ABOUT MY BELLY DANCE STUDIO
JOanne is an accomplished freelance performer, choreographer and instructor with over 20 years of experience in performing arts. Joanne is known as a pioneer of the fusion belly dance style. She is recognized for her unique style, charisma, and magnetic stage presence and signature technique.
Her passion for dance has been a lifelong physical and internal journey. Her extensive dance training started a young age in ballet, jazz, tap, and various modern dance techniques with Doreen Hayes School of Dance and the George College for the Performing Arts, and the brief opportunity with the National Ballet of Canada. And in her later years she studied at Ryerson College, Toronto.
In her earlier years she left Canada to continued her studies and explore the vast cultures of India and Pakistan, where she had the opportunity to witness, first-hand the spiritual depth, and subtle nuances of Kathak and Bharatanatyam with renowned teachers and illuminaires, Naheed Sadeeki, Partap Pawar, and Sheema Karmani. And continued her studies back home in Canada with Rina Singha, and Joanne Das.
JOanne then traveled through the Middle East ( Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Jeddah, North West Africa and Egypt) and delved into the historical mysteries, and vast unexplored potential of the art of "Raqs Sharqi' (dance of the stomach), while widening her scope and understanding of the delicate intricacies of modern and tribal fusion belly dance with world renowned and notable teachers and influencers, Jillina, Suhaila Salimpour, Rachel Brice, Ansuya Rathor, Bozanka Arencibia in San Francisco California, Magdy El Leisy, Germany, Badia Star, and the Arabesque Dance Company, Toronto.
In her growing years, JOanne's interest also included music, she studied reed interments and played the clarinet and bass clarinet, as a member and musician of several Mississauga and Toronto Bands including the Maltese Band Club. JOanne also had the opportunity to widened her musicality abilities with well renowned teacher George Dimitri Sawa, from Eqypt, and has contributed to his book of Music Performance Practice in the early Abbasid Era 132-320 AH / 750-932 AD Second Edition.
Today JOanne is a Toronto based performer, producer, instructor and choreographer in Middle Eastern Arts and Performance Arts in various dance realms. She has been a volunteer, performer for yearly festival events, for the Maltese International Day, and the Maltese Pavilion Carrassaga, and a volunteer at community Festivals in the GTA.
In 2006 JOanne founded her dance school "Vivace studios" in Toronto. She produced her own Belly Dance Instructional DVD, produced in Malta Europe and TO, Canada.
Since the year 2000 entertaining as a regular day and evening performer, and other venues across Canada, US and Malta and Italy in Europe. With highlights that include:
Falls View Casino, Niagara Falls, Maltese International Day San Francisco, Women's Health Matters Expo, and for Corporate Events like Toyota, Sun Media, Ministry of Gov. Services, Weston Hotel in Malta Europe, Doctors without borders , numerous Fashion Shows and more...Joanne has been cast in film and performed in many television shows including: A perfect Christmas, The Listener, Alliance Atlantis History Launch, Much Music, Breakfast TV, and Famous Peoples Players. She has made appearances' in Reality TV shows like Rich Bride, Poor Bride, I Do , Let's eat, So Chic, City TV, Dinner at the Sultan's Tent-The Makeover. Joanne has performed in Live Theatre at The Living Arts Centre, The Rose Theatre and Canadian Stage.
In 2015 JOanne started another one of her passions Circus Arts adding to her repertoire and conditioning as a performer. Joanne instructs Middle Eastern Arts regularly at the University of Toronto, Hart House, and the Living Arts Centre, Mississauga and including, privates, corporate classes, workshops. She has organized dance Troupes all across Ontario and continues to create solo performances and original Middle Eastern inspired fusion dance pieces with select troupes of dedicated students, and creative partner Matina Harpanditis.
Drawing on her varied and well-rounded performance background JOanne's unique technique and expression, style and grace has captured audiences from all around the world.
The objective of the Company is that students of all ages, limitless shapes and sizes, strengths and flexibilities are encouraged to learn the art of belly dance within a friendly, yet productive environment.
Each and every student at JOannes' School of Dance is an important part of our growing dance community.