For as long as Saskia Harmon can remember, dance has been at the center of her life. Now we’re thrilled to announce that she’s the new dance program director at ROOTS Academy.
Born and raised in DeLand, Florida (about 40 minutes outside of Orlando), Saskia realized she had a passion for dance at a young age. Growing up, her mom was a dance team coach at a local high school and secretary of a dance studio.
After high school, Saskia moved to Knoxville to attend the University of Tennessee where she became captain of the school’s nationally ranked dance team and graduated with a degree in theatre.
Since then, Saskia has dedicated her life to teaching dance and she’s been an instructor for the past 16 years.
Before she became a dance mentor at ROOTS three years ago, Saskia was the manager at Pure Barre Brentwood. She was named Best Barre Instructor of 2018 by Nashville Fit Magazine.
But Saskia finds the most joy in helping young dancers achieve their full potential. “The highlight of my professional career was being part of the journey to help the Brentwood Academy dancers become national champions last year,” she said.
“I’ve also helped many high school seniors get ready to be part of their college dance teams at schools including the University of Tennessee, University of Mississippi, University of Alabama, and Lindenwood University. I have a former student who is a current member of the Laker Girls in Los Angeles, California.”
Saskia said the best part of the job is that she gets to use her knowledge and experience to help other dancers grow in their craft.
“I love passing down my passion for dance to my students,” she said. “I also love getting to know them each as individuals and helping them find their best selves.”
Questions & Answers
Where do you look for creative inspiration?
As a dance teacher, I’m always inspired by other choreographers and how they hear the music and tell stories through movement. In my eyes, learning from your peers and other professionals is the best way to grow in your field.
What type of student will excel best with you as his or her mentor?
A student who listens and applies corrections and also has the heart and drive to improve and become their best.
In the past five years, what new belief, behavior, or habit has most improved your life?
Becoming a mom!
Of all the places you’ve traveled, which is your favorite?
That’s a hard choice because I love to travel. If I had the time, I would definitely do more of it! But I have a few favorite places: Holland (my family is from there), London, Hawaii, and Seaside, Florida.
What is your all-time favorite movie and why?
Notting Hill. I love Julia Roberts, it’s a romantic comedy, and it’s set outside of London!
What is your favorite quote?
Everything happens for a reason.