What's In Your Dancebag?

Jen Loane Briand

Teaching shoes with a hint of heel
A must-have for long days in the studio and Achilles tendons that need a bit of break.

Story Cubes
One of my favourite ways to stimulate discussions when facilitating students’ choreography. Rolling the dice gives you the story, but how to interpret the indications of the cubes is for the artist to decide.

I use all shapes, sizes and textures for improvisation exercises. Scarves allow children with limited mobility to create large shapes and smooth movements.

iPod and cable 
I never go to the studio without them. The variety of music is huge, from jazz and classical to Top 100 radio hits.

Leg warmers
Yes, I’m old-fashioned, but there is nothing like a pair of leg warmers with the heels cut out: perfect for cold Halifax days.

I always carry some sort of instrument with me. Giving dancers (especially those who don’t communicate with speech) the ability to make their own music is a special kind of magic.

Key information never seems to stay in my brain in the rush of a class. My notebooks are sacred to my existence as a teacher.

Any type, as long as it’s there when I need it. Students and staff know this now and the fact that we sell chocolate at our front office is both a blessing and a curse.



Jen Loane Briand is an associate teacher as well as a Pre-Professional Certified dancer of the Russian Ballet Society of Canada. A graduate of the Halifax Dance Intensive Training Program and an alumnus of the Young Company, she performed the part of Clara in Symphony Nova Scotia’s production of The Nutcracker from 2004 to 2007. Jen currently teaches ballet, jazz, Pilates and Broadway at Halifax Dance, and is the program creator and facilitator of Inclusive Movement, a dance program for children with special needs. She carries degrees in kinesiology and therapeutic recreation from Dalhousie University in Halifax. 



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