At Raino Dance, we are committed to a safe and non-competitive environment that provides professional training to non-professional and professional adult dancers of all sizes, ages, body types and abilities.
Furthermore, we provide a hub for creators, both professional and non-professional, to create and showcase their work in studio or otherwise.
“You don’t have to have a dancer’s body to dance, just a body that dances.” ~Lynda Raino
Raino Dance (formerly Lynda Raino Dance) has been an established and unique cultural gem of Victoria, BC, since 1982 when it began with one teacher, Lynda Raino, and one genre of dance, modern.
Today it is a thriving centre for adult dance with professional dance instructors, over 250 students and six genres of dance. It has won multiple local M Awards for “Best Place to Dance,” and its teachers have been voted “Best Dancer.”
It has spearheaded Big Dance (a dance class just for big woman) and Rust (a dance class for dancers over 60).
Its founder, Lynda Raino, received a Woman of Distinction for Arts & Culture award in 1997 and a Lifetime Achievement award in 2010 from Dance Victoria.
In 2012, Lynda’s protégé, creator of the flamenco program, and powerhouse dancer/choreographer, Monique Salez, purchased the school. As artistic director, she has revitalized the studio and its branding with an eye to many more decades of dance.
See our Policies & Fees page for all the details on refunds, payment options, dropping in, and the complete terms of our Full Year Program.
I don’t know what I want to take. Can I try the class first and then sign up?
Yes, we encourage people to drop in to their first class to try it out. If you register for that same class within the week, we will credit the drop-in fee you paid to your account. See our Policies page for more details.
What is “Contemporary” dance?
Contemporary dance (sometimes referred to as modern dance) is as different as every teacher that teaches it. Each teacher takes the music, movements and qualities that they enjoy and creates their own style.
The biggest task is to find a teacher that you can relate to. Every teacher will have different things to offer.
The biggest difference between contemporary and other dance styles is the music. Contemporary uses ALL kinds of music, which informs the choreography.
For example, in classical ballet classes, you can be assured that you will hear beautiful classical music; in hip hop, you are going to hear only hip hop music; but in contemporary, we use everything from a gospel choir to solo guitar to crazy experimental sounds to world beat, all to give us the emotional responses we want for the choreography.
Not sure? Drop in to a class to check it out!
Which level should I take?
This is a decision made by the student and the teacher. Whatever class you decide on, if it ends up being the wrong level for you, we can adjust your enrollment.
For some, it is a personality call. If you are the kind of person who likes to be in control of your body at all times, and prefer to be at the top of the class, you may choose to take a lower level. If you thrive in a class where people are more advanced than you and are stimulated by being pushed, a higher level might be the correct choice.
Class should be neither boring nor stressful but stimulating. The final call on level is determined by the teacher.
What do I wear?
Don’t forget to bring water/a refillable water bottle to all your classes!
- Ballet – large range of choices: tights & leotards with chiffon skirt all the way to sweats and a t-shirt; ballet shoes required (canvas are less expensive; leather shoes which cost more but last longer). We recommend Toes n Taps on Cook St.
- Contemporary – loose clothes, bare feet, socks, layers
- EFunk – loose clothes; clean, non-grippy inside shoes or bare feet; layers
- Flamenco – workout pants, layers, a skirt may be required later in the course for women & a vest for men; a heeled shoe, either character shoes (Toes n Taps, less expensive) or flamenco shoes (flamencowest.com, expensive but if you are hooked on flamenco you will want a good pair). Email Monique detailed flamenco shoe info.
- Hip Hop – loose clothes, clean inside shoes (in hand, not on your feet until you are in the studio), layers
- Jazz – loose clothes; clean, non-grippy inside shoes or bare feet; layers