Marja Perren was born in Toronto, Canada, to parents who had escaped Macedonia when it was under communist rule. She was raised in a home filled with family, music and culture, where visitors were always made welcome. As a child, she loved the world of storytelling. Her fondest memories are of being in a magical world, performing her own characters in front of her grandmother, her biggest fan, and listening to her tales of the old world.
Marja was highly intrigued by these stories, and before long, writing became a passion and constant in her life. Her writing ranged from poetry during her peewee years, to journaling in her teens, to creating children’s tales of her own as an adult.
Both Dasha Flash and the Dasha Flash Foundation are direct reflections of Marja’s upbringing. The kind hospitality she remembers her family offering to all and the creative environment she was exposed to inspired her to blend the two together: community-based creative acts of kindness for the Foundation, and an appealing character who is able to blend creativity and kindness.
To Marja, Dasha Flash is an icon representing the impact that creativity can have not only on the learning ability of children but also on the development of their values. This belief is strongly reflected in the storytelling of the Dasha Flash book series and in the Dasha Flash Foundation’s mission.
Marja is devoted to working with children, through community outreach initiatives, to develop their abilities and to inspire in them an openness to art and good deeds. She has journeyed through North America to carry the Foundation’s message to schools. She also aspires to continue her travel to other continents to do the same.
Marja has a degree in business management from Ryerson University. A marketing major, she was the recipient of the Outstanding Student Award, presented by the Broadcast Research Council. Soon after obtaining her degree, she continued her studies at the University of California, with a concentration in creative writing, and, later, she studied film production and performing arts at prominent institutes in Los Angeles, including the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute and the Jeffrey Marcus Acting Studio. Her creative career has taken her from front of camera, to the stage, to behind the scenes as director and producer.
Marja loves to share her time between her hometown, Toronto, Ontario and Southern California, where it’s a “little” bit warmer in the winter and where there are many sun-filled activities to enjoy, and great friends.