Viva Director
INSTRUCTOR: Salsa, Bachata, Zouk, Kizomba, Performance Teams, Wedding Dances, Private Lessons, Hens Parties

Saione began his dancing career way back in the 80s after entering a primary school talent quest and doing the robot and the cool new ‘bop dance’. He doesn’t remember if he won it but the teachers and other kids sure loved his dolphin dive!

Fast forward to the 21st century and Saione is now Director of Viva Dance and a handful of other dance organisations including the NZ Salsa Open, the NZ Salsa Congress and Viva Street. Although Latin dance has become his personal choice of dance these days, Saione has been known to still do the odd dolphin dive at parties, and loves seeing people from all walks of life coming together to enjoy a smorgasbord of dance styles on offer at Viva.


Viva 2IC
INSTRUCTOR: Salsa, Cha Cha Cha, Private Lessons

2iC at Viva, Julie started dancing at the ripe old age of 30 and, despite a lack of natural talent, fell in love with the thrill of social Latin dance. So much so that she persevered to the point of performing and teaching and has danced all over the world.

Apart from the buzz of dancing with a stranger in perfect harmony, she loves being able to use her experience of having done everything wrong before learning to do it right to put students at ease and help them to enjoy the journey of learning to dance.

Julie believes that dance can be truly transformative for your health, well-being, self-confidence, fitness, and sense of humour.  It is not only a short-cut to happiness but also a life-long adventure where there is always more to learn!


Viva Office, Events & Social Media Manager
INSTRUCTOR: Cuban Salsa, Rueda, Bachata, Zumba, Performance Teams, Private lessons, Hens Parties

Javiera is from Puerto Montt in the south of Chile. Co-Founder of Puerto Montt Salsa in 2010, the first Salsa school in the city with more than 250 students who enjoyed different styles like Cuban Salsa, Rueda, Bachata, Salsa LA style, Tango, Cueca, Arabian Dance, and Zumba. Rueda was one of the favourite styles due to its fun, happy and dynamic nature.

In 2014 Javiera decided to embark on a new personal project and left Chile in search of new challenges. In October 2014 she arrived in Auckland and in January 2015 discovered Viva Dance where she was taken on to teach, bringing her special brand of contagious fun to all of her classes. She is now working full time at Viva utilising to the full her experience and know-how in running a successful dance studio.


Viva Language Department Manager, Viva Reception Manager
INSTRUCTOR: Portuguese

With over 12 years’ experience teaching Portuguese in New Zealand, Anelita has degrees from her native Brazil in Portuguese language with post-graduation in Linguistics from University of Brasilia, and Administration from Centro Universitário de Brasília. Anelita has had substantial work experience in Brazil, both in teaching Portuguese, and management and administration. Since coming to New Zealand in 2008, she has devoted more time to teaching Portuguese, which she enjoys enormously!

Anelita has the warm and vivacious manner which you would expect of a Brazilian, and really engages with students. She is also extremely enthusiastic about her native culture, and gives students a lot of insight into life in Brazil, bringing the language to life


Viva Dance Kids Programme Manager
INSTRUCTOR: Kids Classes, Hip Hop

Maddie has been dancing since the age of 3. She has been teaching since she was 13 and has loved every minute of it. She has spent most of her dancing career focusing on her passion for hip hop. As part of that she spent 4 years dancing and performing with the Royal Family Dance Crew around the world in more than 20 different countries. She has also taught all over the world.

Maddie is always full of energy and fun and her favourite part about teaching is being able to put a smile on someone’s face and leaving them with positive energy to go on with their day! Maddie is looking forward to meeting all the wonderful parents and students at Viva Dance studios


2IC Viva Kids and Viva Social Media
INSTRUCTOR: Kids Classes, Tik Tok, Heels

Jaime is a positive and experienced teacher, who enjoys encouraging and connecting with her students. She teaches classes across Auckland in Jazz Funk, Stretch and Leap, Contemporary Dance and Hiphop Choreography. All with the goal of improving her students confidence, performance ability and overall technique in dance.


Viva Accounts Manager

Originally from the UK, Karen has lived in NZ for 12 years and  has been involved with Viva Dance since the very beginning as a student, as an assistant instructor, helping set up the first Salsa Balls and running the accounts.

After getting married she took a step back to have her two beautiful daughters but continued to keep the accounts role. Karen has worked in accounts for 23 years in various roles but loves to combine her passion for dance with her skills in accounts


INSTRUCTOR: Ballroom, Jazz Funk, Lyrical, Kids Classes

Benjamin has trained at Tania foster school of modern dance and limelight studios over the previous 15 years in jazz, contemporary, lyrical, jazz funk, ballroom, Latin, new vogue, and musical theatre. He has competed in various competitions and won multiple NZ titles in Pro/Am Latin. Benjamin has also completed NCEA 1, 2, and 3 Dance at Rangitoto college with Excellence in all practical assessments.

Benjamin is thrilled to be teaching at VIVA, as he wants to share the world of dance from his perspective to help others learn, grow, and improve upon their own abilities.



Camille came to New Zealand from France in 2020. Since her childhood, she tried and gave up on a number of sports, including figure skating, swimming, gymnastic, roller racing and rugby. But, three years ago, she finally found the perfect match – pole dancing, and then immediately went from no exercice to 8 hours of training a week, learning as much as possible from different teachers with different styles in the process.

She’s now excited to share her love and passion for pole, and help your inner pole dancer shine and progress during pole fitness and stretching sessions, up to the point where you will be able to perform super cool looking tricks and beautiful combos!

Claudio M

INSTRUCTOR: Commercial Dance, Dance Fitness, Reggaeton, Ballroom, Ballet, Pole dance fitness, Hens Parties, Private Lessons

Claudio graduated in classical dance from the Municipal Theatre Ballet School in Santiago, Chile and won a scholarship to a Summer Course with the Miami City Ballet in 2001. He participated in productions with Santiago Balle, and Chamber ballet and went on to study and compete in Latin Ballroom dance. He has been dancing and teaching for the past 14 years both dance and pilates as well as wedding dance lessons.

He brings his infectious energy and engaging personality to all of his classes along with superb technique and attention to detail.


INSTRUCTOR: Cuban Salsa, Rueda, Bachata, Dance Fitness

From Chile, David brings more than 20 years of experience in Latin dance and 8 years as a teacher of Cuban Salsa and Linear Salsa (On1 and On2). He has been living in New Zealand since 2015 and has been actively involved in several activities related to the NZ dance community. He has participated in dance events, congresses, and competitions, both in New Zealand and Australia. His experience includes performing and competing in Auckland and in Wellington.

David has teamed up with some of the best teachers and dancers in New Zealand for various Latin dance projects. He also has managed several choreographies with the participation of renowned artists from South American and others on an international level. After working on Salsa Therapy for the last 2 years teaching Cuban Salsa and Rueda de Casino. He recently relocated to Auckland to join the Viva Dance family, to keep contributing to the Latin dance community and Auckland’s Latin dance culture.



Dharshana is originally from Sri Lanka and has lived in Auckland, New Zealand for 20 years. He trained and competed in Tae Kwon Do until a friend dragged him to a Salsa class. After discovering Zouk it became his focus and he has been training and teaching the style ever since.

Dharshana has competed nationally and overseas and won numerous titles in Zouk and Salsa. He has trained multiple performance teams that have gone on perform in several New Zealand congresses. To him, Zouk is an art form and he loves being able to share it with others in the community and see them grow in confidence and skill.


INSTRUCTOR: Hip Hop, Burlesque

Dominique arrived in New Zealand a year and a half ago from Chile. She loves to dance, learn and explore all that New Zealand has to offer. She has been dancing since she can remember and began professional training in dance and dance instruction a few years ago. She loves to explore new dance styles.

Her aim as a teacher is to share her dance knowledge with students so that they enjoy themselves and develop their own dancing style while feeling great in the process.


INSTRUCTOR: Kids Classes

Emma Broad is a freelance, teacher and contemporary dance artist based in Auckland, New Zealand. In 2016, Emma decided to pursue her passion for dance through The University of Auckland’s, Bachelor of Dance Studies programme. Throughout her time studying, she worked with key New Zealand dance practitioners and gained key dance education skills.

In 2019, Emma completed her Honours year at the University of Auckland. While completing her studies, she taught dance at Dulwich College International Seoul, South Korea for 6 months. Emma’s achievement in dance studies have led to her being awarded the Frances Irwin Hunt Arts Scholarship and the Gavin and Susan Walker Postgraduate Scholarship in Dance Studies.

Emma is excited to be teaching and sharing her passion for dance with the students at Viva Dance.



James entered the world of dance at the age of 26 when he realised he wanted a new passion in his life. After trying his first Zouk class he never looked back. James has trained his dance diligently for years by attending every Zouk class he can find, doing countless private lessons with local teachers and international talents, consistently showing up to every social, and attending events at different corners of the world.

James is passionate about dance socials and as an instructor he is committed to supporting our newcomers to the Zouk scene. James has a focused and technique-based teaching style, always aiming to help you understand how to use your body more effectively and deepen your understanding of Zouk. He is perfect for those who take a deep dive approach to dance.


INSTRUCTOR: Belly Dance, Afro Brazilian Dance

Luana is originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Dancing is her passion. Her mother always tells the story that Luana danced to the rhythm of the washing machine when she was a child. Luana has ancestors from Lebanon. As a child, she used to go to a Lebanese restaurant for dinner with her family, and it was there that she first saw a belly dancer. At that moment she realized that she wanted to be a belly dancer one day, belly dancing was in her blood. She has been dancing for 14 years and graduated as a Belly Dance Teacher at Hannan School Dance in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2017.

In 2014, she decided to explore other types of dances and ended up studying Brazilian African Dance. A very different style of dance, but both dances are based on the rhythm of the drums and are deeply rooted in the land, with a lot of history and meaning. Luana has a lot of energy. Her classes are about having fun, dancing from the soul, and transforming the energy through dance.”



Phoebe started Latin Ballroom when she was 15 years old, after over a decade of dance and gymnastics experience. In 2010 she joined a Salsa team with Saione and Beth at Viva Dance where she fell in love with Street Latin and eventually became swept up in Zouk, which is where her passion still lies today.

Phoebe has studied extensively all over the world, training with Alex and Mathilde in Paris, Bruno Galhardo, and in Brazil with the Queen of Zouk, Renata Pecanha. She sees Zouk as a graceful conversation between two people and her love for the style has pushed her to be a skilled leader, follower, and teacher.



Ricardo Grecco is a Brazilian who has a passion for dancing and has learnt many different styles. Just 7 months after he took up salsa, he placed as 1st runner up in the NZ Salsa Nationals, which led to more national and world titles.

“Salsa is a great way to have fun, socialize and interact with ohers, and the best is that dance is a world-wide language, you can do it anywhere you go!”

With his infectious personality and great leading technique, Ricky has taught classes to all levels from beginners to advanced dancers and can’t wait to see you dancing real soon!i



After a short time studying English in London, I went back to Brazil and found myself full of knowledge and willing to share it with everyone!

I started teaching English to friends in 2012 as a side hustle, but I became a full-time private teacher in 2014, having more than 40 hours of teaching every week. Most of my students were professionals who wanted to improve their English skills for presentations to their foreigner counterparts.

When I got to New Zealand in 2018, I got my TESOL Certificate which allowed me to learn and improve my teaching skills and I found myself in love with teaching groups of people. I love the experience of having students from different countries and I have already taught Thai, Chinese, Italian, German, Brazilian, Colombian, Japanese, Korean students and many other nationalities.



Sam started pole in 2017 and fell in love almost immediately. 2 years later she was taking her own classes, aiming to pass on the pole love and knowledge she received from her instructors. She does this through encouragement, belief and dedication to her students.

Sam absolutely loves helping and watching her students grow both physically in their pole journey but also emotionally as they find their pole style and learn all that their bodies can do on and off the pole. Sam will work tirelessly to communicate with her students in order to provide the best possible service for them as a group and as individuals. She looks forward to seeing you in class!



Simie is orginally from HongKong and has been in NZ for 14 years .She found her passion in dance and performing in highschool.

Prior to pole dancing,  she was performing in a jazz dance group for more than a year until she found her passion in pole in Viva back in 2015. Since then she has competed in various competitions and performed in the Miss Chinese pageant and on many other occasions.

Simie is excited to return to Viva and teach pole fitness and exotic flow helping her students to gain confidence and to constantly challenge themselves so they can also feel the sense of achievement in this sport.


INSTRUCTOR: Chinese Traditonal Dance, Chinese Folk Dance, Contemporary, Ballet, Jazz, K-Pop, Hip Hop

Sophia focuses on performing and teaching Chinese traditional dance, Chinese folk dance, contemporary dance, ballet and jazz. She is also a choreographer and researcher. Specialising in dance at the age of 11, she finished her undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in dance and went on to complete her Masters in Dance Studies in the University of Auckland.

Sophia won the performing prize for Contemporary Dance Week in Canton (2011) and 1st choreographer prize in Go Ahead Chinese Contemporary Dance in Hong Kona (2012). Additionally, Sophia won the 1st prize for Exposure, a showcase of the best postgraduate research competition and the performing prize for Island Universes by collaborating with Garling at the national Douglass Lilburn Trust composition prize concert (2017). Recently, she was invited to attend the international Campus Ministry Conference in Korea as a dancer and choreographer.


INSTRUCTOR: Zouk, Bachata, Kizomba

Tia-Marie loved ballroom dancing since the age of 6 but it was the rhythm and magic of Latin dancing that really got her hooked! Fast forward to over 12 years later where she has trained, performed, coached and choreographed performance teams competing in most Latin/Brazilian styles .

Her passionate love of training dancers catapulted her career as a corporate trainer in the learning & development field as her day job.Tia would love nothing more than to see her students shine as she truly believe’s that dance is for everyone , no matter the skill level! She looks forward to you coming along to class, making new friends, having fun and being a part of the amazing journey of dance!


INSTRUCTOR: Salsa & Kizomba

Zoe first started to dance back in uni. After trying all sorts of different dances she became deeply attracted to Salsa – a dance full of passion and joy. She’d dance at least four – five days a week and was definitely crazy about everything Salsa – the Latin music even inspired her to pick up Spanish.

Every city Zoe goes she’ll always check out the Latin dance parties first. She loves the way just a 2-3 minute song dance allows you to build an intimate relationship and story with another person, which is so powerful and fun! After coming to New Zealand, Zoe learned Modern Jive and West Coast Swing before she discovered Viva Dance. She now loves dancing and teaching at Viva. ‘Es un lugar para bailar y divertirse, amigos!’