November 2013 Recreational Division Newsletter

Nov 03 2013 | Posted in Recreational Division Newsletter


In 2009, no one would have guessed that a single one-day workshop on International Dance Day would turn into what is now a vibrant, life-affirming, and powerful annual RWB School Recreational Division program called ExplorAbility. Today, ExplorAbility features three sessions each season, welcoming dozens of adult students with varied movement abilities every year.

“I think it’s really an excellent program for adults wanting to get out and try something new,” said RWB Dance Instructor Jacqui Davidson in a recent CBC News interview. “There’s a wonderful social element to the group as well. Being involved with other people who have various disabilities, it sort of helps them to feel that they’re not alone in all this.”

Over the course of one to two months, ExplorAbility participants are guided through a uniquely customized exploration of dance and self-expression that is carefully matched to their abilities.

“In this type of program, there needs to be a willingness to take a risk and do something very different with our bodies,” Jacqui explained. “When you’re in that situation of really being a vulnerable person – being in a wheelchair or in having a cognitive disability – there is that uncertainty to things. Often times, as we move through the program, I ask them to challenge themselves a bit more physically, to try something they haven’t tried before that maybe challenges their balance or stability, which can be scary. But it makes a huge difference in their level of confidence.”

In addition to seeing an increase in their level of confidence, students also enjoy positive interpersonal interactions with their peers, an improvement in muscle coordination, motor skills, and balance, and a decrease in muscle tension and stress. While each student’s ability will vary, their capacity to enjoy and benefit from dance is limitless.

The RWB School is thrilled to continue offering ExplorAbility over the coming season. If you know of anyone that might enjoy this program, there are two sessions remaining (Jan 8 – Mar 12, 2014 and Mar 19 – May 21, 2014). For more information on ExplorAbility, click here.

Are you wondering what your child has been up to in class? Well, we are really excited to show you! Classes will be open for observation for parents and relatives from November 17-23. This period of observation allows you an opportunity to meet your child’s teacher and for teachers to share valuable information about the remainder of the year with you.


We ask that all guests remove their outdoor footwear before entering the studios and please turn off all cell phones. Video recording is not permitted and photography is only permitted if you are taking pictures of your own child. These policies are in place for the protection of all students. We also ask that all students choose another week to take make up classes.
All students involved in the RWB School Dance Ensembles will be receiving their Manitoba Dance Festival participation summary/invoices this month. These invoices will include mandatory group pieces and may include optional pieces. Registration for Dance Conventions and Competitions will also be included in this package.


The deadline for confirmation of your participation in the optional Festival pieces is December 1. Most rehearsals for optional pieces will begin after the New Year. Payment plans are available for all Dance Manitoba fees, however payments for Competitions are due in full since registrations for these events must be submitted in December.

We attempt to provide as many opportunities as resources allow. We appreciate your understanding and support and look forward to some fantastic performances of our dancers. The festival takes place in mid-May at the Pantages Playhouse Theatre.


The Manitoba Dance Festival offers a category referred to as “student initiated choreography”. This category allows students to choreograph their own dances as well as choose their own performers and costuming. Adjudication is based entirely on the work of the choreographer and not on the interpretation of the dancers.

The cost to participate is $143. This fee will include the use of our studios for rehearsals, staff support and supervision at the festival, as well as the festival entry fee. If you are interested in pursuing this opportunity, please visit School Office for more information.

A limited number of applications will be accepted. Applications will be taken on a first-come-first-serve basis and will be accepted until November 15.

The annual Winnipeg Santa Claus parade will be taking place on November 16 and is scheduled to start at 5 pm. Please be aware that you may experience larger traffic volumes, limited parking and street closures downtown near the RWB Building on this day. We advise that all parents arrange to leave earlier than normal on this date to ensure that your child arrives to classes on time.


For parade map, street closures and parking map details:


Parents please remember to contact the School Office in advance if your child is not going to be attending a class so they can inform your child’s teacher that he or she will be absent.


Students from RWB School Jazz and Tap Dance Ensembles attended the Triple Threat Dance Convention at the end of October. It was a fun filled weekend! Participating students had the opportunity to take classes and learn choreography from Dance Industry teachers and choreographers such as Jillian Meyers (So You Think You Can Dance U.S.), Christian Vincent (Madonna, Prince, Britney Spears), Bradley Rapier (Groovaloos), Nicholas Young (Stomp) and Tina Landon (Janet Jackson, Rhianna, Christina Aguilera, MTV Video Music Award for Michael Jackson’s “Scream”).

Congratulations to Lia Loewen and Anna Radawetz for receiving convention scholarships for the 2014 Triple Threat Tour and to Soleil Kunzig who was awarded Junior Runner-up Definite Threat. Soleil also received a convention scholarship for the 2014 Tour.


On Thursday, November 28 from 5-6 pm the RWB Company will open their studio doors to young gentlemen ages 8-12 from our Recreational Division. Male dancers from the company will provide a presentation for the students of their current work, followed by a question and answer period. RD students will then have the opportunity to work on some of their favorite dance steps with a member of the company!

If your child is interested in participating in this exciting opportunity please contact our RWB School Office to register in advance. Registration is free of charge but space is limited and pre-registration is required by November 23.


Just a friendly reminder that all girls must have their hair in a bun for all ballet classes as well as jazz and tap classes up to and including Level 5A. All other classes, the hair must be in a slick ponytail or bun.

By coming to class with hair in the requested style, teachers are able to better assess your child’s movement and progress. Teaching assistants are not able to help students secure their hair at the beginning of class, therefore we appreciate the assistance of parents to secure the hair in advance.


Parents are required to inform the School Office or Interim Principal Nicole Egeland of any injury that restricts or prevents a child’s participation in dance classes. We will then inform the child’s teacher of any adjustments that need to be made for the child throughout the class. If the injury is severe enough that the child is not able to participate in any way, we expect the child to audit the class. If the child is seeking physiotherapy or other treatment it would be helpful if the parent could ask for a detailed description of the injury and any restrictions are required from the physiotherapist or doctor. If your child is sick, we ask that they stay at home to recover.


Dance Manitoba will be hosting workshops for dancers of all levels over their Showcase Weekend. The workshops are designed to provide dancers of all levels a weekend of programming where they will take classes, learn award winning choreography, and perform!

  • Contemporary Jazz class with last years’ 2013 Manitoba Provincial Dance Festival Jazz adjudicator, Julio Fuentes.
  • Choreography with Jungle Boogie and Mark Samuels. Dancers will learn the choreography from Shawn Desman’s 2011 MMVA Video of the Year “Night Like This”. Over three days, each level will learn their assigned section of choreography working intensely with Jungle and Mark. This will also be performed in the Members’ Showcase!

The fee for this workshop is $60. Registration forms are available online at