Meet Our amazing Dance Teachers

Our highly trained, professional instructors encourage our dancers to improve their technique during every class.

LEA CRESWELL – DIRECTOR

In 2007 Lea Creswell opened the doors of Creswell Dance Academy (CDA) with a mission to instill mindfulness, respect and love for the tradition of dance and theatre in all her students.  Starting with only 7 students in September she ended her first season with 37 students as word spread through The Beaches.  Lea was gaining a reputation for her warm and encouraging nature but more importantly the focus she placed on technique and personal growth for each student. Over the past five years the artistic faculty has slowly increased and with each new addition, Lea carefully selects only those that withhold the same passion and professionalism that she started Creswell Dance Academy with.  Today CDA is proud to have such diverse, professional staff whose training has come from all over the world and from some of the best training centers the world has to offer. In 2012 it was clear to Lea that in order to continue providing the best facilities, training, and support to the CDA families and The Beach community it was time to grow not only the school itself but the programs offered.  The dream was to have a professional preparatory program in which CDA could help students reach their own dreams of being accepted into arts schools and starting a professional career in dance.

SYDNEY TEMPLE – ACRO, CONTEMPORARY, & JAZZ

Ms. Sydney is a Toronto based dance artist, teacher and choreographer. She began dancing at the age of three and it has been a strong focal point in her life ever since. Sydney trained as a competitive dancer at Dance Fusion Company and then moved on to earn her BFA in Performance Dance with distinction from Ryerson University, under the direction of Vicki St. Denys. While studying at Ryerson, Sydney worked with many renowned teachers and choreographers in the dance community such as Robert Glumbek, Allen Kaeja, Hannah Kiel, William Yong, Apolonia Velasquez, and Kate Hilliard. Upon graduation, Sydney has worked on multiple choreographic endeavours including being the lead choreographer for 2019 Fringe show Ghosted: The Musical. Currently Sydney is working on a solo project with Toronto based company Lofty Goal, set to premiere in 2021. She is also expanding her teaching outside of dance – earning her Pilates Instructor certification with mindful movement centre.

BAILEY ALLEMS – ACRO, JAZZ, LYRICAL, CONTEMPORARY, & REC BALLET

Ms. Bailey is proud to have trained at and competed for Creswell Dance Academy for 7 years. She has now been teaching recreational and competitive classes at CDA for the past 3 years. Bailey attended Etobicoke School of the Arts where she performed in numerous shows and graduated with Honours. In 2018 she was the Dance Captain for the national Jazz team as part of World Performers Canada and competed with that group in Spain. Bailey is currently in Ryerson University’s prestigious Performance Dance Program to complete her Bachelor of Fine Arts. She is honoured to study under industry elites such as Vicki St. Denny, Tanya Evidente, and Louis Lebert. She is excited to continue working on new choreography for professional companies and CDA’s own program.

IRENE YACOUB- VAGANOVA , RAD BALLET

Ms. Irene began her training in the Vaganova Method with Cairo Opera Ballet, where she then became a member of their corps de ballet at the young age of 16 and performed Swan Lake and The Nutcracker, among other repertoires. After receiving her undergraduate degree in Biochemistry from McGill University, Irene went back to dancing at Ballet Divertimento under the direction of Victoria Yakabov and Serge Petrosyan. She then continued her training with Ballet Ouest, Ballet Jorgen, and Ajkun Ballet. Irene has been teaching for many years in schools across Toronto and Montreal and has her Registered Teacher Status with the Royal Academy of Dance. Irene love for dance is carried over into the passion she has for teaching and sharing her knowledge with her students. She also loves incorporating The Progressing Ballet Technique Method (PBT) in class to help strengthen young dancers form and technique, ultimately promoting their growth and love for the art of ballet.

KELSI BLASHKO – TAP, MUSICAL THEATRE, CONTEMPORARY, AND RAD BALLET

Ms. Kelsi is a Toronto based dance artist. Originally from Sidney, BC, she moved to Toronto to pursue her passion for dance by attending Ryerson University’s Performance Dance Program and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Distinction. There, she had the opportunity to work with choreographers such as James Kudelka, Vicki St. Denys, Tanya Evidente, Louis Laberge-Cote, Gadfly, and Hanna Kiel to name a few. Kelsi has also had the opportunity to choreograph her own works for the stage during Choreographic Works. Other credits include: Hallmark’s A Nutcracker Christmas, Starbucks Give Good Campaign, and The Lower Ossington Theatre’s Production of 9 to 5. As well as performing, Kelsi has a passion for choreographing. She has had the opportunity to choreograph for Arts for Awareness- One Earth for two consecutive years. She has also choreographed and performed in numerous indie music videos with artists from around the world. Kelsi is thrilled to be teaching the talented and dedicated dancers at Creswell Dance Academy for another year!

Ms Lea and her fabulous team of dance teachers and office staff are warm, welcoming and always smiling! They have created a positive learning environment where kids of all ages feel supported, encouraged and able to do anything!

Karon Livingstone-Hentsch

Lea Creswell and her staff inspire students to strive for excellence and to be the best version of themselves everyday.

Larissa Rowland

Miss. Lea and her incredible team of talented instructors work very hard to bring out the best in every student. Their passion, enthusiasm and love of dance has inspired many students to thrive in a positive, friendly and confident building environment.

Lisa Sipes

Lea is always enthusiastic, flexible and accommodating to the needs of families and ALWAYS teaches with a smile on her face!

Victoria Macpherson

This is an amazing studio!! Not only do they produce beautiful technical dancers, but also a warm and nurturing environment. My girl’s love it here!!

Donna Christo