By Phoenix Naman

Focus On Enmore with DUTI Studios 


In episode five of Focus On, we sit down with Mathew Mizyed, the founder of DUTI Studios in Newtown, who is on a mission to make Sydney dance, along with instructors Miku Ono and Tee Vella. 

Born with rhythm in his bones, Mathew knew from a young age that he could dance. In fact, it’s all he ever wanted to do. With a healthy dose of stubbornness, he persisted in the infamously cutthroat industry with a single-minded determination to live his dreams. With passion as his driving force, he’s danced all over the world, choreographing works for commercial and artistic showcases in New York, Los Angeles and the iconic Sydney Fringe Festival. With a wealth of knowledge, skill, and experience behind him, he’s been pouring this passion back into his local community since opening the studio in 2015.  

An industry-based dance training facility offering a fusion of contemporary, commercial and street-style classes for adults at all levels, DUTI was founded with inclusion at its core. “There’s a community of people that aren’t necessarily dancers that still love to dance”, says Mathew. When he first opened the studio, there weren’t many like it in Sydney, let alone Newtown and those that were established were primarily focused on crafting professional dancers from younger age groups. With DUTI, Mathew was determined to break down these barriers and open up the world of dance to the public.  

Located in a heritage-listed building near the bustling intersection of Newtown and Enmore, DUTI consists of three spacious studios with high, ornate ceilings, full-length mirrors, and polished timber floors. Built in 1902, it was originally established as a dispensary of the Newtown United Friendly Societies, and its key period features have been preserved while the interiors have been repurposed over the years. Staying true to its original function as a community hub, the building now serves as a place for people to come together over the love of dance.  

“When you walk in the hallways you see all the different kinds of people who come in here for different reasons, from professional to social to recreational, in the one place, doing the same thing, forgetting about the world for that hour. There’s something beautiful in that”, says Mathew.  

Much like Mathew, the teachers he has recruited are lifelong dancers passionate about spreading the love of dance as far and wide as possible. Firm believers that the beauty of dance lies in the act itself, not the result, they bring an infectious energy to their classes that allows students to let loose and express themselves in a judgement-free zone. “When you give it a go, it opens up that space for the other students in the room, and you allow it for everyone else,” says Tee.  

A deeply human form of self-expression, dance brings the inner world out. “It is emotion and soul, we can see it in dancing. Really strong emotion, more than language,” says Miku. It’s through this process that Mathew and the DUTI teachers see a physical change in their students from when they walk through the door to when they leave, sweaty and exhausted but freer and more confident in their bodies and their being. It’s what keeps them on their mission to make Sydney dance.  

Inspired to get moving? DUTI offers classes for beginners right through to professionals in one of Newtown’s most iconic heritage buildings. 


This feature is part of a year-long short film series highlighting local heroes of our vibrant inner west community. If you’re an artist, a maker, and entrepreneur, an artisan or a small business operating in a creative space and would like a feature, get in touch.