Meet our Faculty

Holly Ankucza

Director  & Owner

A.R.A.D., R.A.D.R.T.S., B.A. History 

Holly's training started at the early age of 3 at Waterloo Dance Centre where she found her love and passion for the art of dance. She has studied ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical and contemporary. By the age of 8 she was dancing competitively, travelling across the U.S.A. and Canada representing her competitive team and winning several scholarships; top soloist overall awards as well as the tittle Miss Junior Dancefest in 1999. 

The Majority of Holly' training was completed at Davenport Dance Project, she has also trained under professionals such as Frank Augustyn and attended the National Ballet School Summer Intensive. Additionally she still participates in various workshops including the R.A.D., The National Ballet of Canada, Dancefusion, Coastal Dance Rage, The Pulse and many more. Through these workshops she has studied with professionals such as Bonnie Papadopoulos, Paula Morgen in California and many choreographers and finalists seen on So You Think You Can Dance such as Mia Michaels, Blake McGrath, Danny Tidwell, Donyelle Jones and others. Her performance credits include "Fame" at the Humanities theatre and several roles in the ballet Pinocchio performed at the Centre in the Square.

Holly has had students of all ages for the past 12 years and has received many outstanding awards for her innovative and inspiring choreography. She shares her knowledge with a passion and is dedicated to providing a caring and nurturing environment for her students. 

Holly is a member of the Royal Academy of Dance and completed her Advanced 2 exam as well as the Certificate for Teaching Ballet Studies with the Royal Academy of Dance. Over the years she has been guest teaching at RIM park, teaching  dance for the K-W Skating Club as well adjudicating at "Sur La Pointe and Dance Connection" festivals across Ontario. 


Emily Kieswetter

Director & Owner

Emily has been dancing since the age of 3 at The Academy of Dance and competitively since the age of 10. She has studied many disciplines such as ballet, jazz, tap, contemporary, lyrical and hip hop. She also trained in Highland Dance for 10 years, travelling across Canada to attend the ScotDance Canada Championships. Emily has been training under Holly Ankucza since the age of 11, and has been a teacher at PDA since it opened in 2009.

Emily has traveled all throughout Canada winning several scholarships and overall awards. Her performance credits include "The Nutcracker" with Ballet Jorgen, and "Sleeping Beauty with the Moscow Ballet. She has also been in many theatrical shows put on by local theatre companies, such as Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz".

Through her studies Emily has trained with professionals such as Frank Augustyn, Max Ratevossian and Robert Derossier. She has been regularly attending workshops, travelling to California to study with Paula Morgen. In Canada she has studied with dancers and choreographers such as Mia Michaels, Blake McGrath, Benji Schwimmer and Nico Achambault as seen on So You Think You Can Dance. 

Emily is currently pursuing her certification with The Royal Society of Russian Ballet and enthusiastic about teaching and dedicated to Premier Dance Academy.


Sarah Hoekstra

Teacher and Choreographer

Sarah has been immersed in the dance industry since the age of 5. Sarah trained in Kitchener, Ontario in various dance forms including Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical, Contemporary, Acro and Hip Hop. As a child, Sarah competed all over North America for over 13 years winning numerous overall awards, scholarships and recognition for her dancing. 


Sarah began teaching and choreographing at the ripe age of 15, and has never looked back.  Sarah is now recognized for her innovative and thought provoking choreography at dance competitions winning numerous awards for her choreography year after year.  Most recently, Sarah’s choreography has been chosen to be showcased at a charity event called “Let The Elephants Dance” - a fundraiser for mental health awareness. Sarah has been teaching at Premier Dance Academy since 2012 and has since grown her love for dance and teaching dance immensely.  


Sarah spends her summers guest teaching at dance studios throughout the summers, and is frequently sought after by studio directors as a guest instructor.  Sarah is as a faculty member of Dance Attack competitions and workshops and frequently guest teaches at workshops and in studios with Dance Attack. Sarah is also a roster member of Quick Ball Change Dance Agency and The Traveling Stage for dance instructors and choreographers.  

Sarah’s powerful love and passion for dance and choreography continues to grow every year and bring her new and exciting opportunities, but Premier Dance Academy has always been home.  Sarah owes much of her success to her students and co-owners Holly and Emily who over the years have allowed and encouraged her to grow and evolve into the teacher and choreographer she is today.  

Abbey John

Teacher and Choreographer

Bio Coming Soon

Rikki Ciminsky

Teacher and Choreographer

Bio Coming Soon

Ally Saulesleja

Teacher and Assistant

Ally has a strong gymnastics background along with her dance training.  Ally has been training in dance since the age 3, and immersed in the competitive world of gymnastics for many years. Ally began her teaching career at Woolwich Gymnastics Club and has since used her skill set to assist and teach at Premier Dance Academy's Acro events. Ally is excited to share her positivity and enthusiasm with dancers of all ages!