Meet Our Teachers

Sandra Danastas

TCRG, ADCRG, MBAL, Member CSTD, Trinity College, London (Piano Grade 8) - Studio Principal and Director

Sandra commenced dancing in Mackay at the age of five. She competed successfully until the age of 23, winning many Premierships, Titles and Aggregate Awards throughout North Queensland. Throughout her dancing years Sandra had tuition in Highland, Irish, Ballet, Tap and Character dancing. Highland and Irish dancing was her first love and these were the areas that she chose to specialize in.

Sandra passed the BAL/NDAA Elementary Highland Dancing Teacher's Examination in 1986 and then went on to pass the BAL/NDAA Intermediate Highland Dancing Teacher's Examination in 1995. Sandra passed the BAL/NDAA Irish Dancing Teachers Exam in 1988 and when the North Queensland Irish Dancing Teachers became affiliated with An Coimisiun le Rinci Gaelacha, Ireland she decided to continue her studies in that area and in 1998 Sandra became the first person in Mackay to pass the TCRG (Teachers Qualification) with the Irish Dancing Commission (IDC), Ireland. Sandra furthered her Irish Dancing qualifications when in 2007 she became the first teacher in North Queensland to become a qualified ADCRG (Adjudicator) with the IDC, Ireland.

Sandra joined the teaching staff at IDA in 1993 and became principal of the studio in 2006. Sandra not only has a wealth of experience in the art of dance, but has also successfully completed to Grade 8 in Piano with the Trinity College, London. Sandra enjoys teaching and choreographing and is delighted to be Principal at IDA where she shares her passion, knowledge and experiences of dance with her students.

Judy Vidulich

Bachelor of Education, ABTA Registered Coach Level 1 & 2, ABTA Judge Level 1 - Baton Twirling Teacher

Judy began twirling in 1981 with the Proserpine Baton Twirlers. During her teenage years, Judy competed in both individual and team events at local, state and national levels. Moving to Mackay in 1992, Judy maintained involvement with both Proserpine and Sarina clubs. With experience in coaching all age and ability levels, Judy has had many opportunities to extend her knowledge and skills in coaching and judging, utilizing her twirling network of Australian and overseas coaches. Judy is currently an executive committee member of Twirl Queensland Assoc Inc. and a State representative on the Australian Baton Twirling Assoc committee.

Judy has been teaching Baton Twirling with IDA since 2011 and still enjoys twirling in teams with the senior twirlers in competitions and performances. Her passion for twirling inspires her students to challenge themselves and excel.

Ella Barresi

Bachelor of Theatre - Specialisation Musical Theatre

Ella has always loved everything performing arts! The last nineteen years have had Ella singing, dancing and acting across many different mediums. Ella's dance training has involved Tap, Jazz, Ballet and Hip-Hop - completing the Tap, Theatrical and Modern Jazz examination strands under the Commonwealth Society for Teacher's of Dancing (CSTD).

Her vocal training has involved twelve years of private tuition in both Melbourne and Mackay. Ella completed her Bachelor of Theatre (Specialisation Musical Theatre) at Central Queensland Conservatorium in 2015. While completing this degree, Ella had the opportunity to work with some of the biggest names in Australian Musical Theatre on some amazing shows. These included Brigadoon, 42nd Street, The Sentimental Bloke, Chicago, Guys and Dolls (Dance Captain) and Necessary Targets (Zlata). Ella has also taken part in many workshops from visiting artists that involved cabaret, audition preparation, commercial dance, story through song and examination preparation.

From the age of fifteen Ella's passion for teaching began to shine through. Ella started assistant teaching at her dance school in Melbourne, eventually taking on her own classes. The last three years have seen Ella building her teaching profile in Mackay; teaching singing and dancing as well as running the Conservatorium Academy program at CQCM. Ella's favourite form of dancing though, has always been tap and she is SO excited to start working with the tap students at IDA in 2017!

Bella Rethus

CSTD Tap Student Teachers, CSTD Jazz (Grade 8), RAD Ballet (Intermediate), AMEB Grade 5

Bella has trained in the performing arts for many years. Starting from the age of three under the guidance of Jan Millard, Bella has trained in CSTD Jazz (Grade 8), and has gained her Student Teachers Certificate in Tapping with the CSTD. She has also studied RAD Ballet and completed up to the Intermediate level. Bella has successfully competed in Mackay Eisteddfods in both groups and solos, gaining the knowledge of what makes a successful and entertaining performance.

During her time at high school, Bella gained valuable people skills by fulfilling her role as School Captain. Bella was the cheerleading squad captain, coaching them two days a week, allowing them to effectively compete in competitions. Through this experience, Bella has become aware of what it takes to gain a polished finished product. Bella also successfully choreographed and rehearsed Rock Pop Mime performances over a three year period.

Studying other art forms, Bella has completed her Fifth grade Theory of Music with the AMEB, achieving outstanding results. Bella is furthering her teaching studies by starting a Bachelor of Teaching at CQU University. She is very excited to join the team at International Dance Affair in 2018 and is looking forward to meeting everyone and building connections with her students.

Jan Mills

A.R.A.D., Examiner R.A.D., R.A.D Advanced Teachers Diploma, RAD RTS., C.S.T.D. Classical & Theatrical Teachers Diplomas - Guest Ballet Teacher

Jan was trained in Mackay, Central Queensland studying Classical Ballet, Tap & Jazz. She has been teaching for the past 40 years and has been an Examiner for the Royal Academy of Dance since 1990.

In addition to regular teaching, Jan enjoys tutoring at workshops in various cities, coaching students with examination preparation, choreographing routines for dance competitions and above all, nurturing skills & a passion for dance in all young students.

We are privedged to have Miss Jan as a guest teacher at International Dance Affair again in 2018.

Carly Erickson

Hip Hop Teacher

A Mackay local, Carly commenced dancing at International Dance Affair as a Tinytot. During her years of training Carly has learnt Irish, Ballet, Jazz and Hip Hop where she had great success at many competitions, including the Mackay Eisteddfod. Carly not only was a successful competitor, she also enjoyed performing in many concerts, shows and public performances as well as receiving excellent results in her exams.

Using the knowledge Carly has gained from her training as well as incorporating her own choreography, Carly is looking forward to being on the other side as part of the teaching staff at IDA in 2018. She is dedicated to helping the students at IDA grow into the greatest possible Hip Hop dancers that they can be.