Aqeela Ali first fell in love with dance at the age of five in Brooklyn, New York. Her earliest memories of dance include learning jazz, tap, and ballet at The Dance Spot, a local dance studio. While attending Talent Unlimited, a performing arts High School in New York, she had the opportunity to go beyond her daily ballet and modern training by studying graham technique with The Martha Graham Dance Company and flamenco with Ballet Hispanico. Growing up in New York City, Aqeela was exposed to Hip-Hop culture and fell in love with the movement and music during her time in High School. After turning 21, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in the commercial dance industry. She has been on the Ellen Show, Hulu, and has danced with a variety of artists including, but not limited to Beyonce, Nick Cannon, Sean Paul, and Kat de Luna.
After two years of dancing in the industry, Aqeela was certain that her dancing days were over. She was accepted into Teach for America and taught Kindergarten for two years in rural Oklahoma. Starting her own dance club at the school and watching her students blossom and grow inspired her to dance again. The question was...which style?! During Teach for America, she met her husband, a native Atlantan and they moved back to Georgia after their two year commitment. In Georgia, she was introduced to the Calo Gitano Flamenco Dance Academy, which reignited her love and passion for flamenco that she discovered in High School.
Through Calo Gitano, Aqeela met artists from Spain such as Miguel Vargas, Carmen Ledesma, Lydia Caballo, and Daniela Tugues. After a year of studying Flamenco with Calo Gitano, she spent the summer of 2018 at the National Institute of Flamenco studying under Joaquin Encinias. During this time, Miguel Vargas had convinced her that she should move to Seville and train to become a bailaora. So she bought a one way ticket for Spain and in August she found herself studying intensively under Miguel Vargas, Ursula and Tamara Lopez, Lorena Franco, Ana Morales, and Alicia Marquez. Now, in her second year of studying flamenco, Aqeela knows more than ever that she wants to spend her entire life studying and learning this beautiful and passionate form of expression. Her dream is to one day open up her own school where she teaches children a variety of styles they can use to express themselves.
I struggled for years feeling uncoordinated and wildly throwing my hips around whenever I tried dancing with my wife. Aqeela patiently worked with us to help me feel like I actually have control over my body. She taught me the importance of having a variety of moves to match the song/tempo instead of just moving about wildly. I was hesitant to work with someone because I felt very self-conscious but she was so patient and understanding that I was quickly put at ease and ended up really enjoying the experience and wanted more! Her passion for dance is only matched by her ability as all the moves she showed us seemed so flawless and graceful. My version of those same dance moves didn't look quite as graceful but dramatically improved and my wife couldn't be happier!Show More
Its so rare to find a person who is both extremely talented as well as an amazing teacher. I can’t express how much my daughter has learned from Miss Aqeela. Apart from learning a wide variety of dance styles she teaches kids to believe in themselves. We have watched our girl transition from being shy and restrained onstage to one who is confident and captivating to watch. The level of dedication Miss Aqeela shows to every student cannot be overstated!Show More
I’ve never worked with someone as hardworking, and inspiring as Aqueela. We ran an art camp for three summers in a row. She taught up to 60+ kids and is so passionate about dance that these kids just couldn’t wait to come to camp the next day in order to work with her. Parents said they were practicing their moves at home!! You know how hard it is to teach that many kids to do hip hop dance???? 100% participation 100% of the time.
It was amazing. I learned so much as an educator and those kids left the cAmp so proud and eager to learn more about dance because of her. Oh ya and she also led them to design a dance for a showcase for their parents and community.
By far the best dance instructor I have ever worked with and cannot wait to work with her again. When my son grows up I will definitely be reaching out to her so she can teach him the moves.
Aqeela is a patient and charismatic teacher. She is firm and expects hard work and dedication from each student but at the same time she is loving and gives 100% of herself every class.
She is an incredibly talented dancer and experienced teacher and I would recommend her to anyone looking to have a great journey while learning to dance!
My daughter took dance classes from Aqeela and I couldn't be happier about it. Aqeela is not only a fabulous dancer in her own right (I would highly suggest catching one of her performances) she is an outstanding teacher. It amazes me how she keeps the attention of a group of girls (my daughter is 10 and most of her class is around the same age). She keeps the class moving and my daughter learned a lot in a just a few weeks. Now she dances around the house (and anywhere she has an audience). Thank you Miss Ali for bringing dance into my daughter's life!Show More
Aqeela was very attentive, encouraging, passionate, knowledgeable, and most of all helpful during our time together. With her guidance and commitment I was able to meet and surpass my dance goals. I am so grateful for all that she gives me on and off the dance floor! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you and your kids take lessons from her!!Show More
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Hi there! My name is Aqeela (or Ms. Kiki for kids) and I am a professional dancer with over 20 years of experience. I have lived in LA and worked professionally in the industry. My dance credits include Nick Cannon, Beyonce, Sean Paul, and Kat de Luna. I have appeared on the Ellen show as well as Hulu. Aside from dance, I also have extensive experience teaching children. I went to school for Early Childhood Education and have worked as a Daycare teacher, Gymboree teacher, and Kindergarten. I have started my own dance team for kids in every city I have lived in. Can't wait to meet you!
Fluent / Native Proficiency
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