Guest Coaches

LEARN FROM THE WORLD’S LEADING DANCERS AND COACHES.

Your Fred Astaire dance instructors are the cream of the crop. They represent some of the best talent in the country. We believe in exposing our students and our instructors to new ideas and perspectives whenever possible. For this reason Fred Astaire proudly hosts some of the most talented, renowned and award winning dancers, coaches and choreographers from all over the world. Outside coaching from one of our guest experts will offer you new insight and ideas, and can take your dancing to the next level.

Many of our coaches are reigning world dance champions and several have been featured on hit television show such as ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ All are nationally recognized in the dance industry. If you’re serious about improving your dancing, sessions with Fred Astaire guest coaches are opportunities you must take advantage of.

We encourage you to contact us right away to schedule your time for a special coaching with one or more of these top ranked coaches at the studio this month!


Tuesday, November 27th – Stephen Knight

Stephen is one of the busiest men in the industry. As a Regional Franchise Director for the Fred Astaire Dance Studios’ Wisconsin Region, an NDCA Adjudicator, a Coach, Choreographer, and the Co-National Dance Director for Fred Astaire Dance Studios, his dance card is almost always full. Stephen and his dance partner, Rae Josephs, were 3-Time United States American Rhythm Finalists, and 6-Time undefeated Fred Astaire American Rhythm Champions. Stephen is also responsible for creating a large portion of the Fred Astaire Dance Studios Silver Syllabus. He is well-known for his choreography for Open Routines, Solos, Showcases, and Novelties.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • 6-Time Fred Astaire Open American Rhythm Champion
  • 3-Time USDSC Open American Rhythm Finalist
  • USDSC Theatrical Finalist
  • USDSC Rising Star Theatrical Champion

Friday, November 30th – Ilya Velednitsky

Ilya moved from Ukraine in 1989 and has been teaching professionally with Fred Astaire Dance Studios for 11 years total, 4 years at the Milwaukee location and 7 at the Brookfield location. He is currently the Regional Dance Director for Fred Astaire Dance Studios of Wisconsin and competes professionally both regionally and nationally. Him and his partner, Ms. Mariya Ilchenko, are multiple-time Fred Astaire Rhythm Champions, Show Dance Champions, and Ohio Star Ball Professional Rhythm Finalists. He is now making his way into the world of coaching and adjudicating.


Monday, December 3rd & Tuesday December 4th – Tony Meredith

Mr. Tony Meredith, along with his partner Melanie LaPatin, have represented the United States for over a decade in the World Latin American Dance Championships and have taken home over 100 championship titles. They retired from competitive dance in 1998.

Meredith has been behind the scenes as appearing in films, TV shows and Broadway, including feature film performances in Dance with MeThe Thomas Crown AffairLet It Be Me and The Last Days of Disco. He has co-hosted seasons 1 and 2 of the PBS series America’s Ballroom Challenge with Marilu Henner, and more recently, Meredith and LaPatin have appeared fairly regularly as guest choreographers on the Fox dance competition reality show So You Think You Can Dance.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • The United States Professional Latin American Championships
  • North American Latin Championships
  • Latin World Cup Championships
  • Dancesport World Cup Championships
  • Latin World Trophy Championships

Tuesday, December 4th – Natalia Maidiuk

Internationally known as a champion-level ballroom dancer with an exceptional portfolio of awards and titles, Natalia and her professional partner, Mr. Manuel Favilla, began their dancing career together in 2012. While they still dance professional and are available for professional shows, Natalia and Manuel have gone on to adjudicating, coaching and choreographing right here in the Wisconsin region.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • 1st Runner Up Blackpool Dance Festival Professional Rising Star Latin
  • 1st Runner Up UK Championship Professional Rising Star Latin
  • 3 time International Open Professional Latin Semi-Finalist
  • UK Championship Open Professional Latin Semi-Finalist 2013
  • Blackpool Dance Festival Open Professional Latin Semi-Finalist 2015
  • 3 time European Championship Open Professional Latin Finalist
  • World Championship Finalist 2013
  • Embassy 2013 Open Professional Latin Champions
  • 1st Runner Up USDC Open Professional Latin 2015

Monday, December 10th – Ricky Bentzen

Ricky Bentzen is originally from Denmark, and represented his home country throughout his Amateur career. He was undefined Danish Latin Champion and 2-Time World Latin Semi-Finalist. In 2008 he moved to the United States, where he became part of Fred Astaire Dance Studios and began his Professional career as an American Rhythm Competitor with Albina A. Habrle.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • Danish Latin Champion
  • 2-Time Youth Latin World Semi-Finalist
  • 11-Time undefeated Fred Astaire Professional Open Rhythm Champion
  • World Professional Open Rhythm Vice Champion
  • 11-Time Fred Astaire National Open Professional Rhythm Champion
  • 3-Time US National Open Professional Rhythm Finalist
  • 4-Time World Open Professional Rhythm Finalist

Tuesday, December 11th – Michael Mead

Mr. Michael Mead has developed a unique style that ultimately led him and his professional partner to setting a record by winning the Open Championships 4 years in a row (undefeated throughout). You can now find him coaching many of the U.S. top competitive couples, as well as judging for competitions and traveling the world doing shows. Become one of those top competitive dancers by joining Mr. Mead for one of his fantastic and informative coaching’s.


Thursday, December 13th & Friday, December 14th – Maxim Kozhevnikov

Mr. Maxim Kozhevnikov began his ballroom dancing endeavors in 1990 and has been dancing an winning awards ever since. This 5 times World Professional Show Dance Champion, 7 times U.S. National Professional Show Dance Champion, U.S. National Professional Latin-American Champion, Grand Professional Finalist at Blackpool, U.K., Internationaland World Championships and U.S. National Professional Rising Star International Latin Champion. Join him as he takes to our ballroom floor for a day of coaching. Get ready for some of the best dance tips and tricks from this legend!


Monday, December 17th – Eduard Apolonov

Eddie specializes in all areas of International Latin, Standard, American Smooth, American Rhythm, as well as choreography for Showcases, Solos and Novelties. Eddie is a Choreography Specialist on Open Routines and coaches top competitive couples in the country.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • USA National Rising Star Champion
  • USA Open to the World Rising Star Champion
  • 1998 Top Rising Star Couple in the United States
  • Open USA National Championship Finalist
  • Ohio Star Ball Finalist
  • Emerald Ball Finalist
  • Manhattan Dance Sport Champion
  • Millennium Dance Sport Champion
  • Heritage Classic Champion
  • Empire State Champion
  • UK: Rising Star British Open to the World Championship Finalist
  • Blackpool: Rising Star British Open to the World Championship Finalist
  • World Class Adjudicator, NDCA
  • National Judge, NDSA
  • Bachelor degree of Choreography from University of Fine Arts, Russia

Tuesday, December 18th – Ilya Velednitsky

Ilya moved from Ukraine in 1989 and has been teaching professionally with Fred Astaire Dance Studios for 11 years total, 4 years at the Milwaukee location and 7 at the Brookfield location. He is currently the Regional Dance Director for Fred Astaire Dance Studios of Wisconsin and competes professionally both regionally and nationally. Him and his partner, Ms. Mariya Ilchenko, are multiple-time Fred Astaire Rhythm Champions, Show Dance Champions, and Ohio Star Ball Professional Rhythm Finalists. He is now making his way into the world of coaching and adjudicating.


 

Click the image to get started!