Meet the 2020 teachers staff!
Markus Smith & Tren Veal
Originally from Louisiana, Tren started swing dancing in the state of Texas. Over the years she has competed and won many West Coast Swing Jack & Jill’s and Strictly Swing contests placing in the top 5 in the Champions Division. Her love and passion for the dance shows on the dance floor with her distinct style of funk, fun flavor, and footwork. As a professional swing dancer, she travels the world teaching, performing, competing, and judging at many dance conventions with her dance partner and life partner Markus Smith. Dancing is not just a passion for Tren it’s a lifestyle and she enjoys spreading her love of dance through teaching others.
A native of Washington, DC Markus Smith is an accomplished and award winning dance competitor, choreographer and instructor. He has been featured on Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance”, BET’s “106 and Park” program, and the movie Love N’ Dancing. He was a co-host of DC DANCING TEENS, a youth hand dance show that has been seen on GlobalDanceTV and shown on DCTV channel 95 in Washington DC. Markus is most passionate about sharing the gift of dance with others. His energy, style and charismatic presentation, leaves him in a class by himself.
Together they travel across the United States and internationally, teaching, competing, judging, and performing at National Swing Dance events, in addition to volunteer and community outreach. They both routinely place among the top 5 in professional competitive divisions and as performers, their entertainment value is one of kind!
Maxence Martin & Virginie Grondin
Maxence Martin is one of the most renowned west coast swing performers and teachers of the world! Ex-Champion of judo and black belt, he started his dance carreer in Lindy-Hop. Quickly he fell in love with WCS. Maxence is the only French dancer to obtain the West Coast Swing champion title in the USA. His energetic and precise way of teaching always draw big numbers of dancers to his classes.
Virginie Grondin is one of the best female west coast swing dancers in Europe. At the moment she is getting high placements in champion divisions at the biggest American events such as Madjam and SwingDiego. Together with Maxence she place 5th at the US Open classic division in 2016. Virginie has been dancing since she was five years old! Rock ‘n roll, boogie, classical and contemporary dance, modern jazz. In 2012 she partnered up with Maxence. Together, they are the most succesful French couple in their own country and abroad. We are very happy to have them back at the Dutch Open!
John Kirkconnell & Alyssa Glanville
John Kirkconnell and Alyssa Glanville have been partners for three years. Together, their partnership emphasizes musicality and connection. John and Alyssa compete, teach and travel around the world and they are excited to continue growing in the dance together. John has been dancing West Coast Swing for the better part of a decade. He has traveled around North America and Europe spreading his personal love for Swing. His students love his playful personality and the connection he makes with the music. Alyssa began dancing when she was ten, focusing mainly on Jitterbug/Lindy Hop. Throughout the years, she has dabbled in the basic ballroom, ballet, hip hop, jazz and contemporary. Through a friend, she heard about Boogie by the Bay in 2008 and dragged her mom to check out Lindy. She ended up competing in novice strictly and won it! She was hooked ever since, and was especially drawn to the creativity, musicality, and freedom within WCS. Living in the Bay Area has given her many opportunities to teach and grow in her own dance. She won the All Star Jack and Jill and Jr. Strictly in 2010 at the US Open Swing Dance Championship, and she has competed and placed top 5 in All Stars and Champion divisions over the past years.
We are very excited to have this dynamic duo back in Holland!
Semion Ovsiannikov & Maria Elizarova
Maria and Semion have been dance partners for about five years.
Semion has been dancing ever since he was eight. He started with ballroom dancing first, then got into social dancing, and finally into West Coast Swing. He is known for his musicality and great connection with his partners.
Maria has been dancing since 2007. In 2008 she fell in love with social partner dances. She started learning hustle/discofox and salsa. She had been dancing hustle and discofox for 4 years, working on her solo choreography as well when West Coast Swing came in to her dancing life. After that she couldn’t stop dancing WCS. She enjoys the versatility of the dance, bringing new emotions, options for musicality and styling to every dance.
Semion and Maria were the first Russians to ever get to US Open Classic finals in both 2016 and 2017. They also got the second place at The Open Classic finals in 2018.
Their partnership emphasizes technique, musicality and connection. They love the possibilities for communication and dialogue between partners during every dance, and seek to help their students discover this incredibly fun aspect of WCS. They share a philosophy that care and attention are the best things partners can give to each other during any dance.