Claudia, DesJaVae, Kara, and Stephanie purchased Femme Fatale Fitness in October of 2020 and rebranded as Femme Fatale Dayton. All four owners are advanced aerialists with dynamic backgrounds and hold degrees in mathematics, dance, therapy, education, and leadership. The Owners are an incredible team that are excited to carry on the Femme Fatale legacy! You can see their individual bios below! The previous owner, Cassie Guard, mentored the new owners for several months before advancing into the next steps of her career, just as our founder, Jacqueline Allen, had done for her. The uniqueness and glamour of the studio is that of a big city but the support system and encouragement inside has the feel of a close knit community. People from all over the Dayton, Springfield, Cincinnati, and other areas travel to Femme Fatale Dayton for classes and push themselves to new limits every day thanks to the achievements and dedication of the amazing FFD Instructors. Femme Fatale embodies the message: Empower yourself to be your best self … be a Femme Fatale. Femme Fatale Dayton is known for our amazing staff and instructors. Here are the people that make this place great!
I found Femme at the beginning of 2019 and tried my very first conditioning class with Stephanie and was immediately hooked. Where else can you be surrounded by amazing, empowered, resilient, and supportive women?! My background includes dance from many different studios around the area and I am trained primarily in ballet, pointe, tap, and jazz since the age of 7. I have enjoyed performing theater and the arts since a very young age, and love teaching people to communicate through their bodies. I found Femme while looking for a place to come back to that love of dance I had left for 7 years. I hadn’t felt like myself in a long time, and once I finished the first month of classes, the world became brighter! You will commonly find me at Dance Fuzion, any dance classes that have been scheduled, and the occasional turbo kick. Don’t be a stranger, come say hi! I am excited to join the Femme Community as an instructor and share with others what Femme shared with me; joy, confidence, courage, and loving yourself!
I played soccer year round and never had a graceful bone in my body. I never danced as a kid and never thought I’d fall in love with anything dance related. A few years after I graduated and joined the military in 2016, a group of friends and I visited a local pole studio in Virginia and from there I was obsessed—even slowly venturing out into the other aerial apparatuses. I’ve moved a few times and had the opportunity to broaden my pole skills through all the studios I’ve been to and all the instructors I’ve learned under. All of them motivating me to grow in so many different ways. When I found out I was moving to Ohio, I was so relieved when I found Femme Fatale so that I could continue my aerial journey. I absolutely love sharing pole with everyone and took it upon myself to get certified to teach during the 2020 shutdowns, I am now certified in beginner to advanced pole through XPERT Fitness.
I taught my first class at Femme Fatale in 2013. I had been teaching and performing Belly Dance professionally for years when I met Cassie through another instructor. Cassie knew I’d be a good fit for the studio, and when I came to meet with her and take her Dance Fuzion class, I realized she was right. I don’t teach a watered-down version of Belly Dance, and I saw the ladies at this studio were hungry for something deeper and more challenging. I was impressed and knew we could embrace the art form fully. It wasn’t long after that I became a certified Yoga instructor (RYT-200), and eventually added Yoga onto my schedule at the studio. Yoga and Dance are a lifestyle for me, and my goal in class is to present them passionately-body, mind, and soul-and have A LOT of fun doing it!
Cassie is a creator and a performer through and through. With a heart for dance, and skill for detail as an instructor, Cassie has continued to make Femme Fatale one of the most unique finds Dayton has to offer. Cassie has an extensive fitness and dance background. You might also know her as Champagne Shock in the world of Burlesque, where she was first discovered in Austin, Texas and began performing along with the Jigglewats. Cassie owned Femme Fatale under the name Femme Fatale Fitness for over ten years! Her passion, energy, and hard work turned it into the incredible sanctuary it is today. Cassie continues to own Femme Fatale Productions and loves producing shows at every possible opportunity.
I joined Femme in 2016 after moving to the Dayton area for a new job. I cheered at West Virginia University and had been coaching at an All-Star gym before moving, so I needed something to fill that void. I fell in love with pole instantly and quickly picked up lyra and Liquid Motion® as well.
I became an instructor in 2018! I love exploring the different styles of dance when choreographing pole routines and can’t wait to help others discover its versatility.
I am an active pole competitor and PSO Unicorn so I can help answer any Pole Sport Organization competition questions! Throughout my career I have earned many medals, most recently I placed 2nd in Level 4 Exotic at the PSO Southern Competition. I am a Licensed Liquid Motion® instructor (1.0, 2.0, and Heels), and a Spin City Certified Pole Instructor. I purchased Femme Fatale in 2020 and now serve as the Director of Finance!
I am so excited to join the amazing team of instructors here at Femme Fatale Dayton. I have been an ACE Certified Group Fitness instructor since 2015 and an ACE Certified Personal Trainer since 2018. My interest in fitness is rooted in my love of dance. As a student of belly dance, I know first hand how strength and conditioning has helped improve my balance and control, which has translated into more expressive and dynamic movements in my own dance practice. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the clients at FFD and assist in their personal journeys as artists and performers.
I started dancing at the age of 3. I attended Stivers School For the Arts and finished high school learning technical dance. I attended Ohio University for Organizational Communication Studies and Minored in Dance Performance and Choreography. During this time, I also earned a certificate in African Dance and Music Studies. After college, I pursued jobs that focused on my Bachelor’s Degree but was unfulfilled without dance in my life. Eventually, I started looking for an outlet and came across Femme Fatale. I almost immediately signed up for a membership. My first enrollment classes were Intro to Pole and Modern Dance class. I LOVED THEM. In 2016, after about a year and a half, I was hired as an instructor. I teach mainly technical dance and pole. Through the studio I’ve had the privilege of performing at the Jigglewatts Burlesque Revue’s 10 Years of Tease, The Main Event and Grand Opening at the Dayton Metro Library Downtown, Dayton’s Masquerage in 2017 and 2018, and plenty of Burlesque shows. I purchased Femme Fatale in 2020 and now serve as the Director of Marketing!
I joined Femme in 2019; I did ballet and figure skating as a child and teenager and after college, I wanted to start dancing again. I fell in love with pole the second I started. I love incorporating my training in ballet and ice dance into my pole technique and teaching, especially when it comes to heel work and low flow. I was asked to start teaching in 2021 and was so excited to accept that opportunity! Being an instructor allows me to share my passion for pole, and help others find their flow. I love to perform and compete; most recently I placed first at PSO Triangle in the Level 3 Exotic Division. I am also an XPERT certified instructor.
Growing up, I always had a flair for the dramatics! I was involved in musical theater, studio dance, drill team, competitive dance throughout my childhood and even danced in college. Just like many other women, I grew up to critique, shame, and hide my body. I reached a very low point in my life: weight gain, depression/anxiety etc. and decided I needed to make a change for my mental and physical health and found Femme back in 2019. After my first class I knew I needed this space to be a constant within my life. I have learned to explore my sensual/sultry inner being as a woman, wife and now mother! All exploration of dance or apparatuses has been met with a welcoming, safe, compassionate, non judgmental environment where organic friendships can grow with strong individuals on every path of life! The freedom I feel at Femme is indescribable, and now irreplaceable!
I found Femme in January 2018 when I was looking for dance classes to get my body moving again. My first classes at the studio were Dance Fuzion and Pole H.A.B.I.T. and I quickly bought a membership because … it was my new addiction! As a transplant to Ohio, Femme became my community and my happy place. I became an instructor in October 2018 and have taught lyra, pole, silks, and fitness classes at Femme, including becoming a PiYo certified instructor in 2019. I performed with the Femme Fatale dance troupe at Masquerage 2018 “Rio Nights,” aerial silks/lyra doubles with Crave Aerial for “RAW: Cincinnati presents Impact” on the stage at Bogart’s, and aerial silks in Cirque Fatale at the Brightside in November 2019. I purchased Femme Fatale in 2020 and now serve as the Director of Human Resources.
I grew up dancing, primarily ballet and contemporary. Dance was always my emotional outlet, and the only type of exercise I enjoyed. After college, I felt lost without having that artistic/emotional outlet. I found aerial arts at the beginning of 2018, and quickly fell in love. I started with silks, and quickly expanded to lyra, later adding hammock and pole as well. I became an instructor at the end of 2020. I love the community at Femme Fatale, and the wide variety of opportunities it offers – there’s something here for everyone! I have had the pleasure of performing with Gem City Cirque and Femme Fatale throughout Dayton and the surrounding areas. In 2022 I received my Level One Teacher Training certification through Aerial Physique in silks.
I was invited by my best friend to take a circus workout class at Femme in March 2016. I was just about to graduate college and was facing some personal anxiety and uncertainty about what to do next with my life. Other than marching band in high school I had never really gone to the gym consistently. After my first class, I couldn’t leave. I had to try everything because it was all unique and pushed me out of my comfort zone. I fell in love with the lyra in 2017 and it has been my apparatus of choice since. In August 2018 Turbokick was introduced to the studio. I would not describe myself as a dancer in any way but the music and boxing moves of Turbokick made me feel more coordinated than I already was. It quickly became my favorite class. Being asked to teach in 2020 was a dream come true and I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity to teach. Femme is a support system for everyone that walks through it’s doors. Every member and instructor supports me, challenges me, and celebrates with me even through the smallest of victories. As a student I was told, “You do not have to come to Femme strong, but we will help you get there.” At the time I thought this just meant physically. Now I have taken this as strong physically, mentally, and spiritually. I am blessed to call Femme Fatale Dayton my home.
Growing up I always wanted to take dance classes, but I was raised by a single father who wanted me to play sports. Unfortunately, dancing wasn’t one of them. My best friend knew that and introduced me to Femme Fatale. I was in love after the first class – a circus workout. I was hooked. I had been going to the gym regularly but I had never been that sore. I signed up for a membership the next day and attended as many classes as I could. The studio became my outlet and I fell in love with dancing. Liquid Motion® was offered in 2016 and after I took my first LM class, I knew that was it. Out of all the classes I had tried it was my favorite. Liquid Motion® is all about fluid movements, something that was a real challenge for me. I kept going back and eventually became a Liquid Motion® certified instructor. Femme Fatale changed my life. It became my happy place. It is the most welcoming, most loving community I’ve ever been a part of. I hope everyone has a chance to experience a place with this much love. #lovefemmefatale
I walked into the studio one day after work to find Cassie there setting it up. That studio wasn’t open yet, but would be soon. I got lucky that someone was there! I told her about how I was a Zumba instructor and wanted to know if she was hiring. We scheduled an interview and a demonstration and I started teaching Dance Fuzion as soon as that studio was open for business. It wasn’t long before I was being trained on pole followed shortly by silks and Lyra. In all I’ve been teaching at femme for 7 years now. I teach nearly everything including chair dance, burly-q, pole, silks, lyra, hammock, and even cheer dance occasionally! I’ve performed at two Masquerage parties, the library grand opening and ribbon cutting events and a few yellow cab tavern shows. I opened Crave Aerial Apparel July of 2018.
After several years of wanting to try aerials, I finally took the plunge in January of 2017. I’m so happy that I did! Femme Fatale has become my happy place and the place where I feel the safest. Once I tried every apparatus, hammock was the one that felt the best for me. In 2019, I decided to take Liquid Motion for the first time even though I was intimidated by it. After one session, I was completely in love. I’ve taken session after session ever since. In the summer of 2020, after it got moved to a completely virtual event, I became a certified and licensed instructor in 1.0! It was incredibly rewarding for me. That license finally came to use at the beginning of 2022 when I became an instructor for FFD. I’ve been so fortunate to not only be a part of this community as a student but to now be a part of this community as an instructor. I’ve had the opportunity to perform at open houses at the studio and performed a burlesque number at the Brightside at the end of 2019. Femme Fatale Dayton has made me stronger, it’s given me so much confidence, and has introduced me to some of the best people I know. This journey has been so beautiful and I’m so excited to see where it leads me!
I’ve always enjoyed dance and performing but was too shy to really use them as a platform. In high school I was constantly busy with color guard, winter guard, show choir, and musicals. Once I graduated high school, I lost all of that! I stalked Femme Fatale for years before finally feeling comfortable enough to walk through the doors. I finally came to Femme Fatale in 2015. I had just graduated college and was looking for a hobby and a way to help me lose my baby weight (even though he was 2 years old)! I fell in love with aerial silks right away and lost 30 lbs! I gained a ton of confidence and transformed from an introvert to an extrovert. I became an instructor in 2016 with my focus being on aerial silks. My favorite part of being an instructor is teaching people that are brand new to it! I love watching their confidence grow as they watch themselves do amazing things! I’ve performed with Femme Fatale at the Dayton Metro Library Gala, Yellow Cab, Masquerage, and Cirque Fatale. I purchased Femme Fatale in 2020 and now serve as the Director of Operations!
Growing up, I spent my time doing various sports, marching band, and percussion ensemble. As an adult, I really missed the physical activity and comradery of sports and band. I tried to find an activity that would provide this for me. I tried many things and they never really seem to have what I was looking for. I started going Femme in 2014, with a few ballroom dance classes in college being my only dance experience. The lack of experience didn’t matter at all. The instructors and students were so welcoming and supportive. I tried a ton of classes, but I loved lyra the most. I had finally found what I was looking for. After almost 8 years of being a student, I started teaching at the studio.
I started coming to Femme Fatale in 2010. I found a Groupon for a pole class and decided to give it a whirl! I was beyond nervous, I almost didn’t get out of my car to go in. You see, I was very shy and quiet. I kept to myself all of my life, and never branched out of my very small circle. I’d never taken a dance class in my life. But something pulled me out of my car and into the studio that day! I’m so thankful it did! Over the next few months, I discovered my true self! I found new friends, I became a social butterfly, plus I discovered that people liked me and what I had to offer! I’d never felt that before! I started taking burlesque, and that was when I really found out what I am capable of! It was so empowering! In 2012, I was asked to become an instructor. I started helping to teach teaser classes and I took over the party portion of Femme Fatale. Over the years, I’ve taken on new roles and I love being involved with everything! I’m so excited for all that is to come for Femme Fatale and the community we have built!