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Ballroom BootCamp on TLC

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Date Published:
December 7, 2005

About Ballroom Bootcamp
Premieres Friday, Oct. 7 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. on TLC

Ever found yourself riveted to a dance film where the hero or heroine undergoes a dramatic transformation from "two left feet" to elegant ballroom dancer? Or wonder what it would take to transform your husband, boyfriend, brother or self into a dancer of that caliber? Of course you have. And that's why Ballroom Bootcamp is a television program you just can't miss. Ballroom Bootcamp is the series where three "Average Joes or Janes" from all walks of life undertake a rigorous five-week training program. Top ballroom dance professionals Susannah Cuesta, Gocha Chertkoev and Christian Perry will attempt to give the participants the physical, mental and social tools necessary for success, and stop at nothing to transform the participants from ordinary to extraordinary. The Ballroom Bootcamp participants will learn one of five dance styles — the cha cha, waltz, tango, jive or rhumba — and then face off against one another in an authentic, professionally adjudicated competition. It's the ultimate fish-out-of-water story. Think plumbers, couch potatoes, football players, moms and more unusual suspects. It's a chance to test regular people in a way they've NEVER been tested before. And it's a chance to explore the colorful and captivating world of ballroom dancing and the people who inhabit it. Ballroom Bootcamp is not your grandmother's ballroom dancing show. The stories are fast-paced, and the training is intense. From start to finish, our professionals have free rein to do WHATEVER they think it will take to make a dancer out of their contestant, and do it WHENEVER they see fit. That means showing up at the office and dragging their student to the conference room to go over lessons. It means showing up at their doorstep at 5 a.m. to go run the stairs at Santa Monica High School. They will have total control over more than just the dancing — all matters relating to style, poise, confidence and appearance are in the hands of our carefully chosen experts.And it won't always be pretty. With a scant five weeks to train, there's little margin for error. And since these would-be dancers aren't giving up their jobs, relationships, and regular responsibilities, there are going to be times when the going gets tough.

Gocha Chertkoev
A highly successful Latin dance competitor, Gocha Chertkoev has made a significant mark on the American and international competitive dance scene. He has also become a popular and sought-after performer on several continents. Gocha is originally from the former Soviet Republic of Georgia. He and his partner, Shorena, have won numerous professional Latin American dance championships in many competitions, including the Southwestern U.S. Invitational, the Florida State Championships, the Hawaii Star Ball and the Manhattan Dance Championships. In addition, the couple had the honor of representing the United States at the World Professional Latin Dance Championships in South Africa. Gocha and Shorena have been featured performers on the highly popular and widely broadcast PBS television program Championship Ballroom Dancing for five consecutive years. In addition to his competitive career, Gocha has established a successful coaching practice in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, developing and assisting a wide range of professional and amateur dance competitors from all over the U.S. with training, choreography and costume design.

Susannah Cuesta
Susannah brings more than 10 years experience teaching ballroom and Latin dance to her role on Ballroom Bootcamp. She has competed professionally in International Standard, American Smooth, American Rhythm, Theater Arts and Show Dance. She continues to compete at the American Smooth level with her partner, Eddie Alba. Finalists in the National Rising Star American Smooth Competition, they were victorious in Rising Star competitions in Palm Springs and San Francisco. Susannah is certified with both the U.S. Terpsichore Society and with the Imperial Society of the Teachers of Dance. Teaching beginners and working with students competing at the Pro-Am level is her specialty. She won first place in the American Smooth category at the Wisconsin State Dance Sport Championship. Susannah currently owns her own studio, Ballroom Blitz, in Los Angeles.

Christian Perry
Christian Perry has competed in and taught ballroom dance for over 10 years. This Bootcamp Ballroom judge started his career by choreographing and starring in the well-known GAP commercial that helped ignite the immensely popular swing craze. He went on to study and compete at the Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Los Angeles. After a few years, Christian moved to England to compete in the worldwide circuit, where and his partner were the United States' International Latin representatives. Christian now travels the country coaching other ballroom dance professionals. He can be seen as a principal dancer in many commercials, music videos and films, including Mona Lisa Smile and Be Cool. Christian has also lectured at the World Social Dance Congress in Moscow as well as Black Pool, which is the most prestigious dance competition in the world. He has extensive experience choreographing tours for such musical artists as Will Smith, Shaggy and Vanessa Williams.