Dance Biography

Like many children I began dance at the age of three, and I was immediately in love! I knew from that moment on that dance would always be a very important part of my life!

As a child I studied Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Highland and Ukrainian dance. My favourite dance form then was always Jazz - the energetic movement and exciting music fired me up. However Highland and Ukrainian dance opened something in me that would grow exponentially - a passion for Ethnic & Cultural Dance - and that is the path I would forever follow...

I continued through the years trying and studying every form of dance that was available to me. I pursued it fervently, taking part in events, shows, benefits and competitions (for which I won many gold and silver medals). I was also fortunate enough to have the opportunity to instruct jazz from a young age - which was a wonderful learning experience!

Throughout my years of dance I was encouraged to try my hand at choreography. The more experience and insight I gained with choreography the greater my talent grew for being able to breakdown and interpret music. I had found yet another passion through dance, a form of creative expression even richer than the dance itself and that was creating the dance! 

Having been intrigued by Belly Dance for a long time I took a class on a whim when I was 19 and I loved it immediately! Fate was smiling on me because I was encouraged by my instructor to work toward a professional dance career. After a lot of study, hard work and practice I began performing Belly Dance professionally at the age of 24 throughout the many Greek & Arabic restuarants of Edmonton and Central Alberta. Shortly after, I began instructing Middle Eastern Dance at Grant MacEwan Arts College, and many other venues, taking the plunge into a full time career as an Instructor, Choreographer, & Performer of Middle Easter Dance. Throughout my twenties I taught between 10 and 14 classes per week in a variety of locations. I also produced six large Dance Productions including one which followed the history of Oriental Dance.

I had the amazing experience of opening a Dance Studio in downtown Edmonton called Dance Mosaic. With huge student base and lots of energy, a wonderful space full of so much life was created! We had a wide variety of cultural dance classes, music classes, and language classes. We also featured art from local artists on our walls, and had a small costume shop.

When I first began teaching and performing Middle Eastern Dance in Edmonton the Community was small, consisting of only a handful of instructors and maybe a couple hundred students. As the Middle Eastern Dance community began to grow in our city it became a new and exciting topic for the media, and I was featured on television and in newspapers on many occasions (see Dance Resume for details). A real highlight in my dance career was being one of the featured Belly Dancers for a television show called Family Restaurant. A documentary style show created for Food Network Canada, that featured a different family run restaurant each season. The Psalios Family ran a few Greek restaurants in Edmonton under the name of Koutouki. This was an especially exciting event for me as I am a huge fan of the Food Network and a foodie! Not only was I seen dancing throughout the six part series of the first season, but I was featured in the promo clip for the series! 

Another highlight was having the opportunity to dance with Vinok Worldance, a fabulous Edmonton based dance troupe that does an outstanding job entertaining and educating with Cultural Dances from around the world; having more than 40 different countries in their repertoire. My experience dancing with them helped to broaden my training greatly. Years later I was invited back to choreography and teach an Egyptian choreography for their show Christmas Around the World 2010!

I also had the opportunity to design my own syllabus for certain dance programs, being the creator of Belly Dance Orientale, Belly Dancin Babies, and Worldbeat Dance.

Throughout my dance career I have had the great opportunity to study with many amazing dance instructors and attend a wide variety of dance workshops, having studied a huge multitude of dance styles from classical styles to cultural dance from around the world. In line with this passion and obsession, I have done extensive reading and research over the years about dance and music from around the world, have studied certain cultural instruments, and some languages.

I have been dancing for over 35 years and have studied more than twenty dance forms. My personal dance style has been most heavily influenced by my training in Ballet, Jazz, Middle Eastern Dance, and a variety of Spanish dance styles. When I teach and perform I rely on all of my dance experience to be everything that I can be. The more I think I know about dance, the more I realize I don't know; However, my passion for dance keeps me hungry and always wanting more, so I embrace all that comes my way. Dance is a journey, not a destination. Dance is passion ~ And I so enjoy sharing my passion with all of you!

Dance Photos

When I imagine myself... I imagine myself as a dancer!

~Tascheleia Marangoni~1999