Meet Tash Our Greek Goddess


She's got two volumes. Loud, and louder. Her energy and sass is our newest guilty pleasure. Read on to find out more about Auntie Tashi 💁🏻‍♀️

Just quickly - if we were having this interview in real life, where would we be?
Sitting out on the balcony at Coene's on a sunny day, enjoying a glass of rosé 🥂and the
gorgeous view 😎

So tell me Tash, how did you become involved with SU&D?
In early 2017, my friend Meredith flicked me a text asking if I’d be interested in teaching more dance classes. She mentioned that one of their instructors at Vic Uni’s Rec Centre (Clair), who runs Shut Up and Dance, was on the hunt for experienced instructors. I wasn't too sure at first, as having checked out SU&D's website I wondered if I was in the right age bracket for their brand 👵🏻 I also had no idea what the classes were like as I'd never been to one! But I figured the universe was at work here, so told Meredith "yep, sure" to pass on my details to Clair. Clair got in touch, and we arranged to meet up. It was like a nervous first date. 😗 I recall walking in and looking around the café for someone who fitted Clair’s description, and I knew when I spotted her – her energy totally introduced her before she said a word to me. What passion and energy! Down the track, I went to a couple of classes and loved them. Clair was fabulous on stage, and I was impressed with the unique class formula and whole SU&D experience. Clair then asked if I'd be interested in covering for her while she was away in the UK later in the year. I said yes, and since then I've been involved with SU&D as an instructor and trainer. Lucky me!!

What do you love most about being a part of Shut Up & Dance?
Being a part of something exceptional. What Abby, Lesa and Clair have created both in their product and for the community is fabulous. I enjoy seeing the sparkle ✨in a participant's eyes when they talk about how much they love SU&D, and what being a part of it means to them.

What’s your Guilty Pleasure dance track?
I don't believe that any dance music should be a guilty pleasure! Live your best life and dance to whatever music rocks your world ✔️


If you were to be stranded on a desert island and you had to take one person with you, who would it be and why?
Bruno Mars. Because he's an outstanding songwriter, singer, dancer and performer. And then there's the fact I may kinda have a small crush on him. Just a little one, though. 💍💍💍

What about if $$$ was no object - what would you do?
I'd get a private jet and crew, and travel! There’d be a mixture of sightseeing, and participating in classes with my favourite choreographers and dancers from around the world. I'd then come back to NZ (or Australia?) and start up a beautiful dance fitness studio with all that knowledge… Hmmm, I need to win Lotto about now…💸

Have you done anything in the past week that has made you proper cringe? Something that made you laugh?
Yeah, plenty. One example: on a recent evening flight down to Christchurch I had made my way to my seat down the back, and plonked myself down, exhausted from the week. 😴Boarding was incredibly slow. So I shut my eyes for what I thought was a minute… And when I opened them, I turned to the woman on my right and asked her “Have they finished boarding yet? It’s taking so long.” She then looked at me weirdly, I looked down and saw the wine in her hand; and then the captain announced: “Cabin crew, prepare the cabin for landing”. #facepalm 🤦🏻‍♀️

What would you say is your biggest achievement yet?
I've had some cool achievements over the years with dance fitness, but one I was particularly "OMG I'm-having-an-out-of-body-experience" about was winning a competition with Cotton On Body and The Fitness Marshall in 2017. The Fitness Marshall is a Fitness Pop Star who is an incredible dancer, super talented with choreography and a wonderful, hilarious human! He's inspired me hugely since I came across him on YouTube in late 2014. So getting to meet him, his fantastic Back Up Booties and crew, and to be chosen to feature in a video of his was both surreal and amazeballs 🔥💪🏾👊🏻

To make myself feel better when I feel down I...
If I'm feeling down I dance. I've always danced because of the way it makes me feel; it's my passion and therapy.

Something your parents are proud of you for?
I’ve no idea? So I texted them, and received these replies:
Dad: “For being a wonderful, caring person, who maintains strong values, a
commitment to what she believes in, and a work ethic second to none.”
Mum: “Your strength, courage, and everything you have achieved in your career.
You’re a woman who knows what she wants and goes for it! You are beautiful and
caring; who wouldn’t be proud.” So basically I guess I'm amazing? 💁🏻‍♀️



What's your favourite quote? 

I have two: "Your energy introduces you before you speak and "trust the vibes you get – energy doesn't lie."

Vegemite: Yay or nay?


If you were a cake slice what would you be and why? 

Anything chocolatey. Because I'm intense, strong and gooey all at the same time. 😏

If there was a film made about your life, what's the song that plays on it's trailer?

Either "That's What I Like" or "Finesse" by Bruno Mars. Oh, but Finesse would have to be the original version – I'm a purist and didn't dig the remix.

Cats or dogs? 


Something you're really good at?

Tripping up over my own feet on flat ground. For
real. I’m also an awesome instructor, am super organised, and have an extremely
strong work ethic. CONSOLIDATION! 😂

Abby Damen