PUBLICYSTYKA / WYBIERZ: / ARTYKUŁY 2003 ROKU

Michal Malitowski & Joanna Leunis

We present - M. Malitowski & J. Leunis

Dodano: 2003-05-28 | 23:36:00


With great satisfaction I woul like to present you to two people: Joanna Leunis - a Belgian and Michal Malitowski - a Pole, who represent Poland on the floors. In December 2002 they became Professional World Champions in Show Dance Latin, in January 2003 - Polish Champions in the same category.



I had the pleasure to meet Joanna and Michal during the Euro Dance Festival - Szczecin 2003. Among others they also danced to their championship choreography.

Because I was the DJ on this Festival and they had a lot of artistic commitments a direct interview was impossible. Fortunately, we have the Internet - a wonderful mean of communication, thanks to which I was able to interview them and this article may appear on your computer monitors.


THE BEGINNING

We both started to dance quite early.
Joanna had her first dance lesson at the age of 10 in "Perron" Club in Liege, where her parents enrolled her because she had some minor health problems. She had Greg Smith as her first teacher.

As for me, I began "leaping" when I was still a baby. Being unable to cope with that at home parents enrolled me in a dance course. My first instructors were Alicja Gorska and Wojciech Orszak.


WHEN WE WERE NOT A COUPLE

Dancing with Slavik Kryklyvy in 2000 Joanna won Blackpool in the amateur category.In the same year she became the World Champion in amateur pairs. In 2001 together with Louis van Amstel she took the 2nd place in the Professional World Championships in the Show Dance category.

Michal, you are a four-time Polish Champion in Latin Dances. What else in worth mentioning concerning your career that you would like our readers to know?
My biggest success was winning the Blackpool Dance Festival in the Youth category in 1999 when I was dancing with Iwona Golczak, also the fact that we had been dancing together continuously for 13 years.


MEETING JOANNA

We meet years ago, competing with each other on the same dance floors.
We began our career in September 2002.


EVERY DAY

We live in the center of Amsterdam. This is where we teach. We also teach in Poland, Germany, Belgium, Japan and Hong Kong.

Do you tutor or consult other pairs?
Yes. It is enough to browse through our website to get in touch with us. The terms and conditions of the work with us are also presented there.

How often do you practise together?
We practise every day. We attend jazz school whenever we have free time, also fitness center and all artistic attractions that Amsterdam offers . . .

As far as I know, both of you study. Please tell us what and where.
Joanna attends Ballroom Dance College in Brussels.
I am in the fourth year of the University of Zielona Gora where I study socio-cultural animation.


PROFESSIONALISM AND WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

Are you going to devote your professional life to dance?
Yes. Dance in the wide meaning of the word . . .

I am personally very pleased that you represent Poland on the dance floors. Did you have a problem in choosing the country to represent?
Such decision was taken due to the possibility of taking part in the World Championships in Show Dance in December 2002. Other countries which we could represent (Belgium, The Netherlands, The USA) had already chosen their representatives, long before we started dancing together.

What made you switch to professionalism so quickly?
Joanna had won the amateur World Championship two years before she started dancing among professionals. In those circumstances our come back to amateurs did not make sense.

You began practicing together in the beginning of autumn 2002, and already in December you became the World Champions. Could you tell us how your preparations for the Championships looked like and who the author of you choreography is.
You could talk anda talk about our preparations. The methods of work I experienced in TEAM AMSTERDAM simply generate champions! The choreography was basically our own work with some support from Dr Ruud Vermeij.

Was the title of the World Champion in Show Dance Latin a surprise to you or you had expected it?
We were oriented to be in the top three. We dreamed about the championship. Our dream came true . . .


IN BRIEF

Who is your current coach?
We are working with many dance instructors, not only those involved with ballroom dance. We have Dr Ruud Vermeij as our main coach.

The coach, dance teacher you value most.
We equally value all our teachers. Otherwise we would not work with them . . .

Which dancing couple is an example to follow for you?
There is no such pair . . .

Your "dance" plans for the nearest future.
We intend to take part in all major Open tournaments plus the European Championships in Show Dance.

Your other interest besides dance.
There are too many of them to talk about. Generally, we are interested in contemporaty art.

In summer you are going to be lectures at the Summer Dance Academy in Swieradow Zdroj. Could you tell the participants how they should prepare themselves for the Academy to gain most profits from meeting you?
They should come "open" and ready for anything . . .

Your advice to dancing couples wanting to succeed in sport dance.
Keep the right balance between the cometition and pure pleasure from dancig . . .


Michal Malitowski talked and answered the questions about himself and Joanna.
Thank you very much and we wish you a lot of success on the world dance floors.


Adam Socik
May 28th, 2003


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