Shirley's Dance Studio

Todd Parker


Did you ever wonder who your dance instructors are, where they are from
or how they got started in The Wonderful World of Dance?

We are going to introduce you to Todd Parker, an ingenious young man
with an undiminishing passion for dancing.  To become a dance instructor;
the devotion to the art must be in your blood.
Todd noticed this need very early in life; in his hometown of Roland,
Manitoba.  Roland is a small community; just 15 minutes from Carman,
Manitoba.  Small communities are known for their get-togethers and, yes,
they included dances.  Todd would glean enjoyment of dancing by tagging
along with his older sisters, Melanie & Shauna, when the 4-H Club put on
a dance.  Make no mistake; these dances fueled his fire!

As fate would have it, Shauna worked at Wal-Mart.  The very same one
that Shirley Caron worked at.  It was just a matter of time before the
two would meet and the die would be cast.  Back then Todd had a shy
streak, but shy streak or not, nothing was going to keep him away from
Shirley's Dance Studio. He wanted to dance; and dance he would. The
drive from Roland to Winnipeg many times a week in the early nineties
was shortened by his electrified anticipation.  This all began at The
Victoria Community Hall.

He started learning Country & Western dancing.  The Two-Step was taking
Winnipeg by storm and he wanted to be in the center of it.  The West
Coast Swing and line-dancing were starting to make an appearance in all
the country bars that were so popular back then. He absorbed it all at
Shirley's Dance Studio and went seeking for more at the many workshops
that were available both in Winnipeg and out-of-town.  He choreographed
routines and entered competitions.  His need to "sparkle" shone through
in his early endeavors.  This eventually found him at a dance
competition in Florida, where, once again, he was able to soak up even
more knowledge and a lot of fun besides.

Country & Western was a fun outlet, but Todd needed more, more, more.
So into the Ballroom scene he did venture. Practicing each and every
spare moment he had, and with Shirley at the helm, Todd knew he wanted
to become an instructor. Dancing was his life!!

By 1996, and now living in Winnipeg and working as a customer service
manager at the same Wal-Mart as Shirley, Todd started teaching at
Shirley's Studio.  From the studio at Ellice & Wall, to the second
studio at Ferry road, to the Tache Studio, where he is today.  Todd has
instructed numerous group classes both in and out of town; at fairs and
universities, at clubs and at the studio. He has privates lessons for
those people who want to share his passion of dance.  He teaches six nights
a week  Not work, but personal accomplishment, and pride in watching his
students improve and yes, shine.

Todd and Shirley are now partners in the studio.  He has realized a
dream.  Todd encourages all his students to practice, practice,
practice.  "If you don't use it, you'll lose it," and "If your going to
do it, you're going to do it right," are a couple of Todd's favorite
remarks.  Todd takes pride in seeing his students evolve, and his
students soon realize that, to become a good dancer, you need more than
one lesson and a whole lot of commitment.

Todd's students go from their first lesson, to their second and soon
they find themselves learning routines for showcases and competitions.
He watches his students gain confidence along the way.  His students
appreciate his choreographing skills and direction.  Todd is always
implementing steps and moves that are different and eye catching to the
audience and challenging and fun to the student.  He also has a flair
for "sparkle & pizzazz", which Shirley's Dance Studio has a reputation
for.  If Todd is not partnering in a competition routine, you will find
him on the sidelines, nervous with his students, glowing with pride at
their accomplishments, and grinning from ear to ear as the audience show
their appreciation for the flair and fantasy that Todd has added to
their routines.  What a wonderful testimony to their instructors when
their routine outshines them all!

Todd's thirst for knowledge and experience keeps growing, and passing
this experience on to his students is what keeps them coming back.
Dancing can be hard, strenuous work; Todd makes it fun, again and
again.  Passions?  Yes, Todd has those too.  His passion is Latin
dancing.  Here you can see him shine, time and time again.  Join him for
one of his "Latin Passion"  dances and see for yourself.

Todd, we love you, your spirit, your dedication and your dancing.  Let
us share those for a long time to come.

Get to know Todd yourself.  Let him introduce you to the richness that
dancing can bring into your life.  He can be reached at 233-0609 or drop
in at 255 Tache Avenue.

Walk in with a smile and leave with a sense of accomplishment and