Benji Schwimmer. The amazing showcase division competitor, So You Think You Can Dance Season 2 winner, Feather Award Recipient, youngest World Dance Champion in history, professional dancer, choreographer and coach Benji Schwimmer presents a three hour premium content session: “Being the Artist. Being the Technician.” A mini intensive exploring the delicate balance of technique and artistry while still having fun!
Benji will present drills and new concepts on bettering your technique and connection and making it become more automatic and simplified in a world of uber misinformation.
This intensive will also work on creating new ways to explore your inner creative swing dancer in ways you, your partner and your audience ( including the occasional judge ) can appreciate and read.
Benji Schwimmer is a 9-Time US OPEN Swing Dance Champion World Swing Champion. He was the Season 2 Winner of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance (SYTYCD).
Choreography and Artistic Directing credits include American Idol, Dancing With The Stars, SYTYCD, America’s Got Talent, MTV, CMT, Much Music, Comcast, HBO’s True Blood, The TV Land Awards, VH1 Diva’s Live, Fox Teen Choice Awards, Fox Reality Awards, The CMA Awards.
Acting/Film credits include Lifetime’s Holiday Spin, Leading Ladies, Love N’ Dancing and Full House. When not creating art, Benji is involved in several causes including Human Rights, AIDS Awareness and the better treatment of animals. Benji also writes music and is currently working on an album.
Ardena comes from the United States, where she danced as a professional ballroom dancer and received an education in psychology, leadership development and personal fitness training. She later moved to Norway where she completed a master degree education in International Development in parallel to running her business Argo Dance & Fitness. She has helped to fuel the growth of the WCS community in Norway by regularly teaching and consistently bringing International WCS professionals to Scandinavia for intensive dance training workshops. One of her most popular events is the Winter White West Coast Swing WWWCS, a yearly World Swing Dance Council Registry event that takes place in the Oslo region. Ardena believes that dancing allows all individuals to grow mentally, physically and spiritually. She strives to show the world that we can all “enhance through dance”.
Ardena first began ballroom dancing at the tender age of 6 in her native country, Kosovo. Her family immigrated to the United States when they were forced to leave Kosovo during the ethnic cleansing in 1999. After arriving in the USA, she wanted to expand her range of dances. She joined dance teams in her adopted community of Lexington, Kentucky, which emphasized jazz, pompom, and hip-hop dance styles. During her high school years, her highly competitive dance team had won the state championship for two consecutive years, and regularly performed at national level sporting events.
In her early 20s, Ardena was hired as an instructor after only six lessons at Lexington’s Arthur Murray Dance Studio, one of the most sought after dance studios in the world. While there, she taught over 18 partner-style dances, both competitive and non-competitive. These dances included waltz, foxtrot, tango, salsa, bachata and west coast swing.
She continually educates herself by attending international seminars, workshops and competitions. She also regularly takes privates from international champions. Among some of the past and present professionals; Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine & Liana Churilova (The World Mambo/Rhythm Champions), Nick Kosovich (United States American Smooth Champion), Jason Miklic ( WCS Champion), Stephen White (Wcs Champion), Robert Royston (Wcs Champion) and Tatiana Mollmann (Wcs Champion).
Thibault is living in Toulon, south of France. He started dancing at 6 years old with Boogie Woogie, where he succeeded in competing in Junior and Main class division. He placed many times in the French National team and he has won a France champion title.
In the meantime, he has also danced other partner dances like salsa, Bachata Kizomba…. Then shortly after, he started teaching in his parents’ dance studio and in October 2013 he participated in his 1st WCS competition in the novice division. He became passionate by this dance, got training and gave up every other dances to fully pursue his passion for WCS. He has trained with the best professionals of this dance.
In less than 4 years, he became one of the best All-star dancers and placed in a lot of European and American Events.
His own and unique style comes from his Boogie Experience with his excellent musicality.
He is currently a very good teacher. He likes to combine good technique in a relaxed environment with fun and discipline. His teaching, his vision of WCS and his analysis and expertise of the dance make him a very appreciated and valued teacher in all the different dance conventions in the world where he teaches, judges and competes.
When only 21 years old, Thibault Ramirez is considered as a very talented “rising star” of West Coast Swing.