ABOUT DANA FOGLIA DANCE
As Dana made the shift from dancer to educator and creator she founded a thriving collection of intimate training programs to assist young artists with their development into professional dancers. Students from all over the world including the United States, United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Germany, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Amsterdam, Singapore, Japan and New Zealand have traveled to train under Dana.
It’s through these training programs that Dana Foglia Dance was created. An unsurpassed combination of innovative movement and fearless artistry. From the Alvin Ailey School, to Beyoncé world tours , the diverse integration of styles that Dana has created continues to allow for unique and revolutionary repertoire for DFD. The company originated in New York City and is currently based in Los Angeles.
The DFD company has traveled the world to many places such as London, Spain, Amsterdam, Canada, Sweden and more performing their full length shows and teaching company intensives. The company has had the honor of performing alongside Beyonce numerous times under the direction of Dana.
Most recently Dana Foglia Dance had the opportunity to perform with Billie Ellish in her Coachella performance.
While every company member individually is an exceptional artist, the power, intensity and capabilities of DFD collectively is remarkable and unique.
DFD COMPANY MEMBERS
Jose “Boy Boi” Tena hails from the Bronx, NY. After graduating from The Fame School: Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School in 2012 Boy Boi committed himself to training with Dana Foglia Dance in New York and then taking the journey with the newly formed company to Los Angeles.
“I saw Dana’s work live and knew I wanted to be able to perform her work beautifully one day. It was the most challenging and exciting work I had ever seen that gracefully fused classical styles and street styles of dance. The variety of influences that she pulled from in movement and her intense virtuosity truly inspired me. In addition, she is such a rarity. She is a brilliant educator and mentor with such a big heart and because of those qualities I have been connected to her and all things a part of her vision from the very beginning.”
Professionally Boy Boi has danced and most recently choreographed for a few artists such as Beyoncé, Ariana Grande, Megan Thee Stallion, Lil Nas X, Billie Eilish, Jennifer Lopez, Shawn Mendes, Bebe Rexha, Azealia Banks, Danity Kane, Panic! at the Disco, Halsey and has assisted on shows like RuPauls Drag Race, The Latin Grammys, MTV’s Video Music Awards, Coachella, The Formation World Tour and The Mayfair Supper Club at The Bellagio in Las Vegas. He appears as a young dancer in Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Campaign and the film Step Up 3D directed by Jon M. Chu.
Boy Boi is a very passionate educator and lover of movement who works daily to remain a great student. With the company’s teachings he is interested in always becoming the best version of himself and sharing with others.
Ai Shimatsu, originally from Tokyo, Japan, started training ballet at the age of 3 and studied with Tokyo Ballet School. In 2007, Ai moved to NY and continued her dance training in Jazz, Hip-hop, Contemporary, House and more at Broadway Dance Center.
She has toured with top artists including Madonna, Beyoncé, Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry, Brandy and has performed on numerous TV and award shows with artists such as Prince, Kanye West, Janelle Monae, Cardi B, Gwen Stefani, Christina Aguilera, and many other incredible stars. She is also a principal dancer of the musical film ‘Spirited’.
Ai has been a founding member of Dana Foglia Dance since 2010 and has done numerous performances with the company including VATIC, Capezio A.C.E Awards, Jimmy Kimmel Live Show, and more.
Her style, grace, and remarkable skill in dance have not only gained mass attention in the dance world but in fashion also. Ai starred in major fashion campaigns with Coach, Rag & Bone, Tommy Hilfiger, NIKE, GAP, Abercrombie and Fitch, and more.
Natsuki Miya is a Tokyo native/LA-based Dancer, Teacher, Choreographer and Visual Artist. Petite and fiery, her movement is known to pack a punch.
After graduating high school, curiosity brought her to New York City to push her craft further at age 18 where she met Dana Foglia teaching at Broadway Dance Center and has been mentored by her ever since then. She is also one of the first company members from DFD’s first full-length show “VATIC” in 2011.
Determined and dedicated to the love of movement led her to a decade-long career in Dance and Entertainment industry, she has been blessed with many opportunities.
Dancing and touring with major awards winning recording artists such as Beyonce, Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Pharrell, Ariana Grande, Cardi B, Lady Gaga, Kehlani, Normani, Camila Cable, TLC, Sean Paul, J Balvin, and list goes on. She has starred in ad campaigns for globally recognized brands such as Apple, Shiseido, Adidas, Ivy Park, and Urban Decay.
Every single one of these opportunities kept her motivated and willing to learn while pushing herself even further. She continues to strive as an artist day to day always looking for inspiration that will help her inspire others.
Cilia Trappaud, 26 years old, is a native of Copenhagen, Denmark.
Cilia has danced since she was 5 years old and comes from a training background of primarily hip-hop, house, experimental and urban styles. She began working as a dancer in Denmark at a very young age and with time, became one of the most sought-after professionals there.
In 2015, she did her first training program with Dana Foglia and has returned to attend Dana’s program each year until finally moving to Los Angeles in 2018 and becoming a Dana Foglia Dance company member.
In addition to being in the DFD company, Cilia works as a commercial dancer and model.
Martel Jackson, born and raised in Peoria, IL, has been dancing ever since he could remember. As a young child he started always being the center of attention at parties, weddings, and anywhere else he was taken and there was music. At 7 his grandmother enrolled him into tap, jazz, and tumbling lessons at D/D Productions, the local studio in Peoria, mainly so she could positively direct his energy and stop him from getting hurt flipping off her furniture. There he took for 12 years dancing and competing in places like Dallas, TX, Las Vegas, NV, Myrtle Beach, SC, Gatlinburg, TN, and many other places.
After graduating in 2002 in the top 10% of his class at Peoria Central High school he applied and enrolled in at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that fall. There he majored in Business Administration with a concentration in Entrepreneurship.
In the fall of 2003 he auditioned and joined Dance2xs International Dance group, he joined Dance2xs UIUC (hip hop) in 2003 and Dance2xs Caliente (Latin styles) in 2005. For the rest of his college career he performed on many stages on campus and off campus and also got to perform in Portugal at Dance2xs' first international Urbanite event that included multiple bases. He started attending Monsters of Hip Hop dance convention in 2005 and eventually went on to be come a finalist and show cast member in the 2007 Inspirations show at the El Portal Theater in Los Angeles, CA.
Since then he's gone to multiple cities assisting choreographers Tabitha and Napoleon Dumo, Marty Kudelka, Chonique Sneed, Kevin Maher, Rhapsody James, and many others. Currently he resides in North Hollywood, CA where he trains as a professional dancer. He joined the company after attending the very first Apprenticeship Program in 2013.
Mariah Chandler is a Los Angeles-based professional dancer with Michigan roots and a Midwest work ethic. She grew up in a competition dance studio that emphasized ballet, jazz, contemporary, and everything in between. She then earned a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in dance at Oakland University in 2015.
Upon graduation Mariah eagerly moved to L.A. to pursue her passions as a working dancer and teacher. She has had the pleasure of learning from various choreographers, has also performed in numerous live events, and has danced for multiple artists including Billie Eilish.
Mariah first trained with Dana Foglia in 2014 as a mentee, then continued to do multiple DFD programs after that. She later on began dancing for her as a company member. Dana’s mentorship and training have had the biggest impact on her dance journey. She has performed as a DFD company member in productions in Amsterdam, New York, and L.A. Mariah feels her most fulfilled performing and training with Dana Foglia Dance.
She lives by the motto: “Be a good, hard-working human first and the rest will follow."
Brianna Pavon, originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, started training at age 15 in all styles of dance and quickly discovered a passion for performing. After enrolling in LSU for a bachelor’s degree in fashion, Brianna decided to change her path, transferring to PACE university in NYC to earn her bachelor’s degree in dance. While in college, she took her first 3 month DFD Mentorship with Dana, which inspired her to move to LA to pursue dancing professionally.
Since then, she has been seen on multiple world tours, feature films, commercials, music videos and more. She has worked with musical artists such as Beyoncé, Billie Eilish, Mary J Blige, P!nk, Dua Lipa, Mariah Carey, and more. Her unique look has been cast by television series such as American Horror Story and brands such as Gucci, Google, Target, and McDonald’s.
Brianna has been a company member of DFD since 2017. After her 3 month mentorship program, she continued her training with Dana and was invited to participate in an apprenticeship program, after which she was invited into the company.
Brianna integrates her eye for fashion by working alongside Dana to style the visuals for DFD. Living with integrity is a core value of Brianna’s, a value that has been nurtured and solidified by her work with DFD.
Eric Schloesser grew up dancing in Denver, Colorado, training in ballet, jazz, hip-hop, contemporary, and musical theater since the age of 8. After competing throughout his teens, he earned the coveted national title of “Senior Male Best Dancer” at The Dance Awards, and shortly thereafter moved to Los Angeles to pursue his dreams of dancing professionally. He has since been seen performing alongside Lady Gaga, Dua Lipa, Katy Perry, Billie Eilish, and more.
In 2020, the midst of the pandemic brought him into a choreographic role — his self-choreographed performance in Jessie Ware’s “Step Into My Life” music video earned him a UK Music Video Award nomination for Best Choreography.
His career has also led him into the fashion world; he has partnered with Gucci as a content creator, walked in shows for NYFW, and been featured in Vogue Italia for his avant-garde print work.
Eric has been a company member of DFD since 2018. Upon first taking class from Dana on Nuvo Dance Convention in 2014, he began eagerly following her as a student; he was hired by Nuvo as a professional assistant in 2018, where he got the chance to assist her regularly, and thereafter was invited to join the company.
As a creative person, curiosity is very important to Eric; alongside movement, he expresses his tact through baking, coffee roasting, design, video editing, and multimedia creation. He believes in the power of consistency and hopes to forever remain a student.
Denae Luce, a native of Southern California, began dance at the age of three. At West Coast School of the Arts, she had the privilege of training in multiple styles of dance and with many top choreographers from across the country. During these years, Denae realized her drive and passion for dance, as well as her dedication to turn her love into a future career.
Denae moved to Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California, earning degrees in three diverse areas: Business Administration, Dance and Communication Design.
Upon graduating from USC, Denae knew immediately she wanted to train under the direction of Dana Foglia. In 2018, she applied for and participated in her first 3-month mentorship. She continued her training with the 6-week program in 2019 and was awarded a scholarship to participate in the next 3-month mentorship as well. Later that year, she performed in her first full-length show with the company in Amsterdam, a moment she will never forget. Being a part of such an innovative dance company, led by the genius that is Dana Foglia, has been an absolute dream come true for Denae.
She could not imagine her dance journey, or quite frankly her life, without each member of her second family, Dana Foglia Dance.
A highly trained and versatile performer, Denae has enjoyed sharing her passion for dance through the variety of opportunities she’s been offered. She has had the privilege of working on many exciting projects, including performing with artists such as Billie Eilish, Kendra Jae and Saweetie, in the upcoming feature film Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret and in national commercials, including Vroom’s Super Bowl Commercial and the first-ever live commercial for The Greatest Showman. She looks forward to continuing to train and expand her versatility, and to many more amazing opportunities in the dance industry.
Natalie Reid grew up in Seattle, Washington, where she started tap dancing at age 4. She went on to train in ballet, jazz, modern, and hip-hop while competing through her teenage years. Natalie moved to Southern California to attend Chapman University where she earned a degree in public relations and advertising, and she commuted weekly to Los Angeles to work and train in the commercial dance industry.
Natalie has worked professionally in film, television, and stage with artists including Billy Eilish, Adele, Jennifer Lopez, Pitbull, and Flo Rida. She worked as the assistant choreographer to Mandy Moore on the feature film, "Are You There God? It's Me Margaret". Her television credits include: The Tony Awards, Saturday Night Live, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, America’s Got Talent, The Offer, Shake it Up, and more.
Natalie truly loves the consistency and discipline of training and performing found in the company world and joined Dana Foglia Dance in 2021. After her first company workshop in New York City in January 2020, she knew she had found something special and continued to train both in-person and virtually with Dana, Boy, and Lisa as the Covid pandemic hit.
She has previous experience in the company world working with Anaheim Ballet, Odyssey Dance Theater (US and European Tour), Rapture Dance Project, Justin Giles’ SoulEscape, and Evolution Dance Company.
Natalie is currently based out of Los Angeles, recently moving from New York City after eleven seasons with the world famous Radio City Rockettes. She performed in the annual Radio City Christmas Spectacular and was the assistant dance captain for the inaugural New York Spectacular directed by Mia Michaels.
Natalie is grateful for every opportunity to train and perform with Dana Foglia Dance, and for the unwavering support of her husband, Ryan.