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International dancer, choreographer, and researcher Mariana Reis, B.S., RYT, CMT, is a graduate from the internationally known Cultural Foundation School of Dance in Salvador Bahia, Brazil (FUNCEB) and studied in the Master’s of Dance Program at the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA). She began her career as a professional dancer with Super Sonic Samba School, a performing drum & dance group, based in San Diego, CA. She has since acted as the Dance Director for Grupo Liberdade, a Brazilian Drum & Dance group based in Phoenix, AZ, as well as a professional dancer and choreographer in Salvador, Bahia Brazil for Olodum, Dança Afro Inaomile, Slleyk Bahia Dance and Corpo Sismico. She has trained with Rosangela Silvestre, Vera Pasos, Nem Brito, Augusto Omulu, Nildinha Fonseca, Pakito Lazaro, Tati Campelo, and Slleyk da Bahia.
She specializes in Afro-Brazilian dance including, oríxa, samba, samba reggae, samba de roda, capoeira and has trained in modern, ballet, floor bar, and contemporary. As a dance instructor Mariana offers a natural grace, strength and humility augmented by extensive training in mind-body movement, Afro-Brazilian culture and research throughout Brazil and the U.S.A. She is the CEO and Founder of Iemanja Arts, “Everything Bohemian, Everything Brazilian” LLC.
Mariana’s classes tie together the various movement modalities that she has studied throughout the years. She begins class with a quiet concentration and slow moving exercise to awaken the mind, body and spirit. While warming up the body she is sure to emphasize the importance of connecting with your breathe, all which stems from her yoga training. Then she moves into fluid movement incorporating methods from her Capoeira and Release technique training. In the middle of her class she is sure to practice Ballet and she finishes with an interesting choreography, while always tapping into the strong energies and subtle intensity from Oríxa dance.