Monday, February 6, 2012


This weeks Dancer/Choreographer shout out goes to Tamara Bally. Tamara is a professionally trained dancer with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from York University and a graduate of Sheridan College’s Performing-Preparation Program with Mark Melymick. Her educational background has allowed Tamara to understand the roots of Dance including Modern, Ballet, and Pedagogy. Tamara continued to explore some of the world’s dance forms including: Hip-Hop, Street Jazz, Cuban Salsa, West-African, Afro-Cuban, Bhangra and Bollywood. Her diversity has enabled her to sink her heels in some of the worlds dance forms.
Her continued rising career has granted her the opportunity to work with some of Toronto’s most influential artists including, dancing for Grammy Award winner Feist’s “1,2,3,4”, “My Moon, My Man”, as well as K-OS’ “Sunday Morning”. She has worked on set of the Blockbuster hit “The Love Guru”, and choreographed and performed with South Asian Urban Artist Shweta Subram and Namoi Zaman, Kama Entertainment and the Chic-A-Boom Room. She has performed for the International Indian Film Awards and Canadian Music Week – just a few of the many events Tamara has worked for in Toronto and Montreal.
Tamara Bally is a passionate and fierce dancer who has dedicated her life to her craft. She consistently keeps herself current, relevant and innovative by immersing herself in the dance community – always pushing her skills and creativity to the next level.

“I want to make you slap happy, buckle in the knees and wipe away those sneaky tears. Any immense emotion you feel from my performance means I did what I set out to do-entertain you.”

Bio Provided by Tamara

Check out what Tamara had to say in this weeks shout out...

Nikki: Do you remember the first time you started dancing?

Tamara: I was seven, I had seen the infamous Wizard of Oz Show at my school and was sold. The flips, tricks and twirls were all I needed to see. I just knew I wanted to be a part of the epic scenario that was unfolding on stage and I needed to right away. I started as a gymnast first which lead me into dance. 

 Do you remember the first song you choreographed to? (Or your earliest memory)

Tamara: J.Lo “Love don’t cost a thing” (chuckles) I was inspired to create a piece that made me feel the way I felt watching the dance break.  The dancers were swift and held so much strength in that routine.

Nikki: Your personal advice for dancers when it comes to free styling?

Tamara: Let go. That is something I constantly have to remind myself of. Trust yourself and your capabilities. Never doubt the amazing things you can do when you just connect with the music. Find a piece of music that just makes your heart drop; I always freestyle to songs that initiate an emotion which translates into movement that is passionate. You can start layering it once you become more comfortable. Keep practicing, invest the time to strengthen your freestyle, it’s a great way to show who you are as an artist. 

Nikki: Getting in the zone to choreograph, what does it take for you?

Tamara: Inspiration. What story or emotion do I want to convey? I need to feel passionately about the song or piece I am creating. 

Nikki: Who are some of your biggest influences in the Dance industry?

Tamara: Bob Fosse, Jerome Robbins, Luam, Rhapsody James, Dana Foglia and Jerome Browne. The connection between all of them is that they are not afraid to allow increments of what makes them unique shine through their choreography. Fosse has an entire repertoire focused around his own posture, swag and interpretation of the music. They are all risk takers with their choreography and never settle for the minimum. They push you as much as they push themselves to allow their greatness to reach its fullest.  

Nikki: Name a Toronto Choreographer you enjoy working with and why?

Tamara: I have been taking Leon Blackwood’s class and I have to say I am so inspired every time I am in his class. I am so amped by the end of his classes that I’m ready for another class. My body is tired but feeding off of his passion for dance makes me so driven to succeed in his classes and really live in every movement of the choreography. The way he teaches his movements and connects it with feeling and telling a story is important to me as an artist and as a performer. 

 Name one of your favorite artists to work with and why?

Tamara: Working on set Feist’s “1234” was one of my favorite experiences. It was my first music video that I was a part of and the entire cast, crew and Feist herself was amazing. Tons of positive and creative people in one place is a reminder you are exactly where you need and want to be. She is so humble and was a pleasure to work with.

Nikki: Are you currently working on any projects?

Tamara: I have taken on a few projects that are very diverse and unique in their own right.
  • I’ve taken on a Vaudeville inspired Cabaret by PastelSupernova called Love Letters with KJ McKnight as the Co-Choreographer, February 8 & 9th. It is so playful and the creativity has no bounds in this show. Love Letters Cabaret
  • Since I got back from New York I have been involved in CarlaCatherwood’s Chic-A-Boom Room Shows as one of the Nuvo-Burlesque ladies.
  • I have ongoing projects with DivaGirl Entertainment; I have been really blessed to work with someone as turbo charged to consistently succeed as Laura Furtado.
  • Lindsay Ritter’s The Dream Show for Dance Ontario Weekend.
I am consistently blogging all of my events on:

Nikki: Qualities you think Toronto Dancers possess?

Tamara: We have a determination to succeed and a hunger for dance, we hussle to get our hands on as much dance as our bodies can handle.

I love that thirst to create that Toronto Dancers have. Keeps me on my toes to constantly train and work on my craft. 

Nikki: Any advice for emerging dancers and choreographers working/training in Toronto?

Tamara: Passion mixed with work ethic and discipline will take you very far. Be confident in your capabilities and discover what makes you a unique performer and artist. 


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