Joanna Meinl began dancing in 1990 at Ballet Etudes in Miami, FL, training in ballet, jazz and hip-hop. From there she went on to New York University where she studied anthropology and world dance. Upon moving to California, Joanna began learning the art of kathak, North Indian classical dance, with Pandit Chitresh Das at San Francisco State University and in 1999 earned a B.A. in Dance Ethnology.
Joanna has been a performing member of the Chitresh Das Dance Company and instructor at the Chhandam School for the past 10 years. She has toured both nationally and internationally including three tours to India and has been a soloist since 2005. As an active participant in community events and arts education she teaches kathak, as well as modern dance and creative movement in youth programs and schools throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Joanna began partner dancing in 2002 training in ballroom, latin and swing dance at Dance Arts Studios in San Rafael, CA, where she became a certified instructor. Joanna is an accomplished salsa dance teacher and performer. She co-directed Sangre Latina Dance Company for the past two years and recently placed 1st at the Champions Invitational Salsa competition in Palm Springs 2009.
Since 2005 she has performed and competed on the national west coast swing circuit and currently competes at the All-Star/Champion level. Joanna is a U.S. Open Jack & Jill Finalist and has won several World Swing Dance Council sanctioned competitions including:
- Halloween Swing Thing 2009 - All American Jack & Jill
- South Bay Dance Fling 2009 - Champions Jack & Jill
- Bridgetown Swing 2008 - Champions Jack & Jill
- Mountain Magic Swing Dance 2007 - Advanced Jack & Jill and Cabaret
- Fresno Dance Classic 2007 - Advanced Jack & Jill
- Seattle Easter Swing 2007 - Open Strictly Swing
Joanna has been teaching dance for over 10 years and incorporates both her exceptional technical training as well as her practical social dance experience into her teaching style. She recently began partnering with Champion dancer and instructor Nick Jay in classic west coast swing and looks forward to touring the WCS circuit in 2010.