Founder and Principal
FISTD Tap, FISTD Modern Theatre, RADTC Ballet, BA (Honors)
Shirena Hamzah is a registered teacher and an appointed teaching mentor with the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD), She is also the only dual ISTD Fellowship holder in Tap and Modern Theatre in the country, which is the highest teaching qualification awarded by Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing, London.
Shirena, whose repertoire include Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz, Lyrical and Musical Theatre, is a seasoned performer, having graced Malaysian stages and Television productions since the age of eight. At a tender age of 14, Shirena became a member of a local dance company called The Sayang Dancers, and became a teaching assistant in Sayang Academy of Dancing.
Having completed her Advance levels in dance successfully by the age 16, she then proceeded to join the Philharmonic Society of Selangor and TAPP Company as a dancer, then later as a choreographer and Principal dancer in productions such as “Yesterday”, “Regards to Broadway”, and “Charity Dance Extravaganza” which was jointly staged by The Dance Society of Selangor.
She then left Malaysia to pursue a Bachelors Degree in Hawaii, where she studied dance at the Honolulu Dance Studio and Pacific Intercultural Academy of Performing Arts. There, she further strengthened her Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Lyrical technique and choreography, and also trained in Hawaiian Hula. When she returned, she rejoined the Sayang Dancers for two musical productions, after which she founded Dancesteps Studio where she began her career as a full time dance instructor.
Shirena is now dedicated to ensuring her students are given even more opportunities to perform and pursue a dance career. Apart from a number of shows in which she choreographed and performed in, including a musical staged by Australia’s Polard Productions, “Fosse’s World” staged in the 2005 MyDance Festival, “In The Mood” staged by the Philharmonic Society of Selangor, and two productions staged by A Capella singers Six2Eight, Shirena has spent her time and energy producing annual recitals for Dancesteps Studio and organizing international workshops with instructors from New York City, London and Hawaii. She has also coached dancers for local and international competitions in which her entries have picked-up top awards for excellence in dance styles and precision. In 2001, Shirena won the Silver Medal in the Advanced Solo Tap category at the Hawaii International Dance Festival. In 2002 at the same competitions, she submitted multiple entries from Dancesteps Studio and the Malaysian delegation brought back the Gold Award for the Classical Ballet Senior Solo category, Musical Theatre Small Group category and also won a special award for Best Precision in Tap Dancing. Locally, Shirena has submitted entries for the Short + Sweet Dance Festival at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre. Awards obtained from the competitions include Directors Award for Best Up-and-coming Dancer and Audience Choice Award in 2010 for “Dancing Man”, Best Female Dancer, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2011 for “IHeartMJ”, Best Supporting Female Dancer, Best Youth Award - Male, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2012 for “The Silverscreen”, and Best Supporting Female Dancer, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2014 for “Snap, Shuffle & Pop”. Shirena was also given the Mercedez Benz Creative Excellence Award, recognizing her and co-choreographer Clara Lim for their contribution to Dance in the country in 2014.
Senior Resident Teacher
LISTD Tap, AISTD Modern
Trained by veteran choreographer Farah Sulaiman, Clara specializes in Tap, Modern Theatre and Classical Ballet. Having picked up the top award for precision in tap dance at the 2002 Hawaii International Dance Festival, Clara currently holds the ISTD Licentiate Tap and Associate Diploma Modern Theatre certificates and is a fulltime dance instructor at Dancesteps Studio.
Clara has performed with the Sayang Dancers in “Dance Hysteria” and “Broadway Babies”, and also worked in several stage and television productions with the company. In 2005, she became one of the lead dancers in the Philharmonic Society of Selangor’s “In The Mood” and in Shirena Hamzah’s “Fosse’s World” staged at the MyDance Festival at the KLPAC. Clara has also been actively involved in choreographing for Short + Sweet Dance Festivals which is held at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre every year. Her collaborations with Shirena Hamzah have all won top awards, which include Directors Award for Best Up-and-coming Dancer and Audience Choice Award in 2010 for “Dancing Man”, Best Female Dancer, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2011 for “IHeartMJ”, Best Supporting Female Dancer, Best Youth Award - Male, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2012 for “The Silverscreen”, and Best Supporting Female Dancer, Audience Choice Award and Best Glitz & Glamour in 2014 for “Snap, Shuffle & Pop”. Clara was also given the Mercedez Benz Creative Excellence Award, recognizing her and co-choreographer Shirena Hamzah for their contribution to Dance in the country in 2014.
BA Dance Major, ISTD Pre-Registered Teacher
Adeline Chew graduated from University of Malaya with a Bachelors Degree in Performing Arts, majoring in Dance. Trained from a young age in Ballroom Dancing, she has won several awards and has come out champion in the Solo Open Latin Category at the 22nd Singapore International Ballroom Dancing Championships in 2009, Champion in the Cha Cha, Rumba and Samba divisions at the Stars of Tomorrow International Dancesport Competitions in 2010, and Champion in the Solo Cha Cha and Samba categories at the Johor Stars of Tomorrow International Ballroom Dancing Championships in 2011.
During the course towards her Bachelors Degree, she also studied Jazz, Contemporary, Chinese Folk Dance and Classical Malay Dances. She has danced in showcases for the University of Malaya, was a dancer in the musical production “Yao Li – Rose Rose I Love You”, and participated in the World Dance Conference with the Petronas Dance Group.
Upon graduating, Adeline decided to join the teaching faculty at Baby Dancesteps and Dancesteps Studio, to focus on education and training. Her passion in dancing has brought her to the stage in 2013, in Dancebox held at the Actor’s Studio and in the Short & Sweet Dance Festival at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre.
Too Cyn Dee
ARAD, LRAD, FISTD Modern Theatre
Too Cyn Dee started her dance training at the age of 9 and completed her ISTD Modern Theatre Dance Advanced level at age 15 and RAD Ballet Advanced at age 17. During those years, she performed in ‘The Nutcracker’ staged by the Universal Ballet Company from Korea; together with the Hong Kong Academy of Arts Company and also competed in various The Dance Society of Malaysia (TDS) competitions.
In 1993, she went on to London to do a three-year Teacher Training Course at the Royal Academy of Dance. There, she obtained her Diploma in the Art of Teaching Ballet, was awarded the Licentiate (LRAD), Associate (ARAD), Associate in National and Modern Theatre with the ISTD (AISTD). In London, she also danced and choreographed for various performances, collaborating with Central St. Martin’s School of Art and Design for ‘Design for Dance’.
Upon returning to Malaysia in 1996, Cyn Dee continued her dance and choreography with TDS’ Pulse ’97, Danceworks (1998), Danceworks 2 (2000), MyDance Festival (2001 and 2005), and was the principal dancer for ‘The Slave Princess’ organized by TDS; and Dance Classique, by Kuala Lumpur Dance Theatre in 1999; also the principal dancer for Les Sylphide, Paquita and Les Corsaire performed at Istana Budaya. Her success in her choreography works have been evident in the Short+Sweet Dance Festivals held at Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (KLPAC); in 2010 Tribulation won the Audience Choice Award, in 2012 Forbidden won the Best Newcomer Youth Award (Female) and in 2013 Lost in Mind won 3 awards- Best Male Dancer, the Audience Choice Award and the Best Overall Production.
Cyn Dee has also been actively teaching the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) syllabi, sending in students for examinations since 1997. In 2012, she obtained her Licentiate in Modern Theatre with the ISTD (LISTD), and most recently in November 2014, she was awarded the Fellowship status in Modern Theatre with the ISTD (FISTD) which is the highest level professional exam the ISTD has to offer. She is a Registered Teacher with both the RAD and the ISTD.
RAD CBTS Ballet, AISTD Modern Theatre
Raja Rozmin is a registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance. A former practicing lawyer and natural dancer, Rozmin left the legal world after seven years to pursue her love for dance full time. She cultivated her passion for dance at Dancesteps Studio where she started training in Hip-Hop, and then Advanced 1 Ballet level and the Advanced 2 Modern Theatre.
An established hip-hop instructor, her vibrancy and enthusiasm is also evident in her modern and pre-primary ballet classes at Dancesteps.
Rozmin performed at the Short & Sweet Festival 2009, her first foray into the world of stage shows. She has also collaborated with veteran dancer Ann Tan for the same festival, in which her entry entered the finals.
RAD CBTS Ballet
Phoebe Chiew is a registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and has been assisting and teaching since the age of 15. Starting dance when she was just four, Phoebe was awarded a Distinction in Grade 8 Ballet, a Merit in Advanced Foundation Ballet, a Merit in Advance 1 Ballet and has completed the RAD Certificate of Ballet Teaching qualification. To continually expand her knowledge in dance instruction and study other genres, Phoebe has attended the Contemporary Dance Workshop with Alberto in 2008, Contemporary Dance Workshop in Short & Sweet Festival 2009 and the RAD Continuing Professional Development course in Birmingham, England in July 2011.
RAD CBTS Ballet, Diploma in Dance
Josephine started Ballet lessons at a tender age of five at City Ballet in Ipoh, Malaysia. After completing her academic education, she enrolled in the National Art Culture and Heritage Academy (ASWARA) and obtained a Diploma in Dance in 2012. There, she widened her repertoire to include Contemporary and Traditional dances. She is currently pursuing a Bachelors Degree in Dance and is actively attending dance conferences in Malaysia and Taipei, and is also actively performing locally, and has also represented the county in Beijing, Mongolia and Papua New Guinea.
To widen her knowledge and scope in dancing she is currently training to teach the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing Modern work, and has plans to also pursue a Masters in Dance.
In 2013, Josephine won the Best Female Dancer category at the Short + Sweet Dance Festival at the KLPAC.
Sia Jau Huei
BA Performing Arts Major
Sia Jau Huei is our very own Street Dance and Hip-Hop instructor and choreographer. Having learnt popping, locking, hip-hop, and house style dancing as a teenager, he turned his hobby into a career when he joined the University of Malaya’s Performing Arts Programme in order to obtain a more formal training in dance and dance instruction. As an undergraduate student, he widened his repertoire and was trained in contemporary, basic ballet, jazz, as well as performing arts theory.
Jau, as we warmly call him, graduated with distinction. He is now exploring various avenues to work on choreography and also teach part-time. He joined Dancesteps Studio early 2014.
ARAD, RAD CBTS Ballet
Mavis has been dancing since the tender age of five, gaining a Distinction in Grade 8 Ballet and Merit in Advanced Foundation Ballet. This petite dancer has been assisting and teaching since the age of 16.
She has attended numerous courses locally and internationally, namely the Contemporary Dance Workshop with Alberto in 2008, and the Contemporary Dance Workshop in Short & Sweet Dance Festival 2009.
ARAD, RAD CBTS Ballet
Joyce Lee started her dance training at the tender age of nine years old, and pursued her passion for ballet to complete her Advanced 2 RAD examinations. She holds a Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies (CBTS) from the Royal Academy of Dancing and is a registered RAD teacher. During the course of her dance training, she was involved in various performances such as “Beauty and the Beast”, “Shadow of Lights”, “Shiny Black Gold”, “Perak Dance Festival”, “Circle of Love” and “Alice in Wonderland”.
CBTS Pre-Registered, Diploma in Dance
Shirley began her dance training in Ipoh where she studied classical Ballet. She then moved to Kuala Lumpur to pursue a Diploma in Dance at the “Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan” (ASWARA).
Growing up with a passion to perform, she was involved in various dance productions such as “Beauty & The Beast” in 2004, “Toymaker’s Dream” and “Coppelia” in 2005, starred as Connie Wong in the “Chorus Line” musical, the “Toy Soldier” and leading role in the ballet production of “Swan Lake” in 2007, “Cats” the musical in 2008 and “The Little Mermaid” in 2009. She also performed in “Girls in Bondage”, choreographed by Datin Rosalina for the Sanggar production in ASWARA. Additionally, she has been involved in numerous ASWARA productions namely “Main Zapin” 2010, “Biji” Peta Diploma Tari 2010 choreograph by Chai Vivan, “Tapestry” 2010, “Journey to The West” Peta Degree Teater 2010, “NOKTAH” Peta Degree Film and Video 2011, “Kreasi Baru” 2011, “Gelombang Baru” 2011, “Tapestry” 2011, “Pertabalan Agung” 2012, and “Pesta Gendang 2012”. In 2011, she joined Kumpulan Tarian Kebudayaan Malaysia for the celebration of Independence Day of 54 di Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
In 2013, she completed the Dancer Training Program organized by JS Wong under Damansara Performing Art Centre (DPAC) and participated in Dancebox at Kuash Theatre, and Short and Sweet in Dance at KLPAC. In 2014, she won 1st runner up in the “Planet Joget” competition. She also had her debut choreography with Astana (Malaysian Performing Arts Society) cooperate with actors and dancers, entitled ‘DASAMAHAVIDYA’.
RAD CBTS Ballet
A relatively late starter, Kathrina only started ballet training at the age 15. Through hard work and dedication, she has since then obtained a distinction in Grade 8 and high merit in Advanced 1, and awarded the Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies by the RAD in 2016. Kathrina also holds a Diploma in Early Childhood Education and has been working in education since 2011.
Sara trained in classical ballet locally, and has completed her Advance 2 and Grade 8 in the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) syllabus in 2015, with Distinction in both levels. She has participated in the Festival of Dance VII (2009) and was selected as a Corps de Ballet in La Bayadere (2015), choreographed and directed by Choong Wan Chin of KL Dance Works Production. In 2016, she completed her Certificate of Ballet Teaching Studies and is an Associate of the Royal Academy of Dance (ARAD).