Festival Line-up
Here are the instructors for this year's festival:

Bruno & Olga (LA)

Bruno and Olga started dancing together in November 2015 and have since taught and performed at numerous events around the country from local workshops to large international congresses.

In 2016 they took second place in the semi-pro division of the Zouk US Open with their now well-known choreography piece “Worth It” and shortly after got featured in the “Fences” movie, that’s currently in production stage.

Olga has a rich dance background in classical ballet, modern, contemporary and commercial jazz, as well as hip hop and heels choreographies. She is also an All-Star west coast swing dancer.

Once she discovered Brazilian zouk however, it has become her main passion, and these days she dedicates majority of her training time to perfecting her dance skills and broadening her knowledge base in this dance style. She currently teaches and performs around the US with her partner Bruno Miranda and co-directs Zouk team at Ivo Vieira’s Dance Company.

Bruno is trained in hip hop, salsa, kizomba, tarraxinha, semba, and of course brazilian zouk. He has been on the social dance scene of his hometown Braga, Portugal since he was 14 years old. 

Since his move to the US he’s been mainly focusing on zouk and kizomba, training and teaching around the country with his partner, performing in ISDC dance company for a while, and currently co-directing the Zouk team at Ivo Vieira's Dance company and learning from the best dance professionals in the world.

Having combined their knowledge and experience as dancers and teachers, Bruno and Olga have built a unique and memorable style, which they are always eager to share!

Christina Montoya (NYC)

Christina Montoya, who now lives in the East Coast, began dancing in middle school where she joined the jazz/ hip hop team. In high school, she joined the cheer team and continued to learn dance and tumbling as well as perform and compete. She also was a part of "Ohana Maoli", a Tahitian/ Polynesian style dance team that performed at her high school and local events. Shortly after, she began learning salsa and bachata with Aragon Dance Company. She has also trained with Latin Rhapsody, Omambo Dance Project, and has trained with various artists in Zouk. 

Christina are the director of Urban Flow in Los Angeles and have taught at festivals throughout the US including: BKS Festival (Los Angeles), Dallas Bachata Festival, Reno Latin Dance Festival, and LABF (Los Angeles).

Leo & Giselle (Brasil)

Leo da Paixao started dance, theater and music at an early age in Salvador, Brazil. By age fourteen, he was dancing and performing in community events. Leo has had the opportunity to study a wide range of dances with master teachers including Jonathas Firmato and Ilmar Santos for Brazilian ballroom dances. Leo studied samba da gafieira with Sandro Guedes, a student of one the best known instructors in Brazil, Jimmy de Oliveira. He studied forró with Edj Braga and salsa with Alexei Ramos, a disciple of the famous Shaka Brown. In 2005, Leo began dancing the style of zouk with Adilio Porto. In the United States, Leo has taught workshops and performed at the O'Shaughnessy, University of Minnesota, Concordia College and Northwestern College (Orange City, Iowa). Leo enjoys teaching and sharing his passion with people who want to learn how to dance. He currently teaches in Minneapolis at Four Seasons Dance Studio and Jawaahir Dance Studio.

Giselle Mejia has been dancing zouk with Leo Paixao for less than a year, though their chemistry on stage is nothing short of miraculous. Giselle is a professional dancer who earned her Bachelors of Fine Arts degree from SUNY Purchase College in New York which brought her dancing around the world; including Spain, South America, China, Indonesia, Russia, South Africa, Egypt, and across the United States to perform at principal theaters and study with national dance companies including Luna Negra Dance Theater of Chicago and world-renown technology-driven dance company iLuminate who were finalists on America’s Got Talent. She has performed with national dance companies, Broadway shows, television, film and full-length productions in the fine arts and commercial dance industries including IBM, BMW, Lenovo, Roche, Simon Malls, and many local businesses. Giselle has a Master’s degree from Peck School of the Arts at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, with a concentration on contemporary dance, somatic studies, improvisation and dances of the African Diaspora.

Nathalia Carbajal (Brazil)

Sandro (Brazil)

SANDRO SONCINI is a dancer, choreographer and dance instructor from Florianopolis, Brazil. He has studied and trained in dance for over 10 years. Sandro is experienced in many partner dance styles, and has intensively studied the concepts of body movement driven by his training in tango.  In 2010 Sandro moved to Argentina to continue to develop his dance skills and education at DNI tango school.

 Sandro has participated in various congresses and competitions, including BAILA FLORIPA DUO, where in 2012 together with his partner he placed 3rd. In the same year he was invited to dance  and teach at KIRINUS dance School team, where he started focusing extensively on ZOUK, developing performance skills and his own methodology for teaching ZOUK that focuses on the contrast of flow and sharpness influenced by hip hop movement. 

 Sandro has taught in zouk throughout Canada, United States and Brazil.  Currently Sandro is living in Vancouver, Canada with a focus on promoting zouk in the Pacific North West. His goal is to help augment and strengthen the global zouk community.