Teacher's Biographies

Heartsong's Owners and Co-Directors Sheila and Tony Magalhaes are proud of the strengths and talents of the teachers who offer their many gifts and talents to the center. Each teacher brings their own bright shining light, their passions, their trainings, their experience and their unique voices to the classroom. Sheila and Tony are honored to introduce "Team Heartsong" to the community, and grateful for the depth of support and the longevity of their commitment to the deeper practices of yoga.

Sheila Magalhaes

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Sheila's first Kripalu certification was completed in 1993, and she also completed her 500 hour Advanced Professional Kripalu Certification and received her advanced level certification from Beryl Bender Birch in the practice of Classical Ashtanga Yoga from The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute. She is a faculty member and hosts Beryl's 200 and advanced 300 hour yoga teacher training programs at Heartsong. As a “lifelong East Longmeadow gal” she has been teaching for over 25 years, in the studio, local schools, community and corporate settings. Sheila feels lucky to have found the benefits of yoga and meditation back in the early 90’s when she was a new mom, and feels that these practices were incredibly helpful in navigating what felt like a "stressful demanding complicated life” at the time. She is thrilled to see these ancient eastern complimentary health care practices become more mainstream, and is passionate about teaching others to go out into the world and help people find peace in the busyness of their 21st century lifestyles, cultivating radiant health and well being in body, mind and spirit.  With the mantra "More Yoga More Love" Heartsong has graduated nearly 100 students who are teaching all over Western MA; to all ages, in underserved populations, those with disabilities, and all who are curious to learn.

Tony Magalhaes

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Tony received his Kripalu Yoga teaching certification in 1999, and continued his studies in classical Ashtanga Yoga. (Sometimes called the 8 Limbed Path) Tony recognizes that his yoga practices help to create balance and equanimity into his life, and while he is always the "behind the scenes" backbone of the studio, he is involved in a variety of activities outside the center as a self-employed electrician and an adult league soccer player. Tony, Sheila and their (now adult) children Nick and Libby consider Heartsong to be a part of their extended family, and an integral part of their community. You can find him in his favorite spot, "at the desk" most weeekends, meeting and greeting our students and friends.

Beth Wadden

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Beth received her first Kripalu certification in 1995, and completed her 500 hour advanced training there in 2005. She brings vitality and joy into her classes while emphasizing the physical benefits of each yoga pose along with the strength that develops within. Her passion for connection to the cycles and the seasons of the natural world around us is also an important part of her teaching. She reminds the students that all are interconnected, to the world around us and to one another. Beth was honored to assist the August monthlong Kripalu Center yoga teacher training for 25 years, until Covid arrived.  Beth retired from teaching reading for 48 years in the Enfield Public Schools.  She is Sheila's mom and one of Heartsong's most dedicated supporters.

Jane Anable

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Jane has been practicing yoga since 1965 and teaching at Heartsong Center since 1998.  She is certified at the advanced 500 hour professional level of Kripalu Yoga and was trained as a Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy Practitioner. Jane continually explores new techniques to enhance not only her teaching, but her personal practice as well. Jane also teaches a diverse blend of meditation techniques drawn from her experience of Transcendental, Vipassana and mindfulness meditations. For Jane, the joy of teaching is found in watching students' lives become enriched as they reach deeper levels of themselves through their experiences both on and off the mat.

Lisa Zizza

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Lisa has been a student at Heartsong Yoga Center since 1997. She became a certified Atma Yoga teacher in 2000 and is a proud Advanced Level graduate of Heartsong and Beryl Bender Birch's The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute, and is an ongoing long time student of yoga with her teachers. Her background and training is a synthesis of several schools of yoga, including the traditions Atma, Ashtanga, and Kripalu styles of yoga. Lisa also studies Mindfulness Meditation in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh. Her teaching style is a wonderful blend of all of her practices. She brings her skills and passions to Heartsong and its students balancing both the strength and the softness of yoga. Lisa is equally comfortable guiding experienced Ashtangis and brand new students of all traditions, and she is also proud to be an adjunct professor at Bay Path College.

Lauri Deary

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Lauri began her yoga experience as a student of Kripalu and Astanga yoga in 1996. In 2003, she completed a 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training with Todd Norian. Since then, she has continued her yoga training and studied with many Certified Anusara yoga teachers. She brings a sense of lightheartedness to her classes, connecting students with their unique inner radiance. With an emphasis on self-honoring, acceptance, and joyful celebration that is at the heart of all Heartsong practices, Lauri's students learn to express balance in spirit, heart, mind and body. Lauri is passionate about sharing the therapeutic aspects of yoga.

Joanne Tardibuono

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Joanne has been a student of Kripalu Yoga for many years. After 25 years in the corporate world, she took an early retirement in 2000. Because of her passion for health and fitness she was approached to become a teacher in the community. She holds a certificate for Group Exercise Instructor and several other training certificates from both the YMCA and AFAA. In June of 2003 she completed her Kripalu Yoga Teacher training. Joanne is continually taking courses in the fields of health and fitness and is working towards her 500 hour Advanced Teacher Training. As a teacher, she brings the many gifts she has personally received from Yoga with the hope of sharing these with her students.

Steve Sampson

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Steve has been practicing yoga since 2009. He originally began his asana practice as a supplement to his love of cycling, but he quickly developed a passion for the philosophy and broader practices of yoga. Steve is a 200-hour graduate of the Beryl Bender Birch's The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute, with Sheila Magalhaes here at Heartsong Yoga. Steve is also a 300-hour graduate of the Summers School of Yin Yoga, training under the direction of Josh Summers and Terry Cockburn in the practices of yin yoga and meditation. Steve is a Certified Accessible Yoga Teacher, training under the direction of Sarah Helt. He also completed "Yoga for the Rest of Us" teacher training with Peggy Cappy, a program of adaptive yoga.  Steve strives to blend humor and philosophy to help others experience the physical and mental wellbeing of yoga practice and mindfulness in a fun and safe environment. A life-long resident of the Pioneer Valley, Steve earned degrees in management and law from Western New England College, which he puts to use at his day job in corporate America.

Amy Joseph

Amy Joseph was drawn to yoga in 2001 after having her two children. With a background as an APEX certified aerobic teacher in the mid 90's, she was looking for a way to relieve the stress of being a new mom when she found yoga. Amy began practicing yoga at Heartsong and fell in love with the Ashtanga yoga system right away. Sheila introduced her to Beryl Bender Birch, and she completed her 200 hour teacher training program with the Give Back Yoga Foundation's teacher training program, The Hard & The Soft, with Beryl Bender Birch and Sheila, here at Heartsong Yoga in 2014. Amy has taken workshops and trainings with many wonderful teachers including David Swenson, Nancy Gilgoff, and Christine Hoar. She maintains a strong and disciplined daily asana practice and hopes to share the knowledge she has gained with her students, in her unique joyful and happy teaching style. Amy resides in the beautiful community of Hampden with her supportive husband Lou and her two teenage children Anthony and Nina.

Cat Rasid

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Cat Rasid has been a student of yoga since 1999.  Kripalu inspired, she received her 500 hour Advanced Level training with Beryl Bender Birch's The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute, with Sheila, here at Heartsong Yoga in 2019.   She has a passion for beginners. Her loving kindness combined with focused attention on self-care and self-discovery welcomes students of all levels. Cat believes that all is possible with the breath.  Taking a Chair Yoga class with Cat is a beautiful transformative experience, for all ages with any limitations. We call her the Queen of Compassion.

Janine Boland

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Janine was introduced to yoga at a pivotal point in her life. She attended a Heartsong 40 Day Life Makeover program in 2011 and was truly transformed. With a background in training for a manufacturing company, she knew she wanted to use her experience and talents to bring happiness to others. Her dedicated personal practice led her to Kripalu, the yoga of compassion. She completed her 200 hour teacher training at Kripalu School of Yoga in 2013. Janine strives to offer a safe, supported yoga experience infused with heart, humor and humility to students of every fitness level.

Kathleen Gormally

Kathleen’s classes are a reflection of honoring the traditional lineage of yoga and her love of exploring movement and strength building. She is a 500 hour graduate of  Beryl Bender Birch's The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute, with Sheila Magalhaes here at Heartsong Yoga, and studied Restorative Yoga with Gail Boorstein Grossman on Cape Cod. She is continuing her education through a monthly intensive with Kimberly Dahlmann of Yoga East and yearly workshops with other senior teachers. Kathleen is known for her patience and quick smile always there to bring a sense of comfort and ease to the class. When she is not teaching yoga; she loves hiking, gardening, reading and taking care of her four children.

Ronnie Zizza

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I’m not really sure if I found yoga or if yoga found me.
I have always been a fitness enthusiast, having spent most of my adult life in the gym, but after multiple muscle tears and arthritic joints, combined with the emotional trauma of a divorce, I decided that there must be something better, so I decided to give yoga a try. In 2008 I took my first yoga class and the rest is history. Yoga helped me achieve the mental clarity to move on with my life, while allowing my body to stay in-shape in a non-destructive way. I so truly believe in the power of yoga to heal both the body and mind and I’m honored to be able to share that love with others so that they too might find peace, happiness and fitness. Ronnie received his 200 hour training in Braintree MA with Chakra Power Yoga. 

Jeff Conti

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I have always been intrigued by yoga, and after a moderate health scare I decided it was time! I was not feeling good mentally, physically and was looking for a more meaningful way to spend time and energy. As a tradesmen for over 27 years I feel yoga is the best physical therapy to help unwind the years of conditioning my body has endured.  As a musician, I have found numerous benefits from regular yoga practice and breath work showing up in guitar playing.  In 2020 I completed my 200 hour training with The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute and Sheila, here at Heartsong, and my passion is to share with others how yoga helped me, and can help them to balance ‘“The Hard and Soft” of life.  On the mat I enjoy balance practice , inversions and mindful navigation of vinyasas.

Michelle Scheuer

Michelle took her first yoga class right here at Heartsong Yoga She was welcomed into the class with a fellow student telling her that "her life would never be the same"...and she was right!  She completed her 200 hour Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training at Samadhi Yoga in 2008 and in 2022 she did another 200 hour training with the integrative practice of "Hard & The Soft Yoga, the Heart of Heartsong and the Power of Flow" with Sheila and Executive Director Beryl Bender.  Her classes offer students of all ages and abilities the chance to experience a calm, meditative approach to their practice, encouraging them to live in a more "physically aware body" while developing gratitude and acceptance for where they are.  Her classes focus on allowing students to find balance in body, mind and spirit. Michelle specializes in Yin Yoga at Heartsong and you will find her supporting our gentle yoga classes both as a teacher and as student.