Go ahead, add some spice to your night. Friday evening's Ballroom Spectacular program - the second-to-the-last performance of the 2012 Vail International Dance Festival - offers a sampling of several styles of dance that will keep you on your toes and following the beat. Whether you're looking for mambo, tango, bolero or samba; jive, foxtrot, waltz or swing, Ballroom Spectacular will give you what you want, with a few surprises thrown in along the way.
Under the direction of international ballroom sensation Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine, this made-just-for-Vail program showcases ballroom champions from around the world on the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater stage. Ballroom Spectacular takes what's been made famous by television shows like Dancing with the Stars - the celebrities, the costumes and the romanticism - and adds a unique component that takes cues from modern trends in choreography. Think Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers meets the 21st century.
The first dance pairs Latin dance authorities Liana Churilova and Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine, the reigning world mambo, world salsa and world American-style showdance champions. They present an addictive rhythm that translates from North America to the Far East, where they've performed numerous times and received several awards. While the two have not been a pair for long, you'll notice they have a chemistry that draws the audience in, and a technical, consistent performance worthy of their global award recognition and popularity on PBS' America's Ballroom Challenge and ABC's Dancing With The Stars.
Purveyors of poise
Ballroom dancing's sweetheart, the glamorous Iveta Lukosuite, and her fellow World Ten Dance Champion and partner Gherman Mustuc will bring a unique style to the stage that fuses Latin and Standard-styles and has put them in demand around the world, as well as on the hit show So You Think You Can Dance. Where Churilova and Pierre-Antoine turn up the heat, Lukosuite and Mustuc bring their token elegance and poise to the art of ballroom dance.
In addition, the evening will showcase Mikhail Zharinov and Galina Detkina, masters of the "American Smooth" and undefeated Fred Astaire champs; Delyan Terziev and Boriana Deltcheva, World Cup Professional Latin Champions known for being one of the strongest, most charismatic couples on the dance floor; and Anna Trebunskaya and Jonathan Roberts, a married couple who have been heating up the dance floors to earn the rank of 6th in the U.S. and 24th in the world.
Still not sure if Ballroom is for you? Keep in mind that ballroom dancing, at its core, first grew in popularity and now dominates primetime because it is intended to be social. Once considered an elite dance for the privileged, ballroom has evolved with the music and culture of each era to keep pace with the demands and delights of today. Among the songs to which these world champions perform include Michael Jackson's "Black and White," Adele's "Make You Feel My Love," Elvis Presley's "Jail House Rock," "Lady" by Lionel Richie and "The Island" by Barbra Streisand.