Carla grew up in a home with a Radio City Music Hall Rockette turned Ballet studio owner mom and an opera singing, symphony playing, airline pilot dad so her love of performing started as far back as she can remember. Now Carla brings 30+ years teaching experience and 40+ years study as well as an extensive background in dance, theater, vocal performance, choreography, acting and instruction to Dance Fusion NW.
Carla trained in the Vancouver/Portland area, New York and LA doing study & workshops with instructors including: Ann Reinking, JoJo Smith, Frank Hatchett, Luigi, Andre Paradis and Ray Hesselink. She worked as a dancer/vocalist for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and spent years performing in numerous Musical Theater productions with roles including: Ulla in ‘The Producers’; Celeste Romano in Portland’s long-running production of ‘Tony & Tina’s Wedding’; Diana, Sheila and dream-role Cassie in several productions of ‘A Chorus Line’; Sister Mary Amnesia in ‘Nunsense’, Rizzo in ‘Grease’, Sonia in ‘They’re Playin Our Song’, Nancy in ‘Oliver’ and Laurie in ‘Oklahoma’. In Los Angeles she was honored to perform in Long Beach Civic Light Opera’s productions of ‘Cinderella’ and then ‘Follies’ alongside the legendary Juliet Prowse.
In more recent years as a singer/songwriter with her original band, Colorfield, she has shared stages with Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull), Animotion, Rob Hotchkiss (Train), Glen Phillips (Toad the Wet Sprocket) & Gin Blossoms, to name a few. She recorded the song ‘This Time’ with Frankie Valli for the Eternity movie soundtrack and spent years with several show bands including Portland favorite ‘5 Guys Named Moe’. Theatrical choreography credits include: The Producers, Anything Goes, How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Guys & Dolls in addition to choreographing for numerous showcases & studio performances.Acting & commercial work includes: Oregon Forestry Service, On Point, Bissell, Intel, Sunbeam, Con Air, Oster, WebMD, Parr Lumber, AT&T, Xerox & Nike.
Carla is honored to own Dance Fusion NW and work with such world-class instructors and wonderful dance families.
Tony’s extensive professional dance/theatre background includes the Broadway Cast and National Tour of 42nd Street, Carnegie Hall, NY City Opera, NY Theatre Ballet, Cruise Lines, Do Jump and numerous productions across the country. Plus…he’s a ton of fun!
Rachel Närhi holds a B.F.A. in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts. She has taught at Pacific Northwest Ballet School, Western Washington University, and The Firehouse Performing Arts Center. Additionally, she is a Teaching Artist and Mentor to public school students and their teachers through Young Audiences and the ARTS Impact program. Her works have been commissioned by The Seattle Opera, The Burning Man Festival, The Seattle Solstice Fire Festival, and performed throughout Western North America. She has performed with Cornish Dance Theater, Pacific Dance Company (Bellingham, WA), and with choreographers David Dorfman (NYC) and Gerard Theoret (Cirque de Soleil).
Katherine has had extensive training in Ballet, Tap and Jazz and has been a featured performer and/or choreographer at DanceFusion, VDT, ABA and NWCB. You may also find her onstage in local college and theatre productions!
Kai’s core training is in Hip Hop, but he has trained in many dance forms including: Tap, Contemporary, Ballet, Salsa, Merengue, Cha Cha, Argentine Tango, Foxtrot, Viennese Waltz, Swing and Rumba. He is constantly looking to expand his knowledge and love of dance in all areas and it is evident in his positive attitude, encouraging nature and huge heart for teaching.
details coming soon…!
Michele received her Master of Fine Arts in Choreography from California Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles, where she focused her work on women’s studies and dance for the camera. Her thesis, “Definitions and Boundaries”, was selected to be shown at “Exquisite Acts and Everyday Rebellions”, a feminist art project affiliated with WACK! and the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles. Ainza has been on faculty throughout the United States and Mexico, most recently working as a Dance Professor at The University of Veracruz, Mexico. Prior to moving to Mexico, Ainza was the Co-Artistic Director and Full Time Dance Professor at Fresno City College. She has also been the Dance Director at Linfield College and a Guest Artist and Instructor at Lewis and Clark College. Ainza is a Laban Movement Analyst, receiving her certification from Integrated Movement Studies based out of the University of Utah, Salt Lake City. She has choreographed and performed throughout the United States, including New York City, Chicago, Portland, and Los Angeles as well as Eastern Europe. She is a devout Yoga and Pilates practitioner and intends on completing her Pilates certification in 2012.
Dar Vejon Jones was born and raised in Southern California. He was enrolled in his first tap dance class at 8 years old to combat the health issues of his early childhood. He was privileged to study under renowned artists Paul and Arlene Kennedy of Universal Dance Designs and was asked to join their pre-professional company. During his high school years he performed for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Rowell Foster Children’s Positive Plan, numerous LA Tap Fesitvals, The Nate Holden Theater and The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion [televised].
Dar Vejon holds a Bachelors of Arts in Dance Performance and Choreography with a Minor Degree in Japanese Language from San Francisco State University. He received numerous scholarships allowing him to study at Alonzo King LINES Ballet in Contemporary Ballet, Horton Technique and Contemporary Dance. Through the National Endowment of the Arts he performed works by Brenda Way, KT Nelson, Mark Foehringer and Kimi Okada. He has also studied with and performed works by Ray Tadio of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Wendy Diamond and Kat Worthington, to name a few.
In 2011 Dar Vejon founded his company Sharp & Flat, an experimental Contemporary Jazz dance company in San Francisco performing at the Black Choreographers’ Fesitval and PUSH Benefit Concert. His masterwork “Atonal Aves” was commissioned by San Francisco State University to be set on the University Dance Theatre; the first time in the history of the university a student was hired as a Commissioned Guest Artist. Concurrently he was commissioned by the Theatre department to choreograph Spring Awakening.
Dar Vejon looks forward to his new life here in the Portland metropolitan area with his wife and is a firm believer that dance is a language; and like every language, clear communication is key.
Addam Stell has performed and choreographed throughout the Pacific Northwest and Canada for thirty years. Mr. Stell has been featured in productions of Anything Goes, Funny Girl, 42nd Street, and Music Man, while developing and touring with his own tap company, “Tap Cats”. He was a member of the New Jersey Tap Dance Ensemble and Foot and Fiddle Dance Company in New York City from 2003-2009 and has taught workshops and master classes throughout the United States. Currently, he is working as a Child and Family Therapist in Portland while choreographing for dance schools in the Pacific Northwest.
Brittany Walsh competed nationally and internationally in the sport of gymnastics for 12 years. During that time she helped to choreograph floor exercise routines for high school and national level gymnasts and design leotards for Snowflake Designs. After gymnastics, Brittany was not ready to be done moving and jumping around! Between 2005 and 2012, she performed and toured with Do Jump! Physical Theatre Company. Now, Brittany has run away with the circus and performs her solo hand balancing and contortion act for audiences across the globe—but she always makes sure to stay close enough to her Portland home to continue inspiring and encouraging young dancers as they develop their tumbling and acrobatic skills! See Brittany’s amazing work at http://youtu.be/Kr-Xc6nVSK8
Erica is an award winning tap instructor known for her fast-paced, high energy tap and innovative choreography. Born and raised in the Seattle area, Erica has been tapping her whole life and has received many choreography awards for her work. Erica is a proud new mom, just welcoming her new baby boy to the family which includes a beautiful 4 year old daughter, a wonderfully supportive husband, and two insanely rowdy dogs.
Robyn has a heart for dance, especially ballet and contemporary. Starting in ballet at the age of 3, Robyn branched out into other styles of dance such as: jazz, lyrical, hip hop, modern, and contemporary. She has both performed in, and choreographed for, numerous recitals, competitions, and productions. At Western Oregon University, where she minored in dance, Robyn found a passion for movement exploration and teaching. She has taught for several years now and enjoys introducing a fresh perspective of dance to her students.
Brianne came to us straight from OSU where she studied Sociology. Her choreography for OSU included coordinating their Dance Against Hunger event. Brianne also directed the Hip Hop program at Legacy Ballet. She has a heart and passion for teaching and it shows!and theatre productions!
details coming soon…!
details coming soon…!
details coming soon…!
details coming soon…!
DFNW guest choreographers and instructors include: Maria Tucker, Ching Ching Wong, Jamal Story, Kemba Shannon, Aaron Wheeler-Kay, Lauren Edson, Bosco and Mary Hunt.