Mayuko Shoka

Mayuko S.

Pasadena, CA
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Lesson Details


Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
You want to start learning ballet? Want to improve your techniques? Or just want to have a great workout?
I would love to share my passion for ballet and all the knowledge I gained through my career.
I believe ballet is demanding and hard but also it brings joy and beauty in your life.
I make sure that my students are challenged but also having fun in my class.
All ages/Levels welcome and of course lessons are customized and catered to the needs/goals of each student.

I started dancing at the age of 7 in Japan. At the age of 17, I attended to Arts Educational school in England and at the age of 18, I moved to New York city to attend Joffrey Ballet school.
At the age of 20, I was accepted to Dance Theatre of Harlem in NY and danced as a professional ballerina for about 6 years. Performed many principal roles and toured all over the US and overseas.
After my dancing career, I have been teaching dancers of different ages and experiences, from pre-ballet to adults and from beginners to advanced, and I am able to teach in any of Vaganova, RAD, Balanchine and Cecchetti styles.
Send me a message and let's get started!!
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Mayuko teaches



Mayuko passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Mayuko delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 3+

Teaching since:

Mayuko Shoka was born and raised in Gifu, Japan, where she started ballet training at Ballet studio K&M at age of 7 under Kazuko and Zlatko Mikulic. The main ballet style practiced was the Vaganova.
At the age of 17, she moved to England to attend The Arts Educational School. Here she mostly practiced RAD ballet method and Cecchetti ballet technique and she got a Cecchetti teaching certificate. She also had exposure to tap, jazz, contemporary and modern dance forms while she was there.
After a year, she moved to New York to continue her training at Joffrey Ballet School.At the age of 20, she was accepted to Dance Theatre of Harlem Ensemble under the director Arthur Mitchell, where she performed many principal roles in such as Joplin Dancers, New Bach, Concerto In F, South African Suite, Le Corsair, Nutcracker, and Glinka, among others. While she was there, she toured all over the United States and overseas such as Bahamas and Jamaica.
After moving to Seattle she became certified Yoga teacher by CorePower Yoga.
While there, she taught Ballet and Yoga at Vam Studios School of Dance and took tap classes from Mark Mendonca to deepen the tap education.
She recently moved to LA and she is very excited to join TakeLessons to share her passion for ballet and all of the knowledge she learned in her career.
I believe that I am good at teaching young children, teenagers and also adults.
When I was dancing professionally I was so focused on the techniques that I forgot how fun is and how much I loved dancing. Then after my career, I was able to approach dance from a more relaxed and fun-driven perspective and it made me realize that everybody should be having fun dancing, especially if not dancing professionally. Also, when I started dancing as a kid, I didn’t have “the ballerina body” (e.g. not flexible enough, closed hips, no adequate feet) so ballet did not come natural for me. I always had to work so much harder than the other girls in the studio to achieve the same results. Thanks to my hard work, the shape of my legs changed completely after many years. This struggle, to get a better dancer, taught me how hard ballet could be and made me understand more about the details of techniques and the steps necessary to perfectionate them. I am happy to share all the knowledge accumulated over the years to allow my students to improve their skills while still having fun.

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Ballet teacher
Aug 2018 - Present
Ballet Kukan academy

I teach pre-ballet (3 year olds) to advance level (17 year olds) including point work.

Ballet/Yoga teacher
Feb 2017 - Apr 2018
Vam Studios School of Dance

I taught beginner to advance ballet including point work and private classes in preparation for gymnastics competitions resulting in gold medal awards.
Also taught adult yoga class as well as kids yoga in the Summer camp.

I recently went back to teach in a Summer camp.

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Professional Ballerina
Sep 2006 - Jun 2012
Dance Theatre of Harlem

Studied under Arthur Mitchell, Virginia Johnson, Robert Garland, Keith Sanders, Michelle Lucci and more
Performed many principal roles in pieces such as Joplin Dancers, New Bach, Concerto in F, South African Suite, Le Corsair, Nutcracker and Glinka among others.
Toured all over the United States and overseas (such as Bahamas and Jamaica)

Participated to a Jeopardy TV show as a Dancer
Posed in O Magazine with Tina Knowles (Beyonce’s mother)

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Ballet / Character dance
Apr 1993 - Present
Ballet Studio K&M
Sep 2004 - Jun 2006
Joffrey Ballet School
Sep 2002 - Jun 2003
Arts Educational School


English, Japanese
Fluent / Native Proficiency
Limited Proficiency


200-RYT Yoga
Apr 2016
CorePower Yoga

It is 200hour vinyasa yoga certification.
Vinyasa is breath with movement. It gives time to step away from your busy life and focus on yourself inside out.
It is a great workout and also perfect time to stretch out your body where you usually do not stretch in a regular life style.
I want my students to know that yoga isn’t about how you look but rather how you feel. Yoga is about progress, not perfect. I want to share with you how beautiful, powerful and fun yoga is and make our lives brighter!

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Photos & Videos

Photo by Mayuko S.

Photo by Mayuko S.

Photo by Mayuko S.

Photo by Mayuko S.

Photo by Mayuko S.

Photo by Mayuko S.
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3 Reviews

Write a Review
Merab C. Nov 27, 2018
Yoga · Online

Great, positive person, good instructor. I am excited to work with her.

Chris Sep 17, 2018
Yoga · In studio

I did yoga regularly with Mayuko when she lived in Seattle and it was an incredible experience. She's one of the best teachers I've ever had, just really sweet, fun, and knowledgeable. I knew very little about yoga, and I'm hardly fit or flexible, but I was able to learn so much from her!

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Mi Young Sep 14, 2018
Ballet · In studio

We hired Ms. Mayuko to supplement my daughter’s rhythmic gymnastics training. Ms. Mayuko delivered rigorous ballet lessons in sequence to help build my daughter’s foundation in classical ballet, but to also improve her ability to accomplish a strict code of points for competition in rhythmic gymnastics. With Ms. Mayuko’s program, my daughter achieved her split leaps, extension, and turns in less than 6 months. My daughter was able to get the all-around gold title for her state and region, in large part to Ms. Mayuko’s training. She is strict and her lessons are rigorous, yet her genuine love for working with children is imminent and is what kept my daughter’s motivation for ballet and gym going. I recommend Ms. Mayuko to the highest degree.

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