Brande Lee: 

Aerialist and Pole Fitness

Brande is originally from Jacksonville, FL, but currently resides in Salem, MA. She has been training and performing circus/aerial arts since 2009. She specializes in aerial silks, lyra, hammock, pole and hoop dance. She got her start with Orange County Aerial Arts/Ruby Karen Project (OCAA/RPK) in September 2009 and still receives continuing education and performs with them to this day. Brande also trained at the New England Center for Circus Arts (NECCA) in their 2013-2014 Intensive Training Program. She has performed with OCAA, CIRCO Etereo, James Morrow/The Movement, Wire Monkey Dance, Elevated Aerial Dance, SHOW Circus Studio, and is a principle aerialist in the Cirque de la Mer Show at Sea World, San Diego. Brande participated in Aerial Arts America's 2nd Annual West Coast Aerial Arts Festival (WCAAF) November 2014. She placed 1st in her category, tissu/silk professional, and 1st overall. Recently, Brande was selected and competed as a finalist in the silks category for the inaugural U.S. Aerial Championships in New York City, February 2015.

Brande is certified in group fitness through the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA) and has been teaching aerial arts since 2012. She has received teacher trainings through OCAA/RKP, Circus Arts Institute (CAI), AURA Pole Dance Fitness, and SHOW Circus Studio. Brande has worked with numerous aerial schools and programs around the country teaching aerial and circus classes and specialty workshops including, Circus UP!, Boston University, Aircraft Aerial Arts, SHOW Circus Studio, Aerial Athlete, Bittersweet Studios, OCAA/RKP, CAI. Brande has a passion for circus arts and loves to share her joy of fun fitness and performance art.
Brande has a precious little bunny named Bunilla, whom she loves so much! Bunilla travels around with Brande when she performs and teaches across the country! Bunilla has been to San Diego, CA, Jacksonville,FL and Chicago, IL! Brande loves having Bunilla around because she gives her kisses and makes her so happy!



           Rafaela Montanaro


Pole Fitness

Rafaela Montanaro was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, into a family of athletes. Her mom was a long runner and sprinter, while her dad was a volleyball player. She stated her career on the young age of 3, when she was taken to her first gymnastics class. She then went on to compete several times in the Brazilian national competition. Then at the age of 11 she moved to Oklahoma for better training opportunities. Unfortunately, the following year she suffered a bad knee injury and decided it was time to give up gymnastics. Rafaela then dedicated herself to different styles of dance and a few different sports, but missed the acrobatic side. It was always calling to her. Therefore, at the age of 16 she joined the local circus school. At 17 she was accepted at the prestigious Ecole Nationale des Arts du Cirque in France. But due to family issues, she only got to attend the school for 1 year. She then trained kungfu and even made the national team in 2006! She found pole in 2009 while surfing online looking for circus videos and ran into Felix Cane's performance from 2006. She immediately went to look for a pole class and on the first day, the teacher saw potential in her. The teacher then asked her if she wanted to compete in nationals that was only 4 months away. She said yes and the rest is history...
Amongst her titles there are: Brazilian Champion 2009, South American Champion 2009 and 2012, IPC 2010 and 2012 Pole Fit Champion, IPC 2013 Pole Art Champion, USPSF 2015 2nd place, World Pole Sport Championship 2015 5th place, USPSF National Champion 2016, World Pole Sports Champion 2016.


Haley Pafford

Aerialist and Pole Fitness

Haley Pafford is the 2016 USPSF Elite Junior Champion, and will represent the United States in the first International Pole Sport and Arts Federation Pole Sports Championship (ISPAF) in Italy. Haley recently received the National Award of Excellence in Dance Choreography in the National PTA Reflections competition for her choreography on the Lyra. Haley has been dancing since the age of 2. She has studied all types of dance and attended several dance intensives including The Joffrey, NexGen Ballet, Tremaine and YAGP. She has performed in many live performances including the Wizard of Oz National Tour, First Coast Nutcracker, Moscow Ballet Nutcracker, Community Nutcracker, Chocolate Nutcracker and the Sleeping Beauty Ballet. She also competed in many Dance Competitions for several years. Haley was at a dance workshop at Bittersweet Studios when she discovered Aerial Silks. From that point on she was hooked on the Aerial Arts. Haley decided to train pole sports to help build her strength for Lyra and Silks, and loved it. She was the 2015 USPFS Championship Elite Novice Silver medalist, which qualified her for 2015 IPSF Championship in London. She placed 2nd in the 2014 Southeast Aerial Arts Championship, competing on the Lyra. She plans to continue her training and competing in Dance, Silks, Lyra, Pole and Contortion. Her home studio, Bittersweet Studios and her mentor Summer Vyne have been invaluable in their support of Haley with her training and aspirations. Her dream is to one day perform with Cirque du Soleil.

Cris Saez

Pole Fitness

Cris is 27 years old and is from Santiago, Chile.
He has been pole dancing for about 3 years with calisthenics background. Everything has been really fast in his pole life. Cris started competing  in 2015 and since then he just got good things happening in his life. He has been in 8 championships and got metals in all of them! Some of them are: 2nd Place at World Cup Brazil Arnold Classic 2016, 2nd Place Pole Expo Classic Las Vegas 2016, 2nd Place South American Pole Championship 2015, Champion of National Chile Championship 2015. This is just the beginning because he already planned many more for next year!
Cris is very recognized in Latin America for his way of poling; dynamic style, a lot of strength and signature combos. Since last year he began to travel around the world teaching his skills in Tours around Mexico, Chile, Argentina and Brazil; and teaching workshops and privates in France, London and Czech Republic.
"I'm so honored to be ambassador of Grata Designs and to show their amazing pole wear around the world" Cris Saez
Follow him on social media IG: @cris_saez_pole, Fan Page: Cris Saez Pole & Fitness,
YouTube: Cris Saez