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Meet our Team!

Our amazing teachers have decades of experience under their belt, and our competitive classes have consistently great results under the direction of our instructors. Meet your new dance teachers and learn from some of the best in Richmond!

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Studio Director/Owner



Studio Director/Owner

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Senior Program Director

Melissa Medalla started dancing at the age of 13 and has competed and performed throughout North America and Europe including, The International Edegem Folk Festival in Belgium and for the launch of A.D.I.D.A.S. Porche Line in Vancouver, BC. She has won numerous awards at competitions and dance conventions including winning silver at the Hip Hop International Dance Championships in August 2013. During the 2010 Winter Olympics she performed with the Surrey Celebration Dance Team in front of thousands at many events including the Olympic Torch Relay. Melissa has traveled and studied throughout North America in which she broadened her knowledge in contemporary, ballroom, ballet, and jazz. She teaches in the lower mainland and currently performs with The Surrey Dance Company and Project Soul Productions.

Hip Hop, Jazz, Contemporary, Lyrical


Junior Program Director

Sonia Chan has been a part of the UDC Studio community since her youth, and joined the faculty 6 years ago due to her strong technical and leadership skills, as well as her passion for the studio. Having been trained in many disciplines like Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary and Ballet, Sonia found an interest and love in Hip Hop, and furthered her training at Harbour Dance Centre's Kill The Lights (KTL) Dance Company for two years. Under the direction of Shauna Smith and Ken Yung, Sonia participated in numerous performances and travelled to LA to learn from the best dancers and choreographers. Sonia has competed and performed in several events across the lower mainland, and some of her performance credits include the Vancouver 2010 Ozone, Brilliant, Urban Alchemy, the Main Event, and local artist David Morin's video"Come Home."

Sonia's passion for dance extends to her love for choreography. She has choreographed solos, duos and groups and has received recognition and awards for her work. Sonia is excited to bring another year of creativity to her students at UDC Studio!

Hip Hop, Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Ballet

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Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Lyrical, Contemporary

Kaitlin Cheung is an actress and dancer from Burnaby, BC. Kaitlin began her dance training at 4 years old and has competed at local and international competitions. Kaitlin is an emerging choreographer with works showcased in The Vancity Project and West Coast Choreography Lab’s Young Choreographer’s Showcase. She has trained at workshops and intensives with many well-known names in the dance industry, such as Francisco Gella, Joshua Beamish of MOVETHECOMPANY, Alonzo King of Alonzo King LINES Ballet, and Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson from Complexions Contemporary Ballet Company. Kaitlin has also completed her ISTD Intermediate Modern Dance and Cecchetti Intermediate Ballet exams. Kaitlin is excited to continue her dance training with post-secondary Contemporary Dance training program, Modus Operandi, as well as earn her Bachelor of Arts degree at Simon Fraser University.

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Ballet, Contemporary, Modern

Annabelle was born and raised in Richmond, BC. She began her
training for professional dance at the age of 5, including ballet, modern, neo-classical, and Chinese dance. Annabelle trained extensively in the Royal Academy of Dance and Vaganova, reaching Advanced level 2 at the Richmond Academy of Dance. She then proceeded to study modern and contemporary dance. She is pursuing her passion for dance professionally at Simon Fraser University, where she will complete her Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honors in modern, contemporary and ballet in the coming year.

During the summer of 2017, she attended the Alonzo King Lines Ballet Intensive in San Francisco as well as the local Arts Umbrella Summer Intensive in Vancouver. As a dancer, Annabelle has had the opportunity to work with Henry Daniel, Heather Dotto, Josh Beamish, Heather Myers, Sarah Chase, and Judith Garay. Annabelle is passionate about performing dance and hopes to share this love of dance with her students. She believes in hard work, commitment, and most of all, having fun.



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Mary has spent a lifetime of love and passion for dance since her childhood. She has had training in a variety of styles from R.A.D. Ballet , Pointe, Jazz, Lyrical ,Contemporary Jazz, Hiphop , Street Jazz, Musical Theatre, Tap, Polynesian and Heels. Mary has trained under Harbour Dance Centre's "Endangered" training program.


Mary shares her years of experience in Sexy Street training groups such as "Honey" (2017-2022) and "Sultry Sessions" (2022-now) as a director and mentor to aspiring dancers of all ages. She also offers weekly drop-in classes at Harbour Dance Centre and Studio North. She has danced for the Olympics "Red Mitten Mob", The Bay, Lise Watier, Taboo, Vancouver Sports Event , Dreams Take Flight, Air Canada, PraiseTEAM's "On Air" and "Spectrum", The Grinder -short musical film and Uprooted - musical film (skeleton crew)


Mary also enjoys the production side of the dance industry by stage managing local events such as The Main Event, Brotherhood’s 10 yr show, Style & Grace’s 10 yr show, Studio North’s year end, UDC year end shows,Harbour Dance Centre’s Honey shows and directed the Sultry Sessions showcases. Mary is a Certified Make Up Artist and Hairstylist but has the time to constantly train in dance and share her passion. She is happy to be back at home base to mentor our UDC students

Hip Hop, Commercial Choreography, Heels.


Hip Hop

TJ was born and raised in Richmond, BC. He began dancing at UDC Studios at the age of 11 and has been assisting and choreographing the Jr classes in Hip Hop for the past 4 years  


He has had the opportunity to train with some of the industry’s top choreographers at UDC Studios, Studio North, and Monsters of Hip Hop in Vancouver Washington, including Candace Brown, Tatiana Parker, J-Blaze, Ysabelle Capitule, Carmen Forsyth, Adrian Vendiola, Angela Mendoza, Prince Nee, Fran Parma, and Melanie Hidalgo Cruz.


He will continue his performance training at Simon Fraser University Theatre Performance Program and as a UDC Alumni, TJ is extremely excited to pass down his love and knowledge of dance to the next generations of enthusiastic dancers. 

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Ballet, Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip Hop, Tik Tok

Elisha is an enthusiastic and dedicated dancer ready to inspire the next generation of dancers. Born and raised in Richmond BC, she started dancing at the age of 4. As a lifelong dancer, she has honed her skills through rigorous training and performance experiences. Trained extensively in ballet, contemporary, lyrical, and hip-hop, Elisha underwent rigorous instruction in the professional and closed division at the Richmond Academy of Dance.


Elisha maintains a commitment to continuous growth and improvement through ongoing training at Harbour Dance Center under renown artists such as Carlo Atienza, CJ Damaso, and Patrick Howell, staying abreast of the latest trends and techniques in the ever-evolving dance world.


As a seasoned performer, Elisha not only competed but also secured notable titles in various dance competitions such as Synergy, Surrey Dance Festival, The One Dance Experience, etc. This experience as a performer enriches Elisha’s ability to inspire and motivate her students, fostering a culture of fun, dedication, and creativity in the studio.


Beyond her passion for dance, Elisha is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Business Administration degree at Simon Fraser University, exemplifying her drive for academic achievement and a well-rounded education.

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Jazz, Hip Hop, K-Pop, Lyrical, Ballet

Sylvia Liang was born in Vancouver and raised in Richmond, BC where she began dancing at the age of 4 with a focus in The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and Cecchetti Ballet Methods with influences of Contemporary styles of dance. She extended her dedication for dance beyond Ballet at the age of 13 where she began training in Hip Hop, Lyrical, and Jazz at UDC Studios. She has performed in numerous events at the PNE, Vancouver Chinatown Celebrations, the Richmond Night Market, and many others across the Lower Mainland since the start of her dance journey, and began competing at local competitions since venturing out to other styles of dance. 

In addition to Sylvia’s passion for dance, she is currently studying History at the University of British Columbia and will also pursue Education degrees in Secondary and Counselling Psychology. Sylvia strives to teach and spread a positive dance environment to her students.

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Contemporary, Tap, Stage, Jazz, Lyrical, Ballet, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre

Born and raised in Vancouver B.C., Tamara Kiyama started dancing at the age of 4 with ballet classes. She soon knew that her passion was to continue dancing, and branched out to other genres of dance such as jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, modern, musical theatre, and hip hop. She has been taught by acclaimed teachers such as Heather Laura Gray, Rachael Poirier, Kristina Linden, Sarah Brewer Clowes, and Sabrina Phillip to name a few. 


In addition to winning Arts BC Provincials, she has received many scholarships from conventions such as Nuvo, Radix, and New York City Dance Alliance. Aside from her vigorous dance training, Tamara has been taking acting and singing lessons from a young age, which has helped her secure jobs working on set as both an actress and dancer.

Tamara is looking forward to inspire dancers to work hard, be creative, and enjoy themselves during the process!


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Hip Hop

Katrin Usison is a dedicated professional dancer, excited to share her passion for dance and Hip Hop culture with the community. Born and raised in the Philippines, Katrin was inspired by the versatile dance scene in Vancouver to initiate her dance journey at the age of 17. Since then, she has studied a plethora of styles within Hip Hop such as House, Popping, Krump and Waacking. Exemplifying her drive to be a well-rounded dancer, she has also trained in Afro dance hall, Commercial Choreography and Heels. She has trained under Vancouver’s most influential leaders such as Jerome Esplana, Victor Lau, Eden Zerk, Prince Nii, Reid Friedl, Nadia White, Jay Musodi and Kelvin Tu.


She has gained a wealth of experience in working within the Vancouver industry through live performances. She has also competed throughout North America with Studio North’s elite crew: Viridian, and won notable titles at competitions such as Artist’s Emerge. 


Katrin is thrilled at the opportunity to share with the UDC community!


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Hip Hop, Commercial Choreography, K-Pop

Ella Gavilan began her dance journey at the age of 3 in the walls of UDC. It was there where she familiarized herself with Jazz, Ballet and Lyrical styles and eventually Hip Hop choreography as well.


Ella's passion for Hip Hop would only deepen, leading her to learn under PraiseTEAM to study foundations and competitive performance. Musical Theatre and K-Pop also play major roles in fine tuning stage presence and confidence in character. These skills would be put to the test in numerous competitions both locally and internationally in Hip Hop and Technical disciplines.


Currently training at Studio North, Ella continues to hone her craft with weekly classes and training group sessions with some of Vancouver's top dancers including Victor Lau, Eden Zerk, Joyce Nguyen, Rochelm Cabalquinto, Adrian Vendiola and many more. From years of being on stage, to helping behind the scenes at the tech booth, the dance community is a place that Ella fell in love with.


Ella would like to create a safe and fun learning environment for young dancers to grow and gain confidence in and out the studio doors.


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