Cherise Richards is a dancer/choreographer from Ashland, Oregon. At age 11 she met her life long mentors Suzee Grilley, who taught her Capoeira, Modern dance and Yoga, and Paul Grilley, her Yin Yoga teacher. Cherise was in the Suzee Grilley Dance Ensemble for several years before graduating high school in 2002 and moving to California to pursue a BFA in Dance from the University of California, Santa Barbara. While there, she continued her Capoeira training with Contra Mestre Mariano Da Silva through the school Capoeira Batuque. In 2006 she won the Corwin Award for Choreography for her piece, Inward Pilgrimage and was nominated for a Lester Horton Award for Performance for her work in the piece Broken/UnBroken by Stephanie Nugent.
After finishing undergraduate school Cherise spent three years in San Francisco where she studied Release Technique with Kathleen Hermesdorf as well as Ballet and Feldenkrais with Augusta Moore. She performed nationally and internationally with NugentDance, Project Bandaloop and MotionLab and understudied with LevyDance. The first incarnation of her company, at that time called The Cherise Richards Dance Company, mounted shows at Danceground Keriac and Chicken Johns.
In 2010 she went to California Institute of the Arts and 2012 graduated with an MFA in Choreography. Cherise has studied Pilates, is a certified Yin Yoga instructor and has taught Capoeira, Pilates, Yoga and Contemporary Dance. She currently trains Capoeira with Mestre Amen at Brasil Brasil Culture Center and continues to make work on her company now titled Riptide Dance. An avid surfer, Cherise lives in Los Angeles where she spends most of her free time feeding her addiction to the ocean.