Founder: Vanessa

Training across New York, Paris, Berlin, London, Tokyo, Brazil and regional Australia, Vanessa is particularly fascinated with street dance and the way it is born outside of the dance studio context, often by an oppressed people in reaction to political and socio-economic turmoil. in 2016 Vanessa founded Groove Therapy, aimed at making dance accessible to all walks of life.

The program has brought dance to at-risk youth, Indigenous communities, dementia sufferers, refugee girls and the every-day person, using the political and healing foundations that these street dance styles are built upon and mindfully appropriating it in new communities to help spark global conversation and cultural understanding.

Ness is a VAFTA-Award-winning choreographer and movement director. Her side hustle is running Groove Therapy and spreading the joy of dance in her beginner classes.

Upon founding Groove Therapy, Vanessa has been named as one of Westpac’s ‘Unstoppable Millennials’, winning a grant to further pursue her dreams and implement more community-based projects. She was one of the six 2016/17 artists to be placed in the City of Sydney Creative Live/Work Space residencies where she has worked with mentors to build on the business side of Groove Therapy. Vanessa was selected from over 400 applications as one of 60 Young Social Pioneers in 2017 by the Foundation for Young Australians.

In 2018 Vanessa went on to get nominated as a NSW Young Achiever of the Year in the Arts Category. Vanessa, on behalf of Groove Therapy was also selected as a finalist for the Telstra Business Awards in the social enterprise category in 2018.

Vanessa constantly travels Australia and the world teaching workshops and training. You can still take her classes in Byron Bay or online via the Groove Therapy online dance class series.

Feature Image: Sam Wong