My World Dance and Fitness
Our Instructors
photo Suzanne Simmons

Founder & Director; Funk Aerobics, Tap and Thriller Instructor

Suzanne loves to dance, teach, choreograph and perform. Her desire to share her love of dance was her inspiration to open My World Dance and Fitness. She currently teaches funk aerobics at the studio. She is a certified group fitness instructor at the YMCA™, where she teaches aerobic dance. Dancing is a life-long passion of hers.

She studied modern and jazz dance at the University of Washington. She's performed in musicals with My World (belly dance, liturgical, and funk demos); Makeda (African); Ewajo dance (Afro-Caribbean); and Judy Montgomery's Stars of Tomorrow (tap, jazz, ballet, and choreography). She's dabbled in other dance styles that include flamenco, swing, salsa, line dancing, and belly dance.

She loves to boogie! Suzanne enjoys the challenge of helping people feel comfortable with movement. She believes that everyone has rhythm, even if it's to the beat of their own drummer!

     
photo Tricia McKay

Yoga Instructor

Tricia is intrigued by the rich inter-connection between the mind and body. This passion blossomed within the context of her early career as a ballet dancer and more recently as an avid yoga practitioner. Amidst the hectic pace of modern urban life, Tricia seeks to reclaim a sense of spaciousness and breath, entreating the active mind to yield in the presence of the moment and to listen to those often obscured, yet integral messages that the body seeks to communicate. Tricia is a registered yoga teacher (RYT) and maintains a private practice as a psychotherapist.

     
photo Pamela Johnson

Salsa Instructor

Pam began partner dancing more than 10 years ago and dance has become sustenance for her mind, body, and spirit. Pam strives to keep her dance class fun and loves helping students discover that they can dance. The Thursday salsa class is a lively class for beginners as well as intermediate students. The third Friday salsa dance party is a fun way to wind down a work week! Pam co-teaches with her longtime dance partner, Peter Blaustein.

     
photo Peter Blaustein

Salsa Instructor

Born in New York City, Peter was stung by the dance bug at a music festival in the Dominican Republic. Since that time, he has been enthusiastically engaged with Latin dance and music. Peter enjoys working with the students at My World Dance and Fitness, helping them learn at their own pace. He also loves exploring the possibilities partner dance offers for personal connection, play, expression, and the overall enjoyment of music.

     
photo Zombilina (Suzanne)

Zombilina, Thriller Dance Instructor

The funk of forty thousand years hasn't stopped this zombie from dancing! Zombilina teaches the Thrill the World version of the dance and joins all the other zombies at the annual performance on the Saturday before Halloween in Occidental Park. She makes learning Thriller easy and fun...and she gives great zombie "beauty" tips.

     
photo Jacob T Rodvelt-Gamlieli

Youth Program Director and Dance Instructor

Jacob is a third generation dance instructor in a family of great dancers. Jacob's training began with tap, ballet, jazz and later grew to include include lyrical, contemporary, hip hop, acrobatics, step dancing and aerial hoop & silks. Jacob has many performing acclamations to his name including World Championship awards. As an instructor and choreographer Jacob has coached many groups to High Score Awards and his choreography is often recognized for its entertainment value. Jacob attended PLU and opened and sold two successful dance studios. Now he entertains thru comedy, event coordination, performing on stage as well as teaching all around the PNW. Jacob teaches a fun class that is mentally and physically challenging all while infusing it with humor.

     
photo Gi Villanueva

Popping Instructor

Gi represents Seattle's only popping collective Groove Clan from Seattle, Washington. Gi started popping at the age of 14. Learning from both of the Kaku Brothers, Sam Ramos, Icon, as well as other local Seattle poppers in the community. Witnessing his first battle 7 years ago (Mighty 4 Zulu battle) he saw the likes of PopnTod, Devious, Boogaloo shrimp, and others. From there he was so inspired and enticed by the culture he has been popping ever since. From doing tutting, to Boogaloo, Gi is a lover of movement and all styles of popping. He hopes to grow, learn and vibe from everyone he encounters.

     
photo Nazaneen

Belly Dance Instructor

Nazaneen is an award winning and seasoned dancer widely sought out not only for her skill, but also for her patience and ability to translate the complex movements of Middle Eastern dance in a way that is tailored to the student.  She strongly believes that dance is meant to be enjoyed by all and that with the right training anyone can reap the physical and mental health benefits of dance. Nazaneen has extensive expertise in various middle eastern dance forms, including modern and classical Egyptian Raqs Sharqi (belly dance), various Arabic folk dances as well as Persian classical and folk dance.

     
photo Julie Cassata

OULA Dance Fitness Instructor

Julie is an instructor who leads with her heart. She feels OULA dance fitness is a gift and she's here to spread the love. Her approach to fitness is equal parts fun, community and sweat. OULA at My World is an open door to take up space, be heard and become stronger than ever before. Julie encourages you to dance your heart out; it's a powerful way to exercise your mind, body and soul!

     
photo Shushanik Babayan

Adult Ballet Instructor

Professionally trained ballet dancer in Vaganova method with 8+ years of professional experience with a major dance company. Upon graduation was accepted by one of the leading companies in Armenia and was shortly promoted as a soloist to create memorable roles on stage. Continued her career as a dance instructor in Armenia and later on in USA. Currently works as a ballet, modern, and national/character dance instructor. Dedicated and responsible as an instructor Shushanik enjoys working with different age groups.

     
photo Ilauana Gamlieli

Children's Dance Instructor

Ilauna comes from a family of dancers. Her mother and father were both professional dancers at Radio City Hall in NYC. Her mother in the ballet corps and Rockettes, her father a lead soloist recruited out of Europe. After they married, Ilauna’s parents opened a dance school. At the age of the two, Ilauna was taking her first dance class and continued to study ballet, pointe, tap, and acrobatics under their instruction. After graduating, she continued her dance training adding jazz, lyrical, musical theater, modern, cheer/pom, and hip hop to her training. She became a dance instructor at her parent’s dance school and eventually branched out on her own. She has been the Owner/Director of her own dance schools for over 20 years before becoming the head choreographer for the Sun City Grand “Grandettes and Guys,” Sun City West “Rhythm Tappers,” and several singing groups in Phoenix. Her choreography was seen in over 25 productions annually. She returned to the PNW to be near her son and continues to teach while she explores other exciting ventures.  Her brother, sister-in-law and son are also Artistic Dance Program Directors.



My World Dance and Fitness Studio
849 Hiawatha Place South
Seattle, WA  98144
(206) 861-2500 ~ suzanne@myworld-df.com