Studio Information

BURR RIDGE TEAM



Brittany
Dance Instructor

Brittany was born and raised in Youngstown, Ohio where she began dancing at the young age of four.  She is trained in all styles of dance including jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, ballroom etc.  While competing in dance until the age of 18 she was also the all-around athlete participating in varsity volleyball, basketball and track. Brittany joined the Ohio University Dance Team in college and loved the performance aspect of the team.  Brittany began her ballroom journey in 2012 at the Youngstown Fred Astaire Dance Studio. She and her professional partner were Regional Champions as well as National finalists. In 2013 and 2014, Brittany was voted top overall professional at the “Shoot for the Moon” Gala and also brought home the mirror ball trophy with her students. Brittany also loves the glamour and elegance of the ballroom world and takes pride in her certification for cosmetology.
Brittany is excited about her transition to Burr Ridge and looks forward to sharing her passion for dance with all of her students. She strives to be a high level Professional Smooth competitor. Brittany lives by the Charles Bukowski saying: “Find what you love and let it kill you.”

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Mark
Dance Instructor

Mark was born in Chicago, IL. He began dancing with Fred Astaire Dance Studios in 2010. After working in Health and Fitness; he loves to bring his energy and positive attitude to the dance floor. Dance is not something you’re born good or bad at; Fred Astaire says, “All the good dancers I’ve known have been taught or trained.” As an instructor at the Burr Ridge Studio Mark believes atmosphere is the most important. Fun, easy, and energetic lessons are what make dancing such a great experience for our students.


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Stefan
Dance Instructor
Stefan is excited that Burr Ridge Fred Astaire sponsored him to come to the United States to join the Fred Astaire family from Moldova. Stefan has been dancing for more than 20 yrs. now and teaching almost 10 yrs. His dancing experience includes: Dancing With The Stars TV Show of Romania, 3 times Moldavian Ballroom Champion, 2 times Latin Champion, 2 times 10 Dance Champion of Belgium, 2nd in Europe at 10 dance, 2nd in the world in formation ballroom, 2 times 1st place in Europe formation ballroom, and Winner of Power of Dance Project in Moldova. He has had the opportunity of taking lessons with the best coaches in the world. He has coached the top couples of Moldova and Romania. He enjoys passing all this experience on to his students.
Ty

Ty
Dance Instructor

Ty began dancing and performing in high school, where he participated in several musicals. Since then, he has been involved in a variety of physical and kinesthetic activities, from Mixed Martial Arts to Free-Running, before discovering Ballroom Dance. He currently competes in Ballroom on a regional level and has aspirations to compete nationally.Ty is excited to impart his knowledge of Ballroom Dancing to students, and to help them achieve their goals and dreams. When you dance with Ty “Dream Big!!”

Ellie
Dance Instructor/Dance Director

Ellie has been involved in various forms of dancing and athletics from a young age. As a child she participated in both tap and modern dance classes. Ellie was also a figure skater for nine years. Beginning as a student at Fred Astaire Burr Ridge in 2008, Ellie quickly fell in love with ballroom dancing and found it to be a natural transition from skating to dancing.As a dance instructor she enjoys imparting her love and knowledge for dancing with devotion and enthusiasm. Some of Ellie’s titles include regional mixed novice champion and national closed rhythm finalist. She currently competes in the Professional Open American Rhythm division.
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Michael
Studio Owner/Training Director
Michael has been a performer / dancer / singer / actor / choreographer for as long as he can remember. He has been in numerous on stage dramatic and musical productions with his love always remaining in the dance areas of Modern, Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical and now Ballroom. Before coming to the arena of ballroom dance at Fred Astaire 7 years ago his dance company credits included: 15 years with the University of Nebraska-Omaha’s modern dance company, The Moving Company, (which in 2001 won an international award in dance in Cesena, Italy -of which he danced in), Omaha Modern Dance Collective, Missouri Resident Dance Theatre, the Missouri State Ballet, The Modern Midwest Ballet . He credits his love of dance to the many choreographers he has danced with that have inspired him such as, Josie Metal-Corbin (his most beloved dance mentor), Mary Waugh-Taylor, Vera Lundahl, Dalienne Majors, Marc Hufnagl, Peter Hixon, Valerie Roche, Cliff Kirwin and Paul Chambers, Lauren Kotulak-Bartels and Carol Mezzacappa (New York choreographer who re-staged many works by the modern-dance pioneer Charles Weidman -of which Michael had the honor to dance in two), just to name a few of his favorites. Michael is proud to currently have nine choreographies being performed around the country by various dance organizations as part of their active repertoire.He feels very lucky to have had the privilege of living a very full life with past entrepreneurial careers as an independent fine dining restaurant owner, caterer, event planner, as well as, currently dabbling in real estate. He prides himself on giving back to the community and has been involved in many arts organizations and non-profit charity organizations serving on various committees and boards of directors for many years. He is a nature advocate and lover of animals, enjoys the outdoors, and greatly values family time. Some of his most fond memories have been of his close-knit family events, boating and waterskiing, and his many arts performance families over the years.“On With The Dance Of Life” is his quote he honestly lives by every day! He is ecstatic at the opportunity of owning and operating Fred Astaire Burr Ridge, allowing him to enhance the lives of so many others by giving the gift of dance