Never stop learning. It’s a phrase that Royal Winnipeg Ballet Outreach Coordinator Jaime Vargas lives by. A former principal dancer with the company, Jaime now channels his passion for dance into teaching and inspiring others.
His gentle nature and obvious love for dance immediately puts the youngsters at the Ottawa Inuit Children's Centre at ease. They listen intently while he reads them Brontorina, the story of a dinosaur that dreams of being a ballerina.
Soon giggles and excitement fill the room as the children follow Jaime through a morning wake-up dance routine, imagining themselves to be kernels of corn ready to pop.
The children are fascinated by the pointe shoes and dance slippers Jaime has brought. One little girl volunteers to try on a beautiful tutu. She beams and demonstrates her best pirouette.
"Kids see life in the present moment,” Jaime said. “So it doesn't take much to connect with themselves and express themselves through movement."