KIM O'NEILL | STUDIO DIRECTOR
Kim O'Neill is an established dancer, teacher, choreographer and Graduate from the University of Western Ontario.
Kim O'Neill is an established dancer, teacher, choreographer, and Graduate from the University of Western Ontario. She is trained extensively in all dance disciplines, having been trained under the direction of Matthew Clark. She is the proud owner of the O’Neill Academy of Dance, in her home town of London, Ontario.
Kim continues to peruse her dance career, represented by Da Costa Talent Agency in Toronto. With more than 15 years of professional work under her belt, Kim has become a well- established dancer and performer. Kim began her professional career as a featured dancer for the Helix Dance Project, under the direction of Linda Garneau. Kim has performed at numerous industrial shows including the Bell Celebrity Gala, Crystal Ball Charity Event, C.I.M Awards, Contessa Awards, Steve Nash Charity Event, World Pride 2014, 2016-2019 Hold Em’ for Life Gala, Gilda Awards (dancing alongside Eric McCormack), Mary Kay Event Gala (2016/ 2018), Chandelier Ball” (Elgin Theatre’s 100th anniversary spectacular ), and the 2018 Goldwell Fashion show, under the direction of re-known choreographer, Kevan Allen, to name a few. Kim completed a series of appearances on CBC's "Over The Rainbow,” "Warehouse 13’s” finale episode of “42nd Street,” The Strain, Beauty and The Beast, Bomb Girls (CTV), and “Canada’s Smartest Person.” Kim can be seen in the motion pictures "Save the Last Dance 2: Steppin Up,” and "Camp Rock.” She also had the pleasure of working on the hit TV series "Schitt's Creek" as a skeleton crew dancer, and Assistant to the choreographer (Jeff Dimitriou). Kim was also a top 100 finalist for the Canadian Premiere of So You Think You Can Dance, Canada.
Kim’s theatre credits include: Andrew Lloyd Weber's "Song and Dance", Drayton Entertainment's, Aladdin, Cinderella, Robin Hood, Peter Pan, Dance Legends (2010 / 2011), Big Band Legends, Rock n’ Roll Legends, Assistant Choreographer / Dance Captain / Feature Dancer in Dance Legends at The Grand Theatre (2012), Return to Grace (RGA Productions) at the Ed Mirvish Theatre in 2014 / 2017, and the Fallsview Casino (2015 and 2017). Kim was also thrilled to join the Canadian National Tour of Return to Grace in 2015 / 2016, as well as, continue the tour in Bangkok, Thailand (2015). A highlight for Kim was dancing as a soloist for Canadian Country Music Star / Singer, Chad Brownlee, at the 2016 Canadian Country Music Awards. Kim is looking forward to returning to the stage in, Return To Grace, at the Princess of Whales Theatre in May 2019, as well as, continue to tour with the show in Canada and the United States, in September / October of 2019.
Kim has had the honour of assisting many re-known choreographers including Matthew Clark, Gino Berti, Jeff Dimitriou, Trudy Moffatt, and Sean Cheeseman. She continues to train, adjudicate, and teach master classes across North America. She was the choreographer of the Gold Medal winning, Canadian National Jazz and Modern Team in 2010 / 2011 alongside Jacques Monfiston. Kim is a choreographer of the World Performer's Canada Dance Team. Her routines received a Gold, Silver and Bronze medal standing, as well as, receiving the award for "Most Outstanding Group in both Junior and Senior Divisions, in all dance disciplines" for her Senior Tap Large Formation. You can also find Kim teaching guest classes at Metro Movement Dance Studio (Toronto), and at the new Millennium Dance Centre (Toronto), in various disciplines of dance.
BRENDAN DE SANTIS | ARTISTIC ASSOCIATE COMPETITIVE DIRECTOR / STUDIO FACULTY
Brendan De Santis, is an accomplished dancer and award-winning choreographer originally hailing from London, Ontario. Brendan was also the Artistic Director at Jazz be Nimble located in Vaughn Ontario.
He has been performing and competing nationally and internationally since 2003 under the direction of Kim O'Neill who has been a significant influence in his success in the dance industry as an established dancer, teacher and choreographer. Brendan has now established himself as a professional dancer and choreographer. Brendan has studied in various genres of dance which include, Ballet, Pointe, Tap, Jazz, Modern, Lyrical, Contemporary, Musical Theatre and Partnering. Brendan also trained in vocal and professional recording under the director of Kevin Gorman, KG Productions.
Brendan continues to enrich his training, ability and knowledge in all styles of dance through attending numerous dance schools, workshops and conventions. Brendan has also completed his examinations in; Jazz, Modern and Ballet, both BATD and RAD. Furthermore, he was accepted into Ryerson University and York University for the Performance Dance Degree Program.
As a professional dancer, Brendan continues to develop himself with credits that include: performing in the Broadway musicals; The Music Man and Fiddler on the Roof under the direction of Don Flexor. He has also been a featured dancer in The After's music video "Love Will Make You Beautiful". In 2010, Brendan was a contestant on Canada's So You Think You Can Dance television show where he was successful in advancing to the choreography rounds. He also continues to perform throughout Ontario and is featured in companies such as: Airtight Entertainment and performing in shows such as The Choreographer's Ball and Harvest Festival. Brendan also worked with Jeff Dimitriou and Miles Faber for a short film that is yet to be released.
As an award-winning choreographer with an innovative and artistic style, his choreography has won many overalls and special awards and has been recognized for its creative, authentic and passionate movement quality. In 2010, Brendan won an award for his dancing skills and was scouted by Moi Artist Management, under the direction of Dani Matte. Brendan continues to work towards transforming students into dancers through his passion and dedication to his craft. Brendan continues to choreograph at Lester B Pearson's School for the Art, St George Catholic School and Catholic Central High School. Moreover, Brendan also choreographed for the Annual Hudson's Bay Gala in Toronto and the Annual One Run Cancer Benefit. Brendan is also a dance adjudicator throughout Canada.
In addition to all of the aforementioned accomplishments, Brendan is currently finishing his Bachelor of Education at Western University where he enriches his teaching abilities. Brendan is thrilled to be a faculty member at O'Neill Academy of Dance where he strives to instil his love and passion for dance to all of his students.
SHAUNTELL SCHWARTZ | STUDIO FACULTY
Shauntell has been dancing for over 20 years and has been teaching for the past eleven years.
She has taught both recreational and competitive dance to all ages, taking pride in her unique choreography and strong attention to details. Shauntell is known for her extensive acro training and her unique ability to choreograph acrobatic routines that display concept, difficulty, and intensity. She is an extremely sought after acro teacher. Shauntell's choreography has been recognized at numerous competitions across Ontario, and her reputation as an instructor / choreographer is also recognized amongst many...
Shauntell is a licensed teacher in Acro and Stage with the British Association Teachers of Dance. She has completed her membership certification in Acro. Shauntell received her acro training from known acrobatic instructor, Andrea Wegg, and also has received training in contortion by Cirque Du Soleil performers.
Shauntell takes great pride in safe acro training, and is very excited to continue to bring her creative acro approach to OAD.
NICK TULL | STUDIO FACULTY
Nick is the founder and director of Airtight Entertainment, Ontario's hottest up and coming dance company.
Airtight Entertainment company members have been featured in productions by Disney Channels Make it Pop, The Next Step, So You Think You Can Dance Canada, YTV's The Next Star, Cirque de Soleil, World of Dance Toronto Youth Division Champions, and has also been made an addition to the team of choreographers for the illustrious Azul Fives resort company, and so much more. Dance educator, Choreographer, Dancer and Actor. Nick has been dancing since age 7, and has remained passionate and inspired from the very beginning.
From that point on his love for self expression through the art of dance has continued to grow. He has trained in Ballet, Jazz, Hip Hop Contemporary, Tap, Urban underground dance genres, African, and Caribbean dance, and is always looking for the new and next thing that is going to help to further diversify himself through dance; "I'm all about the groove", and having said that, Nick has danced on television, and on stage in shows produced by Warner Brothers, Nickelodeon, Nickelodean Germany, Universal Studios, Paramount Canada's Wonderland, Slice TV, Bacardi, Mercedes Benz, Toronto's World Pride. He has also danced for various recording artists such as Janet Jackson, Kylie Minogue, Aleesia, Shawn Desman, Victoria Duffield, Lloyd Banks, Euro Super Groups and artists like US5, Lexington Bridge, Jimi Blue. As well as performing with Tokyo Hotel, Jermaine Jackson, T-Pain, Fabulous, and Busta Rhymes. In addition to teaching at studios across Ontario, he has been fortunate to travel all across Canada, and the US, and North Western Europe- teaching in the UK, Portugal, Amsterdam, Paris, Denmark, Germany.
SYDNEE BADEEN | STUDIO FACULTY
Sydnee is a third year student at the University of Western Ontario, where she studies French and Anthropology.
She has been teaching students of all ages for 5 years in various styles of dance, and at both the recreational and competitive level. She was a elite competitive company student at the O'Neill Academy of Dance, where she excelled in all areas of dance. Sydnee has been trained extensively in tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, contemporary, hip hop and pointe. Sydnee has been trained under the instruction of Kim O'Neill. At the early age of 3, Sydnee fell in love with dance. Two years later, at age 5, she joined the competitive dance team
Although Sydnee has a passion for all dance disciplines, tap is definitely something she has been recognized for. Throughout her competitive dance career, she has won numerous overall awards, special awards, scholarships and recognition from different judges. She has been recognized for her "expressive quality" and her "fantastic feet" by numerous judges across Canada. Sydnee was a member of the 2010 Canadian National Tap Team that represented Canada at the World Tap Championships in Riesa, Germany. Sydnee won the Bronze medal for the large formation, the silver medal for the small group, and 5th place for her tap duet. Sydnee was a member of the tap performing group Beyond Steps, in connection with The Toronto Rhythm Initiative. In Ballet Sydnee has been trained in the forms of B.A.T.D, R.A.D. and Ceccetti and has received a strong technical background. Sydnee has performed roles as well was named dance captain in four high school theater productions, Grease, Starmites, Back to the 80s and 13 The Musical.
She also was given the honour of choreographing dance routines for Starmites Back to the 80s and 13. Sydnee has also had the honour of dancing at the Detroit Piston's Game for the half-time show. Sydnee is highly trained in all styles of dance, and keeps up her training by attending various workshops and conventions. Sydnee is also a tap demonstrator for Kim O'Neill at various studio workshops. She is thrilled to be a part of an amazing team and is looking forward in bringing her training and extra positivity to OAD.
RILEY WALKER | STUDIO FACULTY
Riley Walker is a familiar face at the studio, an aspiring dancer, gymnast and choreographer.
Beginning at a very young age he has had a love for movement; starting in gymnastics at 6 before enrolling at a dance studio soon after. Focusing in Jazz, Contemporary, Lyrical, Tap, and Ballet with several years of BATD training; he has experience in Partnering, Spotting and Improvisation - also specializing in Acrobatics in which he has been working on with fellow faculty member Shauntell Schwartz since 2007!
In his teen years he continued studying his passion by participating in conventions, workshops and master classes spanning North America, picking up inspiration from influences including Mia Michaels, Blake McGrath, and Brian Friedman. While traveling and competing he was awarded scholarships to several of these events: Coastal Dance Rage, Jump, Fresh Dance Convention, Be Discovered NYC, among others.
Before joining the senior company at OAD he was able to be a part of multiple school musicals, dance shows, talent competitions and charity gala performances. He notes his highlight as being a cast member of Footloose at the Grand Theatre in 2011.
Training at O'Neill Academy of Dance under the direction of Kim O'Neill he was provided with countless opportunities to grow as an artist, learning from industry names such as Gino Berti, Cora Kozaris, Jesse Weafer and Kristin Dobby. Assistant/Substitute teaching since his first year, the 2017/2018 season marks his 7th as part of the OAD family. As a company dancer he earned numerous awards, some of which are: 5-Time Overall Senior Soloist, Move Dance & Fever Dance Off Finalist, Hall of Fame National All Star VIP Dancer, Mr. Dance Canada Finalist, and recognized many times as Judge's Choice for special awards not limited to 'Smooth Style', 'Beautiful Connection', 'Honest Story' and 'Picture Perfect'. Contributing to his individual success was a unit of talented dancers and faculty which propelled the team to become Highest Scoring Studio winners and Senior Regional Group Champions of Hall of Fame Dance in Detroit, Michigan in his final competitive year.
Relocating to Toronto for school at George Brown College as a Dance Performance student, he was part of a joint program, which included full-time training at Ballet Jörgen Canada. Expanding his dance education he also trained at Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre, OIP, Metro Movement and Underground Dance Centre.
Despite each example listed above he certifies OAD as his biggest source of knowledge and motivation, not only to become a better dancer and teacher but also a teammate and friend. He looks forward to continue finessing his coaching and choreography, with a significant focus on building confidence on and off stage.
BROOKE GILMOUR | STUDIO FACULTY
Brooke began her dancing career at the early age of 3 and has been dedicating much of her time and commitment to the art form ever since.
Brooke began her dancing career at the early age of 3 and has been dedicating much
of her time and commitment to the art form ever since. Brooke is trained in Ballet,
Pointe, Jazz, Acro, Modern, Contemporary, Hip Hop, and Musical Theatre. Brooke
also has extensive training and exam work in Cecchetti Ballet. Brooke graduated
from Emotion Dance Company under the artistic direction of Michelle Freiburger
where she trained numerous hours a week with some of the most sought out
choreographers in the dance community. After graduating high school Brooke
attended the Conteur Academy, under artistic direction of Eryn Waltman, where she
studied under many professional teachers and choreographers in Toronto and the
surrounding area. She has been a part of a few full-length shows such as “Frames”
(Conteur academy), “A life Within” (Breath In Movement) as well as smaller show
castings in the Toronto area. During her time in Toronto she was also able to work
with artist Craig Cardiff in a music video. She eventually moved to London to attend
the University of Western where graduated with an Honours Health Science with a
Specialization in Biology Degree. During her time at Western she had many
performance/ choreographic opportunities. She was a prominent dancer/
choreographer of Heat Dance Team where she competed at varsity level. She has
also had the pleasure of choreographing for Caisa Fashion Show, the largest student
run fashion show in all of Canada. Her most recent work includes her first ever
contemporary dance production titled “I Never Promised You a Rose Garden” as a
part of the 2018 London Fringe Festival. Brooke has been teaching/ choreographing
for the past 5 years in cities located in Southern Ontario and continues to grow in
her love of dance by being an active part of the dance community. Brooke’s passion
for dance is evident whether it is teaching or performing herself and she can’t wait
to share that passion and inspire the next generation of dancers.
KRISTOPHER GRZELLA | STUDIO FACULTY
Kristopher Grzella currently resides in Toronto, Ontario. Kristopher has extensive training in ballet, jazz, tap, contemporary and hip-hop.
Kristopher has been fortunate to train with noted choreographers throughout Canada and the United States. Via stage, television, and film. Kristopher has worked with Cora Kozaris, Tatiana Parker, Addy Chan, Jeff Dimitriou, Luther Brown, Desmond Richardson, Tessandra Chavez, Gil Duldulao, Cris Judd, Brian Friedman, Paul Becker and Christopher Scott.
Stage credits include Canada's National Ballet Nutcracker, Aznavour for the Stratford Festival, Family Channels Big Ticket summer concert, MasterCard International Fashion Week Toronto, Fashion Art Toronto( F.A.T.), YTV Summer Beach Bash with OMI-Cheerleader, Underneath 7Sould Toronto Beaches Jazz Festival and Canada's PamAm Games closing ceremony B5C company. Film and television credits include A Night Like This (Shawn Desmond, music video), My Spicy Icy Girl (JusReign X Sprite, music video), Dynamite(Mckenzie Small, music video), Nickelodeon's Kids Choice Awards and The Next Step TV series. Recently Kris completed filming Seasons 1, 2and 3 of Nickelodeon's musical TV series Make It Pop (Nick Cannon) which is airing globally in New Zealand, Australia, Georgia, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Latin America, Ireland, England, France, Russia, USA and Canada. Kristopher has finished working on a Disney Channel Original Movie entitled “Disney’s Zombies”.
Kristopher is an artist at heart whose passion for movement cycles him back to his roots. Kristopher can be seen both taking dance class and teaching class to fulfill his hunger to learn and share. Kristopher creates choreography and shares his movement style through his involvement with various dance studios and dance conventions as a faculty member. Kris is excited to share his multi faceted knowledge and his special brand of enthusiasm with all of you at OAD.