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The Pre-Professional Division of DancEast was established in 1980, under the direction of Harriet Gratian (Artistic Director, Emeritus) and has a rich history of producing “industry-ready” dancers and performers, due to its complete and diverse training methods. Over the years, dancers in this program; have been honoured to work with a virtual “who’s-who” of Canadian and International dance notables – and today, many of our alumni are the “who’s-who” of the Canadian dance scene!  Now, with Shelley Chiasson-Collins, as Artistic Director, the tradition of excellence continues.

From Halifax to Havana, from Washington, DC to Abano, Italy – DancEast dancers, have graced, both national and international stages, exciting audiences here and abroad, with their impressive scope of repertoire and their breadth of technical knowledge.


The Pre-Professional Division; is comprised of two levels –

PV (Performance Values) and the DancEast Young Company (Aspirant, Junior and Senior Company).


  • PV is the entry to the Pre-Professional Division, for dancers aged 8 and up. Dancers can enter into this level, either by recommendation from faculty, or by desire from the students (but only upon approval from faculty).
    • Pre-requisite: minimum ballet level of Ballet 2 and beginner levels in either; Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop or Lyrical. Attendance at SummerDance 1 dance camp, is mandatory, in the summer, prior to that season’s start.
    • Dancers intending to enter into the PV program, in the up-coming season, are encouraged to enrol in the Dance Deal the semester prior.
  • The DancEast Young Company, is the elite group of dancers in the Pre-Professional Division, and is for dancers aged 13 and up. Dancers in the Young Company level can only enter, by recommendation from faculty.
    • Pre-requisite: minimum ballet level of Ballet 3+ and at least one year of consistent Pointe training. Strong levels of technique in Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop and Tap. Attendance at SummerDance 2 dance camp is mandatory, the summer prior to that season’s start.

The Pre-Professional Division; for both the PV Program and the DancEast Young Company levels, is a “Ballet-based” program that emphasizes the importance of the fundamentals of Ballet, while expanding the movement vocabulary, through other styles of dance such as; Jazz, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Acro and Tap. Dancers, in this program, receive a pre-selected schedule, which includes all disciplines, in order to provide a well-rounded and complete level training. The hours of training are a combination of both technique classes and repertoire / rehearsal times. Dancers in the entry level, typically commit 6 hours / week, where dancers in the Company level’s commitment, can be upwards of 15 hours / week.

If you are interested in joining our Pre-Professional Division, please contact the Artistic Director (Shelley Chiasson-Collins) or speak with your child’s teacher, for more information.

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