Versatile dancer and educator, Barbara Vargas, is one of few Tap Dancers in the world to pursue a Diploma in Music, using her shoes as her major instrument. She has a passion of Dance, Education, and Music and her wide variety of performance experience locally and internationally allows her to jump into many different types of projects, from playing Rhoda in the Musical White Christmas, to a Tap Dance percussionist in the Mary Lee Bird Band and Kent Shores Group. Highlights including Wild Mountain Music Festival and Edmonton’s Jazz Festival.
Barbara holds a Bachelor of Education from the University of Alberta as well as training through International Internships in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles. Barbara was for years a leader in the Edmonton and Vancouver Tap dance community as as as a performer and educator. She has recently relocated back to Edmonton as Instructor at MacEwan University, Sugar Swing, Emerge, and DancEd. She can’t wait to see the next generation take the stage at this years Glam Dance Festival and wishes them all the best of luck!
Katherine Semchuk is a dance artist, educator and choreographer based in Toronto. Originally from Edmonton, AB, Katherine grew up dancing at a local studio training in a variety of dance styles including ballet, contemporary, jazz, lyrical, hip hop and tap. In high school, she developed a deeper passion for contemporary dance and composition at Victoria School of the Arts which led her to pursue dance at a post-secondary level. She is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre’s Professional Training Program where she had the privilege of working with many artists including Peggy Baker, Robert Desrosiers, Christopher House and James Kudelka. Her appetite for continued professional development has taken her to intensives across North America and Europe.
As an independent dance artist, Katherine has worked with artists and companies in both Toronto and Alberta including Peggy Baker Dance Projects, Good Women Dance Collective (GWDC), Kaeja D’dance, Kylie Thompson Dance, Meghann Michalsky, Nostos Collectives, Newton Moraes, Sasha Ivanochko, and Naishi Wang. Most recently, she has performed at Springboard Performance's Fluid Festival, New Dance Horizon's Stream of Dance, Dance Ontario DanceWeekend, Dance: Made in Canada and Art Gallery of Ontario’s All Hours.
Katherine has extensive teaching and choreographic experience with students of all ages and levels. With a growing interest in choreography, Semchuk continues to develop her own artistic practice. She has presented her work in both Edmonton and Toronto. Her first half-length work premiered at Expanse Festival 2018 with help from GWDC’s New Work Award and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts. Her teaching endeavours have taken her into studios, company classes and high school programs across the country where she has had the pleasure of leading workshops, choreographic processes and professional development for both dancers and educators. She has taught classes for Ballet Edmonton, Nostos Collectives, Decidedly Jazz Danceworks and YYC Contemporary Training and has choreographed for countless competitive studios and high school dance ensembles over the last few years. Through danceED Movement Project, she has been facilitating dance-focused artist-in-residency programs in elementary and junior high schools across Edmonton and Toronto. Katherine is currently on faculty at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and is the movement and dance coach for the figure skaters at Canadian Ice Academy.
Video Tour Adjudicators
Video Tour & Video Submission Adjudicator
Becky Izad is an accomplished award winning teacher and choreographer and is a qualified ISTD instructor. An avid performer and dance educator, Becky loves to share her passion and knowledge of dance with her students.
Born in Monte-Carlo, Becky grew up in a show biz family and found her own passion for the arts at an early age. Becky continued her dance training in Contemporary, Jazz, Hip Hop, Tap, Stage and Musical Theatre throughout Vancouver, BC. She went on to join some of the top Companies in the city and work with renowned choreographers in Vancouver, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Seattle, and London, England.
Becky has had the opportunity to perform in Canada and the US with the successful hip hop company, TwoFourSeven in competitions such as America’s Got Talent, Season 13, BodyRock (Champions 2017), VIBE XXIII (3rd Place), WOD Los Angeles (Champions 2018). She has also danced, choreographed and starred in numerous music videos for artists such as David Ward and Laurell Barker.
Becky’s students consistently achieve high mark awards at competition and many have gone on to pursue their own professional careers. Her work as a choreographer has earned her much success and numerous choreography awards.
Becky is excited to see all of the talented dancers on stage this week and wishes all the participants good luck!
Jonnis is a multifaceted artist who's work extends into many areas of the Dance, Entertainment and Production Industry. Based out of Las Vegas, Nevada, he is the Artistic Director of JACS Entertainment, a production company that creates and manages for both theatrical and nightlife venues. His work was recognized at a young age as he began performing and choreographing for professional review shows at the age of 14. At 16 years old he moved to the U.S.A., performing in “Legends in Concert”, while also having his choreography featured in the show. Jonnis' credits include: teaching workshops for Cirque Du Soleil, Choreographing for P&O Cruise-lines, Emceeing for TIESTO, Artistically Directing numerous shows/venues (Steve Wyrick: Real Magic, Sake Rok, Haze Nightclub, multiple HAKKASAN properties and many more). He was also a Top 16 finalist on Season 1 of “So You Think You Can Dance” and a featured performer on China's "Dancing With The Stars" (Wu Lin Da Hui). While remaining a faculty member of The Rock Center For Dance, Jonnis continues his teaching career globally.