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The last big event before the World Championship Standard and the Shanghai Final 29 October 2019 14:07

2019 WDSF GrandSlam Standard Moscow F| © Egli

The undefeated couple this year, Evaldas Sodeika – Ieva Zukauskaite (LTU) won their fifth GrandSlam on Sunday in Moscow. They described their feelings right after the prize presentation ceremony: ”I was thinking after the final, that Wow!, so far this year we have won everything, which in the first place we were not really aiming for. Our goal was to perform as well as we could in every competition. And, in the end, when I think about that, it’s amazing!” Evaldas said. ”Of course it’s great when the dancing is going well, the audience supports us so well, so what is left than to enjoy. We enjoyed a lot!” Ieva summarized the day.

The runners-up, Francesco Galuppo – Debora Pacini (ITA) had a good time in Moscow as well. ”We enjoyed a lot, we had a lot of fun, especially in the last rounds,” Francesco said. ”We felt very good, and of course this is a new place this year, and it was very, very nice,” Debora agreed. The Italians had, however, some difficulties during the day. ”Today I felt a little bit sick so it was not my best performance,” Francesco revealed.

About the upcoming World Championship, the couple explained how they take something from every event with them to the next event. ”We come back home to improve and practise to become better and better and better. It is step-by-step.”

The third place was awarded to Evgeny Moshenin – Dana Spitsyna (RUS), who were on a cheerful mood after the competition. ”It was really amazing [to dance in Russia]. And the most amazing thing which happened with our performance is that our teachers were happy with our performance. So it was like a super great evening,” Evgeny said with a wide smile on his face. Dana felt it, too. ”Yeah, it’s a double happiness. It has never happened that our teachers were happy, but today they are ok with our performance, so extremely happy.”

About their preparations to the World Championship, Dana revealed her main tactics: ”For me lately it’s like I really tried to enjoy the process of the competitions, because very often you go to the floor and you try to do some tasks, but it really doesn’t help. So I’m trying to enjoy. Today, I think I enjoyed and I’ll take it to Lithuania aswell.”

Alexey Glukhov – Anastasia Glazunova (RUS) ranked fourth on Sunday, and for the first time this year, the Estonians Madis Abel – Aleksandra Galkina made it to the final and ranked fifth. Evgeny Nikitin – Anastasia Miliutina (RUS) finished sixth with the difference in final scores being only 0.46 points in favour of the Estonians.

The winners gave credit to all the couples in the final. ”I want to say, that this final, this today’s final was so good. I’m so happy that all the finalists were pushing each couple to the maximum level. And all the finalists showed a really good level,” Ieva congratulated all the couples.

About the Shanghai Finals the couples are both looking forward to it but at the same time not thinking about it too much. ”It’s going to be a tough week, the World Championship and then the trip to Shanghai. Shanghai is also, I think, one of the toughest competitions,” Evgeny said.

”Yes, we are thinking about Shanghai, because the plan is to finish after that competition. I mean not in terms of finish, but for this year. So it’s going to be the end of 2019 and we will have a holiday, so we are really thinking about that,” Evaldas said with a huge smile on his face.

”I’m trying not to think about the Red Carpet. It always is the biggest problem – what to wear!” Dana laughed. Francesco and Debora, however, have already almost all sorted out: ”We still have the last things to prepare. We are almost ready!”

”But, step by step. At first to Lithuania!” Dana concluded the interviews, and the event perfectly.

Saturday night Latin in Moscow 28 October 2019 18:27

Armen Tsaturyan - Svetlana Gudyno (RUS) | © Egli

The second anticipated highlight of the Saturday evening was, without a doubt, the 2019 WDSF GrandSlam Latin. The last qualifying leg for the 2019 GrandSlam Series Latin was the last possibility to collect GrandSlam ranking points in order to secure an invitation to the Big Final in Shanghai in December.

The competition itself was dominated by the home town couple, Armen Tsaturyan – Svetlana Gudyno (RUS), who had their families and friends there, cheering and supporting them all the way. The World Championship, which also took place in Moscow in the beginning of September, had left the couple some things to improve, and the couple said they managed to do it. ”I feel a big improvement between the competitions,” Svetlana said. ”We are very happy, but we still have to do many things,” Armen confirmed.

Andrey Gusev – Vera Bondareva (RUS), also big favourites of the Russian crowd, ranked second for the first time ever on the GrandSlam Series despite some small accidents and injuries, which made the couple feel like they are happy they survived the competition. ”It was difficult,” they said, ”but it was worth the fight!”

Charles-Guillaume Schmitt – Elena Salikhova (FRA) ranked third, just like they did in Stuttgart. The couple enjoyed the evening in Moscow. ”We enjoyed very much dancing here, it was an amazing atmosphere and the orchestra was great,” Charles said. ”It was a perfect atmosphere,” Elena agreed. When asked about their thoughts on the best dance of the day, they had two opinions on it. ”I enjoyed jive today. Somehow I was feeling a little cheeky,” Elena said. ”The best dance was Paso, it’s always Paso,” Charles laughed.

Andrea Silvestri – Martina Varadi (HUN) ranked fourth and Edgar Marcos Borjas – Alina Nowak (POL) ranked fifth. Guillem Pascual – Rosa Carne (ESP) made it to their first GrandSlam final, and they ranked sixth.

Next time we will meet many of these wonderful Latin couples in Shanghai. The couples are already thinking about it, and not least because of the Red Carpet. ”I’m very happy to dance in Shanghai, because it is the conclusion of the year and everybody, I think, is thinking about holidays,” Vera said. ”Plus, we have a Red Carpet, so we can dress up and be very elegant,” Andrey continued. ”We love to dance in China,” Charles and Elena said, ”We’re excited, and looking forward to Shanghai!” Well, we are, too!

The triumphant marathon 28 October 2019 16:26

2019 WDSF World Championship Ten Dance Final | © Egli

Winson Tam – Anastasia Novikova, representing Canada, won the 2019 WDSF World Championship Ten Dance title on Saturday in Moscow (RUS). The marathon, which consisted of 40 dances started at 11:20 in the morning and ended after a super tight and exciting final almost exactly 12 hours later. After the prize presentation ceremony the winning couple showed an amazing endurance by performing the Dance of Honor just like they had done some thirty-forty minutes earlier as the first dance of the Latin round in the final.

After the first five dances of the final the two strong Standard couples, Evgeny Sveridonov – Angelina Barkova (RUS) and Daniil Ulanov – Kateryna Isakovych (CYP) were almost tied in scores as the margin was only 0.12 points in favour of the Russians. Both couples had loud supporters on the opposite sides of the arena, and they made sure everyone in the building knew which couple was at the centre stage each time. Winson and Anastasia were 5.5 points behind at the third place, David Odstrcil – Tara Bohak (CZE) were the fourth, 2 points behind the Canadians, Andrea Roccatti – Flaminia Iannone (ITA) about 3.3 points behind the Czech couple and Earle Williamson – Veronika Myshko (UKR) on the sixth place about 1.2 points behind the Italians.

When the first Latin dance of the final, Cha Cha Cha, was over and results were shown on the screen, all the excitement started to build in a totally new way, as Winson and Anastasia won it by two points, and the margin in total result shrank to less than four points. Samba round had the same impact, and after seven dances the difference between the Russians and the Canadians was only 1.5 points, still in favour of the Russians.

It was after the eighth dance, Rumba, when Winson and Anastasia were found on the first place in the standings for the first time. Evgeny and Angelina were less than one point behind them, and Daniil – Kateryna 1.5 points behind the Russians, at the third place. At the same time, the battle for the fifth place was very tight, Earle and Veronika were on the fifth place only 0.39 points ahead of the Italians, Andrea and Flaminia.

The couples kept pushing, Winson and Anastasia wanted to hold on to the lead position, and they kept going like never before. Paso Doble earned them again about two points more than the Russians, and they seemed to be heading for the World title. At the same time, Andrea and Flaminia had a powerful Paso Doble, and they ranked fourth in scores for Paso, David and Tara fifth, and Earle – Veronika sixth, making the battle for the fifth place even tighter.

The last dance, Jive, secured the World title for Winson and Anastasia, and by margin of close to 5 points in scores in final standings the couple ended their day with tears of happiness for winning the marathon. Evgeny Sveridonov – Angelina Barkova (RUS) ranked second and the reigning European Champions, Daniil Ulanov – Kateryna Isakovych (CYP) third.

The fourth place was awarded to David Odstrcil – Tara Bohak (CZE), and in the end the Ukrainians Earle Williamson – Veronika Myshko ranked fifth leaving the Italians Andrea Roccatti – Flaminia Iannone to the sixth place.

After such an exciting and captivating final the winning couple was feeling pure joy, and surprisingly there was still some energy left even though the long day had obviously taken its toll. The World title was the second one for Winson and Anastasia, as they have earned gold medals already five years ago, at the 2014 WDSF World Championship U21 Ten Dance.

All the six couples deserve a standing ovation, as the marathon kept us all thrilled and excited until the very end. Congratulations go to not only the winners, and silver and bronze medal winners, but to all of them, equally. Thank you for such an exciting, thrilling and emotional evening!

1oqghJRoQaM|Winson Tam - Anastasia Novikova, CAN | Winners interview

Five out of five 27 October 2019 18:45

Evaldas Sodeika - Ieva Zukauskaite (LTU) | © Egli

A beautiful atmosphere and live music carried the finalists through the long day, and the final turned out to be pure gold!

Evaldas Sodeika - Ieva Zukauskaite (LTU) dominated the fifth leg of the 2019 WDSF GrandSlam Standard, and they will enter the Shanghai Final with five wins out of five.

The final standing:
1. Evaldas Sodeika - Ieva Zukauskaite (LTU)
2. Francesco Galuppo - Debora Pacini (ITA)
3. Evgeny Moshenin - Dana Spitsyna (RUS)
4. Alexey Glukhov - Anastasia Glazunova (RUS)
5. Madis Abel - Aleksandra Galkina (EST)
6. Evgeny Nikitin - Anastasia Miliutina (RUS)

Congratulations, and thank you all for such a fantastic time in Moscow!

Such a great semifinal, even greater the final 27 October 2019 17:37

2019 WDSF GrandSlam Standard Moscow | © Melnikova

There was speed, there was elegance and there were beautiful lines. The twelve couples enjoyed dancing in front of a live band at the centre stage surrounded by the supportive crowd.

The six finalist couples are:

61   Madis Abel - Aleksandra Galkina, EST
106 Alexey Glukhov - Anastasia Glazunova, RUS
199 Evgeny Moshenin - Dana Spitsyna, RUS
204 Evgeny Nikitin - Anastasia Miliutina, RUS
236 Evaldas Sodeika - Ieva Zukauskaite, LTU
290 Francesco Galuppo - Debora Pacini, ITA

Again, pure fireworks are expected as these stars hit the floor. The last GrandSlam ranking points for the year are up for grabs!

Rolling smoothly in Moscow 27 October 2019 16:15

2019 WDSF GrandSlam Standard Moscow | © Egli

The live stream is rolling smoothly in Moscow as the 24 GrandSlam Standard couples started the quarterfinal about 15 minutes ahead schedule.

The crowd has activated their vocal cords at the same time as the live band started to play the first tunes.

The twelve fabulous couples who proceed to the semifinal are:

61   Madis Abel - Aleksandra Galkina, EST
106 Alexey Glukhov - Anastasia Glazunova, RUS
153 Yuming Qiu - Liying Wei, CHN
170 Igor Kruglov - Ekaterina Kazmirchuk, RUS
199 Evgeny Moshenin - Dana Spitsyna, RUS
204 Evgeny Nikitin - Anastasia Miliutina, RUS
236 Evaldas Sodeika - Ieva Zukauskaite, LTU
262 Tomas Fainsil - Violetta Posmetnaya, GER
286 Dmitri Kolobov - Signe Busk, DEN
288 Edgars Linis - Eliza Ancane, LAT
289 Vadim Shurin - Anastasia Meshkova, LAT
290 Francesco Galuppo - Debora Pacini, ITA

Another Swarovski-shimmering evening ahead!

Getting ready for the live stream 27 October 2019 14:07

Tomas Fainsil - Violetta Posmetnaya (GER)

The interview this morning with Tomas Fainsil - Violetta Posmetnaya (GER) turned out to be again super fun and full of surprises! Such a pleasure to meet these two, right before their first round in today's GrandSlam Standard.

We have uploaded hundreds of photos by Reinhard Egli and Marina Melnikova to the Photos sheet of this blog. Most of them are from yesterday, and now there's a good chance to get back to the feelings of yesterday's fabulous two events through images.

Soon the Standard photos will take over, as the top 48 are dancing their Viennese Waltz right now, and it is a rough 1,5 hours to the live stream on DanceSportTotal.

Bjorn and Ashli announcement 27 October 2019 08:14

Bjorn Bitsch - Ashli Williamson (DEN) | © Castanyer

People were whispering about Bjorn Bitsch and Ashli Williamson and their possible retirement from the competition floors. We heard the rumours and wanted to set the record straight, and just like always, the couple was more than willing to tell us what’s going on, as they have already answered the same questions to many.

In short, there are two more competitions for Bjorn and Ashli, the 2019 WDSF PD World Championship ShowDance Standard next week in Germany and the 2019 WDSF PD World Championship Ten Dance a week after that in Portugal. These two competitions are the last two with Bjorn and Ashli on the starting list, and the couple will retire from competitions after the PD World Ten Dance on November 9th.

Two-times European Champions and eight times World Champions say goodbye to the heat of active competing, and they do it just like they started their careers, in Ten Dance. For 17 years they have been dancing together, and by finishing the circle with Ten Dance they want to inspire the younger generations to not to feel the need for specializing to one discipline too early in order to have a great career.

We would like to thank Bjorn and Ashli for being so open and sharing this news with us. Although we will be sad to hear them leaving the competition floors, we are not going to say goodbye to them, and we are looking forward to the events in Dresden and Vila Nova de Famalicao!

h3K7Sae28sk|Bitsch - Williamson, DEN | Announcement

 

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