DIRECTOR / DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Frank’s first dance steps were taken almost 30 years ago at back yard family parties. As a ten year old, street tango and waltz weren’t exactly popular so it wasn’t long before he found himself breaking and popping during the 80’s dance wave. He has performed professionally for over twenty years both on stage and television.
In 1998, Frank took his first Salsa class. Three months later, not being able to dance salsa (let alone teach) he opened the first Salsa school in Geelong with the help of Aloy Junco, Melbourne’s most influential Salsa instructor.
In the year 2000 Frank co-founded Melbourne Salsa. After many years of promoting Latin dance and music to literally thousands of adults every year, he still thrives on being able to extract the dance out of anyone.
DIRECTOR / EVENTS MANAGER / DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Gabriella was introduced to Latin music at a young age, she fell in love with Salsa in 1997, three years later co-founded Melbourne Salsa. This passion for self-expression through music and dance took Gabby to Cuba and Puerto Rico to further develop her dance & music skills. Her work in organising Latin events and teaching Salsa is much more than a commercial enterprise, it’s her lifestyle and Gabby wants to share her passion with others.
“Latin Dancing is a great way to meet people, it’s one of only a few forms of dance that is supported by a really strong social scene… you’ll find a Salsa bar in every city of the world and immediately make friends”
“When people ask me what do you do?, I respond with I MAKE PEOPLE HAPPY FOR A LIVING”
Cheb Ali (Arabic for Sir Ali) has been Melbourne Salsa’s resident DJ since 2004.
Ali believes in the importance of respecting dancers and reading into their needs. He has always shown commitment to understand each dance event, the dancers and the vibe. Ali offers a lot of energy and interaction by playing the “maracas” not seen by any other Latin DJ in Australia.
“Frank and Gabby allowed me to literally play with the decks at the Grosvenor Hotel in 2005 and I have never looked back. It was just an idea!”
“See you on the dance floor!”
GYSVIER ALDANA NORIEGA
South American born Gysvier has been exposed to Latin music from an early age. Cuban music and dance has always been his favourite. As a member of the famous Venezuelan dance academy “Caribe y Punto”. He is an accomplished Cuban salsa (Casino Rueda) dancer, competing and performing dozens of choreographies including a performance in the opening of the Miss Venezuela 2006.
“The music is inside all of us, we just have to let it flow through our body and we’ll become one with it”
From a young age Danni was competing in dance competitions. She has had various TV productions appearances and academically has pursued a range of dance theories. In her early twenties, Danni joined ‘Satori Dance Company’, training in jazz, funk, ballet, hip hop and partnering.
Danni discovered salsa in London where she took classes in all different styles. Her performing travels include London Scala, Sydney and Montreal Salsa congresses and finally back to Melbourne where she applied her love for dance to teaching salsa since 2008.
Danni Competed as a Professional Soloist in the Brisbane Salsa Solos in November 2012. Won the Victorian State Championships Partnered Teams Division three years in a row (2011-2013). Competed in the Australian Salsa Open in Sydney three years in a row (2011-2013) where her Team came 3rd in 2011, 2nd in 2012 & 2013.
Kiki was born in Miami, the unofficial capital of Latin America, where Salsa Music and Dance is a part of life. “Dance what you feel” is what her mother always said, so with her mothers words and her fathers musical skills Kiki tore up the local Salsa clubs from a young age. It wasn’t until her 20s when one night she was inspired to take dance classes, She went and joined Miami’s world famous Salsa Lovers Dance School.
Kiki teaches Casino (Cuban Style), Bachata amd more recently Salsa Moderna (LA Style).
A dance with Kiki is like dancing with Miami.
SAMBA DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Having danced a range of styles throughout her child hood and teen years, Tsambika found her calling and passion in Brazilian Samba at the age of 19. Raised and trained at Melbourne Salsa for the past 4 years and professionally for 2 years tsambika has performed with a range of professional groups which includes Melbourne Salsa’s “The Latin Dance Company” Gracing the stages of festivals, weddings, and birthdays. Specialising in dancing to live drums Tsambika brings the house down every time. Her favourite thing about teaching at Melbourne Salsa has been the close relationships she holds with her students and being able to teach them self love and to shake what their mumma gave them!
Adam always had a fascination and love for dance but was too afraid to take it up himself. On his regular jogging route, he used to see people going in and out of a dance studio, always with big smiles on their faces. So one day he went to his first beginner’s salsa class instead of his jog. That was over 10 years ago and he has never looked back. Since then he has expanded his love into Mambo, Bachata and Zouk as well as dabbled in Cuban, afro, contemporary, jazz, jive, swing and tango. Adam has performed and competed all over Australia, lastly competing in a team with Danni Cummins which came second in Australia at the Australian Salsa Open.
With a background in classical dance styles, such as tap, ballet and contemporary, it was in Latin America that Alice found her true love; Salsa! Having danced, taught, performed and competed in Guatemala and travelled the world attending various congresses, classes and most importantly socials. Alice has a ton of experience, tips and tricks under her belt. You’ll catch her tearing it up on the social floor where she feels most at home.
She specialises in LA style salsa, NY on 2(mambo), Bachata and Ladies styling.
SAMBA DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Rebecca started dancing from the young age of four, learning classical Indian dancing for six years. It is here that she developed her love for performing and being on stage. As a teen, she was naturally drawn to the modern style of Bollywood dancing and also loved Belly Dancing. She went on to teach and professionally perform in both these genres. In her early 20’s she fell in love with Samba.
Rebecca’s passion is teaching other women the love of dance and loving yourself while having fun and getting fit! She performs samba at a professional level to live drums, for events and functions all over Melbourne. Her dream to be in the official Rio Carnival will come to life in 2018. Her passion for dance and training is always evolving and growing and she wants to share that with you.
“Give me a dance style with rich culture and a drum beat and I’ll be sure to be up and dancing”
Joseph has been teaching dance full time for 14 years. Over that time he has developed his own philosophy that sees students moving seemingly effortlessly yet dynamically in a short space of time. He has taught throughout this time in, Latin American, ballroom, swing, Salsa and Argentine Tango, competing in Australia and winning several competitions in Latin American before making the move to London. In London, Joseph learnt from and taught with world champions in all genres of partner dancing. Notably Salsa, Joseph worked and taught with super Mario for several years.
Joseph has also had a previous student achieve second place in the world Salsa championship. Has run his own dance business in London and been invited to teach all around the world. “Dancing is a language in itself, I have never been tired nor stopped being amazed of the power of dance in connecting people from all corners of the world in such a beautiful and profound way”.
Clara was born in France and grew up with a professional dance teaching mum, so dance has always been a part of Clara’s life. It started at a young age with Ballet, and Ballroom with her mother including Rock’n roll, Rumba, Tango & Cha-cha-cha. Then in her teens Salsa took over and never left, Bachata and Kizomba followed instantly. Clara took classes and performed with a premier Salsa institution in Paris. At the age of 20 she taught for a Salsa association and she also created her own class in Paris, before coming to Melbourne to improve her dance teaching skills.
Clara now teaches LA Salsa, Cuban Salsa and Bachata at Melbourne Salsa. In Class, she understands if you feel uncomfortable as a beginner she will just whisper the right tips in your ear with a comforting smile to help you on your way to dance perfection.
“Dancing means to stop thinking about the stresses in life, it puts you in the present and connects you to your soul. You feel joy and connection to the music and there is no better feeling. Meeting people and connecting with them is magical and the best thing that happened in my life and I wish this for everyone”
Since he was born, Carlos was a shy and introverted who used to love studying maths and physics and had problems to interact with other students. After moving from Spain to Morocco with his family, he decided to change that and he saw that dancing was the best way to improve his Social skills. Since then, Carlos has learnt how to dance Hip-Hop, Weaving, New Style, Salsa, Bachata, Chacha and Kizomba. With a strong focus on social dancing, Carlos style is all about musicality and mixing styles.
Carlos has danced all over the world and has taught in Europe and brings this experience to Melbourne Salsa. What he has learned and how it has changed his life is what Carlos is passionate about and encourages others to do the same.
“Being able to dance has allowed me to meet people and make friends in 7 countries I have lived so far. I encourage everyone to learn dancing, no matter what your level of confidence is”.