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About Zarely


ZARÉLY dancewear is created by professional ballet dancers for dancers. ZARÉLY founders Mateo Klemmayer, Ruben Martin and Diego Cruz got to know each other when they were dancers at San Francisco Ballet. Oh, and there was a fourth guy co-founding the company. His name was Christian Jimenez; a former businessman who left his corporate job to focus on this great entrepreneurial adventure.

One thing continued to surprise the three friends during those years as dancers. Even though they were so close to the arts and the creative design sphere, no major ballet brand ever picked up on the styles and trends catering to today’s modern ballet dancer. The three friends had this feeling the mainstream brands never really thought about a dancer’s needs in depth.

The clothing did not seem customized to ballet dancers; considering how much is possible – technologically and creatively – in garment manufacturing production.


Tights have been around since the days of Henry VIII. For dancers they became part of the practice and part of the costume. When tights started to be produced with 100% nylon they were marketed as durable, indestructible and became the standard for dancewear everywhere. By the 1990’s Lycra was added to ballet tights giving dancers the stretch, softness and suppleness they needed. And for the most part, that formula remained until ZARÉLY. What has changed the game is 21st century technology and techniques in collaboration with over 200 dancers and designers to innovate a product that is more than just tights for ballet dancers. The three stages of everyday life for a dancer (rehearsal, performance and recovery) are realized for the first time ever in dancewear. 


It’s all about the look. In that context the first idea was born: Mateo had an idea that was inspired by the Hungarian-French artist, Victor Vasarely, known as ‘The Father of Opt-art’. Vasarely created optical images that transformed flat surfaces into 3D experiences. Like Vasarely's optically complex and illusionistic paintings, ZARÉLY incorporates a series of effects into their designs that cater to the ballet dancer’s aesthetics.

And so, the friends first started to experiment for themselves. How would materials react differently? Reflect differently? How would colors react and reflect differently in different light settings? How can we create the best body-lines possible?

Then the three friends asked their dancer friends all over the world what they thought of their current dancewear and how it needed improving.


Then the 3 friends wear-tested with their dancer friends... and tested...and tested...and tested….and then went on to making the clothing as smart as they could think of...and then tested...and tested...and tested some more. Using compression-techniques, weaving-techniques and many different materials that they sourced from all over the world.

Having been several times around the globe for two years and financially nearly broke, they were finally able to launch a clothing line that they were proud of.

Since then, all the clothing is co-created with ballet dancers from all over the world. With all of our clothing carrying the names of our ballet dancer friends.

(and happily ever after?)


Today we at ZARÉLY are a team of dancers, designers, visual artists, and physiotherapists working together to support your constant search for perfection!

We are the company that took in fashion designers to co-create with ballet dancers for both genres to learn each other's aesthetics.


Who is Vira Kuschenko? Vira is the creative mastermind behind ZARÉLY fashion and activewear. Inspired by her mother’s love of design and sewing, Vira developed a passion for fashion. She inherited her mother’s taste and sense of style. Combined with today’s technology, a classic Art education and an ear toward a client-based outlook to fashion, Vira and ZARÉLY are a dynamic combination. “I’m a big fan of a science-based approach, combined with research, and analysis. I always try to look ahead and use modern technologies. While creating our latest Laser-Cut mini-collection, we used computer programming, which allowed us to experiment with the size and shapes of our prototypes, said Vira. “It is an exciting blend of today’s high tech and the dancer’s input for what can make them look their best.” 


As a former professional ballet dancer and enthusiastic athlete, I know what it is like to be driven by an ultimate goal to push yourself and have the self-discipline to challenge your limits every day.

When I was 15 years old, I saw my first ballet performance and was amazed by the stamina, movement, and strength the dancers displayed.The dancers' jumping so high, flying across the stage, and how they seemed to drift into other worlds made me want to become a professional ballet dancer.

As you can imagine, most ballet teachers told me it was impossible. Starting classes so late in the game, when the rest of my peers had started at least five years earlier, was a goal too hefty to aspire to.

Not only would I have to reconstruct my body but also train my mind, all while catching up with my peers. I understood the extent of my setbacks, yet my curiosity and determination beat all other adversities. I knew I would have to be creative, challenge the traditional learning route, and find other disciplines that would help me gain a performing edge.

I found myself incorporating disciplines like engineering, biology, and even plyometric training into my daily workouts. I cultivated my champion's mentality with psychology and neuroscience.

I scrutinized the techniques of famous jumpers like Michael Jordan and even studied the anatomy of fleas, the species with the highest jump in the planet, to excel in my jumps.

And I must say that after years of hard work and sweat it all paid off. By 25, I was a Soloist at the San Francisco Ballet. I danced with some of the best ballet companies in the world, as well as performed at international Galas on some of the most renowned stages in Asia, Africa, Europe, and the United States.



Mateo, Ruben and Diego met at San Francisco Ballet in 2007. As boys who were into dancing, things were not always easy. It was a long journey from the studio to the stage. Each of them faced many challenges but they were always empowered by the beauty and discipline of dance. Through perseverance, self-esteem and raw will power they each found their way into major ballet companies around the world and one day, ended up together in California.

Since then, they have bonded as colleagues, friends and now business partners changing dancewear one pair of tights at a time.


The idea behind the ZARÉLY brand is simple…how to improve the look of a dancer’s line and optimize the look and feel of tights, leotards and skirts? The answer is: make ballet fashion better through design and technology. What does that do for you? When you look better, you feel better and your motivation starts to increase. When your motivation increases, you work better. When you work better, you improve. And when you improve, your chances for success increase. We wanted to emphasize the beauty of the dancer with extremely high quality products that work as hard as you do.


Victor Vasarely changed the way two dimensional images could look three dimensional. Light and shading could alter the image. With this concept the ZARÉLY design team was able to add shading and light effects to tights and leotard so they could make the dancer wearing them look better…better leg line, better form, better everything. And if the tights were able to include elements of compression…well that was revolutionary!


The three dancers know on a personal level, how sustaining injuries can drastically and quickly change a dancer’s career path. Often it is the end of dream realized. Sometimes it seems like things will never heal and when they do it’s never the same as it was it before. By the book, dancers statistically have one of the highest rates of injuries and illnesses of all occupations. ZARÉLY can’t prevent injuries but their Professional Rehearsal, Performance and Compression tights for dancers and athletes provide recovery systems that can improve and protect the performance cycle so injuries may be less likely to occur.


ZARÉLY developed three degrees of compression tights – Z1, Z2, Z3 – each geared to supporting the arc in the working day life of a dancer. From rehearsal to performance to recovery, there is a pair of tights that will make your legs and line look and feel their best. Design combined with functionality and technology is a new concept to dancewear. ZARÉLY worked with ballerinas and physiotherapists to develop and innovate this concept into all their products. After much testing (238 dancers gave these new tights a try) and feedback, they were able to finalize their product line. And, not everyone knows this, but another perk from ZARÉLY tights is they build CONFIDENCE.


ZARÉLY brings the same design skill, love and care to leotards. Working with top fashion designers and professional dancers, these leotards have a unique signature look and feel. With imported fabrics, and a variety of styles, sleeve lengths, necklines and colors ZARÉLY has the perfect leotard for you.


Complete your look with a skirt. There is nothing better than a beautiful skirt that gives a polished finish to your look. Long or short, skirts can make you your best.


ZARÉLY offers a full range of dancewear for children, teens and adults for both men and women. The demand from dancers for more leg line enhancing clothes inspired our designs for leggings and activewear. The products are created with dancers and designers using the highest quality materials and fabrics. And all items are named after the dancers who helped create them.



ZARÉLY took the time to connect dancers with ballet stars through a live stream interview series on YouTube providing valuable insights and information on everything from bruised toenails to nutrition. Tips and tricks for sore muscles, overcoming stage fright, auditions and so many issues that young dancers face are asked and addressed by the professionals who have experienced these same things. How to build confidence? It starts with humility and being able to put yourself out there and do the things that scare you. Don’t be afraid to fall or fail. Be you. Keep building and growing. ZARÉLY is here to help you get there.


In 2016 ZARÉLY gave people everywhere the opportunity to watch principal dancers from all over the world perform LIVE. The GALA was the first of its kind and was a groundbreaking collaboration between ballet stars and the ZARÉLY team. With 12 hours of programming no one had ever taken on the global mission to unite so many dancers on one stage through a combination of live and taped performances streamed LIVE. It was an enormous success. And another one is coming. Stay tuned. 


Covid-19 changed the world in 2020. ZARÉLY was there to help. ZARÉLY donated 10% of all sales to ballet companies during the early days of the pandemic. They also were the first to introduce worldwide ballet classes (WWBC) where anyone could take a ballet class or get a first class workout from some of the best teachers and coaches in the world. The COVID-19 crisis also gave birth to the launch of MYSENSEI – a digital one-on-one mentor and coaching platform with famous dancers and choreographers under the ZARÉLY umbrella.


Making dance accessible to everyone is part of the mission. Please visit our Blog addressing topics that are important to dancers, parents and students. Things like what foods are good for dancers, how to get the most from classes, what to do and what to expect with injuries and practical advice for today’s dancers and much more. We are here to help support you.



ZARÉLY cares deeply about ethics, quality and giving back. All our dancewear and active wear is made with the best quality fabrics and materials. You can feel it in everything we produce. We know our seamstresses, and they do not use sweatshops. This may make our clothes and products more expensive, but there is no way around this without breaking our ethics.


Our role models and collaborators are dancing for the following companies