News and Press
At Fred Astaire Dance Studios, it’s always exciting when our talented staff & students, and exciting events & locations are celebrated in the media! From local community stories to national news, our goal is to help share the inspiring examples of how the positive and transforming power of dance enriches lives – physically, mentally, emotionally and socially. Browse these links, and perhaps discover something new and engaging about dance. Then, step in to Fred Astaire Dance Studios and experience the joy and confidence that dance lessons can bring to your life.
Fred Astaire South Windsor’s Contributions Raise Funding and Awareness For Connecticut Fisher House
Over the past few years, Fred Astaire South Windsor, in conjunction with Fred Astaire New England, has lent their support in helping to raise the funds needed to build Connecticut Fisher House which recently held a groundbreaking ceremony to start construction. Fred Astaire Dance Studios of New England raised over $280,000.00 toward this vital project which will provide comfort and support for military and veterans families.
As part of Fred Astaire Studios New England, Fred Astaire South Windsor participated in two Dancing With Our Heroes Galas.The proceeds of these fundraising events were donated to Friends of Fisher House Connecticut for the construction of a Fisher House on the grounds of West Haven VA Hospital. Fisher House Foundation nationwide provides a network of comfort homes where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one receives specialized medical care at a nearby facility.
The Dancing With Our Heroes events spotlighted ballroom and latin dancing competitions featuring military men and women who were partnered with professional dance instructors from Fred Astaire Dance Studios of New England. Fred Astaire South Windsor donated studio time, instructors and a total of 20 free lessons to the competing military members for their dance training. Fred Astaire South Windsor co-owner Paulo Jorge also donated his time and talents to the creation of the brochures for both Dancing With Our Heroes galas. The events included dinner, silent auction, and a professionally choreographed show along with the competition for best dance team.
“The Dancing with our Heroes events were a tremendous success in support of Friends of Fisher House”, said Fred Astaire South Windsor co-owner, Christian Lange. “We are so proud and honored to have been part of this tremendous effort and the positive impact it will have on military veterans and their families”.
“We want to thank the veterans who participated in our Dancing With our Heroes event and all who were able to join in celebrating the start of the Fisher House at the West Haven campus of the VA Connecticut Healthcare System. We were so honored to share this special moment with our South Windsor community, and are so grateful for the support of all our New England dance studios have provided in making this home a reality. We expect this new Fisher House will continue the tradition of providing care, comfort and compassion for Veterans’ families for years to come -because of your support.” said proudly by South Windsor Fred Astaire Dance Studio co-owner, Paulo Jorge.
At the April 11th groundbreaking ceremony for Fisher House a plaque recognizing their generosity was presented to Fred Astaire New England Studios.
FRED ASTAIRE SOUTH WINDSOR SCORES STANDOUT AWARDS AT NEW ENGLAND DANCESPORT COMPETITION
Co-Owner/Director Wins Professional World Smooth Championship
Both instructors and students from Fred Astaire South Windsor captured everyone’s attention and garnered a series of outstanding awards with a spectacular selection of dances and showcases at the 46th New England Dancesport Competition which took place Thursday, March 9th through Saturday, March 11th at the Mystic Marriott Hotel & Spa in Mystic CT.
Christian Lange, co-owner/director at Fred Astaire South Windsor and Nevena Urosevic, owner/instructor at Fred Astaire Trumbull dazzled the crowd and electrified the judges with their breathtaking waltz, easily winning the Closed American Smooth Bronze & Silver Championship. Their elegant style and gracefully fluid movements left no doubt in the judges’ minds that Lange and Urosevic had no equal in their exquisite performance. Lange has won several prestigious professional titles in the Smooth category, most recently the World Championship Silver American Smooth Closed competition in Las Vegas last August.
Fred Astaire South Windsor’s students and instructors also had a stellar weekend at the Mystic competitions with several superb performances that earned top awards. In 1st Place: Beth Gagnon/Christian Lange (Social Bronze Closed Smooth 3-Dance Championship); Karen Gagnon/Vladimir Serbulenco (Social Bronze Closed Rhythm); Sharon Citrin Goldstein/Vladimir Serbulenco (Advanced Bronze Closed Rhythm); Karen Prince/Christian Lange (Jive Showcase); Steven Prince/Amanda Meadow (Quickstep Showcase) and Amanda Meador (choreographer)/Beth Gagnon/Shirley Jakobowski/Linda Landry/Karen Prince/ Jane Smith (Cell Block Tango! Formation).
1st Place Children’s Division: Five-year-old Lara Pereira Catão for her beautifully executed performance in Smooth in her very first competition.
2nd Place Awards included: Consuelo Medrano/Vladimir Serbulenco (Social Bronze Closed Smooth 3-Dance Championship); Karen Gagnon/Vladimir Serbulenco (Social (Bronze Smooth 3-Dance Championship); Vera Maltsev/ Christian Lange (Open Smooth Championship); Sharyn Maclelland/Christian Lange (Silver Closed Smooth 4-Dance Championship) and Amanda Meador/ Damiano Scarfi (Professional American Mixed Novice)
Professionals Ivana Strancaric and Vladimir Serbulenco were among the top finalists, taking a strong 3rd place in the Closed American Rhythm Bronze and Silver Division. Student finalists were John Tillman, Consuelo Medrano, Dr. Monika Szenk and Mark Gagnon who all performed skillfully in several categories.
Saturday evening was set aside for the competition’s celebratory banquet during which special awards were bestowed. Banquet Awards included: Most Spirited School; Southbury and South Windsor; Top Female Award: Amanda Meador; Top Male Award; Vladimir Serbulenco. The much anticipated Honor Dance was performed by Closed American Smooth Bronze & Silver Championship winners Christian Lange and Nevena Urosevic who reprised their winning waltz.
“We could not be more proud of our students and instructors for their exemplary performances at the Mystic Competition, earning them so many well deserved awards.” said Lange. “We have had the privilege of watching them grow and develop as dancers and it gives us great satisfaction to see their progress with each competition. Many of our students are now training for the Las Vegas Championships being held this summer and we are very excited to help them prepare for their performances which we know are going to be really terrific.”
While enjoyment of dancing is the key mission of Fred Astaire Studios, social awareness and philanthropic efforts are also an important part of their mission. “New England Dance Sport Competition organizers donated $1.00 per entry to food banks in each city with a participating Fred Astaire Studio,” said Fred Astaire South Windsor co-owner Paulo Jorge.
Fred Astaire South Windsor celebrates their successes at New England Regional Championships
The strengths and talent of Fred Astaire South Windsor really shined through the New England Regional Fred Astaire 32nd Tri-Star Championships, held at the Foxwoods Resort and Casino, the week of November 14, 2015.
With over 20 Fred Astaire Dance Studios participating and challenging each other on the ballroom floor, the competition is a very positive experience. Students meet, mingle and compete with other student dancers in order to feel accomplished and confident as dancers. Participating in these competition events gives every student and student/teacher team the opportunity to progress more rapidly in their dance endeavors and have fun along the way!
In the single dances, which are danced through out the day, Fred Astaire South Windsor students collected an impressive number of first places. In the championships rounds we congratulate our newcomer student Caleigh Petrillo for taking first place in Social Bronze Closed Smooth 3-Dance Championship. The smooth dances were Foxtrot, Waltz and Tango. Congratulations also go to Shirley Jakobowski for taking second place in Silver Closed Rhythm in Rumba, Chacha, Swing, and Bolero. She took first place with Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot in the Advanced Bronze Closed Smooth 3 – Dance Championship. Fred Astaire South Windsor students seem to agree that competing in ballroom dancing ensures a great time as well as a tremendous feeling of accomplishment.
“It was very interesting to see how people join our dance studio as social dancers and months later they are dressed up in beautiful ballroom gowns and then compete against the whole region” said both directors Christian Lange and Paulo Jorge with proud hearts.
Fred Astaire South Windsor student Shirley Jakobowski was also recognized 3rd place among the top female competing students. The award is determined by the quantity of single dances, combined with the scores of each dance.
We are also proud of our professionals Ivana Strancaric and Vladimir Serbulenco who made into the finals, and placed 4th in Closed American Rhythm Bronze & Silver Division, and 5th in Closed American Smooth Bronze & Silver Division. Congratulations go to Christian Lange, studio co-director, and his dance partner Nevana Jovanovic for becoming New England Regional Champions in Open American Smooth. Most of the championships consist of 20 or more competitive couples.
We give a big thank you to all our friends and students, who took the effort to attend the event and cheer on our students.
For more information on the Tri-Star Championships, the Fred Astaire Dance Studio of South Windsor, or for more answers about ballroom dance lessons please contact the studio at (860) 648-4482 Our studio is located at 1735 Ellington Road, South Windsor CT 06074
Fred Astaire South Windsor Wins First Place Dance Formation at Dance Extravaganza 2015.
SOUTH WINDSOR — The strengths and talent of Team of Fred Astaire South Windsor really shone through at the Fourth Annual New England Dance Extravaganza held Friday, June 19th through Sunday, June 21st, 2015 at the Mystic Marriott, 625 North Rd., Groton.
We have so much to celebrate, we won First Place Formation with the score of 97, 3rd place winner Top Studio Extravaganza Team Match and The Most Spirit School.
We are so very proud of every student from our school, it is so great to see how all the hard work is paying off. Our students put so much time and energy into their lessons and you can not even describe the feeling when you place first and get recognized in front of hundreds of people. Choreographed by our dance instructors, The South Windsor Dance Formation “Indian Fairy Tale” made everyone gasp for more.
“Dance is a sport that can be very beneficial to our health” said Fred Astaire South Windsor Director Christian Lange. Explained “One of our students told me that she’s having fun learning dance routines that she can perform despite medical issues. Dancing is for anyone.
“Sometimes people get the wrong perception about our studio when they read about all the events and competitions we are doing. First and foremost, we are a social studio and our Fred Astaire System is designed to make you the best social dancer you can be. Competitions are a direction some of our students choose to take in order to advance their dancing skills, since the lessons are more intensely structured. Everyone should experience at least once in there lives how it feels to waltz, cha cha and foxtrot across the floor.”
Both directors expressed their gratitude to students for participating. “We had so much fun preparing for this event. We are now getting ready for the Fred Astaire World Championships in Las Vegas, at the Mirage Hotel this July.
“We invite the community to come in and discover the fun and excitement of ballroom dancing,” says Mr. Jorge. “We’re sure you’ll love our studio and feel right at home here. We have every Friday at 6:45 pm an introductory group class to ballroom dancing follow by our practice dance party, a great place to brush up on your dance skills while enjoying our wonderful selection of refreshments and making new friends. We’ve made every effort to make Fred Astaire South Windsor into a destination that will add joy and satisfaction to your life. You’ll soon discover that dancing is a wonderful social pastime for both adults and kids, with many aerobic benefits.”