We are very excited that the following amazing, enthusiastic and friendly teachers will join us for Stir It! 19
Isabella & Pontus (IT / SE)
Maria & Aurélien (ES / CH)
Helena & Alexey (ES / RU)
David & Cátia (PRT /PRT)
Cat Foley (UK)
Sep & Bára (BE / CZ)
Heiko & Larissa (CH / CH)
Isabella & Pontus
Isabella Gregorio is a well-known international dancer. She teaches and performs all over the world. Isabella is known for her exuberant style and her great expression. Her professional career began in Italy in 2002, and very quickly, she won several titles in numerous international competitions, as well as rapidly increasing teaching throughout the world together with Vincenzo Fesi. Isabella is a dancer of different styles since she was a child. She has been part of the entertainment world for a long time as both, as a singer and a dancer.
Pontus Persson has been dancing continuously since he was 5 years old, actively competing (since the age of 6) and started teaching professionally as a 16-year old. After graduating, he moved to Stockholm in 2008 to evolve his dancing, being offered membership of the dance company, Harlem Hot Shots. He has since then been spreading the dance on a full-time basis through shows and competitions, not to mention, teaching. He has worked with television, theatres and international events all around the world.
Pontus’ teaching is focused on practicing of quality body movement as well as realizing the magic of enjoyment. With true spirit the individual dancer can become truly great. Knowledge and Performance are keywords to his dancing and teaching.
Isabella and Pontus started dancing together in January 2011. In this short period they have conquered the world audience by collecting many international competitions.
Maria & Aurélien
Maria and Aurélien come from different and complementary horizons. She fell in love with movement when she was a kid. He was born crazy about rhythm.
Her background: dance and pedagogy. His: music and philosophy.
Since they started dancing together, their passion and desire to learn more have done nothing but growing.Their work is guided by a bunch of simple and yet powerful ideas: understanding movement and roots, valuing and cherishing the basics, doing more by doing less, conceiving of music as a map full of possibilities, playing and trying to feel as free and comfortable as possible, expression. They don’t agree on everything though. Maria thinks that there are no mistakes in dance, but rather thousands of paths to explore. Aurélien isn’t quite as open-minded. But, hey, he is nice too. 🙂
They have their residence in Barcelona, where they discovered the world of swing dancing. They also have a strong link to Geneva, where Aurélien was born, and where they founded Backbeat, an association which organizes monthly workshops and a yearly international festival, the shaKe that laKe.
Helena & Alexey
Helena accidentally discovered Lindy Hop in 2014, while she was studying her Musical Theater degree in Barcelona. She immediately fell in love with it, and attended as many classes as she could. One year later, she started teaching locally and travelling to events, and she hasn’t stopped ever since!
She’s known for her crazy energy and style on the dancefloor and on competitions, where she has accomplished success in multiple occasions.Her classes focus on connecting with the roots of the dance and having fun with your partner.
Alexey is one of the most popular dancers from Moscow. He started dancing in 2013 with extraordinary enthusiasm, came to all parties and in the same year became finalist of newcomer J&J. In 2014 he won the Open Strictly competition in Moscow and was a finalist of an international J&J. From 2015 he started teaching, practicing and traveling all over the world winning a great number of competition titles. Lindy hop, Authentic Jazz, Blues and St. Louis Shag, there is nothing he can’t dance!
Alexey is famous for his personal style as a dancer, his big smiles but most of all for his high energy on the dance floor! Do you believe that someone can dance for 24 hours non-stop? Yes, this is Alexey!
David & Cátia
David is an addicted social dancer. You’ll rarely see him not dancing while there is groovy swing music playing. He’s also a geek, that cannot avoid himself of deconstructing the nuclear bio-mechanics and rhythmic structure of the dance and music. David loves to share this knowledge and vision almost as much as he loves hugs.
Cátia is a person’s person. She’s always caring for everybody, and it shows when it comes to teaching where she uses an intuitive and organic approach to bring out to the best in each student. You’ll rarely see her not smiling.
These two Portuguese started dancing and teaching together in 2011, and have since become international teachers, mainly due to their aptitude to understand the fundamentals of good movement (dancing) and explaining it in an graspable and applicable way.
Cat has been lindy hopping since 2005. After teaching in her University scene and locally in Newcastle, Cat moved back to Liverpool and established Mersey Swing and remains creative director of this fast growing scene. After being awarded the Eurostar ‘Spirit of Lindy Hop’ award at ESDC 2013, Cat trained for 6 months in pedagogy with Swing Step Heidelberg, and went on to compete in the biggest contests in the USA and Europe.
Cat is currently London based, working with Swing Patrol teaching solo jazz and lindy hop and travelling worldwide to teach with her dance partner Cam Mitchell. She is also an acting member of improvisational theatre company Impropriety, and brings this creativity and unique style of performing straight into her dance.
Known for her infectiously fun style, Cat wears her heart on her sleeve and tries to bring fellow dancers into her world. She strives to bring out individuality, positivity and energy from her students, and believes that laughter really is the best medicine.
Sep & Bára
Sep and Bára are developing their dancing abilities on dance floors around Europe. They have different study fields but meet up for their shared values, the love for swing music and a particular freedom that swing dancing goes with. This view on dancing and common joy for body movement led to their cooperation. They were involved in a number of common projects such as performing groups The Dipsy Doodles and Swingzapoppin and the Ghent based school Crazy Legs.
But now they each develop other skills that are not exclusively focused on lindy hop and traditional solo jazz. Bara is beautifully exploring tap, choreo and the later jazz dances. Sep is into the earlier field of pre-era jazz dances and roots music and dance culture. Together it creates an inspiring mix. They love to explore new ideas and approaches and are inspired by any kind of performing arts and any kind of music.
Music has a large influence on their dancing style as well as on their approach to teaching. They believe and strongly encourage students to develop a unique way of dancing and expressing yourself. For that they dig the endless options that music offers. But in the end, the main focus in their classes is for you to have fun exploring all of this.
Areski started taking classes with SwingStep in 2014, and dropped everything else he was doing: it felt like he was meant for this dance. He became a full-time teacher with SwingStep in 2016. Bringing experience from his prior life as a sailing instructor, he has a good sense for understanding what is needed when, and how to express it. Training with SwingStep only helped become even more precise in his teaching, giving him the techniques to inspire people to work hard on their dancing. He also did short studies of ballet, modern dance, jazz dance, hip hop and tap dance. Increasing his knowledge about movement and body awareness helped him understand how he wants to shape his dancing, and therefore also his classes.
As a teacher, he wants to inspire the same way the dance inspires him. Making techniques, concepts, shapes, movement accessible and breaking them down in a way that students can see immediate results.
Heiko & Larissa
Heiko and Larissa are the founders of the Basel Jitterbugs. Together they teach weakly classes and workshops in Lindy Hop, Balboa and Collegiate Shag. They love to combine all of these dances based on the tempo and energy of the music and inspired by original swing dancers from Los Angeles. Their Shag style is smooth, elegant and playful. Their teaching is designed with clear structure and a focus on solid technique. Heiko & Larissa always seek for a good fun class atmosphere where everybody can find motivating challenges. Besides teaching and social dancing they love to show off in competitions and to spread their passion for swing dancing in shows. Come and join their fun and challeging classes!
“Jazz is an exhilarating call for freedom and the purest expression of the joy of being alive. Lindy Hop is that philosophy made visible,” says Malou, and her love for this philosophy is at the core of everything she undertakes.
Malou graduated as a contemporary dancer and choreographer from Zurich Dance Theatre School, which gave her a strong base in the dance techniques of modern, contemporary, jazz and ballet. She is a versatile artist that transitions effortlessly between Europe and India, where she has been based for 7 years.
She has choreographed for the Hindi film industry, also known as Bollywood, and has promoted, performed and taught swing and jazz in Bombay/Mumbai, the City of Dreams, as a founding member of Lindy Hop India. She produces and choreographs plays for her own dance company and works regularly as a stage dancer, currently at the Zurich Opera.
Malou has over 10 years of working experience as a professional Lindy Hop performer, teacher and choreographer. Her teaching aims at achieving the creative freedom to express jazz through acquiring a strong foundation of skills, dance technique and rhythm.