Masa is a dance performer, dance teacher, and journalist. Born to Middle Eastern parents, she first started dancing at the age of six, learning by mimicking her mother’s Persian dancing. In high school, she started the school’s first hip hop troupe and performed Lindy Hop (swing dance) on the weekends. Then when she saw bellydance star Jillina on stage in Los Angeles in 2000, she was inspired to perform the art. A few months later, she began formal training in Classical Bellydance (or Danse Orientale). Her early teachers were international performer Mohammad Khordadian and instructor Rouhi Savojy. She started to teach the dance under guidance of her teacher Rouhi, and performed only at family gatherings approved by her parents. Although they eventually became her biggest supporters, it took many years for them to accept her as a performance artist
Masa graduated from UCLA with a BA in English and interned in journalism and marketing. She continued to teach dance and choreograph for projects such as Persian dance shows, including the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and Swedish-Persian pop performer Arash. While continuing to teach and work as a choreographer for stage shows, she would develop herself asa journalist being published in magazines and dance websites. In 2007, she was forced to take a break from dance to recover from a surgery, and instead began studying the Egyptian drum with Celebrated and Award-Winning Drummer, Gamal Gomaa.
Soon after, Masa made her dream of living in Italy a reality when she spent a year there teaching English in high schools and studying dance in Milan under Jamila Zaki, Malika Ferhat, Alessandra Pedretti and Les Seous Tribales. It was through Malika Ferhat and Cinzia where she performed in more shows and entered her first competition, La Stella D’Oriente, where she placed 3rd among competitors from over 40 countries. During her year, she was hired regularly to perform at the renowned Moroccan supper club in Milan, Dar El Yacout.
In 2008, Masa returned to live in Los Angeles, performing at shows and events in Los Angeles. She was a core member of Tamra Henna’s Henna & Dates and is honored to have had the opportunity to work with such a talented teacher and performer, Tamra Henna. She has produced stage shows in Venice called “An Arabian Night in Venice”, projects made possible by the support of her parents and investors. She has developed 8-week workshops for beginners so that they can perform full routines in her shows. Masa
enjoys working with beginners as well as more advanced dancers, such as those she trains as artistic director of the Donya Rhythms Dance Co., a group which performs Bellydance, Persian, and Bollywood dances. She continues to teach weekly classes to adults including the “Bellydance Breakdown™” and “Bellydance Drills, Combos, and Choreography” in Los Angeles. She also teached Persian dance, Egyptian dance, Bollywood and Hip Hop to kids through non-profit programs in Los Angeles. And she is a regular instructor of Bollywood dance and Belly dance at UCLA.
When she isn’t performing and teaching, Masa continues to study and travel to always help grow her teaching technique and dance education.“There is always room to grow as an artist and learn something new,” Masa says. “Being a great student is what helps me be a better dance teacher.”