Gabriola Dance opening new studio as permanent home

Press Release

Wednesday, August 4 2021

This fall, Gabriola Dance will be opening a new dance studio which will serve as its permanent home. Owner Mara Brenner opened the doors of Gabriola Dance on January 10, 2009 after ten years of teaching on Bowen Island and more before that in Montreal. 

Since then, ballet classes have been taught at the Agi Hall, the Community Hall, in the PHC building, at the school gym, and in the Poetry Yurt at the Commons. 

Now no more moving.

Through all the venues, Mara was growing dancers.

The key to doing that is to have a very strong ballet foundation. Ballet is the ABCs of dance. 

Mara also taught many other styles and showcased them at Gabriola events like the annual Gabriola Players Pantomime, Elementary School variety shows, at the Theatre Festivals, and at the Spring Fairs. By 2014, senior dancers were competing in off-island festivals and soon after were joining prestigious pre-professional companies like Dancestreams. 

Gabriola Dance’s year-end performances are always popular, showcasing Boreal Ballet, Spring, Moonbound, Peter and the Wolf, The Lorax, The Jungle Book, and The Giving Tree/Where the Sidewalk Ends. In 2015, Taylor joined the instruction team, and Jenny Ivany’s Acro-Dance was added in 2018.  Melissa and Jacklin (a Gabriola Dance alumna) taught in 2020.

And now with the new studio comes new teachers. 

Sasha Rochon will teach Contemporary, Jazz, Lyrical and adult Dance Fitness. She is a highly accomplished dancer and choreographer and certified Ballet and Jazz teacher. Mara said, “we are excited to be welcoming Tina Jones as voice coach for our Musical Theatre program and Lorraine Price will teach tap for kids and adults. Both are highly experienced and talented teachers.

“Challenge your strengths, strengthen your weaknesses!”