Capital Dancesport 2014
Capital Comes to a Close!
Yesterday the Capital Dancesport Championships came to a close and as usual the evening session was dedicated to the open professional events.
Out of the four styles the Smooth had the most punch with 6 very promising couples in the final. Peter & Alexandra Perzhu were the best and the judges awarded them first in all dances and they won with a majority of first places in every dance. Peter & Alexandra only received a handful of second and third places. The most noticeable were Pat Traymore and Diana McDonald, the only judges to award them a third place, Pat in the VW, and Dianna in the tango.
Second in this excellent heat, in all dances, went to Travis & Jaimee Tuft, but when looking at the marks they had a lot of variety. Their worst judge was Linda Dean who awarded them three fifths and a fourth in the tango. Mikolay Czarnecki & Victoria Malko were third in all dances and here too there was a variety of numbers. Their worst marks came from Glenis Dee-Creger - 2 5th one 4th and a 6th in the waltz. Sergey Barsukov & Maria Sidjova were fourth overall but not in all dances they placed 5th in the foxtrot. Nickolay Pilipenchuk & Natalia Skorikova were fifth 5,5,4,5, and Adrian & Hannah Dydynski were 6th in all dances.
The Professional Rhythm was also a well attended heat with a healthy quarter-final and here Nazar Norov & Irina Kudryashova placed first in every dance with a near perfect run, just a total of 3 scores that were not 1st. Ivan & Marieta Dishliev placed second overall and in all dances but here their marks were a little more varied and Diana McDonald thought they should be last in every dance. Third was awarded to Shane & Shannon Jensen and their best marks came from Nick Short who thought they should win the cha cha and had them second in all the other dances. From this point on, the couples had to share placements in some of the dances. Shandor Shtefil & Alekandra Barsukov were 4th overall but took fifth in the cha cha. Riccardo Papi & Sabrina Moretti placed 5th overall but took a 4th in the cha cha, and 6th in every dance went to Erwin & Iwona Rybcynski.
The Open Latin was a nice event and that went easily to Ivan Mulyavka & Loreta Kriksciukaityte who placed first in every dance with the majority of firsts in every dance. Second was awarded to Dmitry Nikishkin & Olena Shvets who placed 2nd in four dances and 4th in the rumba. Roman Italyankin & Alexandra Bokova took 3rd 4,4,2,3,3. 4th place overall was awarded to Genya Bartashevich & Yana Mazhnikova 3,3,3,4,4. 5th went to Jean Paul & Lana Rossi and they took 5th in every dance and 6th were Jake Davis & Alyona Kalinina.
The Ballroom was also a significant event and here Alexander Volskalchuk & Veronika Egora placed 1st in every dance, but they only managed to get the majority of firsts in the tango. The rest of the dances they won with 4th or better. Second in this competition went to Andrey Begunov & Anna Demidova who placed second overall in every dance and third was awarded to Nazar Batih & Marico Cantley 3,4,4,33. During this final the foxtrot as in many of this summer competitions was dedicated in the memory of Brian Puttock, his wife Sue was present and judging the event during the dedication, everyone gave a standing ovation during the dedication. Fourth in this seven couple final was awarded to Emanuele & Francesca Pappacena 4,3,5,5,4, fifth went to Iaroslar Beiliei & Olga Tsikalyuk 5,5,3,4,5, sixth was Samuele Pacchini & Ana Oblakova 7,6,6,6,6, and in seventh position were Oscar Pedrinelli & Lenka Kovalcikova 6,7,7,7,7.
It was a pro/am Ballroom day beginning at 7:00AM. The Open Scholarships were pretty good and following the pattern here at Capital, the C division was the largest beginning with a semifinal. Taking 1st in this was Beatrice Wang w/ Giampiero Giannico 1,2,1,1,1. We thought Beatrice danced great today - everything went just right. 2nd overall fell to Lisa Lowery w/ Radek Wiatrowski 2,1,3,2,3 and 3rd to Paige Riffle w/ Iaroslav Bieliel 3,3,2,3,2 - this was the first time we have seen Paige with this new professional.
The B divisions began with a semifinal and Celia Chou w/ Erminio Stefano won the day, taking all dances. 2nd went to Bo Chang w/ Giampiero Giannico 2,3,3,2,2 and 3rd to Yanina Kisler w/ Peter Walker 3,2,2,3,3. We felt Yanina a little unlucky today as attires she looked very strong today.
The A division was again a straight final and was won by a gentleman, Andrey Privda w/ Olga Chekhova. This young man certainly has a lot of potential. He placed 1,1,2,2,1 today. Taking 2nd was Elaine Liu w/ Gary Foster (Hong Kong) 2,2,1,1,2 and 3rd was Jana Hester w/ Dmitry Savchenko 3,3,3,3,3.
As customary at the conclusion of the Capital Dancesport Championships a showcase of many who performed during the weekend took place. The “Show” is put together by Wendy Johnson and a parade of couples get up to do their thing. There were quite a few eye-catching numbers this year and in particular catching our eye were the “wearing different hats” by Mr. Louis Bar was quite humorous and kept everyone in stiches from beginning to end. Penelope Rostad with teacher Nikolai Karchev did a wonderful exhibition featuring some lifts and Nazar Norov & Irina Kudryashova were devilish with their cute swing. Travis & Jaimee Tuft and Shane & Shannon Jensen did a spectacular duo with some excellent floor and lift work and they closed the show. It was so interesting that we suggested to start a two couple category group number competition. There were plenty more but these few caught our imagination.
The after party was a lavish breakfast affair with about four stations so everyone that needed a little food could enjoy, the only complaint is that in Virginia they must stop serving liquor at 1AM and so everyone rushing to the bar were quite disappointed not to be able to have a cocktail before bedtime.
Overall the Capital Dancesport was a tremendous success and as usual it ran like a tight ship with no difficulties and with great class. Congratualtions to John & Marianne DePalma for another terrific year.
Pro Cabaret Ends Marathon Day at Capital
5 great couples contested an excellent Cabaret division at the end of a long day yesterday. The event went on around midnight, but the couples were in good form and gave us 5 very different routines.
Shane & Shannon Jensen continued their winning form taking the division with their new number. We thought it looked just a little uneasy in places, but the level of difficulty in the adagio work is very high. Runners-up were Travis & Jaimee Tuft who produce a more typically “theatrical ballroom” presentation. We thought they were very secure tonight. 3rd went to the acrobatic prowess of Jugie Zamora & Sheena Damimar. Again good lifts but a few wobbles here and there. 4th and 5th went to “showdance” style routines that were also very accomplished. Vincnzo Minieri & Rosaria Virone were 4th and Manuel Trillo & Anastasia Zhitova were 5th.
Overall it was a great night for Shane & Shannon as they also won all 5 dances in the RS Rhythm to take that division. 2nd went to Riccardo Pappi & Tina Moretti in their first competition in this style. They are the latest Latin duo to make the switch. This was a good start. They placed 2,2,2,3,2. 3rd were Erwin & Iwona Rybcznska 3,3,3,2,5. This division began with a quarter-final.
In the RS Smooth, that also started with a quarter-final, Sergey Barsukov & Maria Sidnjova won all dances with little challenge in our view. We also liked runners-up Adrian & Hannah Dydynski and the judges concurred, giving them 2nd in all 4 dances. The new partnership of Morten Jensen & Ashley Mayer took 3rd 3,3,3,4 and certainly showed promise.
The pro-ams contended with 2 styles today – Smooth and Latin. Of the two we felt the Open Smooth Scholarships had the edge over the Latin.
The A was the smallest, a straight final. The winner was Jessica Spink w/ Peter Walker 1,1,2,1. We liked Jessica’s dancing, especially her closed work. 2nd went to Sara Jess w/ Thomas Mielnicki 2,2,1,2, Sara has great floor presence and soft interpretation, but perhaps needs more consistency in technique. 3rd was Samanta Rico w/ Morten Jensen 3,3,3,3.
Christina Donelson w/ Peter Perzhu won all dances in the B Division and looked the strongest to us also. Kathy Howell w/ Martin Cawston took 2nd 2T,2,2,2 ad Lynn Shanahan w/ Darius Mosteika was 3rd 2T,3,3,3.
In the largest division, the C, Robin Kencel w/ Sergey Vasilyev won all dances and was clearly ahead of the field we felt. 2nd went to Aviva Adler w/ Victor Russu 2,2,2,4. Aviva shows improvement all the time. 3rd in all dances went to Charlotte Carey w/ Kostadin Bidjourov.
In the Latin the A was once again the smallest division and it went to Zoe Antoniou w/ Andre Strinadko 1,1,1,1,1. 2nd was Cynthia Hwang w/ Marek Gabor 2,2,2,2,2 and 3rd, Sherry Chen w/ Sergey Izyumov 3,3,3,3,3.
The B division gave us the toughest race for the win but it went to Lorraine Peoples w/ Andre Gavriline 1,2,1,1,2 over Missy White w/ Genya Bartashevich 2,1,2,2,1. We might have called it the other way, but Lorraine has made great strides and certainly there is no argument over her win. 3rd was Anna Poberetsky w/ Andre Strinadko 3,3,3,3,3.
Suzanne Saperstein w/ Ricky Bentzen won all dances in the C Division. Jeanie LaFavor w/ Mariusz Olszewska was 2nd 2,3,2,2,2 and 3rd was Vicki Gorder w/ Andre Strinadko 3,2,3,3,4.
Organizer, John DePalma, took time from his pressing organizer duties to participate in the latest craze of dumping a bucket of iced water over your head. He, Dan Messenger and Mark Weiss took the challenge!!
Short but Sweet!
Last night at Capital Dancesport Championships the night session was short but sweet, filled with excellent dancing. The Rising Star Professional Latin and Ballroom were the featured events as well as some terrific Open Pro/Am Rhythm Scholarships.
Out of the two professional events the Latin was possibly the best with a healthy semifinal round. There were no superstars that grabbed your attention but the quality of the dancing was terrific. Evgeny Likhachev & Maria Levina from California won all dances and Jake Davies & Alyona Kalinina from England were second. Ryan Lewis & Tessa Marie placed third in every dance, Vincenzo Minieri & Rosaria Virone took all fourths. Tomas Vasicek & Kimberly Harris were fifth and Jungie Zamora & Sheena Damiar, sixth.
The Ballroom was a six-couple final and the win went to Oscar Pedrinelli & Lenka Kovalcikova, they won all dances. Mechyslav Pavlyuk & Gemma Arnold were second in four dances and placed third in the foxtrot. Second in the foxtrot and third in the other four dances went to Oleksiy Buravenko & Victoria Karzukhina.
Two very capable couples entered the rare Professional Compulsory Theater Arts. This competition I think only takes place here at Capital and at the USDC. The winner was Shane & Shannon Jensen and second went to Travis & Jaimee Tuft. After the event was run there was an issue about the music. Apparently the music has been changed a number of times on the website and so one of the couples had been rehearsing to a different recording. This possibly presented a problem. We think it was a few seconds longer or shorter. It was not a big issue both couples looked wonderful and ready and had it not been brought up to the attention of the chair by one of the judges, nobody would have known that the song came up too short for one of the couples. However, the couples were fine for the moment and we proceeded with the award. Hope the issue gets clarified before the US Nationals in a week.
The Professional Basics divisions, sponsored by DIVIDA, were not as well attended. The Rhythm had the most couples, 4, and they were all quite proficient at the skill. Nazar Norov & Irina Krudyashova were first in all dances, Shane & Shannon Jensen placed second and third went to Jeffrey Goltiao & Katt Baumgartner (3,3,3,4,4). Thse last two were the only couple entered in the Smooth Basics. Finally fourth was awarded to Rex & Rachel Jones.
The Open Rhythm Scholarships were also good and here the “A” Was won by Viktoria Tvreskaya w/Ilya Reyzin. This lady was great! We are sure that she will do quite well at Nationals. The “B” was taken by Kathy Howell w/Martin Cawston and the “C” went to Penelope Rostad w/Nikolay Karchev.
The fashion show by Dore was a success. Many at the bar were quite impressed by the collection. Alexandra Perzhu openned the runway and it was a good intermission between the two professional events while couples made some costume changes.