The School of Toronto Dance Theatre announces the departure of Andrea Roberts


Photo by Dahlia Katz

Andrea Roberts has served The School of Toronto Dance Theatre for 24 years in a variety of artistic and administrative roles since she completed the Professional Training Program in 1997. She will be moving on to make a major career change to work in the field of cybersecurity in July 2021. Her outstanding dedication and devotion to her work at the School has been of enormous value; she will be greatly missed, but we at the School are excited to see her go on to adventures in this new direction, which will capitalize on her expertise, her rigour, and her incisive intellect.

In addition to her work as the School’s current Admissions & Records Manager, Roberts has been greatly valued as a teacher, rehearsal director, and advisor for generations of students, guiding them both in their training and in their lives. The many aspects of her work at the School include providing first contact for prospective students and administrative support for professional programs, responsibility for scheduling and logistical arrangements, design and implementation of the School’s database management system, and assisting with student recruitment and alumni relations. As a rehearsal director/assistant, Roberts has been involved in the creative process for both new works and remounts by more than 20 choreographers, and she has been teaching the School’s dance history curriculum for the past two years.

Beyond her work at the School, Roberts has been a committed contributor to the dance community. She was Rehearsal Director and Artistic Advisor for Jennifer Dallas / Kẹmi Contemporary Dance Projects for the first decade of the company’s work, and she was on the artistic team for Sylvain Émard’s Le Grand Continental, coaching community members and performing in Toronto’s 2018 Luminato Festival. She has demonstrated her selfless commitment to the dance community through volunteer work in a number of important areas, and has served on the boards of both the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists (CADA-ON, now CADA/East) and Dancemakers. In 2014, Roberts was awarded a Metcalf Foundation Renewal Grant to attend one of the renowned Leadership Development programs at the Banff Centre, and she was a participant in the 2020 cohort of the CHRC Talent to Lead mentorship program.

Roberts has been a model of life-long learning, continuously taking new courses, and while still working full-time, enrolling in a part-time M.A. program to achieve her graduate degree at York University, where she was a recipient of The W. Lawrence Heisey Graduate Award in Fine Arts. Her thesis used psychoanalytic visual art theory to discuss the dance-theatre work of Canadian choreographer Murray Darroch, and her research included co-production of a tribute performance following his passing in 2005. She has dived into fascinating research regarding the history of Pavlychenko studio, as well as performance archives and digital transformation. She completed a certificate in Information Systems Management at Ryerson University in 2016, and recently graduated from the first women’s cohort of the Accelerated Cybersecurity Training Program at the Rogers Cybersecure Catalyst.

As a highly valued member of the School organization for 28 years, Roberts has been a model of all we hope to demonstrate to our students: rigour in training and research, application of intellect, life-long learning, and dedication to the community.

We wish her all the very best in this exciting new adventure, and hope that her new employer will realize how lucky they are! Her remarkable gifts will have tremendous value wherever her fortunes lead her.



Learn more about Andrea Roberts:


Feature Profile: Andrea Roberts
August 2017

“As someone who has built a career in administration with no formal business training (until very recently), I am a model example of the transferrable skills that one gains from a life in dance. In order to succeed in dance, you need to be disciplined, dedicated, and self-motivated. Most importantly, you need an ability to synthesize information from all kinds of sources; this is more and more important in today’s world.”

Photo by Dahlia Katz

Finding a Dance Program: The School of Toronto Dance Theatre
October 2020

Danse Bloom sat down with Andrea to hear her advice for young dancers on finding a dance program. As rehearsal director, dance history teacher, and arts administrator, Andrea has watched many young dancers take the next steps in their careers through her 20+ years at the School.

“You can never know where you are going to end up! I danced at a small studio in the suburbs for my whole life and I had never even heard of Toronto Dance Theatre. Now I am teaching in the program and running admissions, something I couldn’t have imagined when I was a teenager. There are more opportunities and different ways to live out your dance dreams than you might originally think. Choose something and start there — the path will reveal itself as you go. Do your research, take some chances, work hard, and have fun!”