nyusabda logoValentin Chmerkovskiy Retires from Competition
Aug. 22, 2011 ed.

Greetings from the Greater NY Chapter of USA Dance!

In this edition:
  1. “@iamvalc: To All I Care About ….”
  2. Silde and Firstova Retire at German Open
  3. DWTS13 Premieres on Sept. 19
  4. Latin Dancing on the Highline
  5. Reminders of Upcoming Events
  6. Looking to Improve Your Dancing?
  7. Looking to Social Dance?
  8. Looking for a Partner?

“@iamvalc: To All I Care About ….”

Val Chmerkovskiy Dasha Chesnokova IDSF World Latin 2010So began the re-tweet from @dancingmiranda. Of course, I had to re-tweet it and post it to my wall on Facebook. I followed the link that Val C. provided in his original tweet and it took me to the homepage of “Dance Beat” on the web. As hard to believe as it may be, Valentin Chmerkovskiy, in his own words, addressed an open letter to the dance world that began:

To all I care about,
I’m writing this letter to let you know that I have decided to end my competitive dance career.

The sentences that follow explain in detail the reasons for his decision. Read the full text here. I, for one, did not see this one coming. His presence on the floor will be missed. I am sure I am not alone in saying, “Best of luck, Val, and we hope you keep on dancing.” So … where do we go from here?

Silde and Firstova Retire at German Open

On Friday, August 19, at the German Open held in Stuttgart, Germany, Alexey Silde and Anna Firstova from Russia announced their retirement after finishing first in the World DanceSport Federation Professional Division. Those who were at the IDSF (now WDSF) World Latin Championships last November in Brooklyn may recall seeing this couple take first place as amateurs. They turned professional shortly afterward and now, they have announced their retirement from competition, after a brief but successful professional career. Earlier, WDSF Professional Standard Champions Paolo Bosco and Silvia Pitton from Italy, announced their retirement from competition and attended the German Open as spectators.

We are, of course, saddened to learn of the seemingly early (premature?) retirements of these world champions, and the proximity of events, from the retirement of Bosco-Pitton, Silde-Firstova and now Val Chmerkovskiy, one cannot help but wonder if these retirements are somehow related or occuring in response to the current strife and conflict in the ballroom world.

So … what next?

DWTS13 Premieres on Sept. 19

Also seen on Twitter: Tom Bergeron (@tom_bergeron) announced that the cast of season 13 will be announced live on Monday, August 29. He doesn’t mention that you have to sit through “Bachelor Pad” before the new cast is revealed. Rumored to be dancing this season is Queen Latifah. Via Twitter, Jason Alexander announced that he took a pass but was grateful for the invite. The new season launches on Monday, September 19. Louis van Amstel, via Twitter, announces that something called “Ballroom Battle” will take place around week 6 this season. Could this be what people auditioned for at Dance with Me Soho back in July? I guess we will all have to tune in for the answers to these and many other questions. Will we be watching? You betcha! Where? Hmmm … TBD.

Latin Dancing on the Highline

Arriba Latin Music and Dancing at the HighlineIf dancing at Sunset Salsa at the Triangle or Salsa at South Street Seaport at Pier 16/17 are not enough for you to sate your outdoor latin dancing fix, I just learned about ¡Arriba! Latin Dancing on the High Line to a live band. It takes place on Thursdays in August and your last chance to experience it this summer is on August 25. The Highline is that elevated structure stretching from Gansevoort Street in the Meat Market (just south of West 12th Street) up through West 30th Street, near the Javits Center, that has been reclaimed and reconfigured as a park. On Thursday night, in the shadow of the Standard Hotel, between West 13th and Little West 12th Streets, a live band plays and everyone is invited -- for free -- to enjoy some latin dancing. If it rains, the music and dancing will move to the Chelsea Market passage. It all happens between 7 pm and 9 pm, and the Caribbean Jazz music will be provided by Tony Terrell. Sounds like you can at least merengue to it. If you're in the area on Thursday night, check it out.

Reminders of Upcoming Events

  • Karina Smirnoff and Jonathan Roberts of DWTS will be coming to Temple B’Nai Torah in Wantagh, Long Island on August 27. Reservation deadline has passed. Click here for contact information to ask the organizer if tickets are still available.
  • Victor Fung and Anastasia Murvyeva, third in the world in Professional Standard at this year’s Blackpool Dance Festival, will be performing in New York at the Farrington Dance School’s Grand Opening of its new location at Linden Place in Flushing, Queens, on Sunday, August 26. The evening will start at 6:30 pm, with the performace scheduled for 9 pm. Tickets are $88 per person and includes dinner. The President of Farrington Dance School, Paul Ru, has kindly extended a special group rate to members of USA Dance of $80 per person for groups of 8 or more. If you are interested in forming a group, please let us know at info@nyusandance.org. For more information about the event, check the website at this link or contact the studio at rudanceny@gmail.com.
  • If you missed the first USA Dance National Dance Cruise last year, now’s your chance to take part in the second annual USA Dance National Dance Cruise, taking place from December 4 through 11, 2011. Here’s more from the National Ballroom Dance Cruise website.
  • The 22nd Annual Manhattan Amateur Classic takes place in five months, from January 13-15, 2012, at the Grand Ballroom of the Manhattan Center. Registration will be open soon. More details to come. Questions? Send them to mac@nyusadance.org. Save the dates! Hope to see you there.
  • Dance Legends” is coming to the Hammerstein Ballroom at the Manhattan Center next April. It will be a two-day event set to take place on April 13 and 14, 2012, and it will feature past and present champions in ballroom and latin, performing in multiple showcases. Tickets are due to go on sale in a month, on September 1. To learn more, visit the website or follow Dance Legends on Facebook or Twitter.

Looking to Improve Your Dancing?

Here are some ideas for classes and practice spaces:
  • At Brooklyn DanceSport Club, Maria and Eugene will be teaching Open Junior/Youth Seminars on Mondays from 7:00 to 8:30 pm, and Open Adult Seminars on Tuesdays from 7:00 to 8:30 pm. They will also hold regular run-through Latin rounds on Tuesdays from 8:30 to 10:00 pm and Thursdays from 8:00 to 9:30 pm. Blackpool Professional Rising Star Ballroom Champions Marat Gimaev and Alina Basyuk have now joined the studio as Directors of the Ballroom Department and they will be teaching the Open Standard Seminar on Wednesdays at 7 PM, starting July 6th. They will also run regular Standard Run-through Practices on Wednesdays at 8:30 PM and on Fridays at 7 PM. The studio is easily accessible by subway, via the N train, 18 Avenue stop. From there, it’s a short walk to the studio.
  • Stepping Out holds an International Standard and American Smooth Practice session on Tuesdays from 9:30 to 10:30 pm, and the cost is just $3 per person or $5 per couple. On Saturdays, they hold a Standard pratice session from 5 pm to 6 pm, at the same cost. Just show the front desk your USA Dance membership card to take advantage of these great rates, and ask them what other USA Dance discounts are available for their other programs and events.
  • Become the best ballroom dancer you can be for your partner by working on yourself first. ISTD Fellow Michael Choi shows you how with his Ballroom Barre, at Chelsea Studios, every Wednesday, starting at 8:30 pm. Just $25 per person for USA Dance members. The classes are non-sequential so drop in any time; no partner required, all levels welcome. For more information, contact Michael at michael@dancemchoi.com.
  • Manhattan Ballroom Dance studio runs Standard rounds on Thursday , from 9:30 to 10:30 pm and Latin Rounds on Friday nights from 8:30 to 9:30 pm.
  • Basic Ballroom holds a Competition Run-through Class supervised by former World Professional Latin finalists Paul and Olga Richardson on Friday nights from 8 pm to 9:30 pm. Just $20 for USA Dance members.
  • Check out the special rates for USA Dance members at Basic Ballroom: just $79 for a 10 session card and $90 for their unlimited monthly card.
  • DanceSport offers a $100 monthly floor fee card for amateur dancers: Unlimited practice space Monday to Friday 10 am to 5 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 2 pm, and Sundays 11 am to 7 pm for 30 days.
  • Dance with Me Soho can no longer host practice sessions on weekdays due to space constraints. Dancers are welcome to practice on weekends for $15 per hour per couple. Also, you may want to try their practice parties on Wednesdays at 9:20 to 10:10 pm (salsa theme) and Thursdays same time that covers all styles.
  • Jami Josephson will be teaching a DVIDA professional dance instructor certification course at Basic Ballroom starting on Wednesday, July 20. The dance is hustle and the course will run for six weeks. For more details about the program, click here.

Looking to Social Dance?

Here are some suggestions:
  • Monday, August 22, Salsa at Taj, with live band and special performances. Arrive before 7 pm and get in for $6 (admission price doubles after 7 pm).
  • Ballroom at the Saloon TuesdaysTuesday, August 23, mixed ballroom dancing at the Saloon, on York Ave., between 83rd and 84th street, from 8 pm (free lesson at 7:30 pm).
  • Thursday, August 25, Sunset Salsa at the Chelsea Triangle, 14th Street and 9th Avenue. Lessons at 6:30 pm, dancing from 7:30 pm. FREE!
  • Thursday, August 25, Salsa at the South Street Seaport, Pier 16/17, in front of Skipper’s Cafe. Also takes place on Saturdays, but Social Committee Chair Rosalyn Hansrisuk advises that Thursday night is the better night to go, because it is less crowded. It’s free, and the music is supplied by a DJ, who plays mostly salsa, with some cha cha, bachata and merengue thrown in. On Thursdays, the dancing starts at 7 pm and on Saturdays, it starts at 8:30 pm. If it’s raining, it’s not happening. For more details, check out this page from SalsaNewYork.com.
  • Thursday, August 25, Thursday Night Dance Club at Mirelle's, in Westbury, featuring Latin, Hustle and West Coast Swing. Lesson at 7:30 pm, dancing starts at 8:15 pm. Admission just $10 per person for USA Dance members (present your card at the entrance to get the discount).
  • Friday, August 26, Hot Salsa Friday at the VIP Lounge at the Iguana. Doors open at 6 pm.
  • Friday, August 26, Guest night at Dance Manhattan: FREE lesson at 8 pm, FREE dancing starting at 9:30 pm, FREE show at 10:30 pm.
  • August 26, Friday Night with Abakuá at YSBD/Club 412, hosted by Frankie Martinez and Manny Blackett, featuring salsa/mambo and cha cha, starting at 9:00 pm.
  • Saturday, August 27, Swing 'n Salsa Saturday at YSBD/Club 412, with two live bands in separate rooms. Lessons at 7 pm, dancing starts at 8 pm.
  • Saturday, August 27, mixed ballroom dancing at Manhattan Ballroom Dance studio, starting at 7:30 pm with a free lesson, dancing from 8:00 pm to midnight.
  • Sunday, August 28, Sunday Tea Party at Manhattan Ballroom Dance, mixed ballroom dancing starting at 3 pm.
For more ideas, check Wayne's Dance Commentary or bailamosdance.com.

Looking for a Partner?

We have a follower seeking a silver or higher leader in Standard or Smooth. To see this and other posts of dancers seeking partners, take a look here. If your post has expired and you're still looking for a partner, feel free to re-post. It’s free, it’s easy. Do it today!

That does it for this week. Keep on dancing, rain or shine!
Yang Chen
Greater NY
USA Dance
(NY USA Dance)

General disclaimer: Please note that, other than events organized by NY USA Dance, the listing of events in this newsletter is purely for informational purposes and does not carry with it any endorsement, sanction or seal of approval, express or implied. If you have any questions about an event other than one organized by NY USA Dance, you should direct them to the organizer of that event. NY USA Dance has no control over any of the events listed herein, other than those events which NY USA Dance itself organizes. NY USA Dance bears no responsibility for the content, conduct, quality, management or operation of any of the events listed in this newsletter, other than those events organized directly by NY USA Dance.

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