Melanie April Fries - BA hons. Dance, MDW Certified, AAC, CDTA Affiliate
Melanie April has trained in Ballet, Modern Dance, National Character Dance and Jazz. Her early years were spent at the Harriston School of Dance with Wendy W. Vernon as her instructor, and during her teens, she took additional classes at KW Danceworks. During her training she attended several professional intensives at Studio Tanesek and Trepanier Danse in Montreal. Some of her courses there included Modern Dance with Cirque de Soleil choreographer Michael Montanero, and Jean-Louis Moren, former principal dancer and choreographer with the Martha Graham Dance Company. Melanie is one of the only two Canadians certified in the Maor Dance Workout. This method is a dynamic and unique supplementary training course for dancers of all levels which builds strength, flexibility and a strong sense of balance. In 2014 Melanie become a certified Acrobatic Dance instructor. She enjoys attending drop-in classes at Temple Studios in Guelph, the home of Dance Theatre David Earle.
Melanie attained an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Dance from the University of Waterloo where her instructors included Rhonda Ryman; Laura Prada; RAD examiner and National Ballet School faculty member, Anuska Roes; UW dance department founder, Dr. Ruth Priddle; former dancer with the Danny Grossman Dance Company, Judith Miller; and former Royal Winnipeg Ballet Soloist, Svea Eklov. Her courses included technique classes, choreography, notation, dance history, human motor development and the psychology of learning dance. She has also trained at the University of Western Ontario with Dale Yoshida, former Royal Winnipeg Ballet Principal Dancer. In 1996 Melanie opened her studio in Goderich.
Over the years Melanie has inspired many students. She has enjoyed seeing students who enrolled hesitantly in Ballet class (saying they were sure they would not enjoy it) become young adults who named Ballet as one of their favourite styles of dance – no small feat! Melanie is proud to be known as an instructor who encourages all of her students with thoughtful feedback and suggestions for improvement. If you are naturally athletic and inspired to dance professionally, Melanie will help you build your skills. If you consider yourself clumsy or say that you have two left feet, no problem! Melanie will happily guide you in how to use both, with just as much enthusiasm and TLC as she shares with each of your classmates.