The Amateur Ballroom was slightly smaller than the Amateur Latin but it did not disappoint. From the start we saw talent oozing out of it. In the end six couples were called for this final and right from the start we had some excitement. When couple 284, Vladyslav Komelkov & Alexandra Sevastianova took to the floor for a quickstep dance-on, he took off almost without a partner, or should we say with her lagging behind. Soon they came down tumbling, almost under the judges’ feet, head first out of control into a nasty fall. You could here a big “Ahhhh” from the audience and then a startled Vladyslav got up and helped his partner up and continued with the quick demonstration. We really liked this couple and in the semifinal we thought they might fight for a third or higher placement, but once the fall happened we knew it would be an uphill battle for them to reach the top. In any type of ballroom dancing, one of the objectives is that the couple stays vertical unless doing a lift or a trick of some kind. If you end up sideways, laying down on the floor without meaning to, it does not do you any good, especially in the Ballroom category.
As we mentioned earlier, we really enjoyed Vladyslav Komelkov & Alexandra Sevastianova who placed fourth overall 4,3,4,4,4. Unfortunately, they did not get a good start with the fall during the quickstep dance-on, and so my prediction was right - that did not go well with the judges or perhaps the fact that they are not afraid to move and attack each dance with full characterization might have affected some of the old guard who like ballroom dancing to be subtle and non intrusive. Chuck Danza was their best judge he awarded them 1,1,2,2,1. We are not sure we would have awarded them first in that many dances, but we did think this couple was very skilled and full of talent.
Fifth in this Amateur Ballroom event went to Stefan Badea & Madalina Varlam 5,5,5,6,5, and sixth went to David Sholkov & Nicole Beri.
Second overall was awarded to Pavel Lebedev & Dinara Khayrulina 2,3,2,2. On this occasion we found their work very organized and easy to understand. We would have loved to see a little more subtlety in their choreography and approach, but we were happy to see great improvement from them. Third went to Vladimir Popov & Erin Marie 3,2,4,4. As you can see from the marks the judges did not know where to put this new partnership. We really enjoyed their performance it was full of subtleties that only a couple of their experience can get away with. It is unfortunate that perhaps the judges did not see it this way, but this is a brand new partnership and we look forward to seeing great things from this couple to come.
Fourth in this excellent Smooth final was awarded to Christian Lightner & Kia Kenny 4,4,3,3. Fifth place was given to Sharon Levit & Milena Koralova 6,5,6,5, and sixth place went to Patrick Derry & Anastasia Trutneva 5,6,5,6.
With this La Classique Du Quebec concluded for 2019!
Lights, Camera, Action!
Attending La Classique Du Quebec is as glamorous as being at a Hollywood premiere, the French “Candies” have always dressed up to the nines, and with the simple yet rich decor and sophisticated décor, last night was a night to remember.
The Amateur Latin was as always a major hit of the night but the professional categories as well as some of the Pro/Am categories were not far behind.
This is only a sidebar comment and not in the least a reflection on the couples’ work because we know they all work super hard to prepare for a competition of this caliber, but in a few cases we think the judges missed their mark.
Take a look, for example, at couple 312 their last names being Maslanka/Budniak. For us this couple should have made this final easily. Their subtlety and quality we would consider very high standard, but as I said we were not the judges and perhaps we liked them so much we just looked at them more than the others. Nevertheless, we were very surprised and shocked they did not make this grand final, and there was perhaps at least one more couple, I cannot recall their name and number now, that could have easily made over one or two of the finalists.
Not shocked but happy that second place went to Canada’s neighbor the USA with Pasha Stepanchuk & Gabriella Sabler taking second place overall with these marks 2,1,2,2,1, we continue to be great fans of this couple but last night, for us, some of Gabriella’s outfits have perhaps too much movement. We would have loved to see more of her and not that of the dress. With the style of the judging panel last night, perhaps if they would have seen more of her they might have captured the prize. Pasha was perhaps the best man on the floor with few frills just good, solid dancing, we really appreciate his effort.
I was a little disappointed to see Misha Finkelstein & Yulia Ishchak placed fifth overall 6,6,4,6,3. As you can see from their final marks the judges did not know what to do with them. This was perhaps not one of their best performance especially for Yulia who seemed a little flushed at times, but still we though it good enough to place a bit higher. Sixth were Nikita Vasilenko & Olivia Agranovich 5,5,6,5,5. In some ways their marks on first look might seem better than Misha & Yulia’s, but if you look closely the 4 and 3 helped.
In the Pro/am Rhythm categories we had a day of excellent quality.
As we mentioned before, last night was glamorous and we look forward to what tonight will bring with the Amateur Ballroom, Pro Smooth and Latin scheduled to be a hit!
Canada, a Very Inclusive Place!
Yesterday here at La Classique Du Quebec it was all about the Pro/Am Smooth and we are not kidding!
Heat after heat was loaded with a huge, contested amount of couples, competing at all levels and all categories in this style that has basically taken off here in Canada. It now requires a full day of competition. We also had a few Rising Star Division in both the Amateur and the Professional and we will mention those in passing, but first to the Pro/Am Smoothies here in Canada.
The “A” Categories were nothing to write about with one or two entries at the most, but in the “D”, “B”, and “E” divisions the work was totally cut out for the judges.
The “B” category was also a fantastic competition and this division went to Nadia Sicilia w/ Christopher Panasuk and she won all dances. Second in all dances went to Olga Cauja w/ Volvik Edouard, leaving third to Carole Simmons W/ Patrick Derry 3,4,4,5. Sophie Patenaude w/ Konstantin Rogotskyy was fourth 4,5,5,3; fifth was Amber Mizuki w/ Taras Denysenco 5,3,6,4, and in sixth position was Astrid Pacher w/ Pavel Lebedev 6,6,3,6.
The other professional Rising Star events were okay and here the Rising Star Smooth went to Sharon Levit & Milena Kolarova, the Ballroom went to Mathieu Casavant & Melanie Martin.
It was interesting to see a same sex competition held among all the other competitions. One couple went out to dance the Latin, they were not contested, but it was great to see such a terrific, warm welcome from the audience. As same sex competitions pick up more steam around the world, it is great to see countries open their competitions and venues to them. Business wise as well as being on the right side of history will prove that everyone single people, couples, same sex, or not, they all should be able to take part in this great endeavor.
Tomorrow all Amateur and Professional Open events begin and we will keep you posted on it all.