Damarise Ste Marie is a dancer, teacher, and choreographer. She completed studies in contemporary, ballet, and modern dance at York University (Toronto) and L’École de danse de Québec (Québec City). Since 2012, she has been learning and exchanging dances with communities in Western & Southern Africa and Brazil. The blessings and support of her teachers throughout the African diaspora have nourished her passion for bringing joyful movement experiences to her community. Ongoing study of functional anatomy with the Axis Syllabus community is a major influence on her teaching and creative work. Damarise works with children, youth, and adults. She has years of experience as a dance teacher in studios, community centres, and schools across Canada and internationally. She has directed and produced artist residency programs in Québec City, Toronto, Vancouver and Kamloops. Her classes balance process and product, celebrating the simple love of movement as well as preparing students for onstage performances. Damarise is inspired by dancing as a celebratory and joyful experience; an expression of balance between the individual and the collective; the embodiment of culture; and physical communication of the sacred and the beautiful.