our Story

Our Name

The word ORAKI comes from the combination of the words “orenda” & “meraki”; words which we feel bestdescribe what we do, and why we do it.

ORENDA (Native American): An extraordinary power believed by the Iroquois Indians to pervade in varying degrees all animate and inanimate natural objects as a transmissible spiritual energy capable of being exerted according to the will of its possessor.

MERAKI (Greek):(V.) To do something with soul, creativity, or love; to put something of yourself into your work.

Oraki is a non-profit [501 (c)(4)] organization founded in 2015, and located in Columbia, SC.

We are committed  to the growth and diversification of the arts and cultural communities of the city. 
Although based in Columbia, SC; with a focus on Latin dancing,
Oraki Dance Company
outreaches to the entire Southeast region and, to a very diverse demographic through
events and collaborations with other dance companies in the area. With events such as the
Columbia Salsa Summit & and the Southeast Salsa Open, we build a platform for local
dancers to be exposed to professional training, by nationally & internationally renowned
instructors and performers which also provides an excellent networking experience for