Our Studio Staff
David began his career with the Arthur Murray Organization as a guest, and then a student, in Nashville in 1975. He taught in Phoenix as Number One Teacher and Guest Getter worldwide for many years. He became a Duel Certified Examiner in 1980 and started judging dance competitions throughout the United States. David has competed ProAm and Professional in the American and International styles of dance. He has traveled all over America training and motivating Arthur Murray students and instructors. David was former Franchisee of the Woodland Hills Studio is currently the International Guest Director for Arthur Murray International. He is the co-franchisee with Joel Rieck of the Santa Monica Arthur Murray Dance Center. David is a Hospitality Team Leader for St. Monica Parish Community, and has been serving this parish for 15 years. In a short three years, Arthur Murray Santa Monica has become a Green Certified Business, winning the Sustainable Quality Award for Excellence in Sustainable Economic Development in 2016, co-produced Dancing with Our Stars for St. Monica Parish, co-produced the successful Sand and Sea Ball for the Santa Monica Malibu Education Foundation. We are proud members of the Santa Monica Chamber and David is a Membership Council Ambassador. We support our chamber and are proud members. Our mission statement is “Changing Lives One Step at a Time!”.
Joel Rieck began dancing at the age of 16, when he decided to pursue a career in musical theatre. He studied ballet, jazz, tap, modern and West African dance styles, and graduated from UC San Diego with a double major in Theatre and Dance. After performing and choreographing professionally in San Diego, he moved to L.A. to increase his opportunities. He walked into an Arthur Murray Dance Center in early 2006 to fulfill a New Year’s Resolution to resume his dance training, and one week later he was in the instructor training program. Since then, he has competed professionally at the Future Champion, Rising Star and Open Professional levels, and he has successfully helped his students to become finalists in their levels of competition. As the dance director of a top studio, Joel choreographed many exciting and creative routines for staff and students. Now, he has goals of becoming a certified examiner for Arthur Murray International, becoming a top competitive dancer and helping to make Arthur Murray Santa Monica the best possible place to be!
Beginning as an average 'off the street' student in 2006, Joshua John Becket started learning to dance as a means of getting more acting work. What he got instead were some of the best years of his life working with the All-Star staff of Arthur Murray, Sherman Oaks. Learning directly from industry leaders, Joshua became a highly sought after instructor due to his laid back nature and approach of complex techniques. He joined the Santa Monica staff in 2016 and his favorite dances are Hustle, West Coast Swing, and Foxtrot.
Giovanni began dancing at the age of 11 with his sister performing for local school events. He danced Mexican Folklorico as well as Quebradita; An acrobatic Mexican cowboy genre of dance. While studying Theatre and Dramatic arts in College he took Contemporary and Modern dance workshops and that is where he discovered Ballroom Dancing. After taking a couple of beginning courses he fell in love with the genre. Today he is excited to be back on the dance floor and grateful to Arthur Murray Santa Monica for this great opportunity.
Cecilia Abay is a native Californian and was born in beautiful San Francisco.
She started her dance training at the age of seven studying classical ballet and jazz. She majored in dance at Santa Barbara City College where she discovered Modern Ballet.
After moving to Los Angeles, she extended her dancing interest in ballroom dancing and took studied the various dances.
Cecilia has joined our professional team and is excited to share her love of dancing through instructing at Arthur Murray Santa Monica. Her passion and love of teaching range from Waltz to Swing to Rumba and all the popular dances we offer.
Cecilia loves working with couples and also trains her gentlemen in social dancing all the way up to competition and exhibition level dancing.
Eva Dobesch was born in the beautiful capital of Austria, Vienna.
At an early age she discovered her passion for acting and dance. Ballroom dancing is part of the Austrian culture which she already experienced in her mother’s womb. Like most other girls in Austria she took ballet, jazz and hip hop classes but she fell in love with the Viennese waltz at the age of 6 when she learned the dance for New Year's Eve. It is a tradition that on midnight everyone starts dancing to the famous masterpiece “The Blue Danube” by Johann Strauß. Since then she couldn't wait to finally learn all different ballroom dances. In the meantime she joined a musical theater performing group and an English theater group with which she performed for many years. Finally, when Eva turned 14 years old her parents allowed her to go to the social dance school Elmayer and Rueff where she graduated with honors from Bronze, Silver, Gold & Gold Star in international ballroom & latin. Furthermore, she joined the debutante dance formation that opens the beautiful balls with a Viennese Waltz in a white dress. In addition she started competing with the Latin Formation team “TSC Schwarzgold”. After she finished Highschool she took her bags and moved to Los Angeles to attend the 2 year method acting conservatory program at the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute without knowing anyone over here. Afterwards she worked as a personal trainer, zumba and dance instructor at Goddess Fitness Dance. Now she wants to share her love for ballroom dancing with everyone. For her dancing is the most important thing in life since it affects mind, body and spirit. She wants to help people overcome any obstacles in life through the power of dance. Live in the moment and dance through life.