Felipe comes to Charlotte from Colombia, South America. He began his dance training at age 6 and has trained under some of the most prestigious names in the world of Ballroom Dancing. Among Felipe’s trainers are such distinguished names as Louis Van Amstel, Shirley Ballas, Hanna Karttunen, Vibeke Toft and Goran Nordin. Felipe competes professionally in International Style Latin Dancing. He attended Utah Valley State University and studied in the Ballroom Dance Program. He has won several distinctions in his career including:
- Top 20 World Rising Star Amateur Latin – Blackpool, England – 2009
- Professional Rising Star Latin Champion – Florida Superstars – 2011 & 2012
- Millennium Dancesport Championships 2012
- Killick Classic 2012
Felipe appears in DanceSport events both nationally and internationally. He is a well-respected mentor among younger ballroom dancers. Felipe trained the 2010 WDC Junior World Pro-am Latin Champion and also started his own younger brother in the world of competitive ballroom leading his brother and partner to the DanceSport circuit where they are now Amateur Finalists. Felipe is also the Founding Director of the Youth Dance Foundation, Queen City Ballroom’s non-profit organization that provides free ballroom dance instruction for local area youth.
Felipe has been with QCB for 10 years and is now the Director of Staff Relations at Queen City Ballroom. His knowledge and expertise has been key asset to building the studio team.
Born in Argentina, Erica began to dance in her youth. Her inspiration came from her native country and home of the Argentine Tango.
In order to pursue her passion to dance she began training with world-renowned coaches and choreographers, and she currently competes at the top Professional level, Nationally and Internationally, in the Open Professional International Standard Division with her partner Lukas Chockuba. Along with competing they also travel world wide for shows and coaching.
She has won several major competitions thought the nation and was a representative of the USA in the World Championship Classic Showdance Division.
Erica enjoys teaching and feels that being able to share her passion is a gift. She believes that it’s not every day that people can do what they truly love and so she considers herself very lucky.
Erica is currently the Director of Student Relations at Queen City Ballroom and is excited to bring sense of teamwork and home to the students of QCB.
Formerly from Brindisi, Italy, he has made Charlotte, NC his home. He is ranked among the top ten Standard Dancers worldwide. His charismatic personality brings a wonderful energy to the ballroom!
Andrea is fluent in English and Spanish as well as his native Italian. He is an accomplished tennis player and an avid snowboarder.
Kristie comes to queen City Ballroom from Sydney, Australia. With her partner Andrea Zaramella, she is the current UK Rising Star International Standard champion. Kristie began dancing as a child and started her international competitive career at the age of thirteen.
She began her current partnership with Andrea in New York City after a world-wide search. Together, she and Andrea achieved a ninth place finish in the UK Open placing her among the top ten Standard Dancers in the world.
While attending the United States Amateur Nationals in Provo, UT this year, she found a new love in snow skiing and has also taken up tennis in her free time.
Jake is one of the newest additions to the Queen City Ballroom family. Originally from sunny South Africa, Jake started dancing at the age of 12. At the age of 19 he made a big step and moved to England to further his competitive career and to train with top coaches. He and his partner Alyona Kalinina recently moved to the USA as their next endeavor and hope to continue their growth in this new phase of life.
Some of Jake’s top achievements include 2013 Washington Open professional champions, 2012 British National Show dance Champions, British National professional Latin Champions.
Jake has appeared in numerous feature films and was a part of Dancing with the Stars Turkey. He holds a licentiate in both Ballroom and Latin with the ISTD and IDTA and is a certified Zumba instructor. Among his many talents he is also qualified as a professional chef and enjoys traveling around the world sampling foods of all cultures.
Alyona is another new member of QCB. Originally from Ukraine Alyona started her dance career at the age of 10 and improved so quickly that she started teaching her first student at the age of 14. She completed her dance degree at the International Slavik University of Dance of Kiev in 2011.
Alyona made the decision to move to London to dance with Jake. together they represented England in international Latin and trained with the top world coaches.
For Alyona 2013 has proved to be an exciting year with the decision to move to the USA to further her professional career and join the Queen City Ballroom team!
Some of Alyonas top achievements include 2013 Washington Open professional champions, 2012 British National Show dance Champions, British National professional Latin Champions. She also appeared in Dancing with the Stars in Turkey and the Voice of Turkey.
Charlton came to Charlotte after his parents moved from Puerto Rico. He began his dance career in 1995 shortly after graduation. Seventeen years later, his dancing has taken him all over the world from New York to California, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the Bahamas. He was the Fred Astaire National Professional Latin Dance Champion prior to moving to California. While living in SoCal, he danced with some of the greatest legends in Ballroom dance.
Back in Charlotte, Charlton has made a name for himself in a wide variety of interests. He is a highly sought after producer for local fashion shows and charity events, and he is a licensed hair and make-up consultant. Most recently, Charlton can be found on Charlotte’s musical stages. His recent starring roles in “Rent” and “Cabaret” have drawn glowing reviews from the local media. In addition to his expertise in Ballroom and Latin Dancing, Charlton is also a noted specialist in night club style West Coast Swing.
Jeremy is Spanish but hails from New York City where he was trained in all of the ballroom and latin dances. In his career, he has earned several top finishes which distinguish him as an accomplished dancer.
- Finalist – SouthEast Fred Astaire Championship
- Finalist – Fred Astaire Las Vegas National Championship
- Finalist – Fred Astaire New York Dance Championship
When competing professionally, Jeremy was called upon regularly to perform in New York, North Carolina and South Carolina. Some of those performances were done for local theatre groups which gave him experience both on the dance floor and on stage.
Luis began his professional ventures during his teenage years by joining one of Honduras’ most prestigious folkloric ballet companies. Luis proved to be an innovator by introducing Modern Dance, Argentine Tango, and Salsa to the ballet company, creating new genres of Salsa and performance dance which led to a European tour and several large-scale dance production projects. Luis opened two dance companies in Honduras and received many distinguished honors.
Luis moved to the United States in order to pursue his dream of become a top Theater Arts dancer. After a brief time in New York city, Luis has relocated to Charlotte where his many Salsa talents and his Latin Fusion Fitness program added new sizzle to the dance floor at Queen City Ballroom.In accomplishing his dream in moving to the US he is now recognized in the for his expertise in Theater Arts and currently competes and travels for shows and coaching.
He and his partner Dilandia train extensively with their coach Michael Chapman in theater arts and most recently took 3rd place at the Heritage Dancesport Classic, 3rd place at the Southern States Dancesport competition in New Orleans
Dilandia was born in Dominican Republic but was raised in Miami, FL, She moved to New York City to pursue her dreams in the entertainment business and then decided to move to Charlotte and join the QCB team with her partner luis. She is well known as a performer of Middle Eastern and South American dances and Brazilian Samba. She is also versatile in many other dance forms and has performed for the United Nations and various media events in the New York area. She has appeared in several Off-Broadway productions as well as Univision’s “Premios Juventud” award show, and the NYC International Salsa congress. Many renowned Latin recording artists such as Prince Royce, Ochun, and Yerason have used Dilandia as lead dancer in their live shows and music videos.
She and her partner Luis train extensively with their coach Michael Chapman in theater arts and most recently took 3rd place at the Heritage Dancesport Classic, 3rd place at the Southern States Dancesport competition in New Orleans
Brent hails from Seattle, Washington where he began dancing, modeling and acting at a young age. He started performing in theater productions before traveling with a competitive Show Choir performance team in High School. While modeling with John Casablanca in Seattle, WA Brent began performing with a salsa team that showcased performances around the state of Washington.
In 2004 Brent joined the United States Marine Corps and was stationed in the beautiful state of North Carolina where he also taught salsa and ballroom classes. Brent also taught salsa and latin classes while stationed in Iraq to Iraqi nationals and United States service members during his deployment in Fallujah.
After serving in the Marine Corps for four years Brent began to train at a franchised dance studio in Raleigh, NC under the instruction of Rafael Colon a world mambo and Argentine Tango Champion.
Brent has competed in all American Rhythm and Smooth dances and specializes in club latin dancing such as Salsa and Bachata in which he has won many competitions. Brent has done extensive teaching and choreography for over one-hundred weddings and also choreographs routines for non-profits to help with fundraising activities. Brent believes that dancing is the ultimate expression of life because motion creates emotion.
Lauren was influenced in latin dance at an early age because of her Costa Rican background. Her talent and determination brought her to her love for ballroom and her desire to teach and compete. She currently competes in 10 dance which includes both ballroom and Latin. Lauren has won several competitions and continues to work with her coaches to continually improve and master her sport.
Lauren is not only a fabulous dancer but is also Queen City Ballrooms administrative assistant. She helps to tackle all the complexities of office management and desk top publishing.
Lauren’s charismatic personality and joy for dance makes her a great teacher and helps her students to learn in a fun and easy manor. She is able to bring out the best in each of her students and has been a wonderful addition to the QCB family.
Hydeia started dancing at the age of 3. Her foundation stemmed from her training in ballet, jazz, hip hop and free style. In her later years she began dancing Ballroom and Latin and decided to make it her style of choice. Hydeia also had the wonderful opportunity to showcase her dance talents in the Miss Charlotte Talented Teen 2012. She is also Pilates trained and Zumba certified.
Hydeia is always easy to spot in the Ballroom because of her contagious smile. She not only loves dancing but expresses it through her character which is why her students truly enjoy dancing with her. She has a wonderful ease of movement and makes all of her students feel comfortable right away
Along with her dance abilities Hydeia assists with the administrative duties of the studio. She is a huge asset to the studio and a spark that makes everyone smile.
Originally from Poland, Lukas came to the United States 2003 in order to pursue his love for dance. He quickly rose to the top and became the Blackpool Professional Rising Start Finalist in 2008. He considers ballroom dancing his true love and only destiny.
Having ballroom dancing embedded into his life Lukas enjoys sharing his continuously growing knowledge with his students. He feels that the best part of dancing for a man is being able to create something and having the lady respond…it’s what he feels dancing is all about.
Lukas Chockuba and his partner Erica Sazinas started dancing together in 2011 (April) as Professionals. Lukas and Erica travel all over the world for both competition and training and enjoy being able to share their passion with everyone they teach.