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Some Like it HOT! Report by Tibor Kerekes, Supershag
Video by Supershag
It might be freezing outside but sure enough it is hot inside the ballroom! That's the way that La Classique Du Quebec deals with the weather in Montreal. And of course I wasn't only talking about the temperature. The energy that people create and the atmosphere that is beautifully set in the ballroom with plenty of light and great sound spiked with colorful flowers is a signature for what Meryem Pearson and Daniel Heroux put on for this event. "Wives are people who feel they don't dance enough" It started the weekend with the Pro-Am Smooth division followed with some great amateur dancing. While most competitions hold to the very end to have a show by some of the best couples in the world, here they start out with a big bang. The evening session featured a five-dance show by Sergey Surkov and Melia. I've been at this comp a few times. This time it is very visible to me that pro-am dancing is growing in Canada. Friday was the Rhythm division for them. The evening featured the Amateur Latin Championship that started out with 27 couples. There were no surprises in the results. The judges were clearly agreeing on the marks.
 
6th Adam Hathazi - Morgana Lakatos - Hayward 66666
5th Ron Garber - Liza Garber 55555
4th Daniils Kutuzovs - Maria Shalvarova 44444
3rd Tal Livshitz - Ilana Kesselman 33333
2nd Morten Loewe - Roselina Doneva 22222
1st Troels Bager - Ina Jeliazkova 11111
 
Also Friday night were the Open Professional Rhythm and Standard events. The results:
 dd-Azamat and Kateryna 11111
Pro Rhythm
5th Mathieu Casavant - Melanie Martin 55555
4th Dayan Mantecon Roldan - Kyra Kalweit 44444
3rd Egor Shalvarov - Alla Profatilova 33333
2nd Ilya and Mandy Velednitskiy 22222
1st Azamat Evgamukov - Kateryna Angelone 11111
 dd-Marat and Alina 11112
Pro Standard
6th Mechyslav Pavlyur - Gemma Arnold 66666
5th Pavel Lebedev - Tatiana Mescheryakova 55555
4th Ronen Zinshtein - Mariam Izmaylova 44444
3rd Richard Tonizzo - Claire Hansen 33333
2nd Anton Lebedev - Anna Borshch 22221
1st Marat Gimaev - Alina Basyuk 11112
 
Now you know why I said that the judges agreed on the marks. Will be back with more info and results soon.

Ballroom Outshines Rhythm at CA Open Saturday The Open Pro Ballroom was the much stronger of the 2 pro divisions last night at CA Open.  "There are shortcuts to happiness, and dancing is one of them"
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In the final, it was a two-way race for 1st between two of the nation’s best, Artem Palkhotnyi & Inna Berlizyeva and Mikhail Avdeev & Olga Blinova.  Today the race was more one-sided than it has been in the past and Artem & Inna won all dances, each with the majority of 1st places.  The closest was the waltz that they won by 9 firsts to 6.    No other couple took any first places except the top 2.  So were Artem & Inna really in tip top form or was it Mikhail & Olga who were not at their best?  You’ll have to wait for the full coverage in print or online to get our opinion. 3rd today went to Denis Kutepov & Lesya Sinitsa and we thought they also had a very strong showing.  They were 3rd in all dances.  We were also impressed with the style and fluidity of 4th placed Igor Colac & Roxanne Milotti and they were 4th in all dances.  Taking all the 5’s were Robert Nemiro & Olga Tsikalyuk and 6th in this strong final went to Michael Towliszew & Tiffany Fung. dd-P1010179The Rhythm did not rise to the challenge.  We enjoyed the performance of Ivan Dishliev & Marieta Nedyalkova who won all dances, but felt they were strongly challenged by the runners-up, Jonathan Chen & Nadine Messenger.  3rd were Dustin Donelan & Kristen McCloskey, 4th Pierro Della Santini & Allesandra Gonzalez, 5th Tommy Belmontez & Jessica Holty and 6th C.J & Jenny Lynn Gomez.  Giocomo Steccaglia & Melissa Dexter will offer their comments in Dance Beat soon. Just before the Rhythm division began it was time to say a fond farewell to the much loved team of Jason & Sveta Daly, former US Pro Rhythm Finalists who chose to make their retirement official in front of their home crowd here at the California Open. dd-P1010174 They danced a beautiful bolero and thanked their many friends and supporters.  (The full letter will appear in Dance Beat soon)."Never give a sword to a man who can't dance." The evening began with 3 rounds of the Amateur Latin, with some skillful couples and others who had much enthusiasm but little experience.  The winners won all dances and they were Denys Samson dd-P1010162& Yuliya Nikitebko representing England.  They are tall and elegant and certainly were the most eye-catching couple in the competition.  We were particularly impressed with the runners-up, Phillip Kudryatsev & Ashley Goldman who have improved tremendously since their move to California.  3rd tonight were Trey & Hope Jackson who are technically strong but lack characterization at this point.  4th fell to Umar Diallo & Natalya Devitskaya, 5th to Teleryck Ianakiev & Natella Devitskaya and 6th to Parker Lynn & Kristina Tieken. For the pro-ams it was Latin day ans we felt these were the strongest of the open scholarships.  The A was an especially strong final.  Cheyenne Murillo w/ Sasha Althukov won all dances and was clearly ahead in our view.  2nd in all was Brittni Gonzalez w/ Radomir Pashev and 3rd was Natalia Zhukova w/ Kiril Nitkin from Russia.  Look for a full report on this division in Dance Beat – with perhaps some views that differed from the final results. The Open B winner was Svetlana Van Tessel w/ Andrey Tarasov and she won all dances.  2nd fell to Kimberly Bolourtchi w/ Alex Borodko 5,2,3,3,2 and 3rd to Cindy Hwang w/ Nikolai Voronovich 3,3,2,4,3.  Connie Buckley w/ Leonid Proskurov won all dances in the Open C.  2nd in all was Rhonda Lynch w/ Stephen McCann and 3rd was Tammy Knight w/ Oleksil Lytvyn 3,3,3,4,3. Eugene Katsevman & Maria Manusova were on hand to perform their electrifying and fast-paced show that received several standing ovations from the appreciative audience.

Not As You Might Expect!
Friday night at CA Open Last night we saw the first of the Open Pro events and although one roughly as we expected, the other one did not.
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The surprise for us came in the Open Latin.  Debuting tonight was former US Finalist, Yegor Novikov with new partner, Tetyana Olynyk.  The question was, what would the judges decide.  Well, there certainly wasn’t much doubt about the winners – Andrei Kazlouski & Asta Sigvaldadottir received the vast majority of the first places and easily won all dances.  dd-P1010153But it was not to be Yegor & Tetyana’s night to be second.  While they did receive a number of 2nd placements in each dance, it was never enough and the majority of judges placed them lower.  Finally their placements were 4,4,4,4,4 – obviously placing them 4th overall.  Was this too low?  You’ll have to read Dance Beat soon to find out what we thought and Martin Lamb will also give his thoughts on this division. But let’s not write off the other 5 couples in this great final.  They were all great and it was a nightmare for the judges.  The rapidly rising Vitalii Proskurin & Evgenia Shatilova took 2nd overall 2,3,3,2,2.  We thought this was a close race with 3rd placed, Andrey Tarasov & Yulia Kuznetsova 3,2,2,3,3.  Evgeniy Likachev & Mariya Levina took all the 5th  placements, Oleg Astakhov & Olivia Wesolowska were 6th 6,6,7,7,6 and Simeon & Kora Stoynov closed the final, 7,7,6,6,7.
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As we said, the other pro event, the Open Smooth was a little more predictable.  Nick Cheremukhin & Viktorija won all dances tonight.  We did think the runners-up, Kris Suakjian & Brianna Haft put up a good fight and have improved in basic technique a lot, but they had to be content with 2nd in all dances.  The closest race was for 3rd and that required a Rule 11 tiebreak that fell to David & Natalie Shulz 4,3,4,3 over Kyle & Allie Spinder 3,4,3,4.  Sergiy Smolin & Anna Tomasini were 5th 6,5,5,5 and Alex & Jessi Allion were 6th 5,6,6,6.  Beth Knoll will give her thoughts on this division in Dance Beat soon. dd-P1010147The largest event of the night was the Amateur Ballroom, much swelled by the inclusion of many couples from BYU.  It was a strong final with the win going to the tall and stately Andrei & Veronika Ends – they won all dances.  We really enjoyed the dancing of the runners-up, Ruslan Kalyuzhnyy & Ksenia Sovenko who were 2nd in 4 dances and tied 2nd in the quickstep.  The other half of that tie was 3rd placed, Jordan Quintana & Grace Wang 3,3,3,3,2T – a fiery partnership that we also enjoyed.  4th in all were Tyler Wilson & Annie Seeley, 5th Dan Manea & Mia Hu (5,6,5,5,6), 6th Casey Treu & Kayci Kirkham (6,5,6,6,5). Big congratulations to Dmytdd-P1010143ry Dmytrenko & Cheyenne Murillo who won both the Under 21 and the Youth Latin divisions – both massive events. Of the Open Pro-Am Scholarships, danced in the late afternoon, the largest was the C and this went to Deborah Errico w/ Dariusz Michalski and she won all dances.  2nd went to Sally He w/ Enzo Zappia 2,2,3,2,2 and 3rd to Alex Hu w/ Olga Tsikalyuk 3,4,2,4,3T.  Melonie Krumer scored her second Open win of the weekend taking the Open A with Max Sinitsa and winning all dances.  2nd was Rebecca Kuhn w/ Andrea Feraci, again in all dances and Machiko Fuji w/ Alex Muradasilov was 3rd.  Alexandra Michel w/ Victor Veyrasset won the Open B, placing 1,2,1,2,1.  It was a close race and taking 2nd was Lily Chang w/ Sergey Kiselev, 2,1,2,1,2T.  3rd went to Ling Ma w/ Edgar Gasjuns 3,3,3,3,2T.

Stars Rising at CA Open The first of the professional events were held yesterday at CA Open – Rising Star divisions in Smooth, Ballroom and Latin. Kyle & Allie Spinder ran away with the Smooth taking all 9 first places from the judges in every dance.  After them it was definitely tighter.  Slava & Lara Kostianets, a tall, elegant couple from CA, new to us, took 2nd with 2,3,2,2.  3rd, but with the odd placements of 5,5,3,3 were Sergey Smolin & Anna Tomasini.
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We felt the Latin was perhaps the most exciting division of the night, with several truly rising stars contesting the final.  The winners were Vitalii Proskurin & Evgenia Shatilova, but they did not have everything their own way.  They placed 1,2,1,1,1 with Evgeny Likachev & Mariya Levina taking 2nd with 2,1,2,2,2.  Vitalii & Evgenia’s best marked dance was the cha cha, where they took 6 of the 9 1st places.  3rd, placing 5,3,3,3,3 were Oleg Astakov & Olivia Wesolowska.
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dd-P1010138The Ballroom was also quite a close race, but the win went to another new couple to us, Evgeniy Mayorov & Olga Lisovskaya from Nevada who won 4 dances and placed 2nd in quickstep.  Taking quickstep were Simeon & Kora Stoynov.  They were 2nd in the remaining dances.  The judges were fairly evenly split between these 2 couples.  Slava & Lora added a 3rd place here to the 2nd they received in the Smooth (3,3,3,3). The Pro-Ams competed in Rhythm today and many of the heats were highly contested.  Unfortunately, the Open Scholarship did not attract huge numbers, but the quality of the dancing was high.  The largest of the divisions was the Open C.  Hope Huber w/ Troy Baeton won all dances and we thought definitely showed improvement in this style.  2nd went to Penelope Rostad w/ Nikolai Karchev (3,2,2,2,3) and 3rd to Philip Widlanski w/ Jolanta Mosteika (2,4,3,3,1).  We were a little surprised to see Philip this low in the ranking. Natalie Crandall won the Open A (1,1,1,1,1).  Nadiya Kireyko w/ Daniel Vasco was 2nd (2,2,2,2,2) and Tiffany Sulliva w/ Dustin Donelan was 3rd.  Giovanni Fortezza w/ Jolanta Mosteika won the B taking all dances over Victoria Romm w/ Daniel Vasco.  Darlene Bloom w/ Jason Daly was the winners of the Open Senior.
 
CA Open Starts Smoothly, despite winter storms!
The CA Open started smoothly yesterday despite the winter storms that were disrupting travel nationwide.  Even your intrepid reporter was delayed a day, due to airport closures.  But it’s a balmy 80 here in Orange County!
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The CA Open is in a new home this year, the Costa Mesa Hilton, and so far everything seems great here. It was also a “smooth” day in the ballroom with the pro-ams completing all of their Smooth heats.  We thought the best event of the day was the Open C smooth Scholarship that had three rounds.  The winner was Hope dd-P1010114Huber w/ Troy Baeton (1,2,1,1) who gave a very impressive performance.  We were also very impressed with the runner-up, David Schmidt w/ Michelle Hudson (2,1,2,2).  David actually came out on top in the Dancesport Series qualifier, but lost out on the money here.  3rd in all dances was another good competitor, Penelope Rostad w/ Nikolai Karchev.  Penelope also won all dances in the Senior Open Smooth.  2nd in this was another good gentleman student, Norio Yamamoto w/ Anna Shabazyan (2,2,2,3).  3rd was Judy Brown w/ Marcin Tomaszzewski (3,3,3,2). The A & B Open Scholarships were both straight finals.  Melonie Kumerdd-P1010111 w/ Max Sintisa won all dances in the A.  2nd in all was Irene Lee w/ Nick Cheremukhin and 3rd in all Kelly Morikawa w/ Jonathan Atkinson.  Max Sinitsa’s student also won the Open B and this was Sirinda Sincharoen (1,1,1,1).  2nd was Karence Chan w/ Paul Cloud (2,3,2,2) and 3rd, Monica Broch w/ Kris Suakjian (3,2,3,3). Stay tuned for the Rhythm divisions tomorrow.

Reverse Turn at Platinum! It was a reverse turn at Platinum Dancesport last night in the Pro Ballroom. dd-IMG 2051Alexander Voskalchuk & Veronika Egorova were the clear winners taking almost all the judges’ first places.  (Although they did receive one 4th place and two 3rd places from one judge).  The reverse came in the 2nd and 3rd placements.  Last week in Maryland, Gianni Caliandro & Arianna Esposito defeated fellow Italians dd-IMG 2030Emanuele & Francesca Pappacena by 3 dances to 2.  Here it was the reverse, with Emanuele & Francesca placing 2,2,2,3,3 over Gianni & Arianna, 3,3,3,2,2.  Sergey Samchynskyy & Yuliya Besarab were 4th in all dances and Vladimir Triazin & Alicia Gruttadauria were 5th.

It was a great beginning for Maksym Lototsky & Sarah Haworth who won all dances in the Rhythm on their first outing together.  They won all dances, but had the dd-IMG 2059majority of 1st places in only the cha cha and rumba.  Overall the judges’ scores were quite divided in this event.  Another new partnership, Sandor Stefil & Aleksandra Barsukov were 2nd, 2,3,2,3,4.  With 4,2,4,2,3, the experienced Stephen Smyth & Viktoriya Kleyman took 3rd.  Tamas Kardos & Mariya Khristina Shurupova were 4th, 3,4,3,4,2;  Romney Reyes & Brooke O’Donnell were 5th in all dances and Egor Shalvarov & Alla Profatilova were 6th. dd-IMG 20494 diverse couples contested the Showdance and the winners were Clifton Sepulveda & Mar Martinez performing to “At Last” in a classical style.  The more whimsical James Brann & Sayra Vazquez took 2nd with a jazzy west coast swing.  Carlos Zapata & Dora Yaneva were 3rd and Paolo & Liene DiLorenzo were 4th. dd-IMG 2044The audience were thrilled with the closing show performed by Canadian Pro Latin Champions and World Finalists, Mauritzio Vescovo & Andra Vaidalaite. Next year Platinum is returning to its Downtown Miami home.  Stay tuned to the Dance Beat Subscriber site for more about this year’s event. Pro Smooth Gives Surprise Ending at Platinum The Pro Smooth was the feature event of Friday at Platinum Dancesport and it yielded a surprise finish.
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Not too much surprise in the winners, however, as Mikhail & Galina Zharinov won all dances losing only 3 1st places out of 36.  The surprise came with the ascendance of a new partnership, Chris Germain & Olga Chekhova to the runners-up position, besting the established partnership of Vlad & Vera Kosarev by 3 dances to 1.  Vlad & Vera placed 2,3,3,3 to Chris & Olga’s 3,2,2,2.  It was a split panel of judges between the 2 couples, but the majority favored the newbies in 3 dances.  You’ll have to wait until the next edition of Dance Beat (or become a web subscriber) to hear our opinion.  This event began with a semifinal.  The remaining places in the final were:  Stephen Smyth & Viktorija Kleyman (4,4,4,4);  Egor Shalvarov & Alla Profatilova (5,5,5,5) and William Proper & Jennifer Caminas (6,6,6,6). It was also a pleasure to watch the children from the local studio, Dance Town, who performed most of the night in the various junior and youth divisions. For the pro-ams it was a full day of Rhythm and Ballroom, with some strong dancing especially in the Ballroom divisions.

On the first night of Platinum (Thursday) it was all celebration as a cast of dance stars performed for the TAP Benefit Gala.

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2 Interesting Duels at Maryland, Saturday

Maryland ended yesterday nights with all the Open Pro divisions.  Two of them provided interesting duels. 
The first was the Ballroom that pitted two Italian imports against each other – Gianni Caliandro & Arianna Esposito and Emanuele & Francesca Pappacena.  Today it was Gianni & Arianna who came out on top winning 3 of the dances.  Emanuele & Francesca won waltz and quickstep.  Each of the dances were won with the majority of 1st places.  Both couples are free-moving and exciting and for us it was a close call.  Find out more in the full article coming soon to Dance Beat.  The remainder of the placements mirrored the Rising Star division.  Oleksiy Buravenko & Victoria Karzukhina (3,3,3,3,3);  She-Young & Adele Jang Don (4,4,4,4,4) and Janis Kukanis & Milda Gecaite (5,5,5,5,5).

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dd-P1010102The second of the interesting divisions was the Rhythm.  This was won by Andrei Svirydzenka & Yuliya Zubova 1,1,2,1,1.  We thought they had a great night, showing great confidence and a lot of soul.  They won their 4 dances with a slim majority of 1st places.  2nd and winning the swing, were Shane & Shannon Jensen (2,2,1,2,2).  They offer a cleaner look than the winners, but for us didn’t really get into the mood tonight.  The remainder of the couples finished in the same position in all dances.  3rd, Stephen Smyth & Viktoriya Kleyman;  4th Romney Reyes & Brooke O’Donnell;  5th Jonathan Green & Carol Ann Miller;  6th Don Beedle & Jenn Christophel.

The Latin also proved and interesting duel between two very different couples.  The winners were the energetic and passionate Dmitry Nikishkin & Oleana Shvets.  They won 4 of the dd-P1010094dances, all with the majority of 1st places.  Winning the rumba and taking 2nd in the other 4 were the tall and elegant Rangel Spirov & Veronika Chernyavska.  Very different to the winners both in appearance and style.  10-Dancers Sey-Young & Adele were 3rd in all dances.  A new couple to us, Vladimir Velev & Lily Kolman were 4th in all.  Zsolt Katona & Timea Potys were 5th (5,5,6,6,5) and Denis & Amanda Satonin were 6th.

The most clear cut from the judges’ standpoint was the Smooth.  This went to Kostadin Bidjourov & Erin Marie who easily won all dances.  We also liked the strong movement from runners-up, Morten Jensen & Tonya Martin (3,3,3,3).  In 3rd place was a brand new partnership of two experienced dancers – Chris Germain & Olga Chekhova.  We’re not sure if this was their first competition together, but there is certainly potential here.  They were 3rd in all dances.  4th were 9-Dancers Stephen & Viktoriya (5,5,4,4) and 5th Serge & Yana Nelyubov (4,4,5,5).  Jeffrey Golitiao & Katt were 6th.

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The evening ended with an entertaining pro show produced by JT Thomas.  It had a Valentine’s theme and was entitled “Sweet Treats.”  All the numbers had “candy” themed music.  In a great “role reversal” it was the lady adjudicators who ended the show (lately it has always been the men).  Rita Algarra, Polina Pilipenchuk, Amanda Reyzin and Lydia Petrigova strutted their stuff to the enjoyment of all.

It was a really long day of pro-am dancing.  All of the Ballroom and much of the Latin was held today including both sets of Open Scholarships.  In both styles the B offered the best competition.  Yanina Kisler w/ Peter Walker comfortably won the Ballroom B, winning all dances.  2nd in all was Tomoko Shimizu w/ Emanuele Papacena and 3rd in all Kelley Weld w/ Slava Sergiev.  The C fell to Krista Stewart w/ Igor Pilipechuk who also won all dances.  2nd went to Sue Gershowitz w/ Nikolai Pilipenchuk (2,2,2,2,3) and 3rd was Julia Wang w/ Peter Walker (4,3T,4,3,2).  Jennifer Fales w/ Slava Sergiev won all dances in the A.  2nd went to Lisa Dodd w/ Garry Gekhman (2,2,2,2,3) and 3rd to Chris Nunes w/ Lisa Vegas (3,3,3,3,2).

Missy White w/ Genya Bartashevich won all dances in the B Latin.  2nd went to Kelley Ward w/ Slava Sergiev (3,2,2,2,2) and 3rd to Erica Triscan w/ Sergey Izyumov (2,4T,4,4,3).  Ann Morsili w/ Tibor Kerekes won the C, taking all dances.  2nd was Sue Gershowitz w/ Nikolai Pilipenchuk (2,3,2,2,2) and 3rd Laura Stolman w. Genya Bartashevitch (3,2,4,3,3).  A good duel in the A resulted in a win for Sarah Gladish w/ Ilya Reyzin (1,1,1,2,1) over Joanna Wa w/ Anton Tregubov (2,2,1,2,2).  3rd was Lauren Lapointe w/ Louis Bar.
Janice Stanton w/ Clive Phillips won the Best of the Best 10-Dance Challenge.

dd-A smoothPro-Am Smooth Strong At Maryland!

Yesterday the pro-am smooth topped the bill and the Open Scholarships were strong. 
After Thursday’s triple win for the men, Chris Nunes w/ Lisa Vegas kept up the tradition winning all dances to take the Open A.  Nicole Vass w/ Scott Ruddick was 2nd 2,3,2,2 and Lauren LaPointe w/ Louis Bar took 3rd 3,2,3,3.

Helena Kostik w/ Mazen Hamza took all dances in the B and showed a lot of improvement.  Also challenging, we thought, was Chris w/ Lisa once again.  He was 2nd in all dances.  Anna Boyd with Kirill Gorjatsev was 3rd in all dances.

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Darla Davies w/ Jim Maranto was on form and won the C quite easily we thought and she did win all dances.  Renee Kuwahara w/ Ilya Rezin was a strong 2nd in all dances.  3rd went to Amy Pollinger w/ Slava Sergiev, again in all dances.  Darla w/ Jim also won the Best of the Best 9-Dance Challenge.

dd-P1010090The evening finished with two rising star events.  The largest was the Rhythm.  Shane & Shannon Jensen were the easy winners here, taking all dances.  Also winning all dances in the Ballroom were Oleksiy Buravenko & Victoria Karzukhina.

“Let’s Hear It For The Boys!”

It was guys’ night out last night at Maryland Dancesport in the Open Rhythm Scholarships.  Gentlemen students won all 3!
Xavier Paol Aria w/ Mariangeles Moussou won all dances in the A, Giovanni Fortezza w/ Jolanta Mosteika won all danes in the B and Philip Widlanski w/ Jolanta Mosteika won the C 2,1,1,1T,1. We felt the C FB-was actually the strongest division and this started with a semifinal.  2nd went to Darla Davies w/ Jim Maranto 1,2,2,1T,3 and 3rd to Renee Kuwahara w/ Ilya Reyzin 3,3,3,3,2.  2nd in all dances in the B was Angela Morisson w/ Peter Santiago and 3rd in all, Blaire Miller w/ Clive Phillips.  Lauren LaPointe w/ Louis Bar was 2nd in the A, 2,3,2,2,2 and Nicole Vass w/ Scott Ruddick was 3rd, 3,2,3,3,3.

There were 2 straight finals in professional rising star divisions.  Sey-Young & Adele Jang Don won all dances in the Latin and Jeffrey Goltiao w/ Katt won all in the Smooth.

Joining the organizational team of Glenis Dee and Andrea Ringold this year here at Maryland Dancesport is Blake Kish.

City Lights Concludes with Rhythm and Ballroom - Sunday The City Lights Ball in San Jose California concluded last night with a terrific Professional Ballroom competition and a fun Rhythm event. web-MikhailThe Professional Ballroom had excellent couples in the field, Mikhail Avdeev & Olga Blinova won the event and all the dances but they were not the only ones to watch. Denis Kutepov & Lesya Sinitsa were also excellent and well deserving of the runners up spot, they placed second in every dance. It was nice to see Rober Nemiro & Olga Tskalyuk back on the floor, they placed third overall (3,4,3,3,4) and Igor Colac & Roxane Milotti were a terrific addition as well with great energy and musicality, they placed fourth overall (4,3,4,4,3). Fifth in every dance went to Simeon & Kora Stoynov and sixth was awarded to Evgeniy Mayorov & Olga Lisovskaya.
Rhythm Lineup
The Professional Rhythm competition had the most participants with a semifinal round and it too was very entertaining. Jonathan Chen & web-Nadine MessangerNadine Messenger cemented a strong position in this style by taking first place in the open division as well as the Rising Stars, they won every dance. It most have been a disappointing finish for Slash Sharan & Meghan Anderson who we are sure wanted to take the first place finish home but like in the rising stars they placed second in every dance. Third place was awarded to Richard & Marianne Myers (3,3,4,4,3), I’m sure they were very disappointed with this placement, however, we too were disappointed with their performance and we will explain in the full City Lights article. Fourth were Alejandro & Lucelia Falcon (4,4T,3,3,5), fifth went to Tommy Belmontez & Jessica Holty (5,6,6,5,4) and sixth was awarded to Piero Della Santina & Alessandra Gonzalez (6,4T,5,6,6). Although the night before the ballroom was standing only perhaps due to the show by Arunas & Katusha and Giacomo & Melissa, for me the competition this night was terrific and very special. The ballroom was a little quiet as is customary from a Californian audience on a Sunday night, but, the finale to this City Lights Ball was excellent. My congratulations to the organizers in this their first City Lights Ball event, we wish you the best for years to come. 

New City Lights! - Saturday This was the first run for the new owners of the City Lights Ball, and as far as organization it all went without a hitch. Last night the professional events started and the two events ran were healthy finals with excellent dancing that kept the judges occupied. ProSmooth lineupThe most exciting of the two was the Professional Smooth. Here we had three excellent, seasoned couples fighting for first place, Kyle & Allie Spinder, Kris Suakjian & Brianna Haft and Nick Cheremukhin & Victorija. Our favorite was Kris and Brianna who looked completely prepared for this final, but that was not to be the winner in all dances was the new partnership of Nick & Victorija, who had very interesting choreography but who seemed to be going nowhere in our eyes (we will explain in our full article here soon). Third in this great event went to Kyle & Allie who took third in all dances. Fourth place was Nathan Simler & Mirelle Gineste –Tuendemann they placed fourth in every dance, fifth wen to Kyle & Christina Campbell (5,5,6,5T), sixth was awarded to Forrest Walsh & Alexandra Smirnova (6,6,5,5T), and seventh went to Piero Della Santina & Alessandra Gonzales who took seventh in every dance. Pro Latin lineupThe Professional Latin was as exciting but we felt that it was the most predictable.  Unfortunately, we should give up predicting! Our winner, Denis Podolskiy & Yulia Kushnirenko placed third overall (3,2,3,3,3) even though we felt they had a wonderful night and we will explain why in the coming issue here also. The clear winner of this professional Latin event was Vitalii Proskurin & Evgenia Shatilova (1,1,1,2,1). Second went to Andrey Tarasov & Yulia Kuznetsova (2,3,2,1,2). Simeon & Kora Stoynova placed 4th, Oleksii Lytvyn & Carly Booth were fifth, Artjom Shmigeljuk & Oceania Kashkina took all sixth and Lerey & Rebeca Bishop were seventh. The evening concluded with a professional show by Arunas Bezukas & Katusha Demidova as well as an intermission number by  Melissa Dexter & Giacomo Steccaglia. So here comes another prediction! We think for a transition event everything is going superbly and we think that in the future we will probably have one of the best events in the USA here.  As new kids on the block they have settled well on the job of running the event but I have the feeling that the “New” owners will come out with things to make it even more prestigious and special and to make it a “must” on your calendar next year.   

Boston Cup Blends Junior & Pro-Am
The Boston Cup, held Jan. 25 in Framingham, MA, was a mighty 1-Day competition that seamlessly (almost) blended all styles and levels of pro-am dancing with junior and amateur divisions.  It was 1500 entries and a full day of dancing.

The Organizers, Ronen Zinshtein & Emil Loukhnikov are known for their involvement in the junior dancesport scene, so it was no surprise that the junior and amateur segment was the largest with a packed ballroom of kids and parents – always a great atmosphere.  But the day began with sizeable pro-am heats making up almost half of the total entries for the day.  Local studio, Supershag, made up the bulk of the entries.

web-P1010080The highlight of the event was the Adult A Latin that began with a semifinal and pitched many of the USA and Canada’s high ranking competitors against each other.  Canada turned up the winner as Danils Kutezov & Maria Shalvarova won all dances.  2nd in all were Nikita Malakhov & Nadezda Vlasova and 3rd in all Ron Garber & Liza Lakovistky.  Watch out for a full report in Dance Beat soon from Diana McDonald. Also coming soon to Dance Beat is a report on the Junior II Latin by Bill Sparks.  The winners here were Kristers Smite & Sophie Shvartsman (1,1,2,1,2).  2nd were Joshua Lishnevetsky & Angela Gerzberg 2,2,1,2,1).  3rd Matthew Lavitman & Olivia Agranovich (3,3,3,4,4).
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Other feature events were the Youth Latin and U/21 Latin won by Jaryd Farcon & Kyla Dzhaniashvili (1,1,2,1,1) and Steven Varshavsky & Karolina Loukhnikov (2,1,1,1,1) respectively.
web-P1010070
The Ballroom divisions were not as large but the events were still noteworthy.  The winners were:  Justin Lin & Sasha Dubinsky (Youth & Junior II);  Fernando Lareu & Nicole Palagashvili (U/21).
 
The Boston Cup is a 1-day event that felt ready to move on to the big time.  Ronen & Emil decorated the ballroom well and used full lighting and sound.  The venue was the Sheraton Framingham a pseudo castle that had two blazing fires in the lobby (a welcome sight to this Miami native) and had comfortable rooms and ample facilities.

R.S Pro Std
1 Igor Mikushov & Ekaterina Romashkina USA
2 Denis Kutepov & Lesya Sinitsa USA
3 Wu Zhifan & Ying Lei China
4 Zhang Chi & Yanna Zhang China
5 Aleksandr Ostrovsky & Yuliya Igonina Russia
6 Jun Motoike & Noriko Muto Japan

dd-R.S Pro Lat

R.S Pro Latin
1 Marek Fiksa & Kinga Jurecka-Fiksa Poland
2 Dorin Frecautanu & Marina Sergeeva Moldova
3 Sarunas Greblikas & Viktoria Horeva USA
4 Stefano Moriondo & Angelique Meyer France
Tanning products by DanceCos
5 Mykhaylo Bilopukhov & Anastasiya Shchipilina Ukraine
6 Dmytro Wloch & Ekaterina Krysanova Ukraine

dd-R.S Am Lat 2
R.S Am Lat
1 Ilya Sizov & Yulia Koshkina Russia
2 Atanas Gendov & Anna Lisova Italy
3 Wu Liu Fu & Yu Jun Du China
4 Tal Livshitz & Ilana Keselman USA
5 Konstantin Chigirev & Daria Mikhalskaya Russia
6 Darren Hammond & Milla Lykke South Africa

RS Am Ballroom

1 Jianan Peng & Jia Ci Zhong China
2 Si Cheng Li & Zhou Man Ni China
3 Sergei Sutirin & Natalya Sazhina Russia
4 Edmund Ault & A Reum Han England
5 Alessandro Lippi & Sofya Aksenchik Italy
6 Stephen Arnold & Yasmin Priestnall England

WDSF Back in US Territory After years of absence from the USA, the WDSF (World Dancesport Federation), an official body for Dancesport in the world and a member of the IOC, is finally back in the USA. Two WDSF events were run this past weekend of dance at the well-known Manhattan Classic (The Mac) Championship in Manhattan, New York City, organized by USA Dance, the WDSF affiliate in the USA. The events were run in the beautiful Grand Ballroom of the Manhattan Center and it was fully packed and with audience coming to support the athletes participating. The most supported event and the more exciting of the two was the WDSF Junior II Open Championship Latin. Here we had a full semifinal round and the couples fighting for the opportunity and the title were excellent down to the semifinal. Kristers Smits & Sophie Shvartsman won the event by tying for second in the samba, placing first in the cha cha, paso and jive and third in the rumba. As you can see by the marks, the judges could not make up their minds. Matthew Kheyfets & Vanesa Falisova placed second by taking the samba and rumba from Kristers & Sophie, placing second in the cha and jive and third in the paso. Third place was awarded to Dennis Mateev & Valerie Dubinsky. They tied for second in the samba were fourth in cha cha and rumba and tied for fourth in jive. Joshua Lishnevetsky & Angela Gerzberg were fourth (5,3,2,5,3); fifth went to D’Angelo Castro & Amanda Carbajales (4,5,5,7,4.5). In sixth place were Levy Agaronnik & Simona Vigodner (6,6,7,6,6,) and last but not least in seventh position was  Kamil Falkowski & Alexis Turko (7,7,6,4,7). The placements in this competition will award this couples a certain amount of points for the WDSF world ranking system, placing them on an equal footing with other athletes around the world from South America to Europe, Africa and Asia. It is great to see that now all aspects of ballroom dancing are being represented in the USA and the promotion of ballroom dance, whether as a sport or as an art or social form, continues stronger than ever in this the land of the free.
WDSF Standard
The Standard WDSF Junior II Championship was not as well attended but the quality was also excellent. Here Dennis Mateev & Valerie Dubinsky placed first in every dance and were the clear winners.  All seconds wen to Kamil Falkowski & Alexis Turko, and third were Matthew Kheyfets & Vanesa Falisova. Fourth went to Christopher Kantorosinski & Anna Jonczyk (5,4,4,4,4) and fifth was awarded to Denis Smotrov & Karina Mirochnik (4,5,5,5,5). Congratulations to all the couples for being the first to earn their points in this Dancesport arena and also to USA Dance for running two successful Championships. This was the first WDSF event they had hosted since the World Latin Championship in 2010

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