THE TEACHING TEAM
LINDA POSSAK ANDERSON, ADCRG, TCRG
Linda began Irish dancing at a young age and competed at the Open Championship level throughout Western Canada, at the North American and the World Championships. Following a successful competitive career and completion of a Bachelors Degree in Communications, Linda completed her teacher’s exam in 1991 and was awarded her TCRG by the Irish Dancing Commission in Ireland (CLRG). She received accreditation as an adjudicator (ADCRG) in 2017. As an instructor, Linda has developed many championship students and teams. Outside the dance studio, Linda serves on the board of Western Canada's Irish Dance Teachers' Association as Regional Director. Linda is also proud to be one of Western Canada’s elected representatives to CLRG.
ALI HAMPSHIRE BILCOX,
A two-time Western Canadian Oireachtas Champion and six-time World qualifer, Ali began dancing at the age of 13. During her competitive years, she competed at the World Championships four times, and also competed annually at the North American Championships, earning a top ten overall finish at her final North Americans in San Diego. Ali holds an Honours Degree in English Literature from the University of Calgary and is a past recipient of the Irish Dance Teachers’ of North America Scholarship. She received her TCRG qualifications in 2007 and her adjudicator qualifications in 2016. Ali has served as Co-chair and Treasurer for 6 regional Oireachtasi and for the North American Championships in 2019 and Canadian Championships in 2021. Ali currently serves on the selection committee for the IDTANA Cyril McNiff Memorial Scholarship Program.
Cait began Irish dance at the age of 11 after an inspirational viewing of Riverdance. Just three years later, she won the Western Canadian Regional Oireachtas, a feat she would repeat for a second time two years later. Cait was an undisputed champion during her dance career, winning multiple Open Championships and qualifying for the World Championships a total of five times, competing in Glasgow, Belfast and Ennis. She also danced at the North American Championships in Toronto, Boston, Nashville, Philadelphia and San Diego, earning a top ten overall solo placing in Boston. Cait holds a Bachelors of Interior Design from Mount Royal University and a Masters of Environmental Design from the University of Calgary. She received her TCRG qualifications in Calgary in 2017.
KELLY RYAn, TCRG
Kelly began dancing at the age of 7. During the course of her competitive career, she won multiple Open Championships and attended 12 North American Championships, with a highest overall solo placing of 12th. Kelly also competed at the World Championships on three occasions. In addition to her competitive achievements, Kelly has served as a troupe member and collaborative choreographer in three southern Alberta tours of the Calgary-based dance show, Celtic Echoes. Kelly holds dual Bachelors Degrees in Anthropology from the University of Calgary. She received her TCRG qualifications in 2012 and is currently working on her Masters Degree in Anthropology through the University of Calgary.
AMY DEYELL, TCRG
Amy began dancing at a young age and instantly fell in love with this unique dance form. She competed in her first feis in 1994 and retired from competition almost 20 years later to the day, following the 2014 North American Championships in Montreal. Amy is a World Qualifier, competing at the Worlds in Belfast, and she also competed at many Western Canadian Oireachtasi and North American Championships during her dance career. Starting at age 14, Amy began learning the ropes as an assistant teacher in Calgary and Lethbridge. In 2015, she joined the team at Possak Hampshire and received her TCRG qualifications in 2016. She holds a Bachelors of Mathematics from the University of Calgary and a Juris Doctor from Dalhousie University.
Beginning her dancing career at the age of four, Shannon has been competing and performing for over 20 years. Over this time, she has competed in, numerous high-ranked competitions, including eight World Championships, 13 North American Championships, and the All-Scotland, All-Ireland, and Great Britain Championships. In her final year of competing, Shannon won the title of Senior Ladies Western Canadian Champion, and performed a lead role in the school’s annual show. Shannon is a recent graduate from Mount Royal University, holding a Bachelors in Child Studies, in which she received Honours. Having acted as a student teacher for years, Shannon looks forward to achieving her TCRG qualifications in the near future.
Hannah has always had a passion for movement. Beginning her Irish Dance career at the age of 5, she competed in North American and Western Canadian competitions until the age of 18. After retiring from Irish Dance in 2012, Hannah found the Barre community and was introduced to a new form of exercise that was the perfect balance between her dance background, strength training and cardio conditioning. In 2016, Hannah took her love of Barre to a new level and trained under The Dailey Method as an instructor. Hannah holds a Bachelor of Education from Mount Royal University and is currently teaching Grade 4 in Chestermere.
Barre is the perfect combination of yoga, pilates, and strength conditioning. Through isometric movements, students strengthen and lengthen their muscles. Because the movements are so small, there is minimal pressure on the joints, tendons, ligaments and spine. This ensures students are getting a great workout, without compromising their form and alignment. Students can expect to have a fantastic "head to toe" workout to great music, and have lots of fun doing it!
Alli is a former Open-level Irish dancer who grew up competing at the regional, national and international level alongside fellow classmates Ali, Cait, Kelly and Amy. Following her retirement from competitive dance, Alli pursued her Bachelors Degree at the University of Lethbridge, and then Masters studies in Scotland. During this time, she also became a certified Hatha yoga instructor. She now teaches out of several Calgary studios, including Bikram Yoga Marda Loop and Bikram Yoga Calgary South. Alli is also actively involved in the world of competitive yoga, having twice claimed the provincial title of Alberta Asana Yoga Champion.
Alli's yoga conditioning classes focus on a foundational series of postures to strengthen, promote mobility, and increase flexibility and alignment for Irish dancers. Students are taken through a variety of poses and breathing exercises. Alli also works with our dancers individually to create stretching and mobility plans.