Tessa Marie, a California native, entered the realm of dance at the age of 13 quickly becoming a principal with the La Petit Ballet company located at the tip of California. Following two years of performance with the Moscow Ballet in their international tour of “The Nutcracker” dancing both Spanish chocolate and Chinese variations, Tessa at 17 was offered a full scholarship to Joffrey Ballet in New York City, one of the most prestigious ballet schools in the United States. After 4 years of intense training at Joffrey, Tessa discovered the world of Latin Ballroom in New York City’s “Dance Times Square” owned by Tony Merideth and Melanie LaPatin. There she danced Pro/Am for a short time before turning professional.
Since that time, she has competed with three different partners becoming a 5x United States RS professional Latin finalist, including 3x as the United States RS Professional Latin bronze medal recipient.
Other credits include acting as 2x Assistant Choreographer to Dimitry Chaplin on FOX’s “So You Think You Can Dance”, soloist/company member for 4 years in Louie Van Amstel’s international tour of “Ballroom With A Twist”, and Assistant Choreographer for Dreamworks animated movie “Puss and Boots”. Tessa currently resides in Los Angeles, and competes with Umario Diallo.
Umario Diallo was introduced to dance at age 11 in his home country of Ukraine. Within a few years and after vigorous training, Umario became a 2x IDU Junior World Champion in Latin and a World Champion in Standard which led him to be featured in a Ukrainian National TV show called “Dance For You”. At the age of 17 he moved to Prague on his own to study, and was accepted with a full scholarship at the Ballet Conservatorium of Prague.
In 2013 Umario decided to further pursue his dreams in the United States, and was featured as a choreographer on “So You Think You Can Dance” on Fox. He also acted as coach and mentor to his own students in their performance on “World Of Dance” on NBC.
As competitive dancer, at the age of 21, he created the dance team known as “Invictus” in Seattle, Washington. Due to his passionate coaching style, his students have ranked in national championships and continue to place in finals of major competitions in the United States, putting “Invictus” on the map as one of the strongest youth Schools of Ballroom Dance in America.
Umario Diallo & Tessa Marie began their professional partnership in 2018. Their teamwork has resulted in immediate success, as they have already been named 2x US Pro RS National finalists and bronze medalists.