Drea Instructor

Drea Shepherd has been dancing since she was two years old – for the past 17 years. She has studied Highland Dance, Cape Breton Step Dance, Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Tap, Hip Hop, and Contemporary styles for over 18 years. She has been a student for 17 years at her mother’s Studio, the MacArthur School of Dance, as well as a student at the Cape Breton School of the Arts & Northside Dance for 8 years. 

Drea has had a highly successful competitive career during her Highland Dance journey. She was a member of the Nova Scotia Highland Dance Select Team for 6 consecutive years, representing her Province at the Canadian National Championships each year. In 2018, Drea finished in the coveted top 6 overall in Canada at the Canadian Championships in Calgary, in her age category. She has been a Runner-Up at every Championships she has attended in the Maritime Provinces over her dancing career, and has won 7 Premiership titles. In 2019 she won a medal at the Scottish Championships at the Cowal Highland Gathering in Scotland. In 2021, Drea won the SDTA North American Senior Scholarship. She is a touring member of the award winning professional dance troupe, the MacArthur Dancers, and has toured throughout Canada, the US and Scotland performing and competing. During this time, the MacArthur Dancers won three Canadian Choreography Challenge titles, and placed top 3 in Canada at every other event. Drea has also had a very successful stage career, winning many titles and top 3 overall placings as a soloist and team member in several dance genres.

Drea has been Step Dancing professionally for the past five years with Spirit of the Fiddle, for both the Cruise Ships and the Louisbourg Playhouse Series.  

Drea has also studied music her entire life, including: piano, CB piano accompaniment, CB fiddle, alto sax, and Gaelic Song.  She won the Treasure’s Of The Youth Scholarship, Julie Martell Youth Theatre Scholarship, Doris MacDonald Scholarship, Elite Competition Junior Scholarship, as well as many other scholarships for solo dancing in all styles. She has sung all over the island, including regularly singing the National Anthem at the Screaming Eagles Hockey Games and Highlanders Basketball Games. She has had the privilege of singing with Mary Jane Lamond on several occasions, one of her Gaelic mentors.  

Drea graduated from RHS with Honours with Distinction in Advanced French Immersion, earning her French Fluency Diploma. She spent 2023-2024 studying the Gaelic Foundations: Living Cultures Degree at Beinn Mhàbu, immersed in the Gaelic cultures of the Mabou community – her grandfather’s place of birth and youth.

Drea is teaching Highland Dance Workshops for all three youth sessions at the Gaelic College in St. Ann’s this July. She taught Step Dance Workshops at Beinn Mabou this past year, and has taught both Highland & Step Dance programs at the MacArthur School of Dance over the past 6 years. 

Drea is a welcome addition to our teaching staff at the Studio this year, as she will be home attending CBU – studying her second year in the Bachelor of Science program. Drea will be teaching at both the main Studio in North Sydney, as well as our Sydney programs.

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