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Dance studio owner values inclusivity above all

Squamish Dance Centre inspires and accepts students of all ages
Sara Constantin, owner and director of Squamish Dance Centre.

From a very young age, Sara Constantin, studio owner/director, knew she would never want another career. Born and raised in Squamish, dancing since she was three and now at age twenty-seven, the Squamish Dance Studio has been her growing business for six years.

“I’ve always taught dance,” she says, and “had a vision to open my own studio for a long time.”

The focus of her studio is primarily teaching dance to children, but no longer are classes filled mainly with little girls and the occasional boy in attendance.

“The growth of the town, followed by my morals and values of acceptance and inclusivity, we have grown the student body to a wide male range—which is super fun,” Constantin says. “When I started the studio, we had three boys, now we have about 62. It helps bring in male instructors too, they are great role models and fabulous humans. Families are so different than when I grew up, so recreational and arts inclined, and dads are so supportive of their sons in dance.”

Squamish has three dance studios in town, but instead of being competitive, the owners support each other. “We all complement each other well, offer different styles of dance, and appeal to different demographics,” says Constantin.

Squamish Dance Centre classes are filled mainly with kids, but Constantin has adult athletes taking class for improved cross-training, better coordination, “improving balance, keeping nimble, all that fun stuff,” she says. “Adults who want to move and groove,” are hitting hip hop and jazz classes too.

As a young, female small business owner, does Constantin have a secret to success?

“I have a substantial team of teachers and support them with a platform to be creative and explore different ways of teaching, especially if they have struggles,” she says. “I make time for them and walk through multiple ways they can approach a solution. My team is like-minded. I am not just looking at certifications, not just the resumé, and need to have a connection with them and know that my kids will enjoy them.”

Squamish Dance Centre offers a wide variety of dance styles, and Constantin is excited that COVID-19 restrictions will now allow her to bring back in-person recitals, studio sleepovers and pre-school teatime events.

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