Dancing With The Stars at the Raven
CONGRATULATIONS to our 2013 WINNERS:
STAR: Eric Ziedrich
PRO: Jessica Greer
STAR: Lucy Lewand
PRO: Zach Crawford
STAR: Marcos Suarez
PRO: Lauralie Staley Mayhew
The 2013 Dance Teams:
STAR: Eric Smith
PRO: Brina Cimino
STAR: Ashley Kimball
PRO: Raymond Byun
STAR: Catherine Stewart-Chatman
PRO: Franky Miller
STAR: Deepinder Sekhon
PRO: Janelle Guido
STAR: Mike Cameron
PRO: Susan Conway Lombard
STAR: Taya Levine
PRO: Matthew Taylor
Judging, Voting, and Trophys:
Each dollar you donate is a vote for your favorite team. $1 = 1 Vote,$10 = 10 Votes, $100 = 100 Votes. No limit to the number of your votes.
The "Popular Vote" Trophy is awarded to the highest vote-getter. Teams are also judged by a trio of professional dance judges for the "Judges Choice" award. The popular vote and judges vote combine, and one couple will be awared the Grand Mirrorball!
Meet the Judges:
JUDGE: Buddy Schwimmer
Buddy Schwimmer is known as "The King of Swing", as well as "The Man with a Thousand Moves”. In 1964, at the age of 15, Buddy invented a new American partner dance, which he called “Two Step.” He developed this dance while practicing dance with his sister and searching for a way to dance to popular slow ballads. It is now called the “Night Club Two Step.” He was a dancer on Channel 5 TV’s SheBang hosted by Casey Kasem, Ninth Street West with host Sam Riddle on KHJ-TV (9); and on ABC’s American Bandstand hosted by Dick Clark. Buddy was California Freestyle Champion four years in a row! He performed and choreographed on the movie American Graffiti. He was a performer on the 1977 TV variety show Dance Fever with Lynn Vogen. He was a choreographer, along with Ron Montez, on the 1992 show special Big Band Ballroom Bash, hosted by Juliet Prowse and Bobby Short.
Buddy has trained and produced many Champions and he is known throughout the dance world as one of the top promoters and instructors of our Youth to Young Adult students. Buddy’s studio moto is “bring a friend or come make new friends”, but most of the students consider Buddy Schwimmer’s DANCE CENTER as their second home! Buddy Schwimmer still travels all over the world as a renowned instructor and choreographer.
JUDGE: Kelly Casanova
Kelly Casanova is a two-time US Open Swing Dance Champion, winning first place in both the Classic Swing Division and the Open Jack & Jill Division. Kelly has been teaching West Coast Swing locally throughout the San Francisco Bay Area since 1981, but has also spent much of her career traveling throughout the United States competing, teaching, and judging at major national conventions.
Kelly was inducted into the California Swing Dance Hall of Fame in 2006, and was inducted into the National Swing Dance Hall of Fame in 2004. This National Hall of Fame is a lifetime achievement award for Swing dancers from around the country representing the various styles of Swing. Through dancing, competing, teaching, judging and/or promoting, Hall of Fame inductees have shown distinction in exemplifying the highest standards of leadership, ethical conduct, and local and national service, resulting in a body of work with a far reaching and significant impact on Swing dancing. Beyond mere enjoyment and participation, they have given of themselves. Over the years Kelly has consistently donated her services to a wide variety of charitable organizations and is extremely pleased to support the Raven's fundraising efforts.
JUDGE: Stephen Nordquist
Stephen Nordquist teaches dance in Santa Rosa's Vets Building. One of Santa Rosa's most cherished traditions, Nordquist's Dance has been teaching teens for more than 30 years. Stephen and his wife, Shirley, took over from Bob and Shirley Burkart, who began teaching Sonoma County teens to dance in the late 1950s.
ALTERNATE JUDGE: Elizabeth Mustaro
As a youth growing up in Canada, Elizabeth studied ballet for three years and classical piano with the Royal Conservatory of Music for seven. When she began studying partner dancing, her focus was on International Standard Ballroom. From 1998 to 2004 she studied regularly with world-renowned Blackpool Finalists Glenn Weiss and Maya Serve of Denmark. Elizabeth received teacher training in West Coast Swing from US Champion Kelly Casanova from 2004 to 2007. More recently she has been honing her Latin skills with four-time US Latin Finalists Dima and Olga Sukachov. Since Elizabeth started teaching dance in 2001, she's taught at many different venues in the North Bay. Among other dances she teaches are Night Club 2-Step, Argentine Tango and Country 2-Step. On staff at Bay West Ballroom in San Rafael since 2004, in 2012 Elizabeth joined the roster list of instructors at The Ballroom in Rohnert Park. Alternate Judge in 2011, then Judge in 2012, Elizabeth is once again serving as Alternate Judge at this year's Dancing with the Stars at the Raven.
Event Producer and Co-Directors:
Producer and Co-Director: Vera Harvey
Vera Harvey is currently retired (happily) for the second time! At age 7, her sister taught her the BOP to “Bumble Boogie” by Bee Bumble & The Stingers! Although she didn’t know it then, her life from that moment would never be without dance. Next, dad taught her fox trot and waltz. Tango, Salsa, Rhumba, and Cha Cha Cha were next as she assisted at San Diego State dance classes. Clogging got her on stage with Oklahoma in San Diego and she was a member of the Redwood Country Cloggers performing for Danielle Steele, George Lucas and others in and around Sonoma County and San Francisco. Clogging, however, is very hard on knees and feet and as she looked for something to quench her hunger for dance while saving her knees and feet, she found West Coast Swing. This led to choreographing, teaching, and performing with the Sonoma County Swingers…fun, fun, fun. If you are not a dancer, she encourages you to try a dance class. Remember, life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.
Co-Director: Joe Gellura
Joe is a founding member of the Raven Players and a member of the Board of the Raven Performing Arts Theater and the Raven Players Artistic Group. His directorial experience began in 1965 (Ten Little Indians). For the Raven Players, Joe has directed Gypsy, Seussical, Wait Until Dark, 2 by 5, and Forum, and most recently, Doubt, for the Raven. For many years, he taught theater in a high school in New Jersey, his former home. Joe has also designed and built sets, stage managed, and directed. He was last seen on the Speckles Theater’s stage performing in Jekyll & Hyde, the Musical.