Mariko Kumanomido originally from St. Louis, MO, started dancing at the age of three in her living room. After begging her parents for dance classes, she began her formal training at the Alexandra School of Ballet, and continued her studies at Washington University and University of Missouri – Kansas City, where she earned her BFA in Dance. Her love of dance took her to New York City, where she was a Fellowship student at the Ailey School, and studied at the Graham School, and danced professionally with Buglisi Dance Theater, C. Eule Dance, Jessica Danser/Dansfolk, and Graham II. In New York, she began her teaching career by teaching three and four year old students, and discovered that her original dance skills (as a three year old dancing like a butterfly fairy princess ) came in very handy. After five years in the big city, she began to long for trees and grass once again, decided to move back to St. Louis, and joined Common Thread Contemporary Dance Co. She teaches ages 3 – adult, and loves that she can share her joy of dance through her teaching.