Founder and Director
Founder & Director
Jennifer Aucoin is a full-time salsa instructor, performer, choreographer and event organizer. She is the founder and director of STEPS Dance Studio and co-founder of the Women’s Salsa Retreat. She is the organizer of the annual Six Degrees Salsa Competition in Toronto, one of the most prestigious salsa competitions in Canada. Jennifer has represented Canada on the judging panel for the World Salsa Championships televised on ESPN for the past four years and has judged competitions in Puerto Rico, Ecuador, New York, Las Vegas, Orlando, Miami, Detroit, Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto.
Jennifer was also the first instructor in Canada and remains the only instructor in Ontario to be certified to teach Latin Hustle by the International Hustle Dance Association and DVIDA.
Jennifer is the organizer of the annual Canada Salsa Congress, an international salsa festival that takes place in Toronto every October. This 4-day extravaganza is the largest salsa event in Canada and features nightly performances by dance companies from all over the world and daily salsa workshops given by world-renowned instructors. Now in its ninth year, this year’s Canada Salsa Congress will take place October 6-10, 2011.
Jennifer has been involved in dance and the performing arts her entire life and has extensive training in gymnastics, ballet, flamenco, Argentine tango and, of course, salsa. To keep progressive, she continues to travel extensively to learn from the world’s best dancers and instructors, and has attended close to a hundred salsa congresses in Colombia, Puerto Rico, Los Angeles, Zurich, New York, Washington, Boston, Detroit, Ottawa and Montreal. Jennifer also teaches salsa workshops internationally and has taught in Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Holland, Washington, Detroit, Miami, Orlando, Montreal and Ottawa.
As part of her spectrum of salsa endeavours, Jennifer has successfully integrated her teaching of salsa with her love of children. STEPS Dance Studio, in addition to the extensive adult salsa program, also offers latin dance and salsa classes for children and teens. Jennifer teaches workshops at grade schools and high schools around Toronto. In addition, she runs salsa team-building workshops for corporations.
Jennifer’s attention to detail, along with her patience and dedication as an instructor, keep her classes progressive in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. She teaches group classes, private classes and specialty workshops. Jennifer focuses on ensuring proper technique, excellent leading and following skills and musicality while she teaches a range of moves from basic steps to intricate turn patterns, open floor shines, dips, tricks and styling. Her skill as a salsa instructor won her the award for Best Dance Instructor in Toronto by Now Magazine two years in a row.