Hot Night Fusion Weekend 2018 Instructors

Nicole Trissell

With more than 20 years of dance training and over a decade of teaching under her belt, Nicole is a movement and communication professional with a mission.

Nicole enjoys enabling dancers to use their body in the most healthy way possible and her ability to diagnose and change postural issues is only exceeded by her love for cultivating dance as an art form. Whether you want to add technical excellence to your dance or experience music in a whole new, visceral way, Nicole has got you covered. Dance has been one of the most important forces for growth in Nicole’s life and she is excited to share her joy of dance with you.

Nathaniel Abrea

Nathaniel is a nationally acclaimed blues dancer who loves to social dance, compete, and teach as much as he sleeps. He is known for having precise musicality, playful movements, and expressive body shaping as a lead, follow, and solo dancer.

Nathaniel first explored dancing through a catchy choreography on YouTube in his bedroom, and continues to do so to this day. Coming from a non-technical background, he is highly attuned to his intuition for body mechanics and musicality. His intuition-first approach allows him to craft intellectually accessible and relatable lessons that reward students with new techniques to challenge themselves on their own time. He also executes each lesson with as much patience as he has excitement, and hopes to empower his students to start navigating their own personal expression within Blues.

Nathaniel has worked with dedication in the past several years, and competed and placed at many national events such as: BluesSHOUT!, Austin Blues Party, Rose City Blues, and more. He has won competitions as a Lead, Follow, and Solo dancer, and is proudly recognized as the first to officially qualify in the Blues All Star division as both a Follow and a Lead.
Nathaniel continually strives for new ways to grow, and for more things to learn, in hopes that he can share his newfound knowledge and experiences with his students.

Joe Demers & Jes Cutler

Joe DeMers and Jes Cutler have been teaching together for three years. They are powerhouse instructors who engage total beginners to experienced dancers. In an intensive, ‘all-levels’ approach, they leave students feeling focused, guided, included, and encouraged. As teachers, they have beautiful interplay and teach strongly to both roles. Followers in their class feel equally challenged and focused in their experience of technique, movement, and making beautiful lines, shapes and expressions.

Drag Blues is a lovely dance culmination of Blues aesthetic, jazz elements, dynamic shapes, soft close embrace connection, and Frame Matching. Joe and Jes explore the range of musicality and shapes within a partnership, alignment, body mechanics, and teach moves for the social dance floor. They give language to connection in a way that empowers partners to clearly express timing, shape changes, weight transfers, and a sharing of energy that is efficient, comfortable and fun.

LaTasha Barnes

LaTasha “Tasha” Barnes is an artist, dancer, entrepreneur, and ambassador of culture. Born and raised in Richmond, VA, Tasha has enjoyed much of her life immersed in jazz, funk, soul, and R&B music and dance thanks to her DJ father and dancing family. Having turned that lifelong passion into cultural activism she serves towards achieving the mission of Urban Artistry, Inc to preserve the arts that represent the urban experience, as a directing member, performer and educator. She is celebrated for her musicality, athleticism, and joyful presence throughout all her dance forms which include: House, Hip Hop, Waacking, Vernacular Jazz, and Lindy Hop. Through her own expression and endeavors Tasha hopes to inspire fellow artists to cultivate an authentic sense of self in their creative expressions and daily lives.

Rachel Farley

Rachel is a Movement Coach and Certified Neurosculpting® Facilitator. She is dedicated to developing customized workshops that provide sustainable tools to empower businesses, dancers, social justice activists, and educators to thrive. Participants leave workshops with a deeper understanding of how our minds and bodies are intrinsically linked and in constant communication. Rachel received her B.S. in Pure Mathematics and Secondary Education from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and her Masters in Educational Policy and Leadership from University of Colorado at Denver. After teaching in urban high schools for 7 years, Rachel left the classroom to pursue her goal of combining dance and mindfulness practices to strengthen communities by cultivating healthier relationships rooted in trust and empathy. With over 23 years of experience in partner dancing including Brazilian Zouk, Lindy Hop, Blues, and Ballroom, she approaches the body and brain from a multi-disciplinary perspective. Workshops incorporate the 5 step Neurosculpting® process to regulate our emotions, heighten neuroplasticity, and edit our stories in a way that better serve us. Contact Rachel with questions and ideas regarding workshops, private meditation and/or dance, small group session or just to say “Hello!”

Donato Juárez

Donato is one of the most talented of the new generation of tango dancers in Argentina. Musical, elegant, precise, driven, Donato teaches tango as he dances it: with energy, passion and sensitivity. From his hometown of Mar del Plata in Argentina, he has been part of a group of enthusiastic young dancers that has continued to tirelessly explore the intricacies of this dance. He has studied with many renowned teachers who were quick to notice his impressive technical skills.

Donato has been invited to international tango festivals in the United States, Iceland, Australia, New Zealand, Europe (Italy, Spain, Holland, Belgium, Greece, Switzerland, Finland), and Mexico and has performed in many theaters in Argentina. He has been invited to perform, with Cecilia Gonzalez, in the 2006, 2007 and 2008 International Argentine Tango Congresses (CITA) in Buenos Aires. Since 2009 he also takes part as a master teacher .

Diana Cruz

Originally from Asunción, Paraguay, she began her dance studies in her home country: Centro de Artes Cascanueces, Luque; Instituto de Bellas Artes, Asunción; Instituto Municipal de Arte, Asunción. The process of dance-learning placed her in various Performing Arts schools around Argentina, Brazil and Chile.

As a professional dancer, she joined several ballet companies, such as: Ballet Clásico y Moderno Municipal de Asunción, Ballet Uninorte (Asunción), Compañía Intermitente de Danza Contemporánea (Asunción), David Taylor Dance Theatre (Denver). 

Diana has received a Comprehensive Pilates Teacher Training Certification by BASI (Body Arts and Science International). She has taught the Pilates method in several studios of Asunción, Buenos Aires, and continues teaching intermittently in Denver, CO. 

Her discovery of Argentine Tango has given her yet another turn in the never-ending, cyclical journey of exploring new ways of moving and expressing. She is currently teaching and performing Argentine Tango  around the U.S. and abroad, in a dance partnership with Nick Jones, as well as continuing to develop her solo carrier as teacher, choreographer, producer, director and performer. Her work as a choreographer includes pieces  in dance productions like: the “Tango Zone” (NY), “Tango Times”, “Cortinas”, “Avenida Vivencias”, “Piazzolla, En Sus Palabras” (CO). She produced and directed various dance production, such as “Avenida Vivencias” (2015), the innovative experimental production “Oniria Tango” (2016), “Estación NaturalTango” (2017), and the upcoming “Nostalgias” (April, 2018).

Diana incorporates her multi-disciplinary techniques (Ballet, Contemporary Dance, Modern Dance, Latin American Folk Dances, Pilates, Yoga, Singing, Poetic Interpretation and many Tango Dance styles) into one cohesive dance. She uses these techniques to create powerful, musical, unique performances. Her understanding of biomechanics gives her an astute approach as a movement teacher. She studied Poetic Interpretation and Voice Training throughout the years of dance training; and joining the Orquesta Típica Natural Tango, as a singer, in 2010, has been an important addition to her artistic career. She holds a degree in Psychology from the Universidad Nacional de Asunción, a study that has enhanced her understanding of the human mind and body interaction. Miss Cruz has created her own line of Tango shoes for women, Cruzartango, which is a continual exploration of organic and ergonomic dance shoes.

Bennie Vo

Bennie is a licensed massage therapist with certifications in medical massage, neuromuscular massage, trigger point therapy and spurts massage. He is teaching a class focused on injury prevention for Dancers. The main topics covered are common injuries for Dancers, how to recognize these issues and self and partnered exercises.


Lindy On The Rocks 2018 is run in Conjunction with Hot Night Fusion Weekend 2018… All Access passes give you access to Lindy Hop classes as well as the fusion classes. Lindy on the Rocks has brought in Skye Humphries, Gaby Cook, Nathan Bugh, Latasha Barnes, Joshua McClean, Jenna Applegarth, and Jon Tigert to teach swing classes. Read more about these instructors HERE.