Pole and Aerial Small Group Fitness Studio

The Brass Butterflies Team

Owner, General Manager, Instructor

Heather has been pole dancing since April 2010.  Married mom of two, she started taking lessons at a studio in her hometown of Oakville when she was 35 years old.  In her first year of pole dancing she fell head over heels in love with pole dancing and alternative group fitness.  Pole inspired her to make healthy changes to her lifestyle.  She lost more than 50lbs that first year, but, more importantly, she regained confidence she had lost in her journey into motherhood and reconnected with her sensual side, learning to love her body again.  She became an instructor at the Oakville studio after just a year, also starting down the road to certification in yoga and other group fitness. After becoming an instructor, she even designed some non-pole fitness classes that were incorporated into the studio's drop-in program.

In the fall of 2012, the opportunity presented itself to purchase her own studio in Kitchener and she took the leap into entrepreneurship, moving her family to the Waterloo region the following year.  The years since then have been an incredible journey.  She loves all the amazing people she meets every single day in this business, be they students, instructors, suppliers or fellow entrepreneurs.   She loves introducing new students to Pole Dancing, Aerial Arts, and general fitness, and nurturing the incredible community that has developed in our studio.

Heather is a certified Fitness Instructor Specialist with CanFit Pro, certified Pole Instructor through the Canadian Pole Fitness Association, and has completed instructor specific training with the Aradia Fitness Canada, YogaFit Canada, and the US Pole Sport Federation, just to name a few. She also holds as Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and a Master of Business Administration degree (MBA) from McMaster University.

 

Operations Manager, Official Photographer
 
Alexa was introduced to Brass Butterflies through a student who recommended her for her professional photography skills. After working together to do the first commercial shots for the new studio location, we knew we had found a kindred spirit, even if we hadn't gotten her on a pole or aerial apparatus yet! Alexa has since worked on several photography projects with Brass Butterflies and began subbing on reception when needed.  In mid 2017, Alexa progressed into the role of Operations Manager for Brass Butterflies, taking on some general administrative duties and operational tasks on top of reception work. The studio has become her second home and if she’s not working on something for the studio she’s working on creating something with her photography or body painting.  Check out her amazing creative work at www.alexabakerphotography.com.  
Customer Service Manager, Receptionist


Katy joined the Brass Butterflies family in May of 2016 when we moved to our new facility in Waterloo.  She had never tried pole or aerials before but was intrigued.  Katy was heavily involved in athletics, especially soccer, until an injury forced her to stop.  Missing physical activity and movement, when she was looking for part time employment, the posting for a receptionist at Brass Butterflies caught her eye.  She started learning pole at the same time as she began as one of the friendly faces greeting students at our front desk, and she immediately fell in love.  She performed in her first showcase less than two months after joining our family and trained to become a party instructor shortly after.  

Manager of Aerial Programs

Lindsay is the Artistic Director of Theatre Arcturus where she co-created, choreographed and performed in WEIRD (Best of Fest 2015 Ottawa Fringe, Cutting-Edge Award 2016 Toronto Fringe), Rough Magic, and the more family-friendly Lumberjack Show. Before Arcturus, she directed STALLED in the 2013 Toronto Fringe Festival. After graduating from the University of Windsor’s BFA in Acting program, she trained in aerial arts at the Toronto School of Circus Arts, and other studios in the GTA. As an aerialist she has performed her acts at festivals and events across Ontario, with a brief tour to China in 2015. She loves to bring her experience back to the studio as an instructor; after running a small studio in Muskoka under Arcturus for almost two years she is now joining the team at Brass Butterflies in Waterloo, where she’ll be leading the aerial program.

Aerial Instructor

Andrea was hooked on aerials from her very first class at Firefly Circus and Theatre in Edmonton, Alberta in 2011. Starting from barely being able to dangle from her knees on the trapeze, to learning big tricks twenty feet in the air, it’s been a love affair, only slightly marred by bruises in interesting places. After training for two years in Edmonton, Andrea continued her practice at Esh Aerial Arts in Somerville, Massachusetts, where she learned exciting moves like the death defying ‘Big Russian Slack Drop,’ and ‘The Blender'. Andrea has attended aerial workshops and instructor training sessions at the New England Centre for Circus Arts (NECCA), in Brattleboro, Vermont.  
In September of 2013 Ellie took her first pole class. While laying on the floor in pain the next day, she knew it was love. Since then the love has grown to include silks and hoop; each apparatus presenting a new and exciting challenge. She finds that pole and aerial arts encourage continual personal growth and deliver an endless supply of new opportunities and friends. Brass Butterflies is now her second home and family. She is thrilled to be able to crunch numbers during the day and fly all night.
Pole Dancing, Fitness Class Instructor
 
Ievgeniia (Jane) has been active in dance and fitness since she was 7 years old.  She discovered pole fitness and began taking lessons in Russia.  When she moved to Cancun, Mexico, she earned her Instructor Certificate with Martin Solis and Aleksandr Zakirov. While living in Cancun, she taught pole classes at Pin Up Infinity Studio.  Jane is currently a student in the Global Hospitality Management Program at Conestoga College.
Aerials and Yoga Instructor
 
Jen has been teaching yoga since 2010. In 2013 she discovered AcroYoga and started to share it with her students. It was a natural progression from acrobatic yoga into aerial arts and she quickly fell in love with every circus apparatus she tried. Jen is really excited to be able to share this new love with others at Brass Butterflies!
Between yoga practices Jen completed a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, raises four children and four cats, and tries to find time for good books, good food and good friends.
Pole Dancing Instructor
 
Katie was inspired to take her first pole dancing lesson in 2012, after watching a performance by Jenyne Butterfly. She is constantly pushed to improve her grace and strength by everyone in the pole community. As an instructor she enjoys having fun in class, and helping students reach their goals. One of her favourite spins is called the pretzel, however, she does not share the same love for the food pretzel. Katie hopes to help her students achieve the same confidence and strength that pole dancing provides her.
Aerials and Flexibility Instructor
 
Katy is an aerialist and flexibility instructor with four years of circus experience. She is certified with Alixa Flexibility and has been finding every piece of flexibility and bio-mechanics information available to create her flexibility programs. They cover a wide range of stretching techniques from passive flexibility through conditioning exercises and alignment drills.  
Zumba and Group Fitness Instructor

Kristen took her first ever Zumba class in June 2012 in the basement of a grocery store in the small town of Chalk River, 2 hours west of Ottawa with a population of just over 1500. She was the only person under 30 in the class but within minutes she was hooked. She’s been leading classes in Kitchener Waterloo for over 4 years and is also a certified Fitness Instructor with CanFitPro. Her favourite thing about teaching Zumba is watching her participants come out of their shells and the fun from the positive energy she is able to create in her classes. If you’re looking for a fun and care free environment to work on your fitness, Kristen’s classes are definitely for you. Each and every class is a party.
Pole Dancing, Fitness Class Instructor

I began my pole dancing journey in January 2014 as the Studio Assistant.  I don't come from a dance background.  I grew up playing competitive ringette and lacrosse as well as recreational hockey.  So, needless to say, pole dancing hasn't come naturally for me.  It certainly has its challenges but has been the most rewarding thing I've ever done. In March 2014 I performed along side the owner, Heather, to a very sexy chair routine at our grand opening showcase. It brought me completely out of my comfort zone and was such a rush that since then I've performed in all of our studio showcases as well as competed in The Great White North Pole Competition in June 2015.  In April 2015 my role in the studio changed from the Studio Assistant to Aradia Instructor.  It's such an honour to watch all of our students grow and find themselves in this sport and knowing that I've been apart of that process as well.
Pole Dancing, Fitness Class Instructor
 
Laura has been pole dancing since 2010 and became and instructor in 2012. She originally started pole dancing as a New Year’s resolution and has been hooked ever since. She is an Advanced level student herself and thoroughly enjoys the sense of mastery that comes from perfecting a new move, especially when it’s an inversion. Her all time favourite move is the Cross Ankle Layback. In 2015 Laura took on the new challenge of  learning and creating choreography and performed a beautiful routine in the VerticaLove Pole Dancing and Artistry Showcase in Hamilton.  Laura has a degree in Psychology along with minors in philosophy and sociology. She works at an insurance company during the day.
Aerial and Yoga Instructor

Maya D’Alessio started as an aerials student at the studio in 2016 and it quickly became an addiction. With a background as a yoga teacher, she tries to approach aerial training with body awareness and acceptance. She has a passion for gentle, restorative, and relaxing yoga to help restore the body and mind. As a new aerial instructor she is excited to engage with students and bring her yoga background and obsession with human anatomy in to her aerials teaching. When she’s not in the studio you can find her at home with her cats or in her graduate research lab slowly getting closer to graduation.
Pole, Chair Dancing, Fitness Class Instructor

Megan started taking pole dancing lessons in March 2014. Previously, she had tried a few classes at Ottawa Pole Fitness, and couldn't wait to try it again when a friend told her about our studio. Back then, she couldn't lift her body weight, and was terrified at the thought of going upside down! Now, 2 years later, she has performed in 2 troupe routines and had one solo performance in studio showcases. She also competed with a group in the Great White North Pole Competition in June 2015.

In summer 2014, Megan started taking the Burlesque Chair Fit Cabaret class, and instantly loved it! She loves learning new choreography to all different types of music, and also enjoys the fact that the class doesn't feel like exercise, but you still get a great workout. She took over the class in September 2015, and has recently discovered her passion for creating new and interesting chair choreography of her own. She even got to try her hand at pole choreography with the beginner/ intermediate troupe at the 2015 Halloween Showcase!

Megan can't wait to share her enthusiasm and sense of humour with her current and future classes!

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