cast and creative

DMITRY CHAPLIN Chaplin has established himself as one of the most recognized ballroom dancers and choreographers in the United States and around the world. He’s performed as one of the star professionals on “Dancing with the Stars”, received an EMMY nomination for his choreography of an Argentine Tango on “So You Think You Can Dance” and is one of America’s favorite dancers. Chaplin’s ballroom dancing career began at the age of 12 in his hometown of Rostov-on-Don in Russia. He moved to the United States in 1999, where, after studying both in America and the United Kingdom, he began representing the United States at many world famous ballroom competitions. Chaplin won many of those competitions, became a national finalist in 2006, and ultimately a semi-finalist and finalist in various international competitions around the world. In 2006, Chaplin’s dance career took a different course, when he won a spot on the hit TV show “So You Think You Can Dance” and became one of America’s Top 10 dancers. As a result of his popularity on “So You Think You Can Dance”, Chaplin frequented as a guest performer on “American Idol” and was invited as a ‘special guest’ to dance with Gloria Estefan on the phenomenal and EMMY winning episode “Idol Gives Back.” Chaplin has also had special guest appearances on “The Ellen Degeneres Show”, “Jimmy Kimmel Live”, “Good Morning America”, “Live with Regis and Kelly”, “Larry King Live”, KTLA News, “The View” and many more. Follow Dmitry on Twitter @dmitry_ch

CHELSIE HIGHTOWER  Her dance partner for season 15 was Helio Castroneves who won the coveted mirror ball trophy in season 5 with dance partner Julianne Hough. He races on Team Penske in the Indy Car Racing League. Chelsie’s other DWTS partners were Disney star Roshon Fegan, season 14, entertainer Romeo, season 12, singer-songwriter Michael Bolton, season 11, The Bachelor, Jake Pavelka, season 10, Olympic snowboarder, Louie Vito season 9 and Ty Murray, 7 time All Around World Rodeo Champion, season 8. For the past five years she has wowed audiences with her dancing skills as a professional dancer on Dancing with the Stars. She was a special guest star for a week this summer in the Dancing With The Stars Live show in Las Vegas. Chelsie has assisted with choreography and danced for numerous musical guests on DWTS including: Justin Bieber, Whitney Houston, Nicki Minaj, John Legend, Martina McBride, The Script, Goo Goo Dolls, Heart, Rascal Flatts, Kevin Rudolf, Jewel, Susan Boyle, Melissa Etheridge, The Go Go's, The Bee Gee's and Train.  July 2010 she received her first Creative EMMY nomination for Outstanding Choreography for her “Dancing With The Stars” routine, Paso Doble/Malaquena. She co- choreographed the piece with fellow DWTS pro Derek Hough. Chelsie participated in her first USO tour visiting family bases in Germany, June 2011. Chelsie states, “It was an honor to meet the men and women serving our country and their families. I danced before such appreciative audiences, had a chance to teach a children’s class and even worked with an engaged couple on their wedding dance.”  On July 4th, she and Mark Ballas performed to Jordin Sparks singing “Beauty and the Beast,” on the iconic 2011 PBS Special “A Capitol Fourth.” She appeared on the September 2010 issue of Fitness Magazine cover. Chelsie and Ty Murray were featured in the 2010 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.  Chelsie is the face of Reebok’s new dance shoe and apparel line, which launched March and April of 2013.  “From top to bottom this Reebok line is fabulous.  I can’t wait for everyone to ‘dance’ in these great shoes while looking so fashionable.” states Chelsie.

ANNA TREBUNSKAYA is best known as a top professional dancer for eight seasons of Dancing with the Stars and has been partnered with football star Jerry Rice, model Albert Reed, actor Steve Guttenberg, UFC fighter Chuck Liddell, U.S. Olympic figure skating gold medalist Evan Lysacek, football quarterback Kurt Warner, boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard, and TV star Carson Kressley. She began her dancing life at the age of six in her native Russia. Her parents owned a dance studio, so it was only natural that she took to dancing at an early age. At age seven, Anna entered her first dance competition, which she won, and she has been winning titles (both amateur and professional) ever since. She moved to the United States (with her parents) at age 17. Her parents were dancers and her mother, Irina, still makes her costumes today. They run You Can Dance ballroom studio in Hermosa Beach, California. Anna’s first U.S. title was the 1997 Amateur Standard Youth Championship. Anna and Jonathan Roberts then began competing in professional ballroom dancing competitions from 2001 to 2006 and achieved many top placements in competitions around the world. Anna was the 2004 USA Rising Star Latin Champion and was ranked sixth in the U.S. and 24th in the world, while also placing second in the Blackpool Rising Star Latin championship with Jonathan. When he retired, Anna then teamed with Pavlo Barsuk for two years, capturing third place in the Professional Latin U.S. final, second place in the Rising Star Professional Latin U.K. Championship, and fourth in the Rising Star Professional Latin Blackpool Dance Festival.

GINA GLOCKSEN is best known as the ninth place finalist of the sixth season of the mega-hit television show American Idol. Although Gina was often referred to as the ‘rocker chick’, her musical influences and abilities range far beyond the realm of rock. Gina’s original music infuses the passion and attitude of a rock ’n’ roll rebel with the precision and soul of the modern ‘diva.’ Since her time on American Idol, Gina has toured North America on the American Idols Live Tour and continues to perform around the country showcasing her original music. Gina recently rocked the stadiums by opening for both Bret Michaels and the band Heart. While on the show, Gina’s genuine candor and charming wit made her a favorite of millions and it has helped her to continue her career in entertainment as a co-host on the FOX Reality show American Idol Extra. In addition to working in television Gina continues to write and record original music with the help of many great musicians including Samantha Maloney (former drummer of Hole and Mötley Crüe) and Geoff Repo (son of legendary rock producer Bob Ezrin), to name a few. Gina’s captivating personality and edgy style have helped the world to see that this girl is a talent that cannot be ignored.

VON SMITH was most recently seen on Nigel Lythgoe’s new TV show Opening Act, where he was chosen by Lady Gaga to be her opening act on her tour in Australia. First introduced to the world when his version of “And I Am Telling You (I’m Not Going)” from Dreamgirls became a sensation on YouTube, Von has garnered a legion of fans and has performed on some of the most celebrated stages in the U.S. including ABC’s The View (by personal invitation of Rosie O’Donnell), BET’s 106th and Park, MTV News, VH1’s Best Week Ever, E! Entertainment’s The Soup, TV Azteca’s La Academia and perhaps the biggest stage: American Idol Season 8 as one of the top 17 finalists. When he’s not rocking out on national stages across the country with fellow idol buddies, or performing in front of symphonies conducted by the likes of the late Marvin Hamlisch, Von has been seen around the Los Angeles area in several Upright Cabaret productions, as well as leading roles in an LA-based series of shows called For The Record, paying tribute to the soundtrack songs and iconic moments from films by noted directors such as Quentin Tarantino, John Hughes, Baz Luhrmann, Paul Thomas Anderson, and most recently, Martin Scorsese. He is currently working on his first EP.

C.J. BAIR began dancing professionally in various theater productions such as Rick Robinson’s Evolutions of Dance, Return to Christmas, and Latin Fusion. Shortly after he joined Louis Van Amstel’s touring production of Invitation to Dance. Since 2009 he has been touring with Ballroom with a Twist. C.J. began dancing at age 16 at Center Stage Performing Arts Studios in Orem, Utah. He specializes in Latin ballroom and has competed in numerous competitions all over the world and has been trained by some of dancesport’s top coaches.

YANA BLINOVA is currently ranked 8th in Open Professional Latin at the UK Championships and third in the nation. Initially competing as a Pro/Am Latin competitor, she turned Pro after winning the National and World title. Originally from Siberia, Russia, Yana began dancing at 13 in her parents’ studio. She is the International, UK and British Rising Star Latin Champion, British Open Professional Latin semi-finalist, UK 10 Dance Champion and US 10 Dance representative to the world.

OKSANA DMYTRENKO has been a force in the world of competitive dance since the age of six. Oksana was a juvenile and junior finalist in multiple competitions in her native Ukraine before becoming the National Youth Champion. She held this high honor in her country for three consecutive years. When Oksana took her skills to the international realm, she truly began to flourish by earning first place in the International Dance Union World Cup 2005 and 2006. She earned first place in the Dutch Open from 2005 to 2006 and won the 2010 World Masters. At the age of 18, she took her pursuits to the U.S. where she took second place in the National Amateur Championships, which led to the honor of representing the U.S. in the World Championships in Australia. After turning professional in 2011, Oksana took first place in the Professional Rising Star Latin category. Oksana now graces television screens worldwide as a pro on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, recently performing on her third season as a member of the troupe.

ALLEN GENKIN is thrilled to be performing with the cast of Ballroom with a Twist having just won this past season’s Ballroom Battle on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. He will again be dancing with his partner from DWTS, Alla Kocherga. Allen was a Youth National finalist in 2008 and ranked in the top 10 in both Youth and Amateur divisions in the U.S. for many years. He has been a professional competitive dancer since the age of 11. Allen would like to dedicate his performance to his mother.

PATRICIA KANIOWSKI joined the cast of Burn the Floor after moving from Australia to the United States at the age of 19. She began her dancing life at the age of eight. The next year, Patricia entered her first dance competition, which she won, and she has been winning titles (both amateur and professional) ever since. Now, she is focused on Latin ballroom and is currently ranked 10th in the U.S. Patricia and her former partner were also ranked 24th at the International Championships and placed eighth in the Rising Star Professional Latin division. She has established an internationally successful reputation for teaching and lecturing and continues to train, compete and perform worldwide.

ALLA KOCHERGA has been seen in a wide range of entertainment programs, from ABC’s Dancing with the Stars to national commercials to her role on the classy but sensational touring show Ballroom with a Twist, directed and choreographed by DWTS’s own Louie van Amstel. Originally from Ukraine, Alla moved to Los Angeles at the age of five where she began passionately pursuing the art of dance. With ballet as her foundation, she later developed a love for ballroom, has managed to reach the top 24 in the IDSF World Open Ballroom Competition and recently won the first segment of Ballroom Battle on the hit show Dancing with the Stars. Her unique facility mixed with her hard work ethic and professionalism has steered her from the competition world to the performance aspect of her artistry. Alla strives to make an impact on every audience she encounters and lives each day seeking to learn and improve her performance and believes that being a student and growth are the key to success.

LEGACY is one of the most sought after dancers in the entertainment industry today, known for being one of the very few true B-Boys who can also execute many different styles of choreography. He has an inspired freestyle, versatility, drive, and willingness to tackle all styles of dance that has attracted the attention of industry’s top directors, choreographers, and artists. Legacy has been chosen to perform in countless feature films, music videos, commercials and live stage shows. Just a few of his most recent credits include Hannah Montana the Movie, Dance Flick, and Step Up 3D. He competed on So You Think You Can Dance (Season 6) where he placed fourth. Legacy has worked beside his friends, and now very well-known dance crews, The Jabawokees, The Beat Freaks, and The Groovaloos. He has also had the chance to work beside artists like Rihanna, Toni Braxton, The Black Eyed Peas, Chris Brown, and Akon, as well as being a featured dancer on both of Gwen Stefani’s solo world tours. He has also trained various artists, like Chris Brown, in the art of B-Boying. While Legacy still continues to enjoy performing, his focus has now turned to using what he has learned to choreograph and direct. While Legacy has been creating shows with dancers for years, his first experience creating and choreographing a show for a recording artist was a successful tour that kicked off in Miami with upcoming Latin sensation Josie Cordoba. Legacy also looks forward to being a producer in various fields, ranging from movies to videos to stage productions.

SERGE ONIK has made numerous appearances on national television, including ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance and FOX’s Bones. He is well-known for his role with two-time Emmy Award-winning actress Kirstie Alley in their web series, 100 Days of Dance. He has lent his expertise in choreography and performed in numerous shows for the Wynn Resorts Company including La Reve, The Wynn New Year’s Show, and the grand opening of their new resort in Macau, China. Serge was born in Kharkov, Ukraine. At age three, he moved with his family to the United States. His passion for dancing first began at 12 years old, when he met fellow Ukrainian and world-renowned ballroom dancer, Maksim Chmerkovsky. With Maksim’s mentoring, Serge quickly made a name for himself as a champion ballroom dancer. Throughout his competitive career he has earned many national and international titles, including National Youth Champion and National Amateur finalist. Serge captured 8th place at the 2009 World Games in Taiwan.

JONATHAN PLATERO gained national attention with his athletic dancing as a So You Think You Can Dance Season 5 finalist. Before SYTYCD, Jonathan had already won titles including World Undisputed Salsa Champion and was the head choreographer for Salsa Heats Pro-Team, making his team one of the top team finalists in the world. Being trained in jazz, contemporary, hip-hop, ballroom, and salsa, Jonathan had always dreamed of being a professional dancer. Shortly after his stint on SYTYCD, Jonathan moved to Los Angeles and landed his first major spot on the hit television show, Glee, alongside Olivia Newton-John. Immediately following, he appeared on Disney Channel’s Shake It Up, Fran Drescher’s hit show Happily Divorced, and the Wendy Williams Show dancing for the international Superstar Agnes. In addition to all his accomplishments, Jonathan has showcased his talents in music videos for artists such as Jennifer Lopez, John Mayer, and Cody Simpson. Most recently Jonathan was featured on Dancing with the Stars Season 16, gaining international exposure. Currently, Jonathan is one of the head choreographers/dancers for Estrella TV’s Mi Sueno Es Bailar, the Spanish TV version of Dancing with the Stars.

TONY PUTUTAU has performed in many dance productions including Odyssey Dance Theater, Louis Van Amstel’s Latin Revolution, and the 2007–2008 North American tour of Dancing with the Stars. Tony is from Provo, Utah, where he began ballroom dancing at age 12. He has been a competitor since 1994 and a teacher and choreographer since 1998. He has won many Latin and standard competitions in the United States and Europe, including the Irish International Open Latin Championships in 2000. You can currently see Tony partnered with ABC’s Dancing with the Stars Pro Cheryl Burke in her new TV commercial campaign for Depends.

JANA SAPIR has established herself as one of the top International Standard ballroom performers in the world, winning national Junior & Youth 10 dance championships in her native Russia and the United States.  She also placed in the top 12 among professional couples at the prestigious Blackpool dance festival in the UK. Born In Vlodivostok, Russia Snejana took up dancing at an early age of only 5 years old. After immigrating to the USA she took the top prize in youth and under 21 national championships representing USA at the world championships two years in a row. In 2010 she became the champion of the most watched show in Latin America Bailando Por Un Sueno with Paul Barris. Snejana has also appeared in many guest performances on Dancing with the Stars and performed with stars like Jennifer Hudson and Rebba Mcentire. Currently she tours with Ballroom with a Twist and Dance Temptation. She is also well know for performing and choreographing in many other Broadway and Off Broadway productions here in the USA and Europe.

RANDI LYNN STRONG is best known for being a Top 5 Female Dancer on Season 5 of the FOX Hit TV Show So You Think You Can Dance and the accompanying 40-city national arena tour. On the show, Randi and her partner turned in one of the more memorable performances in the show’s history: the infamous “Butt Dance” choreographed by Emmy Award-winning choreographer Mia Michaels. The dance that was inspired by Randi’s backside has lived on in SYTYCD history and was recently re-created on Season 9. It inspired Judge Nigel Lythgoe to claim that he still thinks about Randi’s rear. Although this is certainly an honor, Randi is much more than her bottom; she is a multidisciplinary dancer and a top, in-demand choreographer. Dancing since the age of three, Randi trained for over 15 years at Utah’s famed ‘Dance Club’ of Orem. In her many years of competing, she earned numerous titles, including National Outstanding Dancer for the New York City Dance Alliance. Randi has performed as a member of the ensemble in the highly acclaimed Radio City Christmas Spectacular, the 2002 Winter Olympics Closing Ceremonies with Earth Wind and Fire, choreographed by the famed Kenny Ortega, and featured on X Factor choreographed by Brian Friedman. While best known as a contemporary dancer and choreographer, Randi is quite accomplished in many forms of dance and more recently is being known as a professional ballroom dancer. She is currently featured as a ballroom, Latin, and contemporary dancer on tour with other stars of SYTYCD, Dancing with the Stars, and American Idol in Louis Van Amstel’s Ballroom with a Twist. Randi also just recently completed an international run with Royal Caribbean’s Navigator of the Seas as a Guest Ballroom and Adagio Couple.

JAYMZ TUAILEVA’S credits include a featured role in High School Musical 2, a guest professional role on Dancing with the Stars, a finalist on the second season of So You Think You Can Dance, a principal dancer in Legally Blonde 2, Rebel in Glee Live 3D, and a dancer with Katie Holmes in an episode for Eli Stone. He has done commercials for Jello and Orbit Gum, worked with artists such as Michael Jackson, Cher, Usher, Nicki Minaj, Ne-Yo, and most recently choreographed Donny and Marie Osmond’s Vegas show as well as their touring Christmas Show. Jaymes hails from Center Stage Performing Arts school in Orem, Utah, where he began dancing at the age of 11. Growing up as an athlete and artist, he decided to pursue his true passion, dance. He plans to further his career in the entertainment industry by directing and choreographing as well as continuing to perform.

LOUIS VAN AMSTEL (Choreographer) is an Emmy-nominated choreographer, 12-time dance champion, and consummate professional, but he may be best known for his stunning turns on the ABC hit show Dancing with the Stars. Now after a lifetime of perfecting his craft, Louis is finally sharing his passion for dance with the rest of the world. In the summer of 2007 Van Amstel signed on for the second time as the creative director and choreographer for the immensely popular Dancing with the Stars live stage show and tour, bringing his unique teachings and edgy style to millions of dancing fans around the U.S. Louis’s artistic and inspired choreography brought the ballroom to the people and his creative vision helped to make the Dancing with the Stars tour one of the most successful live shows of the summer. Louis first began his ballroom career training in a theatre school where he gained a background in ballet, tap, and jazz while simultaneously engaging in rigorous competitions. Upon graduating, he attended the University of the Arts in Amsterdam to further strengthen his skills in the classical dances and theory. Training under lifelong dance/acting coach, friend, and mentor Dr. Ruud Vermeij, Louis is a student of Laban choreology and is well versed in human movement dynamics. During his competitive ballroom dance career, Louis has amassed a staggering number of accolades including: 7-time Dutch National Amateur Champion, European Amateur Latin Champion, World Amateur Latin Champion, Grand Slam Professional Latin Champion, World Professional Showdance Champion, and Professional World Latin Finalist. Upon immigrating to the United States from The Netherlands, Louis became the U.S. National Latin Champion in 2000. In addition to his seasons on Dancing with the Stars, Van Amstel has had recent guest-star stints on The Suite Life of Zach and Cody and All My Children. In 2000 Van Amstel founded his own corporation, VanDance, through which he directed, choreographed and performed in the Broadway production of Latin Fusion, a feature production at City Center in New York City. The success of Latin Fusion was quickly followed up with a second creative effort, Latin Revolution, which debuted in Salt Lake City in 2004. In addition to his work with performance theatre, Louis maintains a busy instructional calendar delivering master classes for championship level competitors. “America’s ballroom dance instructor,” director, choreographer, singer, model, actor, and decorated champion dancer, Louis channels his passion for his craft to tirelessly fulfill an increasingly demanding schedule and continues to dance his way into all of our hearts.

MICHAEL WHITE (Production Manager) began a lifelong love affair with the American Theatre while still in high school. As a young actor, director, designer, and technician, he won numerous awards in statewide theatre competitions and earned a scholarship to the prestigious University of Texas Department of Drama. In addition to his work onstage, he designed scenery, lighting, sound and special effects, and wrote and directed his first original play while still in high school. By the time he graduated, he was already a veteran of nine Equity productions on the professional stage. After a distinguished collegiate career, Michael returned to the professional theatre wherein he served as an actor, director, designer and stage manager in professional theatres from coast to coast. His numerous technical credits include stage managing Bermuda Avenue Triangle starring Renee Taylor, Joseph Bologna, and Lainie Kazan, as well as the extended national tour of The Odd Couple (Female Version) starring Barbara Eden, a show in which he also served as assistant director and lighting supervisor. As a director, he most recently helmed the national touring production of Say Goodnight, Gracie; and the world premiere production of playwright Lizzie Maxwell’s Confessions of a Nice Jewish Girl. As an actor, Michael’s credits range from Shakespeare, Williams and Albee to light comedies, including the box office record-setting tour of Hanky Panky. His performances have also been seen in numerous films and television shows. Of all the roles, all the assignments and all the hats he has worn in all the many shows, his all-time favorite remains the role of husband to his beloved wife, Jennifer and father to his cherished daughter, Michelle. And today, more than 35 years after it all began, that love affair with the American Theatre is still going strong.

Choreographed by    LOUIS VAN AMSTEL
Production Manager    MICHAEL WHITE
Music Editor    WILL HOLLIS