At CDS Inc, our Teachers are patient, caring and kind. We will strive to develop a positive relationship with your child while both encouraging and elevating their self-esteem. Focusing on the foundations of hard work and discipline, we will engage each dancer by sharing our knowledge and passion.

Catherine Simmons, AISTD-ACDTA

Owner & Principal Teacher

Catherine is a highly qualified professional dancer and instructor. She attended a 3 year Post-Secondary Dance Teacher Training Program which she fast tracked and completed in just 2 years. Catherine holds her Associate status with The Imperial Society for Teachers of Dancing in London, England (ISTD), and is Head of the Examinations Program at the studio. 

Believing strongly in continuing her education and training, Catherine regularly participates in classes & workshops to provide her students with new techniques and styles , and has had the opportunity to study under some of North America’s most renowned Master Teachers and Choreographers including: Brian Friedman, Shane Sparks, Peggy Baker, Sorella Englund, Finis Jhung, Cris Judd, Bob Rizzo and many more.

When not in the studio, Miss Catherine can be found playing the role of Mother to her 2 beautiful Children, Claire & Grayson.

When time allows, she is involved in local charities and spends much of her time fundraising for such charities including but not limited to; Local School Breakfast Programs, Ascension Collegiate Auction, The Angel Fund, BTSPCA, The Children’s Wish Foundation & The Janeway Children’s Hospital.

Qualifications include:

  • ISTD Associate Modern Theatre

  • ISTD Associate Tap

  • CDTA Associate Ballroom, Latin American

  • ISTD Advanced 2 Tap

  • ISTD Advanced 1 Modern

  • Module One Acrobatic Arts Certification

  • Virtual Teacher Intensive with Broadway Dance Centre, 2020

  • Virtual ISTD Summer School from Chichester, UK, 2020

  • CDTA Silver Dancing Standard in Ballroom & Latin American.

  • ISTD Advanced Level training Cecchetti Ballet, including Associate work.

  • Dance Teacher Magazine Summer Conference, NYC.

  • The PULSE Advanced Level Intensive

  • Certificate from The National Ballet School of Canada Teacher Training Seminar, Toronto

  • Certificate from Broadway Dance Centre International Dance Teachers Seminar at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, NYC

  • ISTD course for New Grades Syllabus {Primary Class, Grades 5&6} in Modern & Tap

  • Broadway Dance Center International Dance Conference, NYC 

  • Professional Study at Broadway Dance Centre, NYC 

Other Performance & Choreographic Credits

Catherine’s performance credits are among the best in Newfoundland over the last 15 years. She has had the opportunity to be apart of many prestigious dance and performance troupes, along side the best dancers and performers that Newfoundland has to offer.

  • Catherine was a featured dancer for the Matthew Celebrations in Bonavista in 1997, for which Queen Elizabeth was present.

  • In 1999, she was a member of a 50 dancer crew for Soiree ’99, celebrating 50 years of confederation. For the Soiree ’99 kick off, Catherine was one of 3 dancers selected to perform at a private party for the Prime Minister.

  • In the same Year, Catherine was cast in the dance troupe for the Millennium Celebrations on New Year’s Eve on the St.John‘s Water Front. She performed onstage with Newfoundland’s best in front of 200,000 people!

  • Catherine was cast as a Principal Dancer for the original Our Diva’s Do Broadway show at Mile One in 2004, and since has been continuously cast as a Lead Dancer in 3 productions of Our Diva’s Do Christmas, being given solo work during each show. Catherine’s talent was recognized by the show’s Director and Producer, and in 2007 she was asked to lend her hand to some of the choreography. She choreographed a beautiful Viennese Waltz and a Lyrical solo piece.

  • Catherine also gave her expertise to the Cupids 400 celebrations. She was hired as Lead Choreographer, and worked with Ged Blackmore, Brian Way and the Cupids 400 committee in preparation for the performance of “Seeds of Settlement”, an original Musical written by Ged Blackmore. The production was performed in Cupids, and guests included the Prime Minister and visiting Royals.

Shauna Ryan

DiscoverDance, Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Acrobatic Arts, Back2Back

Shauna began dancing at CDS when she was 3 years old. Once she started, it didn’t take long for her to fall in love with class and the studio. CDS quickly became her second home. 

Shauna has spent her years studying many dance styles at CDS including; Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Modern and Hip Hop. Prior to joining the teaching faculty, she was a teaching assistant and substitute instructor for many years.

Shauna is in her 6th season as a full time teacher at CDS In. She leads with kindness and understanding while still pushing our dancers to work hard and push themselves to their best ability. Shauna has a gift for working with small children, and we are proud to have her as our lead DiscoverDance Instructor. 

Her Qualifications include:

  • 18 Years of Training through CDS Inc
  • Module One Certification with Acrobatic Arts
  • Virtual Teacher Intensive with Broadway Dance Centre, 2020
  • Dance Teachers Expo, Toronto, 2019
  • DiscoverDance Foundations Certification, 2022

    Caitlyn Mercer

    DiscoverDance, Jazz, Tap, Back2Back

    Caitlyn began dancing with Catherine at CDS Inc when she was just 3 years old. As the years went by, Cailtyn discovered her true love and passion for dance and continually added more and more genres to her classes. She has studied many dance styles including Ballet, Tap, Hip Hop, Lyrical and Jazz.

    In 2016,  Caitlyn joined on as a Teacher’s Assistant in the studio Preschool Program, and it was there she discovered her love for working with young children. During her time as an assistant she also was a substitute when needed. 

    Caitlyn is currently a 4th year student at Memorial University while also running her own Aesthetics Business; Luxury Lashes, in Shearstown. 

    Students attending Cailtyn’s classes adore her. We are delighted to have her with us again this season. 

    • DiscoverDance Foundations Certification, 2022

    Clare Hiscock

    Back2Back Ballet

    Clare started dancing at CDS Inc when she was just 3 years old. She has grown up within the walls of the studio and has become a familiar face to all students and parents.Having been a teacher’s assistant for 2 years, Clare has gained a passion for teaching young children. 

    Clare studies all styles of dance including Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical and Modern and has been a part of the CDS ISTD Exam Program for 7 years. She has completed her Primary, Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3, Grade 4 and Grade 5 Modern Theatre Examinations and her Grade 4 Tap Examination. This year will find her working towards her Intermediate Modern and Grade 5 Tap.

    Having been a part of the CDS Inc Competitive Program since its inception, this year she will continue to compete with Creative Edge. We are so excited to watch the magic she will bring to our little dancers this season!

    Abigail Hussey-Slaney

    Back2Back Jazz

    Abigail is so excited to be teaching her first class at CDS Inc this season! It feels like a dream come true! Abigail has been a teacher’s assistant for 2 years, and has shown an incredible level of patience and kindness to our students. Her passion for dance shines through in every class!

    Abigail has been studying all styles of dance at CDS Inc including Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical and Hip Hop as well as being a student in our ISTD Exam Program in both Modern Theatre and Tap. She has completed her Grade 3, Grade 4 & Grade 5 Modern Theatre Examinations as well as her Grade 4 Tap. She continues this season to prepare for her Intermediate Modern and her Grade 5 Tap Exams. 

    Having been a part of the CDS Inc Competitive Program since its inception, this year she will continue to compete with Creative Edge. 

    We are thrilled to have her and can’t wait to see the fun and excitement she will bring to our little dancers this season!

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