Stardust Future Events

Ballroom Dance Events

Ballroom Dance Weekends
June 15-17, 2018
September 7-9, 2018

Ballroom Dance cruise 2019
February 1-11, 2019

STARDUST DANCE INSTRUCTORS

Donna DeSimone - Instructor of Performing Arts, Ballroom, Choreographer, Performer & Judge. Donna has been teaching dance for 32 years. Her knowledge of Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Lyric, Broadway Theater and Ballroom has greatly influenced her Hustle style. In 1975 Donna was introduced to a dance called the Hustle. Donna became a Hustle dancer on the Television show “Soap Factory Disco” in 1977. In 1978 she opened her first Dance Studio. Four years later opened her second studio. In 1983 she discovered the world of Ballroom dancing. She trained and competed for 8 years under Roberto Pagan and many well known coaches in American & International styles. In 1985 took 5th in her first ballroom competition at the USBC. In 1986 took 1st at the Virginia State Ballroom Championships in Latin, Won 1st place at 1986 Ohio Star Ball State Championships. In 1986 she won her first United States title,” USBC American Rhythm Champion” in Miami Florida. In 1990 Donna entered the well know Zackary’s Dance Competition and took 1st Place. One year later winning the Tri State Open Hustle Championships sponsored by Night Life Magazine. Donna went on to choreograph for dance tours to China, Italy, Florida, Hershey Park, Carnegie Hall (“Cole Porter’s 100th Birthday Celebration” and “An invitation to Dance” with the NY Pops Orchestra). You can also see her on Cable TV “Touch Dancing” with Alfonzo. Donna started competing again for fun after taking a 14 year break and took 1St Place with her dance partner Derrick Allan in Professional Open Hustle Theater Arts at the Hustle Congress in 2006. Donna has been on staff for “World Hustle”, New York Hustle Congress”, “International Hustle & Salsa Competition” in Miami and the New Orleans “The Big Easy” to judge, teach workshops and perform. Donna won an on line poll in 2006 sponsored by Ron Bess’s Dance Talk as Favorite Female Dancer in the Reader’s Choice Awards. Currently Donna teaches, Choreographs and performs in New York and beyond. For the past 15 years Donna has been the Ballroom Entertainment Director for the “Stardust Dance Weekends” in the Catskills & Stardust Cruises

Wingo Hom - known as "The Dance Doctor" was born and raised in New York City.  At age 11, he was introduced to partner dancing by his classmate’s parents.  They were social dancers and demonstrated a variety of dances in their living room, which awakened his passion for all dances.  His determination and motivation has rewarded him by studying under some of the finest instructors and coaches, which has lead him to compete in an array of dances such as, Hustle, American and International styles of Ballroom, Latin, East Coast Swing, West Coast Swing and Salsa.  He is known for his unique technique for diagnosing and improving your dance. The dance doctor makes house calls, you supply the floor space and he will bring the knowledge. Wingo has over 50+ years of dance experience and multiple accomplishments, which include: Recipient of the 2015 Artie Phillips Lifetime Achievement Award, Recipient of the 2014 Employee of the Year Award for Stardust Dance Productions, Winner of 10 Top Teacher Awards, Winner of the 2009 Dancing with the Stars Tour Version in Cha Cha and East Coast Swing competition in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, 2006 Amateur Male Hustle Dancer of the Year, First and only amateur hustle couple, with partner Angela McCabe, to defeat a professional Hustle couple in a competition, 649 first place titles, 34 Jack and Jill first place awards. Wingo is one of the very few instructors that is certified (lead and follow) in Hustle, 12 different American Smooth, Latin and Rhythm Styles at full Bronze and Silver Levels. He is also certified to Judge Dance competitions in all levels. Wingo is a familiar presence in the Hustle, West Coast Swing and Salsa community and is currently teaching in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Florida.    

Leon Harris started his association with the dance community after retiring from the US Navy. His first dance was the Brazilian dance Lambada, moved on to ballroom, and finally developed a love for Argentine Tango .  Viewing dance as an extension of his interaction with people, Leon focuses on teaching good dance technique and building confidence in his students.   Being calm and understated, his students find his classes easy going, stress free, but meet their goal of learning to dance. Being located in Washington DC, his training has included local ballroom studios, workshops with visiting dance professionals, salsa and Argentine Tango dance festivals in the US, South America, the Caribbean, and Europe; tango workshops in Buenos Aires and Dubai, and two summer sessions at Stanford University for advance Argentine Tango.   Seven workshops at the Conjunto Folklorico Nacional Habana (Cuba) provided him with a focus on Cuban dance history, Afro Cuban Folkorico dances, Cuban social dances, and the dances of Santaria. Although he was a student, he taught Argentine Tango while in residence at the Conjunto.  As a former Stardust dance host, his experience opened doors for  him to hosting/teaching on all the major cruise lines. On the Queen Mary 2, he danced around the world and taught Argentine Tango to a group of beginners that resulted in a performance for the ship. For the pass 20 years, his home has served as his dance studio for Latin  and Argentine Tango classes.

Cameron Johnson - Hailing from South Africa, Cameron Johnson started his dancing career at the age of 5, under the tutelage of his parents.Cameron is the unbeaten South African International Standard Champion in the Junior, Amateur and Professional ranks. In 1996 Cameron represented South Africa in the Open Fleetwood Professional Championship in Blackpool, England and was placed 6th. Also in 1996, Cameron represented South Africa in the Open French Masters Professional Championship on the Isle of Reunion and was placed 3rd. In 2000, Cameron was invited to immigrate and teach in the USA, where he has since made his home. In 2008, Cameron represented the USA at the World Pro/Am Championship in Buenos Aires, Argentina and was placed 1st. To date, Cameron is still active in the competitive Pro/Am arena where he teaches and moulds his students into the best dancers they can be. Since 1995, Cameron started studying to do his professional qualification exams and In 1996, achieved a Highly Commended pass rate as an Associate in International Standard through the South African National Council of Ballroom Dancing. In 1999, Cameron also achieved a Highly Commended pass rate as an Associate in International Latin and a Highly Commended pass rate as a Licentiate in International Standard through the United Kingdom Alliance in London, England

Mark James - A Professional Theatre Arts Champion with over 30 titles. Marks creative style is cool and elegant. He is a teacher, coach and choreographer with extensive training in American, International, Smooth, and Rhythm, as well as Theatre Arts. Mark's love and dedication of dance has led to creating "National Ballroom Project", bringing dance education to schools and libraries.
Karen Lupo - Known for her elegant style, Karen has been captivating audiences while performing Latin, Smooth, and Theatre Arts routines. She is a former American Rhythm Champion who is a regular performer, teacher and coach in the New York Area. Together with Mark James,  she has created "Elegance Of Dance", a professional stage show bringing Ballroom, Tango and Salsa with a touch of Magic to stages, corporate events and libraries.

GALINA NIKITINA - Started to dance at age 3 and was offered her first job as a dance teacher’s assistant at age 17 for Rostov-on-Don State University’s dance team. Later she was promoted to an instructor and then to a Choreographer and their Assistant Director. Under her supervision, the University’s Dance Team was named top dance team in Russia.  As a ballroom dancer, she won many prestigious Russian competitions. In the US she has taught at Arthur Murray, Fred Astaire, independent studios as well as her own studio. Currently teaches at the IM Gallery in Highland Park, New Jersey and at various studios in central NJ, as a guest teacher at BIS Dance Studio in Moscow, Russia.  Her teaching skills cover both American and International styles, and ranges from beginner social all the way up to to advanced and competitive levels. 

Lourdes Cruz -  has been dancing from a very young age and began teaching & competing professionally in 1996.  Her dance background extends from Ballroom & Latin Dancing, Folk, Belly Dance, West Coast Swing & Argentine Tango.  Her 13 Ballroom Dance Major along with her interdisciplinary teaching experience and studies in music, martial arts, & speech pathology contribute to the versatility of her dancing and teaching style.  Currently she is Program Director and Lead Instructor of the Dance Program at Innerlight Movement Studio in Hyde Park, NY. 



Maria Fiora - Dance studio owner Stamford Ct- Maria Fioras Dance Center. Since1989, Maria has been a dance Instructor, social and competitive. She is also a choreographer and performer. Maria was an American Rhythm finalist competitor from 1995-2001 with Emilios Bousios. She does performance work in Argentine Tango, Latin and ballroom, and also competitions with pro and pro/am.
Maria also teaches core dance fitness, using belly dance isolations , arm styling and leg toning.



ENTERTAINERS & SPECIAL INSTRUCTORS

Lukasz Chockuba - was born in a small town in the southeast part of Poland, Rzeszow.  At the age of 13 his mother took him to the local dance studio for ballroom lessons. This was the beginning of what turned out to be a life time journey. After just 4 month of dancing, Lukas participated in his first dance competition where he was placed fifth in his category. Since then, he continued his dancing education & took part in many local competitions. IAt the age of 21, Lukas and his family emigrated to The United States. After one year of searching, he found one of the best ballroom dance studios in the world; Ballroom On 5th in New York City. Vast training from top world class coaches allowed him to turn pro in 2005 and then lead him to become a US 2006 Rising Star Champion and 2008 Blackpool Dance Festival Professional Rising Star Finalist. Lukas participated in more than 300 competitions in US and around the world. He has become a well- known dancer and teacher in world ballroom community. Tatiana Keegan - was a principal dancer in the Columbia Pictures film Center Stage and was featured prominently in the AMC reality series, Into Character. As a dance teacher, Tatiana was head of the International Latin and American Smooth Departments at Paul Pellicoro’s DanceSport studios in Manhattan.She also works with top teenage dancers through her association with Pierre Dulaine, who inspired the films Mad Hot Ballroom and Take The Lead. Tatiana has also coached Olympic ice skaters from the U.S., China, Russia, and Australia. She placed among the top 21 couples in the Rising Star division at the Blackpool DanceFestival in England in a fiercely competitive field of 246 couples from around the globe.


Tybaldt & Hazel Ulrich have been dancing, teaching, and competing since the 90’s. They met on the national tour of Swing Dance America, performing WCS, Lindy, Shag, Balboa, and Push, quickly becoming partners. They went on to work the Swing and Hustle competitive circuits, becoming Champions and featured teachers at many national competitions, known for their fluid style, playful and musical, yet fierce and sexy all which convey the richness and depth of American partner dancing. They have directed many dance teams, in WCS, Shag, Hustle, 2step, Lindy, and Zouk.Tybaldt & Hazel
has been inducted into the Hustle and Living Legends of Swing. Tybaldt has an Ethnomusicology degree and DJs. Past couple of years Tybaldt has been on staff at Paul Pellicoro's DanceSport in NYC. Hazel is an independent instructor in New Jersey raising their two children. They are well Known throughout the Hustle and Swing communities in the US and beyond with their teaching and performances. They always bring a unique approach to their dancing style with creative choreography and musicality. 


Tal Livshitz - started dancing in Israel at the young age of 6. Having a professional ballroom dancer as his mother, it was only inevitable that Tal was going to fall in love with dancing. With his current partner, Ilana Keselman, Tal has achieved the best results of his career.  They became rising star Latin champions in numerous European competitions and earned a spot in the final of the amateur Latin world championships in France. With Ilana, Tal has found his soulmate with whom he shares his passion for dance. The chemistry in their dancing in undeniable and a big key to their success. Ilana Keselman began dancing in the young age of 5.  When her family immigrated to the US, she already knew through the hardships, that dancing was her future.  When she began dancing with Tal Livshitz, her career success rose.  In their first competition together, they placed 3rd in the prestigious United States National Championships. They became rising star Latin champions in numerous European competitions that followed and earned a spot in the final of the Amateur Latin world championships in France.   Tal and Ilana are a relatively fresh partnership. They began dancing together in December 2012. Their success did not stop there. In May, Tal and Ilana represented the US in the biggest competition in the world located in Blackpool England. In the Rising Star Amateur Latin category, out of 400 plus couples, they placed 2nd. In this short time they spent together, this couple achieved so much and more. 

Armando Orzuzaborn -born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, appeared as a dancer in the Broadway show “Tango Passion”, in the promotion of the album "Tango" by Julio Iglesias, the movie “Assassination Tango”, “Jazz at Lincoln Center” with Avantango, the Opera “Y Borges Cuenta Que…”, with Jon Secada in the Broadway-style show of “We”, “Tango Nuevo Cabaret”, and the show “C’est Rouge” at the Faena Theater. He choreographed for Alan Parker’s movie"Evita", and in the 2004 Madonna’s “Re-invention” touring show. He self-produced the shows “Tangoing” and “Tango, the Show”, and coordinated the recording of the CD “Quilombo” in Buenos Aires in 2016. 

Nuria Martinez-born in Spain, her first internation appearance was in “West Side Story” at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. As a modern dancer she performed for the Dance on Camera Film Festival, the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, and the NY State Theater. Ms. Martínez was an apprentice for Jennifer Muller/The Works and a dancer at the Washington National Opera. She appeared as dancer/actress in o=-Broadway productions, the Midtown International Theater Festival, and the Cherry Lane Theater. As a Tango dancer,
she performed at “Jazz at Lincoln Center”, “Y Borges Cuenta Que…”,the show “We”, “Tango Nuevo Cabaret”, and “C’est Rouge” at the Faena Theater.

STARDUST FITNESS STAFF 

Marion Panos - has been coming to the Stardust Weekends since 1999 and has only missed one weekend since that time.  In 2004, she became one of our agents and is known for her ability, diligence and consistency in seeing that her guests are well taken care of and in representing Stardust.  In 2009, Marion joined our fitness staff and teaches Belly Dance classes at the weekends. Marion is trained in several styles of dance, including jazz, modern, Afro-Brazilian, African, Middle Eastern and Ballroom.  She is proficient in American style ballroom and Latin and has also studied International Standard.  She competed around the country at the pro-am level in American style ballroom and Latin for many years.  She was a professional Middle Eastern dancer and has been teaching Belly Dance for more than 15 years.

Molly Gelsomino - originally from Upstate, New York.  She has a diverse background in the arts, including a BA in Dance from the University at Buffalo, over 15 years of performance and choreography in concert dance and 6 years as a Dance Educator in the Brooklyn Public Schools.  Molly is a former professional cheerleader for the AFL, and spent 6 years in NYC as a Co-Artistic Director for The Movement Collective Dance Company.  As a newer resident of Sullivan County, Molly found Zumba® to be the most exciting way to fuse her passion for dance. music and fitness.  Molly enjoys inspiring her clients and encouraging her classes to feel the music, join the party and have a fun fitness experience upon stepping into the studio.



STARDUST DANCE HOST DIRECTOR

Mario Cadavid-has come to us from the Information Technology world.  Having graduated with is B.B.A in computers and his M.B.A in management he has worked in multiple hospital I.T. departments throughout the years acquiring numerous certifications along the way.  Having made his first splashes into the dance world in 2015, he quickly acquired a passion for many dance styles and continued his residency under Wingo "The Dance Doctor".  Mario has competed and placed at Disco America and was part of Donna DeSimone's Swustle team that took first place in New York's 2017 Hustle Congress team division.  His lighthearted approach to social dancing is noticed by his followers when occasionally things don't go as planned and he's heard saying "No ambulance....No problem

   

4 GREAT DJS!!

BALLROOM DJs Michelle & Bob Friedman - have been part of the ballroom dance word for the past 15 years. As avid dancers they started with Ballroom Dance Lessons, and for the past 7 years as professional DJs – specializing in Ballroom Music. In 2001 they even won Top Couple in a Good Morning America 25 hour dance marathon. They have a comprehensive music library of over 20,000 tracks spanning the decades, which includes all types of Ballroom, Latin, Hustle, West Coast Swing & Argentine Tango. They are northeast coast DJ favorites spanning NY, CT, NJ, PA, & DE areas, and are regulars at the world famous Stardust Dance Weekends. They are equally at home playing their music for Ballroom Socials, Showcases, Competitions, and professional performances for some of the world’s most famous ballroom couples. While preferences in music certainly vary from person to person, what they use as their criteria when choosing music to play is really very simple - does it make dancers feel like they just have to get up and move, or doesn’t it? They get great satisfaction when they watch dancers who were heading for their seats at the end of a song turn around and pull each other back out to the dance floor time and again as a new piece begins.

LATIN DJ Louis Del Prete - is a talented musician and dancer.  He is accomplished on drums, keyboards, and trumpet,  and is a fantastic singer.  Louis is also an excellent ballroom dance teacher and DJ.  Louis’s skills started at the age of 13, when he  joined his talented mother and father, Rosann and Louis (also known as the “Perry Lane Orchestra”) at the former Island Squire Restaurant in Middle Island, where they performed for many years!  His mom, Rosann, was a member of a popular all-girl band in  the 60’s called the “Female Beatles”.  His dad toured the United States with various bands as a trumpet player with a sound like  Harry James. Louis background talent will contribute to making the Latin room one of our most popular venues. When Louis is not playing  music, he is dancing.  He is accomplished in Ballroom and Latin dancing, having an excellent lead, precise technique and smooth  style.  He taught dance on popular cruise lines.  Now he teaches group and private lessons and runs many dance venues on Long Island.      

ARGENTINE TANGO DJ Mark Sakowski - very versatile DJ with over 20 years experience playing music for dancers.  He has been fortunate to have played multiple times for some of the largest swing, hustle and Argentine tango events in the country, many dance cruises and over 50 Stardust Dance Weekends in the Catskill Mountains of New York State. For the last 15 years he has DJ'ed predominantly but not exclusively Argentine tango and specializes in playing an inspiring mix of traditional tango, vals & milonga in a similar style as the best milongas in Buenos Aires.  A few of the venues Mark has DJ'ed at are:  Eastern Market Milonga - DC, ESL Milonga - DC, El Besito Milonga - NJ, Milonga de Luz - DC, Milonga Portená - DC, Domingo Tango Club - NYC, La Nacional Milonga - NYC, Fandango De Tango 2014 - Texas, Boston Tango Festival 2015, 2016 & 2017, One City Tango Marathon 2015 - VA, Milonga la clasica - Philadephia and the Official USA Argentine Tango Championships in San Francisco in 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017 and the 2016 Providence New Year's Eve Tango Marathon.  On July 13th Mark was the DJ at Midsummer Night Swing "Hardcore Tango Night" with the Aces of Rhythm Sextet at Lincoln Center in New York City. Mark also won the "1st Annual Tango DJ Competition" in Somerville, Massachusetts in September of 2013, is a guest DJ regularly at the prestigious Astoria Tango Club Milonga on Sundays in New York City and was the organizer, host and DJ of the longest running weekday milonga in the Washington DC area;  Milonga Diversité in Coco Cabana Grill in Hyattesville, MD every Monday night for over 10 years.  Mark has DJ'ed over 1000 milongas but was very excited to be the DJ the first time at Sarah La Rocca's "All Night Milonga" in New York City on August 26th, 2017.

WEST COAST SWING/HUSTLE/CALIFORNIA MIX DJ John Lindo 
After beginning in country-western dance in 1992, John Lindo quickly made his mark on the West Coast Swing circuit by garnering an astonishing number of awards and championships in Jack-and-Jills and Strictly Swings. Some of his First Place awards include the U.S. Open, Grand Nationals, Phoenix Champion of Champions. He is also sought after internationally for his experience and teaching, having travelled to five countries in the past year alone. John currently resides in New Jersey, and is an influential presence in the New York City West Coast Swing scene