Paula, Amaranth's director, was first introduced to ATS® in 2009. Belly dance was a fitness curiosity, and she enrolled in her first class with Sam Brenneman. Practicing across the dining room and in the kitchen, she realized all her interests had come together in this dance form. Two years later, she earned ATS® General Skills certification and joined Maria Dancer's troupe, Shimmy By Fire. She completed ATS® Teacher Training in 2014 to become a FatChanceBellyDance® Sister Studio. Current dance efforts include workshops with FCBD®, classes with Tamarind Tribal and other folkloric dance instructors. As the Grand Pooh-Bah Muse, Paula is an avid collector of each troupe member's dreams. Visit www.sepiatribal.com for her class schedule and more info.
Grace, our socially-gifted Ambassador Muse, came to belly dance after years as an ACE-certified fitness professional. After discovering yoga, she decided to hang up her aerobic shoes and focus on barefoot activities. Grace began with cabaret belly dance lessons, followed by tribal fusion lessons a few years later and that ultimately led to American Tribal Style®. Grace knew within the few weeks of her first authentic ATS® class with Maria of Shimmy by Fire, she had found her belly dance passion and mission. She completed teacher training and is proud to be a FatChanceBellyDance® Sister Studio. Her belly dance classes are in a dance studio in the western suburbs of Chicago. You can email her at email@example.com and visit www.easternfirebellydance.com.
Mithra’s artistic journey began by studying classical piano at age 4 and violin at age 9. It's no surprise she is our Orchestral Muse, our expert in musical selections and editing. However, it wasn’t until she hit her 30’s and was pregnant with her third child that she started dancing. Mithra, like many moms, was losing herself to motherhood. In 2006, she joined a park district cabaret belly dance class to get a little “me time” and to get in touch with her Middle Eastern roots. She danced into her third trimester, had her baby, and hasn’t stopped dancing since. In 2010, she expanded her learning into the tribal fusion style of belly dance, under the direction of Christina King of Blue Lotus Tribe. In 2012, she expanded some more into the American Tribal Style® of belly dance, under the direction of Maria of Shimmy by Fire. Most recently, she has earned ATS® General Skills certification in August 2014. Currently Mithra is continuing her cabaret training under Sabah of Bellydance Superstars®, is teaching belly dance at Bolingbrook Park District, and takes flamenco from Diane Campbell of Ritmo Flamenco. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org for her class information.
Agnieszka has always loved to dance. She took ballroom lessons in her childhood but, when she moved to a higher level, her adventure ended because she had no partner. Her passion to ballroom, especially Latin ballroom, continued as she watched Patrick Swayze lift Jennifer Grey in the movie “Dirty Dancing”. Agnieszka knew life was not a movie, and she accepted the fact that she could only dance at social events or clubs, nothing more. Until one day, a couple of years ago, she attended a yoga class at a Naperville studio and happened to notice they offered belly dance lessons. She decided to give it a try. While it was by pure accident that Agnieszka was introduced to the world of American Tribal Style® belly dancing, it was a conscious choice to continue her belly dance journey. She immediately took to her weekly lessons with Maria of Shimmy by Fire, whose encouragement made her realize that you can dance when you are over 30. In January, she earned her ATS® General Skills certification and has recently begun teaching in Aurora, IL. Visit www.mantrabellydance.com for her class information. As our Hollywood Muse, Agnieszka uses her silver screen inspiration towards magical photo and video production.