Ross Wirtanen is a dancer whose expertise in urban styles positions him at the top of up-and-coming artistic directors & choreographers in Canadian entertainment. He has won awards for his choreography and performances in festivals and competitions throughout North America.
Having taken up tap at the age of seven in his beautiful hometown of Victoria, BC, Ross' relationship with dance developed early on. In high school, inspired by the music videos of Michael and Janet Jackson, he became seriously passionate about street dance and hip hop. By graduation he had played a significant role in reinventing his school’s dance program. He won the Dogwood Scholarship for Dance and established himself as a reputable teacher and choreographer in the local scene.
Ross moved to Vancouver to pursue a career in dance and continue his training at a professional level. With more exposure to underground styles like waacking, vogueing, locking and dancehall, he began performing alongside elite street crews TwoFourSeven, SickStlyz Symphony and, most notably, the House of La Douche. Recognized as Vancouver’s premier vogue and waacking group, this became the perfect outlet for Ross to express his unique performance persona and subversive choreography. Reminiscent of Boy George’s flamboyant Culture Club movement, The House grew in popularity, achieving notoriety in the national dance and fashion industry.
Ross has toured North America and trained intensively in L.A., New York and San Diego under some of the world’s most renowned street dance teachers and choreographers.
Now located in Toronto, Ross directs RiaToss Productions, his own theatrical performance art company. Known for their fashion–forward and edgy multidisciplinary pieces, RiaToss has performed works at notable Toronto venues and events including The Carlu, Casaloma, The Spoke Club, World Pride and Fashion Art Toronto.
Ross' stage credits range from choreographing, styling and performing for artists Brock Zanrosso, Anjulie, High Diamond and Tea Kittagucci, to dancing in live concert performances and music videos for Janet Jackson, Ariana Grande, PSY, Nicki Yanofsky, INXS, DJ Tiesto, Elise Estrada, The Jabbawockeez and Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B (film).
Despite the success he's achieved away from home, Ross remains an integral component of Victoria High School's esteemed dance program and performance troupe 'Platform 61'. As the resident guest teacher and choreographer, he motivates and inspires youth dancers to attain their fullest potential and realize their own innate talents.
With such extensive and diverse knowledge of pop culture and movement, Ross works tirelessly to expand his versatility as a dancer, pushing the boundaries with his unique and eclectic artistic direction and choreography.
To view Ross' CV, click here