Interview with Stefano Moriondo and Daria Glukhova
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Interview with Stefano Moriondo and Daria Glukhova

Hinzugefügt: Freitag, 01 Mai 2015, 23:14 von admin
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We talked to Stefano Moriondo and Daria Glukhova who won the Professional Rising Star Latin at the UK Open 2015. Stefano and Dasha got together only recently and UK Open in January 2015 was their first competition. They were overjoyed with that result!

[in Professionals ...] you have to develop a stronger character, you have to become special in some way. That's what the great Professionals are, they are special in their own way, they are unique

Congratulations. You must have been really happy yesterday

[Stefano]: Of course, of course.

Shall we start with the usual questions then? When did you start dancing?

[Stefano]: When I was young I started swimming, but after a while I got bored. At one of the swimming competitions my Mum spoke to a mother of my friends and she heard they were dancing. I must have been about seven years old at the time. So she got me into that. And since then I have been dancing Latin. My dance club only did Latin.

It is not a typical boy's activity at that age, is it?

[Stefano]: Well, maybe, at that age. Lots of boys were making a bit of fun of me. Why not football, why dancing, it is for girls...

[Daria]: Especially in Turin, football is a big thing.

[Stefano]: Yes, everybody is supposed to want to play football for Juventus. But dancing is much more interesting when you get older. You then understand you made a good choice. You are always with women around you (laughing).

Exactly! What about partners?

[Stefano]: I had many partners in my career. Maybe eight. Something like that.

What was your best achievement before you met Daria?

[Stefano]: For sure, the most successful partnership was my previous one, when I turned Professional. Two years ago we were in the finals of Rising Stars in Blackpool and won the same event at the International. We also were in the semi finals of the European Championships.

Was this when you were the happiest with your results?

[Stefano]: Of course I was the happiest yesterday with Dasha (laughing). I had good results in Amateur but I must say I felt the best when I turned Professional. I took a break from dancing before that for about six months to give myself time to decide what I wanted to do in my life. After six months or so I realised I missed dancing very much and that's what I wanted doing for the rest of my life. I wanted to dance, get good results and be successful. So I started again but turned Professional. If you ask me for the best day, it was when I made the final of the Professional Rising Stars Latin in Blackpool in 2013.

What about you Dasha?

[Daria]: My story is simple. My grandmother brought me to the dance school when I was little and I have been dancing since then. That's' all.

[Stefano]: Come on, there is more to it! She is very shy.

[Daria]: I started when I was six years old. I come from Moscow in Russia. I started with both Latin and Ballroom, it is like that in Russia. I did also a little bit of disco. I remember that years ago my Ballroom was actually much better than Latin. But the situation changed, maybe because I am not that tall, and it is better to be tall for Ballroom. I could not find a partner for 10 Dance so I started to dance only Latin.

How did you meet?

[Stefano]: Should I be honest? (laughing)


[Stefano]: I split from previous partner. We had various issues like financial problems and it is not easy when you are from different countries to make it work together ... It is never easy, please have their own lives and priorities and it is difficult to match it all. Dancesportinfo put up a News article about our split and that I am looking for a partner and one morning I woke up and had a message from a Russian girl: "Hello, my name is Daria, what do you think of having a try-out". I did not know her. She was dancing in WDSF before and I was in WDC. So I went on YouTube to check her...

Whether she is pretty or not presumably? (laughing)

[Stefano]: I remember I just woke up and when seen her I was in shock! Wow! So we started texting and arranged a try-out.

And how was it?

[Daria]: It was good

After all, you started dancing together

[Stefano]: It was good. We planned three days of try-out. One day would not be enough for it all. On the first day it felt good but I did not want to say anything. On the second day I remember we went to a bar to have a drink together and I said to her: I think I want to dance with you. And she said: I thought that yesterday already. That's how it all started for us.

No coaches were involved?

[Stefano]: Of course, we showed the video to Sergey and Melia. They liked the try-out video, but of course, they always say that they could give an opinion but the ultimate choice is ours.

So, Dasha, how come you contacted Stefano? Did you know him already?

[Daria]: I was a bit afraid how it will be, because he was from another federation and it is a little bit different dancing and different view of dancing. But for me, it was also interesting.

[Stefano]: We were both a little nervous. We met in the airport, I was returning from Hong Kong and she was flying from Moscow. When WDSF and WDC separated I was really young. So I've never danced in WDSF. Dasha was my first try-out from WDSF so I was also nervous and unsure how she was going to be.

[Daria]: Be honest. You do not like the style of dancing in WDSF (laughing)

[Stefano]: No, I think it is just a different approach to it. So it was interesting.

How would you describe the different approach?

[Stefano]: I think the view is different...

[Daria]: Well, WDSF style is more like sport and WDC is more art of dancing.

[Stefano]: I agree...

But you need both, don't you agree?

[Stefano]: Oh yes, it is art but of course you need the sport part. Especially nowadays, it is not all about dancing because lots of couples also train in gym, they prepare their bodies for their performance. It all matters.

What is, for you personally, the most important thing in dancing?

[Stefano]: For me, the most important thing is that I can express my feelings through dancing.

[Daria]: For me as well.

Would you be able to describe each of the dances in terms of feelings?

[Stefano]: Cha cha is flirty, more like disco when you are trying to approach the girl.

[Daria]: It is sexy, it is playing together

[Stefano]: Samba is of course Brazilian...

[Daria]: It brings two people closer together

[Stefano]: And then Rumba is love and passion

[Daria]: Paso Doble is more like a drama

And Jive means relaxed again – more like a life story, isn't it?

[Stefano]: Maybe.

What do you like about Daria?

[Stefano]: I said that to her at the try-out, that I like that she is really mature and womanly. I like that a lot. I like that we can talk and I like the way she thinks.

Daria, what about you?

[Daria]: The same! At the try-out I said to him, that maybe this is that time of life for me that I finally feel that I am dancing. I feel very feminine and I like that I am near a man in dancing. It is very important to me.

[Stefano]: It is a very difficult question, because we are started only three months ago and it is still like a honeymoon period for us. There are not that many problems. Yet! (laughing) I think it is good that she has me, because she sometimes feels under pressure. So I need to calm her down a little.

[Daria]: Strange, because he is Italian

[Stefano]: Yes, I am very calm. But you should ask her (laughing)

[Daria]: For me, Italian men should be like all passion and fire

And he isn't?

[Daria]: Well, he is of course. But it is very difficult to make him angry.

Have you tried?

[Daria]: Sometimes I am trying (laughing)

[Stefano]: No, not yet. She has not made me angry yet (laughing).

What should she be careful about then?

[Stefano]: Come on! She is lovely. The only thing I can complain about is that she is sometimes late. But I think this is normal for every woman.

[Daria]: It is normal

Who is usually driving a car when you go somewhere?

[Stefano]: I am driving everywhere but Moscow. Dasha is driving in Moscow (laughing)

Not brave enough?

[Stefano]: She is too worried to give me her car in Moscow. There is a lot of traffic there!

Who is making decisions about the dresses, clothes, design for competitions?

[Stefano]: We always talk to Melia and she is making these decisions. We trust her a lot.

Are Melia and Sergey your main coaches?

[Stefano]: Yes, they did all the routines for us and they are the main coaches who we work with. They supported us yesterday.

But I guess you have your own ideas as well?

[Stefano]: Yes, of course! Before we went to them we prepared some routines, we worked for a month together before we went to them to help us to prepare for competitions.

Who do you go to when you have disagreements on the dance floor? How do you resolve it?

[Stefano]: Each of us can have an opinion. I like that when we tried-out we melted these things together. You can never be sure that you are right and that you know everything. Maybe your partner arrived with a better idea and it can fit better. So it is always good when we can try both ways to see which one is better. I think we have a good communication. We like playing with ideas. It is nice to play around the field together.

Are you a couple privately as well?

[Stefano]: Yes

Who is cooking and what is your favourite food?

[Daria]: Stefano

[Stefano]: You will be laughing, but it is me.

Typical Italian, I guess

[Daria]: He is a great cook. He cooks lovely pasta.

Typical Italian again (laughing). I have not met an Italian who doesn't like or eat pasta. Stefano, do you like Russian food?

[Stefano]: I have tried borsch for the first time in my life.

[Daria]: It is hard to cook the Russian food in Italy. I hate the washing up as well.

[Stefano]: The thing she was the happiest about when she came to Italy was the dish washer machine in the kitchen!

[Daria]: Yes, that's the reason I finally decided to stay (laughing)

Which competitions are or were your favourite?

[Stefano]: When we first started dancing together the whole idea was to experience something new. Dasha told me she wanted to change what she was doing, she wanted to experience the English competitions. So our main goals are to do well at Blackpool, UK Open and the International. We will also go to the European and World Championships.

So Dasha, which WDSF competitions did you like most?

[Daria]: I think the German Open in Stuttgart. I really liked this competition.

[Stefano]: It was funny, one month ago we watched on the Internet, as I said we've never knew each other before, we found out we were in one of the finals together some 11 years ago. It was in Alassio. She was third and I was seventh.

Do you think there will come a time when both federations will allow their couples to compete together in one competition?

[Stefano]: Dasha knows WDSF system, so she should be able to tell you more about them. For me, I would love to go back to the times before the split. When everybody were together. They are all dancers, it is the same discipline.

[Daria]: There are a lot of great dancers in WDSF. It would be very interesting to compete together again.

[Stefano]: Of course, it is not us who can make this decision.

When couples do not compete together it is difficult to compare them to each other. Perhaps, you as Professionals, will be making such decisions in the future

[Stefano]: Maybe

Do you have the same teachers?

[Stefano]: Dasha goes to Moscow to her teachers. I have a teacher in Italy. As a couple, we go to various people. We try a bit of everything and everywhere.

How much time do you spend in Moscow?

[Daria]: Not much. I had to go to Moscow to get an English visa.

[Stefano]: We almost did not make it to the UK Open. She had a lot of troubles with the visa. We had to apply three times, because she had her first application declined.

[Daria]: Only few days ago we go it, I tried three times.

Do you think this was because of the current sanctions imposed on Russia?

[Daria]: Maybe, I don't know

[Stefano]: I was shocked it was so hard.

Dasha, before Stefano, you danced in Amateurs?

[Daria]: Yes

So why did you decide, as a couple, to dance in Professional?

[Stefano]: I have danced in Amateurs before. My former partner Angelique was in Professionals for many years and when we had a try-out it felt good but she did not want to go back to Amateurs after so many years. For me, it was not an easy decision because I was only 23 years old, quite young to turn Professional. But I took a risk and it turned up to be good.

Do you see a difference in your dancing? It would be interested to hear Dasha's part as for her it was not just to change from Amateur to Professional but also to change the federation.

[Daria]: And change of the country

[Stefano]: When we started she said than she changed her whole life for me! She now dances for Italy, in Professional and for WDC.

So what is the difference for you?

[Stefano]: You put more attention to what you are doing. In Amateur you just go for it because everybody is pushing and pushing, in Professional you have more responsibility. You have to develop your own style. So of course, you need to become more mature and understand which elements you want to sell, what you want to show. You have to develop a stronger character, you have to become special in some way. That's what the great Professionals are, they are special in their own way, they are unique.

[Daria]: They develop their own style. I feel more freedom now, I can do what I want. When I was an Amateur I felt I was in some box, limited in some ways. I feel that now I can do more how I want it and I like that.

As Professionals it is easier for you, but when you were Amateurs, how did you fund your dancing?

[Stefano]: Here I have to say a bit thank you to my family. They supported me when I was young and they continue helping now as well. Of course, when you turn 18 years old, you have to find your own ways to support yourself but my family helped all the way.

[Daria]: Without parents it would be impossible but from the age of 20 I started to work a lot. I teach in Moscow a lot.

[Stefano]: Of course, we try to teach as much as possible because it is very expensive. All the flights, the competitions, dresses, lessons, visas, all that costs money. So we have periods when we teach a lot, but we try to find a balance with enough practise as well. There were days when we were practising through the night, till 2:30 in the morning. And also, we need to find time for lessons. We try to be well organised.

Do you have your own studio?

[Stefano]: I teach in Italy in the studio of Jerry and Denise Abrate. It was my first studio, that's where I started dancing.

[Daria]: I work in the Moscow dance club called "Melodia". They belong to WDSF. There is a lot of students there, Juniors and Juveniles and Youth couples.

[Stefano]: But we don't have our own studio yet.

What do you do when you don't dance?

[Stefano]: I like to watch football.


[Stefano]: Yes (laughing). Sometimes it is hard when you are in Hong Kong and have to wake up at 5 in the morning to see the match! But when it is possible I like to do that very much.

[Daria]: I like what every girl likes, I like to go shopping, I like massage, spa...

[Stefano]: She knows about football, it was something we also talked about at the try-out (laughing). She knows a lot of players' name.

[Daria]: Especially of Juventus

So did you prepare specially?

[Daria]: No, no. I just like football.

What are your plans for the near future?

[Stefano]: Our private and dancing plans are connected. We will be in Italy for a bit and then Daria will go to Moscow. We will start preparing for Blackpool.

Will you dance the Rising Stars as well?

[Daria]: I don't think so

[Stefano]: We will see, but I don't think we will dance the Rising Stars there. It was a great start for us yesterday and now we want to go for the Open.

Do you think under pressure now?

[Stefano]: I think it is good. It proved that we are both very able. We achieved so much in such a short space of time. It is motivating for us, because we know how much we can do.

If you couldn't dance, what would you do?

[Stefano]: Never thought about that... It is too late for football (laughing).

You could be a famous chef!

[Stefano]: I think it would become boring after a time. I would still like to do something connected to art.

[Daria]: I don't know either. I like learning, maybe I would go to the University to study something else. That would be my second degree. I did Sport degree, specialising in Dance.

What kind of music do you like?

[Daria]: It depends on mood. When I drive I like to listen to Prodigy or something like that, sometimes I like to listen to the classical music.

[Stefano]: When we are together we like Zucchero, the Italian singer. Dasha likes him as well. But it also depends for me. Sometimes I like Hip Hop

What about dance music?

[Daria]: I enjoyed yesterday's music a lot

[Stefano]: It was great because we were practised to the Ross Mitchell music and it was great to have a live orchestra from the semi-final.

Do you prefer the live orchestra?

[Daria]: It is an amazing feeling to dance to the live orchestra

[Stefano]: Oh yes, much better than to dance to the music from CD.

What do you think about the Blackpool music?

[Stefano]: We are looking forward to it. We will start practising to it very soon.

Isn't it a bit too old fashioned for you?

[Stefano]: No, I disagree; it is not old fashioned at all. It is not the same to dance to the Ross Mitchell CD and to the live band. And it is the same with the Blackpool music. It adds to the atmosphere as well. It also depends where you are. Perhaps when you arrive at your dance club at eight in the morning, the Blackpool Rumba is not the best thing to play. But if you are in Blackpool, the place is so magical, than that music just fits the place. It is just right.

[Daria]: Yes, I agree

One couple told us they never liked Blackpool music until they arrived at Blackpool

[Stefano]: Yes, it is just right. I cannot imagine Blackpool without that music. It would feel strange.

Do you prefer to dance to the modern music, with vocal perhaps?

[Stefano]: When we practise I like music from Feliciano or something like that but Latin in mood. I don't like the contemporary music that much. But it depends. But generally I like the original Latin music.

[Daria]: Me too.

Do you have friends outside of dancing?

[Daria]: Yes, but most of them are former dancers (laughing). OK, I do have some friends without any connection to dance but unfortunately it is difficult to keep in contact. It is hard to fit it into our busy schedule.

Who was the first person to call yesterday to tell them about your results?

[Daria]: My Mum

[Stefano]: My Mum (laughing)

Did you wake her up?

[Daria]: I think, yes! It is quite a time difference.

[Stefano]: My Mum was awake because she was checking on the internet. It would be nice for them to come but it is quite expensive. They have their jobs and cannot take so many days' vacation. They were awake and waiting for the message.

What would you like me to wish you?

[Stefano]: The best for tomorrow! We are ready. The goal is to get to the semi-final.

[Daria]: We will see.

[Stefano]: The most important thing is to do our best.

[Daria]: Important thing is to show that we can do even better than yesterday. Competition will be much harder.

OK, I wish you all the best for tomorrow. Thank you.