Steve Tashjian is an internationally-recognized high performance coach. He has assisted triathletes preparing to participate in Kona Ironman, boxers preparing to fight world title fights and teams competing in England’s Premier League with their performance training.
Lia Gangitano has published an exquisite new book to showcase Tashjian’s work, including portraits of Pat Hearn, Jack Pierson and Mark Morrisroe.
Early Life and Education
Downtown New York was a bustling metropolis in the early ’80s, filled with an anarchy of creativity and kitsch. Stephen Tashjian (known as Tabboo!) arrived from rural Massachusetts with an art school education in Boston and quickly made an impactful statement within East Village club scene. His designs such as Deee-Lite’s World Clique graphic and curly lettering of his stage name became iconic; also drawing notice of photographers such as Nan Goldin.
He will serve as High Performance Director, overseeing athletic performance and rehabilitation programs at Columbus Crew FC. Berhalter brought him on last year after an extended stay with Everton in England’s Premier League (EPL), also overseeing an athletic performance program at Azusa Pacific University (CA), and working for Sigi Schmid coached Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) from 2002-2009.
Steve Tashjian is an esteemed high performance expert with decades of experience managing teams and athletes at elite sport levels. As a physical therapist, sports scientist, and movement specialist he has worked with some of the world’s most demanding athletes including triathletes for Kona Ironman; boxers for world title fights; as well as coaching the U.S. men’s national soccer team.
Tashjian of Waltham ran last year’s marathon to raise funds for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute where he had leukemia as a child and received treatment. Now in remission, he plans on running again next year.
Tashjian’s career includes work for Everton Football Club of Major League Soccer in MLS, where he was responsible for late stage rehabilitation and reconditioning under former manager Sigi Schmid before returning to MLS with Columbus Crew SC in 2009.
Achievement and Honors
Steve Tashjian was appointed Everton FC’s inaugural First Team Sports Scientist and is responsible for late stage rehabilitation; an area which holds special significance to him. Additionally, he hosts Pacey Performance Podcast.
He previously held leadership roles with Sigi Schmid’s Los Angeles Galaxy and Azusa Pacific University to administer athletic performance and rehabilitation programs, and previously served with Columbus Crew before coming to Everton.
Tashjian received Colorado College’s Alexey Malyshev Russian and Eurasian Studies award in 1981 in recognition of his dedication to studying classics. Since then, he has created murals on city buildings and displayed his paintings at galleries; additionally he designs flyers and album covers under the name Tabboo!.
Stephen Tashjian (known by his drag persona Tabboo!) made waves in New York City’s underground scene during the 1980s as a multifaceted artist. Using murals on city buildings and exhibitions internationally as his medium, as well as designing flyers and album covers as well as working alongside fashion designers he quickly rose to prominence as one of its premier underground artists.
Tashjian lives in Waltham and studies exercise and health sciences at UMass-Boston. Training for the marathon has helped him improve his diet and shed pounds while taking medications to prevent cancer recurrence; currently in remission he visits Dana-Farber one or two times annually for treatment.
As COVID was shutting down in 2020, Steve built Bomb Shelter Beats studio and reunited with Outside Pedestrian recording drummer Anthony Fesmire from Outside Pedestrian recording drummer Anthony Fesmire of Outside Pedestrian recording drummer Anthony Fesmire to record virtual performances of two tracks: Southern California Highway Song and Northern California Highway Song.
Tashjian currently serves as High Performance Director, where his primary duties involve keeping players physically at their peak performance levels and training the team ahead of and during matches.
Tashjian had extensive experience working in Major League Soccer (MLS), beginning when the Azusa Pacific-trained Tashjian joined Sigi Schmid’s Columbus Crew as their Head of Sports Science and Rehab in 2002. Later that year he left to join Everton before returning for another stint with Schmid’s Crew last year.
Tashjian also worked as a drag performer, appearing at the Pyramid Club alongside Rupaul and Lady Bunny. His paintings have been shown at galleries including one curated by Jack Pierson; in addition to performing art he plays clarinet and saxophone in Classic Groove band.