Interview with Andrew Yefremchenkov and Anastasia Siabro

Interview with Andrew Yefremchenkov and Anastasia Siabro

Hinzugefügt: Samstag, 16 Feb 2019, 23:27 von admin
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We interviewed Andrew Yefremchenkov and Anastasia Siabro from Ukraine, who won the Amateur Rising Star Ballroom at the UK Open 2019.

I wish people have more respect towards each other...

Welcome the winners in Rising Stars today but tomorrow, surely, of the Amateur Open?

[Anastasia]: Thank you so much! Of course (laughing). Can we use this opportunity to express an enormous gratitude to our best team in the world Team MAXIMUM. We are so thankful to Maxim Bulanyy, Katusha Spasitel & Stas Portanenko, Nataliya Kolyada for their invaluable inspiration, support and believe in us! It was a great pleasure to dance in this fabulous ballroom for you and feel your enormous support! Also many thanks to all our teachers and coaches for your contribution in our couple!

We would like to find out more about you. How did you start your dancing?

[Anastasia]: I started Ballroom dancing quite late. I was fifteen years old and my first competition was in Junior. And then very quickly I moved to Youth.

Did you do any dancing before?

[Anastasia]: I did choreography and ballet before. At some point I decided to change my life and took up Ballroom dancing.

Was Andrew your first partner?

[Anastasia]: No, fifth (laughing).

Where did you start and who was your first partner?

[Anastasia]: In Kyiv, in Ukraine. I was born there. My first partner was Taras and after 3 years of dancing together he stopped because of studying. That's what he wanted to do. We did both programs Standard and Latin.

And you, Andrew?

[Andrew]: I started when I was seven years old. I danced in Ukraine, in Odessa, where I am from. When I turned eighteen I decided to go to Germany, where I thought I had better prospects. I found a partner and danced there for two years. But after two years it became more and more obvious for me that my place is in Ukraine. So I came back to Ukraine. Now we both live in Kyiv.

How did you two meet?

[Anastasia]: We are from the same team, team MAXIMUM.

But he was in Germany?

[Anastasia]: No, no. He came back to Ukraine, and danced with another partner. Then we met. We both split from our partners and we both were looking for a new one. Our teachers suggested we try with each other...

[Andrew]: Yes, and when our teachers saw us they said, wow! (laughing)

But did you know each other before?

[Andrew]: Just a little bit. We saw each other at practice.

How do you finance your dancing?

[Anastasia]: Of course our parents help a lot. But we also try to work for it as well.

Did they come with you to the competition?

[Anastasia]: No. They are at home and support us from there. Of course we want to express particular thank you to our families, who support us so much. We always feel it even if they are far away!

Did they watch you live on DSI-TV?

[Anastasia]: No, they are too nervous about it (laughing) and they sit and are waiting for our call.

Are your parents somehow connected to dancing or to ballet? You said you started with ballet

[Anastasia]: No, ballet and choreography were just good activities to take up as a young girl. And my parents enrolled me to that when I was six.

And for you Andrew?

[Andrew]: I have a brother who is twenty four years old now. He started dancing before me. My school organised dancing classes and I said to my parents I wanted to do this. I liked it very much. And my parents did not have anything to do with dancing either.

[Anastasia]: They are just good parents, they supported him with what he wanted to do (laughing).

What was the first thing you liked or noticed about her?

[Andrew]: I'll say it in three words: she is very intelligent, hardworking and...

[Anastasia]: I am waiting (laughing)

[Andrew]: She has a very good heart.

These are the first things you noticed about her!?

[Andrew]: Yes, these were my first impressions. Maybe not hardworking, as it is impossible to notice it on the first practice but I noticed she was very intelligent. And that she has a good heart. I could feel that. Magic (laughing)

[Anastasia]: We knew each other a little bit and when the teachers suggested we try I thought, OK, let's try few steps together. And we did few steps. It immediately felt really good, and I thought to myself, it is a right partner for me. That's what my first impression was. His energy, the way he kept his position and the way he moved, it felt very comfortable for me.

Were there any problems in the beginning?

[Anastasia]: I think it took time for him to open a little. He was very quiet.

So Andrew, were you scared of her? She has a strong personality!

[Andrew]: Maybe (laughing). But seriously, we did not have any problems, all felt good.

Was it all really perfect?

[Andrew]: Maybe, for me, she was a little too kind... I need a partner who is challenging me. But she has learned that since (laughing)

Who is driving a car?

[Anastasia]: He does, of course. He is a partner, he is a leader.

How do you use internet? What do you use it for?

[Andrew]: Watching movies, football, dancing videos

Do you use a normal TV?

[Andrew]: Very rarely. Maybe with parents sometimes

What would you change in dancing if you had such power?

[Anastasia]: Probably I would make people respect each other more. Sometimes I think there is lack of respect, even between dance partners. And definitely between federations. And coaches, teachers...

Do you think it is better to have many coaches, or just have one?

[Andrew]: I think it is better to have one trusted coach.

[Anastasia]: One main coach. And then different teachers to receive some more information on different aspects, different points of view. That can help you to create something new, your own style. We have separate teachers who take care of our dancing, and separate who help us to work on our fitness, body, stretching.

How often do you go to the gym?

[Anastasia]: I go three times a week before the competition.

[Andrew]: I don't go. I don't think it helps when you are a Ballroom dancer. Building muscle mass doesn't help your frame.

What do you like to eat?

[Andrew]: Fast food (laughing)

Really?

[Andrew]: No, I can't really. But it can happen, one time, after the competition. As a celebration (laughing)

[Anastasia]: I try to eat healthy food. I need to eat healthy stuff because I need to keep fit. I like Italian cuisine.

Where did you go for your last holiday?

[Anastasia]: In summer, I went to Turkey with a friend. It was just for sun, beach, and to relax. No dancing.

[Andrew]: My last holiday was in Odessa, with one of my team-mates. My family lives there, so I visited them as well. But when I go to Odessa I don't just stay with parents. Odessa is a seaside town, great atmosphere, and I like to spend a lot of time with friends there.

What types of movies do you like to watch?

[Andrew]: I like historical ones. For instance, Troy. I really like it, watched it like five times (laughing).

[Anastasia]: I like psychological dramas. Or thrillers. Sometimes I like to watch a comedy for fun.

Do you read books?

[Andrew]: I don't really read books, but the last one was about Babylon. I like history. I like to find out how people lived in the ancient times, how they went about their lives.

[Anastasia]: Yes, I like books about psychology. It interests me.

What do you do apart from dancing?

[Anastasia]: Last year I received Masters Degree in International Relations at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and now I continue my post-graduate studying there.

[Andrew]: I study Ballroom Dancing at Kyiv National University of Physical Education and Sport of Ukraine.

What other dance related websites do you visit?

[Anastasia]: Dancesportinfo of course. Scrutelle or easycomps right after the competition (laughing). Also Facebook as there are many sites about dancing.

Do you watch dance videos on YouTube?

[Anastasia]: Yes

Do you like to watch yourselves on videos later?

[Andrew]: Yesterday we watched ourselves on DSI-TV, after the competition.

[Anastasia]: We wanted to check ourselves from the first round. Try to find the mistakes (laughing). We never feel that we were great.

[Andrew]: I never like me when I watch us dancing.

Do you like her?

[Andrew]: I don't look at her, only on me, and try to find the mistakes to work on them later. I look for things I need to do better next time. She has her job, and I have my job to do. Sometimes I think I did well, and then when I watch the same step again and again, I find the problem in it.

Lucky for you that judges disagree (laughing)

[Anastasia]: We always try to do better, give our best. But we always feel we could do more.

Even yesterday when you won?

[Anastasia]: Yes, also yesterday.

So what are your plans for tomorrow, for the Open event? To win?

[Andrew]: No. We want to be in the semi-final.

OK, good luck for that! What was the best moment for you yesterday?

[Anastasia]: For me, walking down the stairs for the presentation. It was like a dream.

[Andrew]: For me, when we were on the stage and we bowed. Everybody clapped, everybody was looking at us...

[Anastasia]: Yes... It was incredible.

How many times do you come to Britain?

[Anastasia]: Three times a year, for the International, UK Open and Blackpool.

Do you have any sponsors for your costumes, dresses, shoes?

[Andrew]: No, unfortunately not.

Who is making your dresses?

[Anastasia]: Kataerina Company (Ekaterina Sviridova) in Kharkiv makes my dresses. She designs them as well.

[Andrew]: I have a tailor in Kharkiv as well for my tail-suits.

What shoes do you wear?

[Anastasia]: From International Danceshoes.

What are your plans for the next two years?

[Andrew]: This year we must do the semi-final in all the main big competitions. And then the following year, finals.

[Anastasia]: I completely agree!

Will you dance Rising Stars in Blackpool as well?

[Andrew]: Yes. And we want to win of course. You have one life and you have to live it as best as possible!

Can you describe each dance in few words? Does it bring any special feelings?

[Andrew]: Waltz - love

[Anastasia]: Something memorable from your life, the happy feeling. That's what I want to portray. Tango is passion.

[Andrew]: For me, Tango is a fight, a battle

What about the Foxtrot?

[Anastasia]: It is hard to describe in one word. For me, it is playful.

[Andrew]: I think I agree with that

What about the Viennese Waltz?

[Andrew]: Oh, I don't like this dance. Whenever we dance it at the competition my muscles get tense, tired. It is really hard to then switch to Foxtrot and Quickstep.

Do you prefer to perfect your basic steps, or do you prefer to have more complex interesting choreography?

[Andrew]: I like to be able to dance different steps. Of course, you cannot do it without good basics.

[Anastasia]: We always start with the basic. And I think from that, you can create something interesting and more complicated...

What about the Quickstep?

[Anastasia]: You need energy for it. Crazy dance.

Would you describe yourselves as introvert or extrovert?

[Andrew]: Definitely extrovert when I am with friends. I like to have company, I like to be with people, have fun. But when I am at home, I enjoy the opportunity to be on my own.

What do you like most in dancing?

[Anastasia]: I enjoy both competitions and practice. I like to work on things, I like the feeling when it starts to improve. And it is an amazing feeling when you get the result you've been dreaming about! I like that I am able to create something, express through this art.

[Andrew]: I like to be able to show my emotions, my feeling and be able to convey that to others.

We wish you good luck tomorrow and thank you for talking to us.

All images taken on the day by Tomasz Reindl

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