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.
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
Last night we saw some jockeying for position at the first major event of 2014 in the Pro Smooth.
It was by far the best event of the night, danced over 3 rounds. Travis & Jaimee Tuft were the clear winners, taking all 4 dances with the clear majority of 1st places. The battle was for 2nd place and there were 3 couples contesting this placement and all had their supporters and gained ‘2nd or better’ scores in every dance. Only in the Viennese Waltz did one of these couples receive the majority of ‘2nd or better’ scores and this was Kyle & Allie Spinder who did achieve 2nd place overall in all 4 dances. This was their best result to date as it placed them ahead of David & Natalie Shulz (3,3,3,3) and Vlad & Vera Kosarev (4,4,4,4). It wil be interesting to see if they can maintain this form further into the year. It was also close for 5th place, but Rule 11 gave it to Mark Short & Alyssa Kark (5,5,6,6) over Morten Jensen & Tonja Martin (6,6,5,5). Watch out for Jenell Maranto’s report on this division in Dance Beat soon. "The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance" Click here for more
Travis & Jaimee also won the Showdance division which began the night.
The other 3 divisions were straight finals and it was a good weekend for Sergiy Samchynskyy & Yuliya Besarab, now from Georgia, who won both the Ballroom and Latin winning all 10 dances, easily in our opinion. Their toughest competition came in the Ballroom from 2nd placed Martin & Liene Reinbold (2,2,2,2,2). 3rd in all dances were Oleksiy Buravenko & Victoria Karzukhina, 4th in all to Matt Rivers & Maliwan Diemer; 5th in all to Kevin Camarata & Michelle Jones and 6th to Brad Coutney & Elisa Seja.
In the Latin Matt & Maliwan were 2nd in all dances. Vlad Astafiev & Linda Gergye were 3rd in all; Denis & Amanda Satonin were 4th in all and Mario Skonieczny & Mary Jester.
Erwin & Iwona Rybcznska had a comfortable majority of 1st places in all dances to take the Pro Rhythm from the new partnership of Slash Sharan & Megan Anderson who were 2nd in all. An even newer partnership, Sandor Stefil & Alexandra Barsukov were 3rd in all. With 4,4,4,4,5, Christopher Wayne & Lisa Burghart were 4th, Michael Foncannon & Meghan McNash were 5th, 5,5,5,5,4 and Aaron Greer & Adrienne Hite were 6th.
The pro-ams danced both international styles today and the open scholarships of both were in the evening. The Open B Ballroom was the best event, beginning with a semifinal. Jill Bradford w/ Gert Roslender was the winner over Yanina Kisler w/ Peter Walker. Brynda Insely w/ Martin Reinbold was 3rd. Yanina w/Peter also won the Open A division.
Nashville Starz is the season finale for the Dancers Cup Tour, so the top prizes were awarded. Winning Top Teacher this year was Louis Bar. Louis was surprised by the secret arrival of his two children who actually presented him with his award. Louis’ student, Laren LaPointe was the top female student of the year and the top male was Russ Longley.
Put On Your Western Duds for Nashville Starz!
Last night was country western night at Nashville Starz, everyone was encouraged to wear their finest hats and jeans and the evening ended with a country style cookout in the ballroom.
But before that it was the turn of the Rising Star professionals to be the “Starz.” All four styles resulted in fairly comfortable wins. In the Smooth, Kyle & Allie Spinder took all dances followed by Mark Short & Alyssa Kark (2,2,3,2) and Morten Jensen & Tonja Martin (3,3,2,3). We thought this was the strongest of the four divisions.
In the Rhythm Slash Sharon & Megan Anderson also won all dances. Second in all were Sandor Stefil & Alexandra Barsukov and 3rd were Romney Reyes & Brooke O’Donnell 4,4,3,3,3.
Matt Rivers & Maliwan Diener won the Latin losing only the cha cha. Winning the cha cha and taking 2nd in the other 4 dances were Dmitry Karabanov & Daria Emelianova. 3rd in all were Senzo Makhaye & Agnieszka Strojek.
Martin & Liene Reinbold won the Ballroom, the smallest of the four divisions, again taking all dances. 2nd in all were Matt & Maliwan and 3rd, Kevin Camarata & Michelle Jones, 4,4,3,3,3.
For the pro-ams it was a day of Smooth. Robert Schipp w/ Shalene Archer won the Open B Scholarship 1,1,1,1. Louise Seawright w/ David Medeiros was 2nd, 2,4,2,3 and Donna Bade w/ Chris Germain was 3rd, 3,3,3,2.
Completing the 9-Dance saw Briana Yadgir w/ Chris Germain as the winners. She won all 9 dances.
Over 6,000 Entries for Nashville Starz!
David Hamilton’s Nashville Starz is in a bumper year with over 6,000 entries for 2014.
This despite unavoidable hotel problems when he was forced to relocate to the Marriott Renaissance as the original venue, the Sheraton was unable to accommodate the event due to renovations.
The first day was dedicated to the pro-am Rhythm categories. The Open Scholarships were split into only 2 age categories – A and B. The A produced an interesting result as Giovanni Fortezza w/ Jolanta Mosteika won the event over the US Open A Champion, Brianna Yadgir w/ Aaron Desotto. Giovanni won all dances and Brianna was 2nd in all. It was a good day for the gents as Stephan Tuomanen w/ Michelle Officer was 3rd, 3,3,3,4,3.
In the B Diana Best w/ Alosha Anatoliy was the winner, 1,2T,1,1,2. Roberta Fox w/ Aaron DeSotto was 2nd, 2,1,2,3,3 and Janet Brutell w/ Michael Neil was 3rd, 3,2T,3,2,1. As you can see – a tight race!
The night ended with a pizza and karaoke party for everybody - lots of laughs I'm sure!
Today it’s Smooth day at Nashville Starz plus watch out for results from the professional rising star divisions.
Bill Morganti, progress after car crash
The following comes from Marc Nocera
As you may have heard, Billy Morganti was in a bad car accident on the 4th of July. He is currently recovering at Boston Medical Center. The outlook is positive but he has a long recovery ahead of him. For information on Billy's condition please visit his Caring Bridge page here. If you would like to donate please use the link below - please do not donate through the Caring Bridge page.
Donate via PayPal here: click to donate
Fundraising events will also be held at the Massachusetts Dancesport Challenge next month.
We have a paypal account and a GoFundMe account set up. The link to GoFundMe is: http://www.gofundme.com/bje0c8
Halloween In Indianapolis
U.S dancers could be found in all corners of the country on Halloween weekend as 3 events were taking place in different parts of the country. I was in Indiana attending the North American Imperial Star Ball which also hosted the finale of the Global Dancesport series. Hosted by David Medeiros and Julie Stadler at the Sheraton Indianapolis at Keystone Crossing, the competition ran smoothly and in good spirit, thanks to the help of music director Rick Popp and Mark Brock using the opportunity to practice his karaoke styling. The only place this weekend I am pretty sure where you could do an international VW to "We Are The Champion", original version!!
I would like to mention some of the pro/am competitors who were at the top of their game this weekend.
In the Bronze Smooth category, Alicia Richhart dancing with Christopher Spalding, Cheryle Russo dancing with Josh Tilford, Tom Travgott dancing with Shalene Archer and Charlie Carboneau dancing with Kelly Bartlett.
In Silver Smooth, congratulations to Stacey Tilford dancing with Josh Tilford and Judy Renau dancing withBen Ermis.
Open Smooth "A" went to Karen Jacob dancing with Christopher Spakding and the "B" to Wendy Stambaugh dancing with Ben Ermis.
In the Bronze, Alyssa Ivanson dancing with Tony Didier, Peggy Lavinski dancing with Aleko Khutsidze and Tim Bolin dancing with Shalene Archer.
Silver, Chris Wilson dancing with Emilia Goldberg.
Open, Sophia D'Angelo dancing with Ilya Reyzin. Sophia was also the recipient on top overall lady for the Global tour.
Bronze, Stacey Tilford dancing with Josh Tilford, Nancy Farrell dancing with Andrea Stefano.
Silver, Dawn Phillips dancing with Jari Muller, Donna Torsney dancing with Ben Ermis.
Open, Joyce Lo dancing with Guennadi Lakounine, Sherry Borchelt dancing with Andrea Stefano.
Bronze, Peggy Lavinski dancing with Aleko Khutsidze, Elizabeth Callahan dancing with Gert Roslander
Silver, Karen Rembold dancing with Gert Roslender
In the Pro category it was a very successful weekend for Roman Malkhasyan & Viktoriya Kleyman, they won the RS Rhythm and Smooth, the Open Rhythm and came in second to Adrian & Hannan Dydynsky in the Open Smooth.
The Open Ballroom winners in all dances were Michal Towliszew & Tiffany Fung followed by Pavel Cherdantsau& Svetlana Rudkovskaya who also won the Showdance.
Also a good show for Jason Rivers & Elisa Seja who won the RS Ballroom and came in 2nd in the RS Smooth.
The Open Latin went to Dmytro Kovalenko & Nina Kovalenko.
But none of these dancers were happier than Josh Tilford who was the overall recipient of the top teacher price for the Global tour taking home $10,000!
Congrats to all, and thank you to David and Julie.
10 for 10!
Last night at the WDC World 10-Dance Championship, held at the Grand Nationals, new World Champions were crowned, and it was Nikolay Govorov & Eugeniya Tolstaya from Russia and they won all 10 dances.
It was also a great night for USA as we took 2nd and 3rd places. Sergey Samchynskyy & Yulia Besarab were 2nd and Igor Colac & Roxane Milotti were 3rd and it was a close race. Sergey & Yulia placed 6,5,7,6,6,2,2,2,2,2 (ballroom listed 1st) and Igor & Roxane 5,4,4,5,4,4,4,4,6,4,3. We thought both couples danced really well and especially in the Latin, perhaps both could have been higher. In fact we were a little surprised that Nikolay & Eugeniya won al the Latin section.
4th were Richard Still & Morgan Hemphill from England. A second English couple although a name well known in the USA, Jonas Kazlauskas & Kathleen Ilo were 5th (8,7,5,4,5,5,5,5,4,5,5). 6th went to David Kiar & Lauren Andlovec from Australia. They were 2nd in all the Ballroom but did not make any of the Latin finals.
There will be full reports in Dance Beat on this event soon.
The other 3 professional events were run as supporting events. The Smooth was a semifinal round and was won by Radek Wiatrowski & Denise Sobiewski. It was quite close as they scored 1,1,2,3. 2nd went to Maksym Lototsky & Sarah Haworth and they were 2,3,1,1. With 3,2,3,2, Shandor Shtefil & Aleksandra Barsukov were 3rd. 4th in all were Proper/Elliott, 5th in all Lange/Urosevic and 6th Klotzsche/Lee.
In the Pro Ballroom Haritonov/Haritonova were the winners 1,1,2,2,2. Skriptsov/Skriptsova were 2nd although they won 3 dances 2,4,1,1,1. 3rd in all were Shelkovy/Shelkovy. 4th with 4,2,4,4,4 were Ishihara/Yokoyama. 5th in all Pavlovic/Barhatova. Summers/Summers were 6th and Mader/Mader were 7th.
Azarov/Makarenko received a standing ovation for their routine in the Cabaret and they were the winners. 2nd went to Sepulveda/Martinez and they also received a standing ovation. 3rd were Falcon/Falcon, 4th DoLorenzo/DiLorenzo and 5th Sese/Lozada.
This ended the 2105 Grand Nationals, and with the addition of this World Championship it was certainly “Grand” indeed!
Is it a “Perfect 10?”
Yesterday we began the WDC World 10-Dance Championship here at Grand Nationals. On this first night the first round (quarter-final) of all 10 dances were held with the semifinals and finals taking place tonight. USA is well-represented and our chances look good. The defending champions from Germany retired this year, so the world title is wide open. Check back tomorrow for the results.
The other featured events were the Professional Latin and Professional Rhythm. The Rhythm was the larger of the 2, beginning with a semifinal. Nazar Norov & Irina Kudryashova won all dances and did not lose a single 1st place mark. It was a tighter race for 2nd but in the end Andrei Abrashin & Maria Gavrylova took it by 3 dances to 2 – 2,3,2,2,3. 3rd went to Shandor Shtefil & Aleksandra Barsukov 3,2,3,3,2. Maksym Lototsky & Sarah Haworth were 4th in all dances, Tamas Kardos & Mariya-Khristina Shurupova were 5th in all and Jonathan Chen & Melissa Keller were 6th.
The Latin was a straight final but was a strong event. The winners – again by 3 dances to 2, were Dmitry Nikishkin & Olena Shvets-Nikishkin 1,2,2,1,1. The other half of this duel was Roman Italyankin & Aleksandra Bokova 2,1,1,2,2. Obviously this was a close fight between these two as it often is in other events around the country. 3rd were Aleksey Alekseev & Ekaterina Derevleva 3,4,3,3,3. We were impressed with 4th placed Stefan Ilies & Anna Tabolina 4,3,4,4,4. 5th in all dances were Kristian Sese & Mae Lozado and 6th were Victor Caneo & Valentina Delano.
At night the pro-ams danced their open championships in Ballroom and Rhythm. It was a good night for Lisa Lowery w/ Radek Wiatrowski who won the C division in both styles. Miwa Rifu w/ Peter Minkov won the B Ballroom and Elaine Richardson w/ Linas Korieva won the Snr. Janet Brutel w/ Michael Neil won the Snr. Rhythm and Anna Trull w/ John Abrams won the B Rhythm.
Putting on the Ritz
Last night was the beginning of the Grand National Championships at the beautiful Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne.
The main feature of the evening was the Grand Nationals 10 Dance Championship. This 10-dance championship was excellent with very talented couples trying to be the best in ten dances. The winners were Simeon & Kora Stoynov and they placed 1,1,2,2,2,2,2,1,1,1, runners up were Jonas Kazlauska & Kathleen Ilo with the scores of 2,2,1,1,1,1,1,2,2,2. So as you can see a very close competition. Third went to Ruslan & Ekaterina Wilder 3,3,3,3,3,4,4,4,4,4.
The afternoon was packed with Closed Rhythm dances and outside the ballroom it was all about the beautiful resort, beach and pool and we totally enjoyed ourselves in that department as well. Tomas Melnickski is a living testimony in that department and you can judge for yourself in the picture below