Sudbury School of Dance
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Sudbury School of Dance faculty bios

Our instructors bring a wealth of knowledge, experience and passion to the studio. Their many years of training bring excellence to the dance they teach.


Our faculty


Denise Vitali

Owner, Instructor

Denise began her training with Sudbury School of Ballet and completed her dance education with Tini Pel at the Arts Guild Dance Studio in Sudbury, graduating from the three year apprenticeship program for professionals.  She furthered her studies in dance with courses in Halifax, Toronto and Copenhagen.

Denise has been teaching in Sudbury for 35 years, opening her own studio in 1984.  She performed liturgical dance as part of a Huntington University lecture series and went on to perform and choreograph liturgical dance for many churches in the Sudbury area.  Since 1984, Denise has choreographed numerous musical theatre productions for Theatre Cambrian, including Hair, West Side Story and My Fair Lady.  In 2005 Denise received Northern Life's Community Builder's Award for the Arts and in 2009 she was awarded the Champions for Children award by Our Children, Our Future.  In 2012 Denise received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee award from the Sudbury Multicultural Society, and in 2017 she was honoured by the Sudbury Theatre Centre with the STC Honours award for her lifetime contribution to the arts in Sudbury.  Denise holds an Advanced Teacher's certificate from The Society of Russian Ballet and is currently an executive member and examiner for the Society.

Denise is currently teaching at Thorneloe University in the theatre program. She is also the artistic director of earthdancers and she continues to perform - most recently with Adelheid, elleQ Dance Factory and YES Theatre.


Lauren Foy

Instructor, modern

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Lauren Foy is a Sudbury-based choreographer, dancer and instructor. She majored in dance during high school and continued her training at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, graduating as a bursary student from the Professional Training Program in 2002. In 2009, Lauren formed elleQ dance factory, to support her choreographic work, and since then created two full-length shows - including The Imagination Project, which was supported by the Ontario Arts Council. Lauren is often a choreographer and guest performer for the earthdancers, having worked with the company for over 10 years. Her work has been featured in local music videos, for bands such as Pistol George Warren and Night Terrors, and in Greenboot’s award winning short film Dancing is Meaningless. Lauren also worked on the play Rearview as a movement consultant at Le Théatre du Nouvel Ontario for their 45th anniversary season. Lauren has been a dance instructor in Sudbury for 12 years.


sandy lanz

Instructor, ballet

Sandy started dancing at 5 years old and continued right through high school.  She then attended Ryerson University in the Dance program.  There she received her Royal Academy of Dance certificate at the Advanced level.

Sandy returned to Sudbury and taught for 3 years at the Arts Guild with Mrs. Tini Pel.  Then, after an absence of 20 years, she rediscovered her LOVE OF DANCE.  She has been taking classes and teaching in the Russian style since 2006.  Although she has studied in many different disciplines (jazz, modern and national dances), her first love has always been ballet!

Sandy's hobbies include gardening, spending time with her large dog and reading.


april-marie machum

Instructor, ballet and jazz

April began dancing at a young age and has grown to love all aspects of the art... classwork, performance and teaching.  She is currently teaching and dancing at Sudbury School of Dance as well as completing her Bachelor of Architectural Studies at the McEwen School of Architecture at Laurentian University.  April has been training at the Sudbury School of Dance for many years.  She has trained with Denise Vitali, Lauren Perl, Sarah Kallio and Sandy Lanz in ballet, modern and jazz.

April is also passionate about performing with the earthdancers where she has been a strong presence for many years as a dancer, production coordinator (2012-2014) and now choreographer (since 2013).

April is currently assisting and teaching ballet and jazz classes at Sudbury School of Dance.  She has completed the Student Teacher exam and continues working towards her teaching certificate in ballet through the Society of Russian Ballet as well as her jazz teaching certification through the ADAPT syllabus teacher training program.


matt foy


Matt's musical journey began at age 11 when he received a brand new acoustic guitar.  That was the start of an ongoing love affair with music and performing.  He is a multi-talented vocalist, musician and composer, playing guitar, banjo, ukulele, mandolin and percussion.

Matt has been a part of the strong Sudbury music scene for over 20 years.  Having played in numerous bands of all musical genres, he has performed in many venues and festivals across Canada, the USA and the UK.

In addition to releasing five solo albums - Self titled (2004), Shine (2010), The Micromoog Dub EP (2011), Colony Collapse Disorder (2012) and I (2013), Matt has also composed music for dance company elleQ dance factory (most recently The Imagination Project in 2011) and soundtracks for several movies.

Matt plays regular gigs in and around Sudbury as a solo artist and with a variety of bands featuring Reggae, Bluegrass, Rock, Surf and Francophone music.

Matt has also enjoyed being a percussionist at Sudbury School of Dance for many years now!


matthew kallio


Matthew started his musical journey through the Royal Conservatory of Music.

Afterwards, he studied music (piano concentration) at Cambrian College, followed by further studies at Acadia University where he studied under Professors John Hannah, John Hansen and Ronald Tomarelli.  Following graduation, Matthew worked in Halifax's vibrant music community for 10 years, mainly through the Maritime Conservator of Performing Arts as a pianist and piano faculty member.  During his time in Halifax, he was in demand as a pianist and collaborator in the dance and music worlds.  At this time he enjoyed collaborating on music with the Acadia University Chorus, The Maritime Conservatory Dance Department and various concert events with both amateur groups and colleagues.

Since moving back to his hometown of Sudbury, he has been working as part time faculty (piano) at Cambrian College's school of music.  He also holds a position at St. Patrick's Church as principal musician and currently is the Sudbury Chamber Singers and the Sudbury School of Dance.  In addition to these activities, he has been maintaining a busy schedule playing for various events around town as well as teaching piano and theory.  Matthew has also enjoyed singing in the local a cappella group Octatonic Decacadence under the direction of Dr. David Buley.


Michel Giroux



Michel comes from a musical family and started playing piano at the age of 7. After finishing high school, he graduated from Cambrian College in the music program. He then furthered his studies and obtained a bachelor's degree in music education from the University of Moncton, New Brunswick. 

He started accompanying dancers for the Art's Guild Dance Studio with Denise Vitali and Tini Pel. He was also a piano instructor at Marymount School of Music for several years and an organist for local churches in the Sudbury area.  

After leaving Sudbury to pursue another career, he obtained a Bachelor`s degree, a Master`s Degree and a specialist status for the Canadian Association of Pastoral Practice and Education. Upon his return to the area, he taught piano at Carrefour Francophone and cofounded a local choir for which he has been the accompanist for over 25 years. Since his retirement, he has been accompanying for dance classes at Sudbury School of Dance.