Tap dancers Emily Slavin

Tap dancers Emily Slavin

Ridge dancers head to the worlds

Team Canada dancers from Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows are busy fundraising for a trip to Germany & Poland. They needs your help.

Isabelle Flavin can tap out a tune with her feet, quickly and to a beat.

An avid dancer who dabbles in every style from ballet to hiphop, 12-year-old Flavin admits she loves tap the best.

“I love making noise with my shoes,” says Flavin, whose prowess in tap has been recognized by Team Canada.

The Harry Hooge student and her sister Emily, who train at Coastal Edge Dance in Coquitlam, are busy preparing for their trip to the International Dance Organization’s world championships.

Flavin will compete in the intermediate category and has only four opportunities to learn her routine before she performs in Germany with her team of 24 dancers.

“I’m really excited,” she says.

“But there’s going to be lots of fundraising to do.”

Sending two dancers to Germany isn’t cheap. The sisters have to raise $7,000 in a span of three months.

Emily Flavin, 16, doesn’t know if her love for tap rubbed off on her sister.

For her, tap is a style that’s different and extremely creative.

“It’s not a serious style,” says Slavin, who’ll be dancing in the senior/adult category. “It’s also really good to have under your belt.”

The siblings have already begun fundraising for their trip. They’ve held a bottle drive and even travelled to Vancouver to busk on Granville Street.

Though nervous, Flavin is thrilled she’s going to represent her country in what’s billed as the “dance Olympics.”

“I’m over the moon,” she says.

Joining Flavin on the senior tap team is Franqui Barber, a student at Samuel Robertson who trains at Peggy Peats School of Dance.

Barber, 16, has been dancing since she was three.

“Tap has always been my favourite, I have done tap solos since I was eight and it’s my passion,” Barber says.

“Going to Germany and representing my country will be the best experience of my life so far, I feel very privileged to have been selected and part of the dance team. I am excited to see tap routines from other parts of the world and meet new people.”

Auditions for the Canadian National Dance Team brought some of the best dancers from across Canada together, with over 300 participants competing for a position on the team to represent Canada at the world level.

Team Canada dancers train up to seven days per week – they are as flexible as any gymnast, as graceful as figure skaters and as dedicated as any other Olympic athlete.

Nasiv Sall can’t imagine her life without dance.

“Dance is an outlet for me to express myself and I enjoy developing the artistic and creative side of myself,” says Sall, 14, who will compete in a range of categories including  junior ballet, junior jazz and junior modern.

“Even though it requires a lot of training and hard work, I enjoy every minute of it.”

Sall too has been dancing since she was three and dancing for Team Canada is an opportunity of a life time.

“I have been very fortunate to work with excellent choreographers and teachers who have encouraged and motivated me along the way.  I do not take this opportunity lightly and will work hard to make them and my country proud.”

The best dancers from 46 countries around the world will be vying for the World Champion title in December.

Having collected 11 world titles, Canadian dancers are known to be some of the best in the world.



• The Flavins are holding a car wash fundraiser at Kirmac on 227th Street and Dewdney Trunk Road on 29 Sept.

• On 24 October, there’s be another fundraiser hosted by Emily and Isabelle Flavin at Wings Restaurant where you’ll get dinner and a drink for $20. For tickets, email torysalvin@shaw.ca.

• You can donate to Franqui Barber by visiting http://www.gofundme.com/4a0wu4 or for more information visit http://teamcanadadance.ca

• Mail donations to Team Canada Dance Central, Box 157, 605 Mercy Street, Selkirk, Manitoba, R1A 2B2.



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