9 min read

Generation Mox interview with Haruna Kunisawa, celebrity choreographer and dancer

Generation Mox interview with Haruna Kunisawa, celebrity choreographer and dancer

5, 6, 7, 8… Haruna Kunisawa has counts of 8 built into her heartbeat. If you’ve ever seen Haruna dance, you’ll know what it means to be truly captivated by a performer. As a choreographer and dancer, it’s clear this Japanese-born, Hong Kong-based dancer loves what she does. Haruna worked with some big names in the industry, including Sandy Lam, Fiona Sit and GEM. As her dance career developed, she founded BeDREX, a dance studio in Tsim Sha Tsui. Today, she works to share her skills, technique and passion with Hong Kong. Haruna talks to us about the importance of appreciation, compassion and chasing your dreams – both on and off the dance floor. So, take a front row seat, sit back and let Haruna’s story unfold.

1. What inspired you to open your own dance studio? 

I’ve always loved moving my body to music. It was with me as a child, it was with me after my surgery when I needed to stop dancing for a while, and it’s with me today. My first Jazz Funk teacher in Portland, Oregon was the first person to help me realise how much I actually love dancing. After I met her, I decided to quit university in Japan and move to New York. I worked in the States for almost four years – learning techniques and eventually performing. I moved to Hong Kong in 2005 to continue dancing and eventually started BeDREX. I wanted to have a place for me, my husband and our students to share the joy and happiness of dancing. I wanted others in Hong Kong to find their dreams and nurture their excitement with us.

2. Aside from running a successful dance studio and being a working parent, you’ve also worked with notable names in the music industry such as GEM, AGA, and starred in multiple music videos. What three things have contributed to your success?
  1. Taking time to enjoy every moment.
  2. Standing by other people’s side and thinking: how I can help them?
  3. Being myself throughout every challenge.
3. Can you tell us something most people don’t know about you?

I’m Japanese, but I don’t like sushi or sashimi. In my free time, I watch movies, funny Japanese TV programs, and chill at home drinking beer or wine.

4. You’re an extremely successful dancer and choreographer. What would you say is one human quality that is important in your field?

Appreciation. I am grateful for what I have right now, and truly appreciate the people around me.

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5. Your studio name stands for “believe in dreams and excitement”. What piece of advice would you give to people pursuing what they love?

The things that excite you aren’t random. They are connected to your purpose. Follow that feeling and you will see you’re one step closer to your dreams and goals.

6. What financial tips would you give them? How did financial planning support your journey?

Save the same amount of money every month, even if it’s just HKD2,000. Set targets and invest if possible.

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7. Tell us about an obstacle that you’ve been faced with in your life or career. How did you overcome it and how do you continue to find the balance?

There have been a lot of obstacles in my life. It’s never been easy to make things happen, but I’ve always trusted in what I want… and I am persistent in making it happen. When I’m working on a goal, I put all of my energy into it. I think about it every day and eventually I find a way to make it happen.

8. Can you tell us what it’s like working and choreographing with your husband and fellow dancer? Do you have any words of wisdom for those who also work with their family?

Sometimes it’s fun, sometimes it’s hard. It’s easy to forget to appreciate each other and we can sometimes talk rudely, without compassion (especially when the job gets busy or hard to handle!). But when you’re working with family or someone you’ve been in a long-term relationship with, you always need to remember how important they are to you. Approach everything with compassion and consideration for their point of view. No matter how long you’ve been working together, or how close the relationship is, don’t forget to thank each other.

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9. How do you see your career and lifestyle evolving? What are you most excited about?

When I began dancing, my dream was to dance on big stages or in front of cameras. When I moved to New York and Hong Kong, that was the goal. But now it’s evolved into wanting to share the dance space with others. I want to help others find their joy through dancing and support the younger generation of dancers in making their dreams come true.

I’m most excited by watching people come to BeDREX to dance, leaving with smiles on their faces. We want to give them a space to have fun, sweat, release stress, refresh and find out how happy they are when they dance.

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10. Complete the following sentences:

Growing up, I believed money was... not the most important thing and not difficult to make.

Now I view money as... a tool to be adventurous and experience more. Work with your heart and money will come to you.

To me, financial empowerment means... to keep our dreams on.

My favourite Mox feature is... to be able to earn real CashBack while spending.

Mox Masterclass: Get Funky with Haruna Kunisawa

Mox Bank is combining forces with Haruna Kunisawa – dancer, celebrity choreographer and founder of BeDREX to bring you our latest Masterclass. As a respected dance teacher and talented choreographer, you can trust you’re in great hands with Haruna!

Ready to learn from the pro? Sign up now! We’ll see you in the studio!

Inline 5 Masterclass EN

Space is limited, so open a Mox account to sign up through the dedicated link in the Mox app under “Discover Tab” > “Mox Masterclass” now!

Remarks: The views expressed by individuals featured in this interview are the personal views of such individuals and do not necessarily reflect, and, should not be taken as the views of Mox Bank Limited.

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22 Apr 2021
9 min read