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Interview with Mona Isabelle - the founder of @mona_isabelle_

· Floristic,Tango,Dance Studio

Dear Ladies,

today we have a very special interview to share with you.

Tango dancer, dance studio owner, fashion designer, DJ, traveller, floral artist - that is all Mona Isabelle @mona_isabelle_ - a beautiful, artistic and courageous woman whose heart beats for Tango Argentine.

In her deep, honest, and emotional interview Mona shares with us her path of finding her biggest passion in life, the challenges and the exciting experiences that came along with it.

With no doubt you will find here tons of inspiration, courage and faith for yourself and your own heart projects!

Enjoy reading the interview with Mona below.

Dear Mona, you have many interesting & inspiring projects, but they all stem from one big passion Tango Argentine. Could you please tell us how it all started, how did you fall in love with tango?

I fell in love with Argentine Tango by falling in love with a man, while I was studying fashion design in Berlin.
He invited me to a milonga and I still remember how fascinated I was, by the whole evening, the music, the dancing and the atmosphere.
I was captivated by this new world, with its secret longing, that had opened up in front of me and so wonderfully touched my heart. Soon after, I started to take Tango lessons. Initially with other participants in Tango classes but then I wanted to progress faster and took private lessons.
My love and enthusiasm for Tango grew stronger every day, until one day it had become stronger than my devotion to my profession of being a fashion designer.
The desire to have my own milonga one day matured during this time.
In addition, most of the milongas in Berlin at that time only played traditional Tango and I loved to dance to contemporary and non-tango music.

From this initial impulse the Tango-Loft-Milonga was born - my child with Henning Klose, with whom I was together at the time..
A place for modern Argentine Tango in a romantically decorated room full of flowers.

As a co-owner of one of the most beautiful & stylish tango studios in Berlin - Tango-Loft - what do you enjoy the most about your work? What was particularly challenging for you?

I'm so happy and grateful that I can run this wonderful milonga and the beautiful Loft we have created. I love my work so much.
The many dancers that I have met throughout the past years, the great musicians and in general the people with whom I work make me happy.

Sometimes when I am at the Tango-Loft I cannot believe how much this place, this milonga, has evolved during its 17 years so. It makes me incredibly proud and happy that I was able find my true calling through the TANGO-LOFT.
Still, I often had doubts about making the right decisions. We moved the Loft three times into new locations and each time I was afraid the dancers would not like the new place.
Would I manage to turn a barren, dreary factory-loft into a unique atmospheric, cozy place?
Would the dancers continue to like my style of music?
The Tango-Loft has become a large location with its 450sqm and this also means a large financial responsibility. Of course there were phases when things did not go so well and we had to come up with new ideas.
But I always knew that this is for me and for my future and for the future of the Tango-Loft, and this knowledge has given me strength and courage to reinvent myself time and time again.

You travel a lot around the world, dance at tango festivals, perform as a DJ, etc. How do you combine these two aspects - managing a dance studio and travelling?

I have a great team that supports me when I travel. However, this is also a huge organizational effort for me. I'm pretty chaotic by nature and I have to focus very hard on not forgetting anything.
I love the variety between my work at the Tang-Loft and international festivals. It keeps my mind creative, young and alive.

Berlin is blooming all year long thanks to your wonderful “flower flashes”. Could you please tell us more about this bold & exciting project and how did you come up with it?

Every weekend, since its beginning, I have decorated the Tango-Loft with flowers. Over the years, my flower decorations became more and more colorful, bigger and imaginative. The urge to create flower bouquets outside of the Tango-Loft, in the landscape and in the City of Berlin was a sudden evolution.

It was around the same time, that I discovered the US flower artist Lewis Miller on Instagram who created so-called Flower Flashes in the city of New York.
His work inspired me tremendously and I wanted to do this as well.
Since then, I have been creating my own Flower Flashes in Berlin.
Everything that inspires me flows into my flower art. I enjoy watching peoples delight as they see my work and start to smile.

If you would look back at your life so far - has there been one “defining moment” (or more) that brought you where you are right now?
There has been more than one moment in my life when my heart and soul have been blessed with happiness.
Moments when I danced Argentine-Tango, or even when I prepared a milonga for my guests, when suddenly I realized how deeply satisfying it was to do what I really wanted to do.
It is from these moments that I draw my energy and inner strength.
I also try to be positive in my heart and mind.
Where do you draw inspiration & courage for all your projects?
Everything I love touches my heart and inspires me.
People, flowers, nature, music, colors, cultures of different countries ...
I enjoy rediscovering and reinventing myself time and time again.
It has not always been this easy for me to open up to new things and in the past I hardly dared to live my dreams.
But the feeling of not doing what I really wanted to do was stronger in the end.
My friends helped me a lot in these phases and supported me by giving me both courage and strength.
Friendship is very important to me.
Do you have any other creative plans for the future you can share with us?
I would like to professionalize my love of flower art and develop a business based on offering my services as freelance Flower Artist for film productions or various events for example.
I also want to expand my DJ career. Together with my current partner Carlos Libedinsky I have founded a duo with South American Beats (electronics, bandoneon & vocals)
We are planning a tour through Europe and South America in 2019.
Many women sometimes underestimate themselves and feel the lack of self-confidence. Is this something familiar to you and how would you advise to deal with it?
I know it's not as easy as it sounds. But I think that if you do what you burn for, doors and paths open up.
After studying fashion design and working as a fashion designer, I had a well-paid job that I enjoyed. But my love and passion for Tango was greater than it had ever been for fashion design.
My heart was literally on fire when I thought of Tango.
There was a moment in my life when I felt I only had energy to do one thing or the other, but not both.
I had to make a choice and so I made the decision to pursue Tango, even though I had much less income with this new pursuit than I had previously working in the fashion business.
This decision came from my heart and not from my common sense.
Today, fifteen years later, I am very happy to have accepted what my heart said, but at the time I was unsure of what the future had in store for me.
I will always continue to trust my gut feeling instead of trusting papers and numbers!
What would you advise to a woman who wants to start her own business but is hesitating because of the lack of resources (finances, connections, experience, etc.)?
I would advise her to never lose faith in herself and to believe in the universe.
Paths will lay open the moment you start to dream. Talk to people and search for solutions together with friends.
Sometimes it is also good to start with a partner who shares responsibility and also makes some of the decisions.
You cannot do it all by yourself, but you will grow stronger with each new challenge as long as the initial fire remains a part of your thinking.
What is your life credo?
My credo is a philosophical poem by Hermann Hesse. It´s called: STUFEN.
There is a line with a special meaning for me: “In jedem Anfang wohnt ein Zauber inne” which translates to “Every new beginning is alive with magic”.
I wish to always have the courage to enter new doors and rooms.
Not to be afraid of what is new.
I want to give the new seed the power to blossom into a new flower.
Even though I am often afraid to let go, I would like to trust in the power of birth.

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