Yesterday was the first day of this great competition and it belonged to Rising Stars events. Everybody agrees that winning one of these events is a great start of the year and a great way to establish your position in dance world. Again this year, as in all previous, we had a chance to observe young Amateurs and Professionals fighting in both styles for these fabulous titles.
First two events which started in the morning were Amateur Rising Stars Latin and Professional Rising Star Ballroom. In the early afternoon Amateur Rising Star Ballroom couples and Professional Rising Star Latin danced their events. Exciting semifinals and finals of all four events were in the evening and night and were danced to the live music played by famous Ross Mitchell orchestra.
Sam Shamseili & Arina Grishanina from Denmark (photo above left) were over the moon when they were announced winners of the Amateur Rising Star Latin. Lorenzo Valerio La Pietra and Antonella Illuzzi from Italy were second and third place went to another Italian couple: Luca Urso and Alessandra Tripoli. It was a seven couple final and the remaining couples came from Poland, USA, Italy and England.
Professional Rising Star Ballroom event was danced next and also seven couples were called to the final round. In the end Andrea Zaramella and Kristie Simmonds from USA (photo above right) won the title. It was the first competition in the Professional field for them as they turned Professional two weeks earlier. Second place went to the English couple Alex Sindila and Katie Gleeson and the third place to another American couple Gianni Caliandro and Arianna Esposito. Remaining finalists represented Finland, Russia, USA and Japan.
After a short break next two finals were danced by another group of wonderful dancers. The next event Amateur Rising Star Ballroom, as it became a tradition now, has been won by a Polish couple Wojciech Jeschke and Malgorzata Kowalska (photo above left). They were followed by Iaroslav Bieliei and Virginie Primeau from Canada who took a second place and Russians Yuriy Prokhorenko and Mariya Sukach who got third place. It was a great win for this very young Polish couple, they are still under 20 years old - Wojciech is a younger brother of Jacek Jeschke who won this event in 2011. The other couples who danced this final were from Poland, Italy and Russia.
The last event tonight was Professional Rising Star Latin which was convincingly won by Martino Zanibellato and Michelle Abildtrup (photo above right) from Denmark, who turned Professional this year and it was their first competition in that field. What a wonderful start of a year for them! Second place was won by Manuel Favilla and Nataliya Maidiuk from Ukraine. And third place went to Vitaly Sevastianov and Anna Stepunina representing Ireland. Remaining couples were from Russia and USA.
We would like to congratulate all dancers in those four fantastic events and, as it became a tradition, we will publish interviews with all four winning couples as soon as possible.
Positions in the other rounds and available now but detailed placings will be published after they are available from the organisers after the competition.