Archive for the ‘Ramzi Edlibi’ Tag

A DREAM COME TRUE   28 comments

All photos (available for purchase HERE) courtesy of photographer Kai Cheung

The 3rd US Tango Championship is history

The day finally arrived and once more we headed for the Stepping Out Studios to dance the final three tangos on the first round of the finals with three other couples.


Highlights of our round of three tangos

Then there would be a second round with the four other salon finalists. After that four couples would compete in the stage category before the judges would retire to deliberate.

Salon and Stage participants with Sid Grant, seventh from the left

The music selected by DJ Yesim tonight was perfect for our mood and our style. The previous day anxiety and nervousness was replaced with a taste of Malbec to tone the muscles and calm the mind. The tanda started with a Di Sarli classic, followed by a lively Biagi. When the chords of Al compas del corazon from the trademark sound of Miguel Calo signified the third and final song of the first round, we couldn’t help but to share an intimate smile as the countless times we have danced it since we first did it in 1995 took over us for the next three minutes .

The way we dance tonight

The way we waited the judges decision

The way we were overtaken when they called our number

The way we turned into each other

The way the people greeted our accomplishment

The way it settled in being recognized as the best tonight

Alberto Paz - Valorie Hart

The way we smiled for all our friends in our tango world

Tango SALON 1st PLACE – Valorie Hart and Alberto Paz
Tango SALON 2nd PLACE – Selena and Alberto Hoyos
Tango SALON 3rd PLACE – Sarah La Rocca and Lexa Rosean

THE HOPE ENDURES, AND THE DREAM LIVES ON   1 comment

Our ride to Manhattan was smooth and short. As we went in, we were given our registration papers. A number was affixed on my back, lucky 120. Then we were directed to the warm up room at Stepping Out Studios, 9 stories high on West 26th Street between 6th and Broadway. There was a conglomerate of nervous smiles, polite greetings, and last minute rehearsals.

Master of Ceremonies Sidney Grant went through the logistics and one of the participants suggested that all the dancers form a circle and hold hands as a symbol of the camaraderie that tango brings into people’s lives. The twelve couples ready to compete were,

120 Valorie Hart & Alberto Paz USA/USA
121 Colleen Liddie & Richard Isaacs Canada/USA
122 Jean Fung & Mark Greenglass USA/USA
123 Emily Vartanian & Pawel Cheda USA/Poland
124 Antoinette Tomai & Johnny Tablada USA/USA
125 Catherine Nicodemo & Edmund Fu USA/USA
126 Chino Hara & Yoshi Adachi Japan/Japan
127 Suki Shorer & Ramzi Edlibi USA/USA
128 Amy Zhang & Barry Black USA/USA
129 Selena & Alberto Hoyos USA/USA
130 Sarah La rocca & Lexa Rosean USA/USA
131 Ninah Beliavsky & Joseph Samaha USA/France

Antoinette and Johnny

Antoinette and Johnny

Valorie greets Amy

Valorie greets Amy

Pawel and Emily

Pawel and Emily

Valorie with Alberto Hoyos from Orlando, FL

Valorie with Alberto Hoyos from Orlando, FL

The format of the competition called for three rounds of four couples each dancing three tangos. DJ Carlos Quiroga spun Di Sarli, Biagi and Malerba pieces selected by judges Torres and Cervila.

But first the participants were introduced to the audience and had a warm up dance.

SEMIFINALS WARM UP DANCE

Video courtesy of RoseUnderMyWindow

At this point we haven’t been able to secure videos of our own round, but here is a sample of what it looked like had you been there.

SECOND OF THREE SONGS OF THE THIRD SEMIFINAL ROUND

128 Amy Zheng & Barry Black – USA/USA, 129 Selena & Alberto Hoyos – USA/USA, 130 Sarah La rocca & Lexa Rosean – USA/USA, 131 Ninah Beliavsky & Joseph Samaha – USA/FRANCE

The Judging Panel would be judging 4 different areas: musicality, circulation, walking style and the consistency of the embrace

The 2009 Official Judges: , Junior Cervila, Guillermina Quiroga and Jorge Torres

After the rounds were danced, the judges retired to deliberate and when they came back we heard the names of those who would return the next day. We did it. Our happiness was beyond description. We were among the finalists who will be dancing for the championship Friday night at Stepping Out Studios in Manhattan.

The hope endures, and the dream lives on.

2009 Salon Finalists

120 Valorie Hart & Alberto Paz USA/USA
123 Emily Vartanian & Pawel Cheda USA/Poland
124 Antoinette Tomai & Johnny Tablada USA/USA
125 Catherine Nicodemo & Edmund Fu USA/USA
128 Amy Zhang & Barry Black USA/USA
129 Selena & Alberto Hoyos USA/USA
130 Sarah La rocca & Lexa Rosean USA/USA
131 Ninah Beliavsky & Joseph Samaha USA/France