Sonya Blacker began her Mid-East dance journey in April 1996, and has compared it to catching a "belly dance flu" - she found it was the first thing in her thoughts every morning and the last thing she pondered each night. Sonya began teaching in 1999 at her mentors behest, and found it to be the most rewarding aspect of the art form. Sonya was a principle dancer in "Ward el Sahara" Dance Company & performed over 35 theater shows in her first 8 years, showcasing folkloric, traditional, cabaret, and themed or interpretive Mid-East dance, fusing her study of Tahitian, Polynesian, & Bollywood/East Indian with flavors of Oriental & Andalusian dance.
Christiana first discovered belly dance while attending a friend’s performance at a suburban festival, but it wasn’t until 2007 when she finally took her first class at Arabesque. Immediately hooked, Christiana began to study Tribal (ITS and Fusion) and Orientale styles of belly dance. Today, she continues her studies in these styles under mentors Sonya Blacker and Eliza Perry. Her life-long passion for dance has led her to study various dance styles throughout the years including hip hop, burlesque and 11 years of ballet, tap and jazz.