While at your favorite musician’s concert have you ever wondered, “how did those dancers get to work with them?”. If you’re like me and have, you’ll love Amari Marshall‘s story. Also known as “Monster”, Amari’s career as a professional dancer and choreographer has literally been years in the making. We sat down with Amari to learn more about her story and what her plans are for the future.  


You’re originally from Jacksonville, Florida but made your way to LA to follow your dreams. Take us back to this time when you knew it was time to move to the west coast and talk about your beginnings in LA.  

The moment I knew it was time for me to move to the West Coast was inn 2014. I had a job opportunity from this amazing choreographer/creative director named Free Boogie. He had invited me to LA to become his dance assistant. Mind you, me and my brother Andre had already attempted to move to LA two years prior after performing in the Monsters of Hip-Hop show in the summer of 2012. We only lasted two months!  

 So, you can imagine how terrified I was to go back. This time I moved with my mother Tiffany. God had placed it on our hearts to make the transition together. And over 3 years, our family of six relocated to California from Florida. My beginning years in LA were filled with a lot of ups & downs. I was learning not only how to be a young independent adult, but how to make it in an industry that I really did not know much about. It was literally a whole new world. 

Where did your love of dance come from? Did you realize your passion for it before or after your parents created their own dance company?  

My love for dance came from my older brother Andre; he was my inspiration. Growing up, he was the star dancer. He started when he was five years old and was great at so many things, such as dancing, acting and music. That eventually led to me and Jore’ getting into dance too. 

 I would say I realized my passion for dance after my parents created the Systematic Dance Crew, which was filled with many talented dancers from our community, some of whom have become extremely successful in the entertainment industry. Another person who helped keep the passion alive was my late mentor Kavin Grant. He is the founder of the dance production company ‘A Rhythm Nation’ aka ARN. We call him the Godfather of the Jacksonville Dance Community. I owe him a lot. 

The Renaissance World Tour wasn’t the first time you worked with Beyonce. Tell us about the Bey-Chella performances and how you were able to be a part of it!   

 Bey-Chella! So, me and my sister Jore’ had heard about the Family & Friends Audition through a friend. We immediately hit up our agents, to have them get us on the list. Because of my history with both Chris Grant & Jaquel Knight (The Choreographers for Beychella), I knew we had a good chance of making it into the room.  

Thanks to God we did, and the rest was history or should I say herstory! Being someone who didn’t finish college. The process really felt like a college experience. I just loved being on stage with so many beautiful black people and doing the things that black people do. It was a special treat. 

How did it feel to perform alongside your sister while you two shared the stage with Beyoncé? That feeling had to be indescribable!   

 Honestly sharing that stage with Jorè Marshall is a moment we will cherish for the rest of our lives. It’s cool doing these performances by yourself or with your friends. But it hits differently when it’s with your family – nothing beats it all. We both knew how hard it took for us to get there. So, to do it together was a true testament to never giving up on your dreams. 

Wardrobe: Andrea Lyamah

When you joined the 56 city Renaissance World Tour in 2023, take us back to the moment you knew you would be a part of this experience. What was it like and what was your favorite city to visit?   

Having the opportunity to be a part of the Renaissance World Tour last year was something that I manifested and prayed about! So, when I got the call saying I was picked, it was surreal. RWT was A LOT of work! This was my first tour, so I didn’t know what to expect until it all began. And man, I tell you it swept me off my feet for sure. 

My favorite city to visit was Barcelona. Barcelona was so beautiful to me, I loved everything that we did together as a group and individually. The city felt like Florida but European.  

You’ve mentioned that you had so much fun making memories with everyone doing things outside of the show. Tell us about some of the things you all did and what are your fondest memories from these experiences?   

 One of my favorite memories with my castmates was our boat trip in Barcelona for one of the members birthdays. Boy did we have a time! And it was my first time on a yacht. I was the happiest girl on earth that day. 

Some of my fondest memories were on our tour buses. I loved the long drives after the show. We did nothing but laugh, talk, watch movies, and enjoy the scenery from outside. It was our home on wheels. 

How does it feel to have your first tour as a dancer and choreographer with Beyoncé? What did you expect tour life to be like and what did you learn from this experience?  

I feel extremely blessed to have had my first tour as a dancer and choreographer be for Ms.B. Not many people can say that they have achieved that. It was always a huge goal of mine which I worked super hard for years to accomplish. I thank Chris Grant whom I have known since I was 13 years old, for believing in me and for bringing me onto the team. 

I went on tour with an open mind ready to learn any and everything. Before RWT I had already traveled and taught in over 40 countries by myself. I was no stranger to working jobs that were longer than 3 weeks, but traveling with 400 people for 7 months straight? There’s nothing that can prepare you for that. It taught me a lot about myself and how to have more compassion for people.  

What was your absolute favorite outfit that you wore on the Renaissance World Tour?   

 Hmmm, my top 3 were the Pucci – super cute, I loved the pink Valentino with the fur on our wrist, and the infamous David Koma look. That outfit right there?! Ugh, every time we saw it on the rack, we got so excited. My booty looked so good in it – so fab!  

You became a co-captain for the dancers while on tour with Beyoncé. Take us back to that moment and tell us how this accomplishment felt.   

When I was asked to be co-captain alongside my queen Hannah Douglass, I was super thrilled and honored to know that the team saw me as a leader in that space. It was an emotional moment for sure. Everyone showed me a lot of love and support that day. 

Not only do you provide positive representation for dark skin women, but curvy women also look up to you as well. When did you realize so many people of all backgrounds viewed you in a different light that you’ve never been in before?   

  Beychella is when I started to see the impact that me and my sister were making on the curvy community, and for black women. But it was during RWT when I saw a lot of different people from various backgrounds being moved by my story and by who I was as an artist and a person. 

You’ve mentioned that people have dressed up as you for Halloween. How did it make you feel seeing that and which costume of yours did they emulate?   

Oh my gosh, when I saw people dressing up as me for Halloween, ah! I gagged! The outfit everyone wore was my iconic black leotard, with the diamond fringe across the chest, with the black shades, and thigh high boots! (Shoutout to the RWT wardrobe department!) It warmed my heart seeing so many people remake my “BAWDY” look.  

Your background as a dancer and choreographer is not only with Beyonce. You’ve worked with Rhianna, Janet Jackson, Ciara and many others! Tell us about what projects you worked with them on, and which was your favorite creatively!   

 Rihanna, I had the pleasure of dancing in most of the Savage X Fenty shows, which was creative directed and choreographed by Parris Goebel. With Janet Jackson, I performed with her as a dancer during her Billboard Awards Icon performance. Then she later brought me back to choreograph her music video ‘Made for Now’ alongside the legendary Danielle Polanco. 

 With Ciara, I choreographed & danced her American Music Award Performance. All the projects with Janet Jackson were my favorite. Specifically, because it was heavily afro influenced. My style of dancing is a combination, afro, hip hop, and dancehall. So, when I can do all 3 it’s great. 

Who are a few artists that you’d like to work with in the future? Are you currently working with anyone that you can share with us?   

  A few artists I would love to work with in the future… Chris Brown, Victoria Monet (shout out to her, we’re both Monsters of Hip Hop alumni and she’s fabulous), Kendrick Lamar, Tiwa Savage, Amaarae, Busta Rhymes, and Rema.  

You’ve started your own production company, Amari Monster Experience. How did the idea of having your own company come about and what was challenging about starting it?   

For the longest time I have always produced my own events and visuals. Then it started to get to a place where I was doing these things for other people. I realized I had a passion for it and wanted to start doing it professionally. So that is when AM.X was created. It is a chameleon company here to serve and come alongside you. Where executing your vision is our top priority. Less of us, more of you. The challenge initially was identifying what makes my company stand out from the rest. 

Not only do you professionally dance and choreograph, but you also teach others how to dance through your classes. What do you love most about teaching others and where can people find details on where to take your classes?  

What I love about teaching is being able to see the knowledge and teachings of mine contribute to my students’ success and journey. I love seeing people win whether it’s big or small. To keep up to date with my teaching schedule, make sure to check out my website and/or on my Instagram – @AmariMonster

What’s next for you? Is there anything going on this year you’d like to tell your supporters to look out for?   

I recently transitioned to New York City. So, I am excited to be in a new city with new opportunities awaiting me. This year I will be hosting a huge event in the summer in Jacksonville, FL that I cannot wait to share more about soon. I also always look forward to making more magic with The Councilwomen, an Empowerment Collective of powerful women who are also my sisters. We are storytellers with our bodies to support and elevate women and all of humanity in general.  


Editor In Chief: Prince Chenoa (@princechenoastudio)

Feature Editor: Taylor Winter Wilson (@taylorwinter)

Photographer: Catelyn Richard (@catelynrichardphotography)

Photography Assistant: Courtney Richard  (@courtney.twin1)

Wardrobe Stylist: Mattine Guillaume (@tameyourstyle)

Makeup Artist: Bray Muhammad (@face_beaterr)

Photograph Retoucher: Tyrone Johns (@creativessntls)

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