Born Deneen Millner, she named herself “Farasha” after visiting a butterfly sanctuary outside of Boston. Her search for authentic self-expression led her to live in New York City and Massachusetts as she became a professional belly dancer, which was the fulfillment of one of her dreams. Farasha then moved to Las Vegas in 2002, after she landed a contract performing at the Aladdin's Dessert Passage. She then was contracted to perform all over Las Vegas, including Caesars Palace, and numerous corporate and private events. She soon established herself as an internationally acclaimed belly dancer, performing in the countries of Japan and Egypt. She also produced a mermaid-inspired cabaret show, La Sirene Lounge in Las Vegas, which was a huge success.
Farasha is now on a mission to fulfill a lifelong yearning to embody the spirit of the mermaid, the legendary siren of the sea. From her earliest days of childhood, Farasha loved the ocean and spent every possible moment dreaming by the sea. A sensitive, creative child who grew up on the California coast in Ventura County, she imagined being transformed into a sea creature who flourished in the underwater realms where there was race and gender equality; where children would be safe and secure from bullying at school. Thus, she created a magical underwater utopian world she named, “Myrthia.”
Although as an adult, Farasha loved to read about the myths from around the world, it was the magic and sensuality of the mermaid myth, especially the African diaspora’s powerful Mermaid Goddesses, Mami Wata, Yemaya and La Sirene, from which she drew her greatest inspiration. She fantasized about dancing underwater with her mermaid body and tail, and often referred to herself as “Desert Siren.”
Then, in the summer of 2011, she attended MerCon at Las Vegas' Silverton hotel and met her tribe of “merfolk.” Here was a group of women making a living as professional mermaids! Since she had been an excellent swimmer since the age of 5, she saw it as a natural progression from belly dancer to mermaid. The undulations are the same, the grace and strength of the movements are the same, and both are powerful yet fluid.
"I've always used the element of water to explain to my dance students how their bodies should look and feel, and for them to imagine they were in water, a mermaid or a dolphin. The complete balance of resistance and grace," Farasha explains. It was obvious to her that this was her true path.
Her latest incarnation, Mermaid Farasha, the belly dancing Desert Siren, is on a mission to empower women and children to believe that whatever you dream can become a reality. It just takes unwavering faith in yourself! No matter how different you are, there's room for you to sparkle and make your own unique wave on this planet.
Farasha has appeared in ABC's Reality show "True Beauty" and has also opened for Lebanese singer Wael Koufury's concert and is a featured dancer in IAMED's "Stars of Bellydance" DVD. Her unique teaching style has been covered in publications such as Fitness Rx, Las Vegas Revue Journal, Luxury Las Vegas, and Summerlin Magazine. She has been a guest instructor for the Boston Ballet's "Taking Steps" program, Las Vegas' own Belly Dance Intensive and currently teaches at the JW Marriott Resort’s beautiful Spa Aquae studio in Summerlin, Las Vegas.
Her qualifications are:
Naui Scuba Certified
AHA CPR/First Aid Certified
Professional Belly Dancer/Instructor
Singer~ Current Opera Student
Performs with a swimmable silicone tail
Farasha is available for both land and water performances for charities, corporate events, birthday parties, mermaid sightings, pool side events, aquariums, modeling, children’s book readings, weddings and wherever else a mermaid will astound and inspire.