As he trained to become a dance instructor, Devon Panko's journey took a series of unexpected happy detours, starting with his achievements in the finals and semi-finals of national dance competitions. As he competed while simultaneously training for his teaching certification, doors kept opening for him, including opportunities to choreograph TV and movie stars such as Lily Tomlin and Fred Willard. Now teamed with Orianna Panko, also an accomplished choreographer and winner of several national dance titles, Devon lends his expertise as the head instructor at Panko Dance Ballroom and DanceSport Studio.
Instructors at the studio lead four levels of classes tailored for dancers from the inexperienced to the seasoned. Within the bright and airy studio, dance experts demonstrate the steps of international styles that range from viennese waltz to samba, as well as North American styles such as west-coast swing and country. For more customized instruction, lesson packages help prepare students to dance at weddings, competitions, or to impress at a driver's-licence renewal. The Panko team also buttresses the class schedule with supplementary events that include swing workshops and regular Friday night dance parties.
Linda Tyler founded the Edmonton based Dance Moves more than 31 years ago as a way for participants of all ages and abilities to lose weight while having fun. During 75-minute classes, AFLCA certified instructors aim to help clients achieve their fitness goals by providing a full-body workout that helps boost core strength, endurance, and flexibility in a safe environment, concluding with a session of relaxation and meditation. Classes occur in progressive, 10-week sessions, and students have been known to show off their skills at flash mobs and fundraising events.
Since 1998, the instructors at Salsaddiction have been infecting students of all ages with their passion for Latin dance, helming classes at numerous locations around the city, including the 4,000-square-foot Integration Pilates dance studio. Once they turn on the music, they’ll divulge salsa styles, such as the flamboyant L.A. school or the group-based, partner-swapping rueda de casino. The fiesta continues at regular social events where students can try out their moves between conversations with peers or uncooperative pairs of feet.
A program created by the Edmonton Hispanic Cultural Society, Dancing with Little Stars introduces participants to salsa dancing during 60-minute classes that set easy-to-follow routines to fast-paced Latin beats. New moms can choose to dance with babes in arms or take to the dance floor alone while their newborns nap in cozy car seats or challenge other infants to do the worm. In addition to its fitness benefits, the program encourages socializing between moms both on the dance floor and after class.
Emerge Dance Academy instills kids and adults with the grace and poise of dance. They foster skills during lessons in tap, hip-hop, jazz, ballet, and lyrical dance. To enhance flexibility and alignment—two strengths necessary to dance—they also offer yoga classes.