

The Starting Point

All forms of aerial dancing require long term training and are very physically demanding. Combining acrobatics and dance while suspended in the air at any height comes with an inherent risk. It is therefore important that a dancer has a solid foundation of flexibility and strength before starting to learn the basic aerial dance techniques.

While the classes are open to anyone aged 10 years and up, participants are required to be able to perform at least one full chin-up as well as one full push-up from the toes. This test is given to ensure that students have the strength to take on this physically demanding class. We also recommend that students enrolled in our Aerials Program should also register for an acrobatic dance class to build up their strength and to learn the foundation of acrobatics on the ground before performing these tricks in the air.

At KaliAndrews Dance Company, we feel that participants can commence their strength and flexibility training for circus style Aerial Arts at any age, which is why we also offer Hammock Silks for participants under the age of 10 and/or anyone who is still developing the foundations and fundamentals before entering into the Silks, Hoop or Aerial Everything classes.

Safe Training

KaliAndrews Dance Company also ensures the physical safety of students by adhering to high safety standards at the facility. The rigging systems use rated and tested components and dynamic ropes for very strong, soft feeling points that can be used for a variety of aerial activities. Each point has a double redundant floor anchoring system to ensure they are more than capable of supporting the loads and drop forces associated with any type of aerial apparatus. Open cell mats are also used beneath the rigging points to ensure the safety of our students. Participants are instructed on techniques close to the ground first and slowly move up to suspended heights, not immediately forced to attempt new practices high in the air.

Aspiring To Become a Professional?

For those with professional aspirations, KADC offers programs at the competitive level. Serious dancers work with experienced and qualified trainers who prepare and condition them for performances in front of audiences and/or participating in competitions. Whatever your goals are, you will find a laid-back, friendly atmosphere with no pressure for the experiences required to take your training to the next level. You can conveniently register for classes online or give us a call at 613-601-5254 today for more information.

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Choose the Best Dance Lessons in Ottawa

Choosing the Best Dance Lessons in Ottawa

Dance Lessons in Ottawa

If you’re looking for a dance school to register your child or yourself, there are many factors that we should all consider when making this choice. For adult and children’s dance lessons in Ottawa, you’ll make a great choice by choosing KaliAndrews Dance Company. We’re dedicated to providing our students with the very best dance lessons that we can possibly provide in your area. Choosing the best school for you simply comes down to a few important characteristics:

Professional Trainers

All KADC dance instructors are certified through the standard set by the British Association of Teachers of Dancing (BATD) in the dance genre they are passionate about teaching. Many of our teachers have over a decade of competitive and recreational dance experience and are able to relate to the students on both a professional and personal basis.

Style Variety

At KaliAndrews Dance Company, we ensure that students are able to choose from a variety of dance genres where they’re most comfortable and most interested. Lessons are offered in ballet and pointe, acrobatic dance, jazz dance, hip hop, tap dance and contemporary dance. Circus-based genres such as stunting, tumbling, contortion and aerial silks and aerial hoop are also offered for the more daring acrobats!

Professional Setting

Kaliandrews Dance Company is a professional dance studio built specifically to provide a focused and safe learning environment. We have one of the largest dance floors in the city that can be converted into multiple use studios or one large room for workshops. The studios have overhead lighting or side spot lighting depending on what environment the instructor would like to set up. Our floors are closed cell sprung with “Rosco” performance dance surface. Mirrors run wall to wall and 8 feet high.

We also have rigging installed for aerial classes, which can also be converted to harnessing for advanced stunting tricks! The rigging systems use rated, tested components and dynamic ropes for very strong, soft feeling points that can be used for a variety of aerial activities. Each point has a double redundant floor anchoring system to ensure they are more than capable of supporting the loads associated with aerial apparatus and harness work.

For our acrobatic classes, we use closed cell sprung tumbling mats in addition to open cell crash mats. We also have an inflatable tumbling track that is used to develop new skills and techniques with much less risk of injury.

Flexible Schedules

KaliAndrews Dance Company understands that while you are taking dance lessons, there are other things going on. For this reason, we try to provide schedules that are as realistic as possible. Our schedules are always available online, and all class times for each dance style are listed by age on that style’s page our website. For example, if you’re looking for Jazz class times, simply visit the Jazz page under our Programs menu.

Friendly Environment

For some, dance lessons are an after school, fun activity. For others, dancing is a career aspiration for which they wish to train seriously. There are also those who dance to keep their fitness routine fun and varied. Whatever brings you to the dance floor, KADC will meet you at your level. The instruction KADC offers is given with a lot of encouragement, without any added pressure.

Here at KaliAndrews Dance Company, we will work with you to meet your dance goals. Contact us today to register for the best dance lessons in Ottawa, and you will soon be putting your best foot forward!

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The Skills and Techniques of Acrobatic Dance

The Skills and Techniques of Acrobatic Dance

Acrobatic dance combines the elements of classical dance training with acrobatics and floor gymnastics skills to create a unique athletic form of dance. Acrobatic dance, more commonly known as Acro, is typically practiced in smaller subcategories of the style that include stunting, contortion and tumbling techniques. By mastering these skills through intensive, individualized courses, independent from one another, an acrobatic dancer can blend these skills together with their growth and experience.

Acrobatic Dance (Acro)

Our recreational Acro classes are a perfect spot where students begin to learn the fundamentals of Acrobatic Dance. Dancers work on their flexibility and strength before attempting their tricks with experienced and qualified spotters. Basic tricks such as Splits, Backbends, Rolls and Cartwheels are introduced almost immediately after obtaining the proper strength for support. Participants also learn the basic fundamentals of multiple acrobatic balances such as Head, Chest, Elbow and Hand Balances. Front and Back Walkovers are introduced once the participants obtain the Backbend and Recovery consistently, which then prepares them for more advanced skills while applying new and interesting variations to the basics.


Stunting classes focus on the ability to do tricks and different balance positions between a pair or a group of dancers together. Tricks that dancers learn in their Acro classes as an individual are commonly used in the Stunting class with a partner or in a group. Partners in Stunting can vary depending on the trick and the level of experience. The partners learn to become one with the ground as they are now in complete support of each other. “Flyers”, or the acrobat on the top, usually balance upside down over top of the partner or porter(s) with different types of partnering tricks or sequences. These roles can change as we encourage participants to learn both roles of partnering techniques. Partners learn to develop great trust in one another as well as team work throughout Stunting classes.

These classes focus heavily on balance, strength and coordination as individuals and as a group. To Stunt successfully, partners need to be able to work together to find a rhythm that works for them. This style is both fundamental to Acrobatic Dance as a whole, but also challenges dancers to improve their partnering abilities and overall athleticism.


In Tumbling classes, dancers are advancing their basic Acrobatic skills into power tricks while focusing on their ability to execute skills like Rolls, Handsprings, Round-Offs, Aerials and other strength or power moves. While we practice these tricks, dancers are guided by the help of our coaches. First by starting on our Tumble Track, then moving to master the techniques on the floor with a spotter. It is important for students to learn and master the basic fundamentals of Acro in our recreational classes before moving into Tumbling classes. Cartwheels and Walkovers must be obtained before taking the Tumbling class, as these tricks are enhanced and advanced in Tumbling skills.

Though these skills are fundamental to acrobatic dance, they are beneficial to many other athletic and dance areas. Tumbling is often seen in Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary and Cheerleading, to name a few, but the skills of flexibility and body control are essential to advancement. Tumbling allows dancers to become acutely aware of how to transfer their weight correctly, to gain and maintain momentum, and how to land properly.


Contortion classes are for dancers who have an enhanced natural level of flexibility. These classes utilize this flexibility to shape and contort the dancer’s body in various positions to enhance their skills. With constant stretching and practice, the body begins to comfortably bend in certain ways that a dancer can begin to show off. Stability is key in Contortion, as absolute control over your body must be mastered. Breathing techniques are introduced as a safety measure in the first class and are continued and practiced in each class beyond.

Contortion skills are a fantastic addition to any other form of dance as well. The ability to bend and contort will always benefit dancers while impressing an audience. These skills are also utilized in Stunting and Tumbling, as limbered dancers are able to master other acrobatic dance skills faster than less experienced or less limbered students.

Acrobatic Dance is an excellent way for all dancers to improve their athletic abilities and master control of their muscles while learning impressive new tricks in a safe manner. Dancers of all ages are invited to learn Acrobatic Dance techniques that will push them far in their dance future. Contact us today to learn more about our Acrobatic Dance program and to find out which level your dancer is ready for!

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Studio Profile

One of the most unique dance studios and schools in Ottawa, Ontario! We offer a wide variety of lessons in traditional dance styles such as Ballet and Pointe, Jazz, Contemporary and Hip Hop. We also specialize in circus-based dance styles such as Acrobatic Dance, Stunting, Tumbling, Contortion and Aerial Arts.

Get In Touch

KaliAndrews Dance Company wants to hear from you!

2664 Lancaster Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1B 4T7
Email: info@kaliandrews.com
Hours: Mon-Thurs 4-8 PM and Fri 4-7 PM