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To help understand some of the terms used to describe Ballroom Dance, we have included links to Wikipedia definitions where applicable.

John and Penny Participate in a number of DanceSport Ballroom Competitions. They compete in International Style, also known as "Standard" and "Latin", American Style, also known as "Smooth" dances as well as American Style Rhythm dances. American Style is taught in most social dance studios in this country. International Style is what you see in most major competitons around the world and on Dacing with the Stars. Currently John and Penny compete in Foxtrot, Slow Foxtrot, Waltz, Tango ,Quickstep, Viennese Waltz, Rumba, Cha Cha, Swing, Samba, and Jive.
Competitions have different levels and age groups. The 1st 3 levels are Bronze, Silver and Gold. These are the syllabus levels where dancers are restricted to steps within the syllabus. The next levels are called "open". These are the non-syllabus events where the dancers are not restricted and are able to use advanced choreography. These levels are Novice, Pre-Champ and Championship.

  • Dance Competition History:
    USA Dance Senior IV National Championships, Bethesda MD - Feb. 17-20, 2017
    We reached a milestone in our competitive dancing. For the first time, we danced a championship level event in a National Championship.
    We had a number of placements. Here are the highlights:
    1st Place and National Champions in Sen. IV Pre-Champ & Novice International Standard, as well as Gold and Silver Latin. 1st Place in Senior III Gold & Silver Latin. 2nd Place in Senior IV pre-champ American Smooth. 3rd Place Senior III Championship Smooth.


    Carolina Fall Classic National Qualifier, Sept. 30. - Oct.2, 2016
    One of our toughest competitions to date. We were very pleased with our results and have now qualified for all of our dances at the next National Competition
    Highlights of our placements:
    3rd place Sen II Prechamp Smooth
    3rd Place Sen III Championship Smooth
    2nd Place in Sen III Gold Latin
    2nd Place in Sen II Gold Latin
    5th in Senior III Novice Standard


    Mid-Atlantic Championships National Qualifier, Feb. 2016
    1st Place Senior II Silver Latin
    2nd Place Senior III Silver Latin
    3rd Place Senior III Pre-champ Standard
    6th Place Senior III Novice Standard
    4th Place Senior III Pre-champ Smooth
    6th Place Senior III Championship Smooth


    Carolina Fall Classic National Qualifier, October 2015
    Our first time dancing Championship Smooth as well as Silver Latin.
    2nd Place Sen. III Championship Smooth
    2nd Place Sen. II & III Pre-champ Smooth
    2nd Place Sen. III Pre-Champ Standard
    3rd Place Sen. III Novice Standard
    5th Place Sen. II Novice Standard
    1st Place in Sen II & III Bronze Latin.
    2nd Place Sen II Silver Latin.
    1st Place Sen. III Silver Latin.

    Gumbo Dancesport Championships, Baton Rouge LA June 2015
    We had a great time with pleasing results
    1st Place Senior III Novice Smooth
    2nd Place Senior III Prechamp Smooth
    2nd Place Senior II Novice Smooth
    4th Place Senior II Prechamp Smooth
    5th Place Senior III Novice Standard
    2nd Place Senior III Prechamp Standard
    1st Place Senior III Bronze Latin
    1st Place Senior II Bronze Latin

    National Ballroom Championships Baltimore, MD - Mar. 29, 2015
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    Our best showing at Nationals to date. We are happy to say that we are now 5 time National Ballroom Competition Finalists. To qualify for Nationals you had to place in the top 65% of a regional competition.
    Our National Results and Titles:
    1st Place Senior III Gold Smooth
    1st Place Senior III Novice Smooth
    We made our finals in Standard
    6th Place Senior III Novice Standard
    6th Place Senior III Prechamp Standard
    4th Place Senior III Bronze Latin

    Carolina Fall Classic (USA Dance National Qualifier) October 4, 2014 Once again we were very pleasantly surprised with our results. This was our first time dancing in PreChamp for Smooth and Standard. It was also our first time dancing Latin.
    Senior III Novice Smooth 1st Place
    Senior III PreChamp Smooth 1st Place
    Senior II Novice Smooth 2nd Place
    Senior III PreChamp Smooth 3rd Place
    Senior III Novice Standard 2nd Place
    Senior III PreChamp Standard 2nd Place
    Senior II Novice Standard 6th Place
    Senior II PreChamp Standard 5th Place
    Senior III Bronze Latin 1st Place
    Senior II Bronze Latin 3rd Place

    Gumbo DanceSport Championships (USA Dance National Qualifier) June 28, 2014 Our results were a real surprise. This was our first time dancing Standard Novice. We are now qualified in all events for the 2015 Nationals.
    Senior II Gold Smooth: 1st Place
    Senior III Gold Smooth: 1st Place
    Senior II Novice Smooth: 1st Place
    Senior III Novice Smooth: 1st Place
    Senior II Novice Standard: 1st Place
    Senior III Novice Standard: 1st Place
    Senior II Gold Standard: 4th Place
    Senior III Gold Standard: 1st Place
    Open American Viennese Waltz: 3rd place
    Open Night Club Two Step: 2nd place

    National Ballroom Championships Baltimore, MD - Mar. 28, 2014
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    We are proud to say that we are now 4 time National Ballroom Competition Finalists. To qualify for Nationals you had to place in the top 65% of a regional competition.
    Our National Results and Titles:
    2nd Place Senior III Gold Smooth
    3rd Place Senior III Novice Smooth
    4th Place Senior II Gold Smooth

    Carolina Fall Classic National Qualifier - Charlotte NC - October 4-6 2013 This competiton was a big surprise. We returned to the competition floor for the first time in a year and a half since John's foot injury. It was our best competition to date. We danced 55 times in 3 days.
    Our results: (Note that "Smooth" is American Style and "Standard" is International Style)
    Senior III Gold Smooth - 1st Place (American style in our age and level)
    Senior III Novice Smooth - 1st place (Next higher level - open choreography)
    Senior II Gold Smooth - 1st Place (Next lower age category for our level)
    Senior II Novice Smooth 3rd Place (Next lower age, next higher level)
    Senior III Gold Standard - 1st place (International Style higher level in our age group)
    Senior III Silver Tango - 1st Place
    Senior II Silver Standard (14 couples) 2nd Place
    Senior III Silver Standard (14 couples) 2nd place
    Senior II Silver Tango (18 couples) 6th place
    Senior II Gold Standard (14 couples) 6th place
    Smooth Master of Syllabus (Any age or level) 3rd Place

    National Ballroom Championships Baltimore, MD - Mar. 30, 2012
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    We are proud to say that we are now 3 time National Ballroom Competition Finalists.
    We were really impressed with the number and level of dancers competing at the National Competition this year. The level of dancers has really risen. It was the largest Nationals yet with over 1200 competitors that had qualified. In order to qualify you had to finish in the top 75% of regional competitions during the year. It is really something to be on the floor with the best amateur dance couples in the country. We were also delighted and surprised with our own results. The final round for each event is limited to 6 or 7 couples. To make the final round you have to get "called back" from semi-final or even quarter final rounds depending on how many couples are in the event. We figured that we danced 53 times in two days. We danced Waltz, Tango and Foxtrot in both American and International styles along with Quickstep, Viennese Waltz, Rumba and Cha Cha.
    Our National Results and Titles:
    2nd Place Senior III Gold Smooth
    3rd Place Senior III Novice Smooth
    6th Place Senior II Gold Smooth
    5th Place Senior III Silver Standard
    7th Place Senior II Silver Standard
    6th Place Senior III Gold Standard
    2nd Place Senior III Bronze Rhythm
    2nd Place Senior II Bronze Rhythm


    Mid Atlantic Championships (Nationals Qualifier) Bethesda, MD - Feb. 2012
    This was our first time competing in Rhythm. It was also our first time competing in a non-syllabus event (Novice).
    Our final results were:
    1st Place Senior III Bronze Rhythm.
    3rd Place Senior II Bronze Rhythm
    1st Place Senior III Gold Smooth
    1st Place Senior III Silver Standard
    1st Place Senior III Gold Standard
    2nd Place Senior III Novice Smooth
    2nd Place Senior II Novice Smooth


    Carolina Fall Classic (2012 Nationals qualifier) Greensboro NC - Oct. 2011
    Well, I'll say again we were so surprised and pleased with our results. We had large fields of competitiors, as many as 19 in some.
    Our final results were:
    2nd Place Senior I Silver Smooth
    2nd Place Senior II Silver Smooth
    2nd Place Senior I Gold Smooth
    4th Place Senior II Gold Smooth
    3rd Place Senior I Silver Standard
    4th Place Senior II Silver Standard
    7th Place Open American Viennese Waltz
    We qualified for Nationals in all of our events.
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    National Ballroom Championships - Baltimore MD - April 2011
    Once again, we obtained national titles and did much better than we had hoped.
    With all the best amateur ballroom dancers in the country competing we just felt privileged to share the same floor. There were about 1500 competitors dancing for three days in all categories. Dancing started at 7 in the morning and went to midnight most days. We were usually up at 6:30 to try to get some practice. We competed in American Style "Smooth" and International Style "Standard". We competed at the Silver and Gold levels and in two age categories, Senior II (ages 45-55) and Senior I (ages 35-45). Depending on the event, we had to make our way through quarter finals (sometimes multiple times), semi finals and finals. "Smooth" dances were Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot and Viennese Waltz. "Standard" dances were Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot and Quickstep.
    Our final results were:
    3rd place Senior II Silver Smooth,
    4th place Senior II Gold Smooth,
    3rd place Senior I Gold Smooth,
    5th place Senior I Silver Smooth.
    Standard: Made the semi finals (top 12 couples) in all events but did not place.
    We were thrilled with our results.



    Mid Atlantic Championships - Bethesda MD - Feb. 2011 This was our first time competing Gold.
    Results:
    Senior II Silver Smooth - 2nd Place
    Senior II Gold Smooth - 2nd Place
    Senior I Silver Smooth - 4th Place
    Senior II Gold Smooth - 4th Place
    Senior I Silver Standard - 6th Place

    Carolina Fall Classic Championships 2010 - Greensboro NC
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    The International  Viennese was an Open Event (open to all ages and levels). We started with 17 couples. Me made the quarter finals and semi-finals. The final round had 6 couples on the floor including our coaches. We took 6th place.
    We made the final round in all of our events.
    Results:
    Amateur Open Intl. V. Waltz  - 6th Place
    Amateur Senior I Bronze Standard (Waltz Quickstep)  - 5th Place
    Amateur Senior I Bronze Standard (Tango Foxtrot) - 3rd Place
    Amateur Senior I Silver Standard (Waltz Foxtrot Quickstep) 7th Place
    Amateur Senior I Silver Intl. Tango  4th Place
    Amateur Senior I Silver Smooth (Waltz Tango Foxtrot) 4th Place
    Amateur Senior II Bronze Standard (Waltz Quickstep) 3rd Place
    Amateur Senior II Bronze Standard (Tango Foxtrot)  2nd Place
    Amateur Senior II Silver Standard (Waltz Foxtrot Quickstep) 6th Place
    Amateur Senior II Silver Intl. Tango 4th Place
    Amateur Senior II Silver Smooth  (Waltz Tango Foxtrot) 2nd Place

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    Gumbo Dancesport Championships 2010  - Baton Rouge Louisianna "We were very pleased with our results among all these great dancers. The biggest surprise came with our results in Viennese Waltz. These were "open" events. Open to all ages and levels. We were competing directly with a number of championship level couples."
    Results:
    Senior I Silver Smooth - 5th place
    Senior II Silver Smooth - 4th place
    Senior I Bronze Standard (Waltz - Quickstep) - 4th place
    Senior II Bronze Standard(Waltz - Quickstep) - 4th place
    Senior I Bronze Standard(Foxtrot - Tango) - 4th place
    Senior II Bronze Standard(Foxtrot - Tango) - 2nd place
    Open American Vieneese Waltz - 4th Place
    Open International Vieneese Waltz - 6th place



    Mid Atlantic Dancesport Championships 2010  - Bethesda MD


    The Triangle Open Dancesport Championships 2010  - Raleigh NC
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    All in all, they entered 7 events, took the floor 29 times and achieved the following results:
  • Senior I Bronze Smooth: 1st Foxtrot, 2nd Waltz, 2nd Tango
  • Senior I Bronze Standard: 1st Quickstep, 2nd Waltz, 2nd Tango, 2nd Foxtrot
  • Adult Bronze Smooth: 2nd Tango, 3rd Waltz, 3rd Foxtrot
  • Adult Bronze Standard: 6th Tango, 6th Foxtrot, 8th Waltz

    pix7p3.jpg The Highpoint Classic Competition Oct. 2009
    This was also a qualifying event for the 2010 National Competition.
    John and Penny entered Senior I & II Bronze and Silver Events. They made the finals in all events with the following placements:
    Senior II Bronze Smooth - 3rd Place
    Senior I Bronze Smooth - 4th Place
    Senior II Silver Smooth - 5th Place
    Senior I Silver Smooth - 6th Place
    They also competed in Senior I & II Bronze Standard events. They did not make the final round in those events.

    pix0p1a.jpgThe 2009 Triangle Open Ballroom Competition.

    John and Penny took:

    1st Place Senior I Waltz
    1st Place Senior I Tango
    2nd Place Senior I Foxtrot
    3rd Place Senior I Rumba
    Then, in the Adult (19+ yr old category) with 32 couples competing,
    3rd Place Tango
    5th Place Foxtrot

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    USA Dance National DanceSport Ballroom Competition April 2009 in Baltimore MD.
    John and Penny Take 2nd Place in Senior I Bronze Smooth and 2nd Place in Senior II Bronze Smooth
    Posing with Carrie Ann Inabba
    from Dancing With the Stars
    after taking 2nd place medals
    at 2009 National Championships.
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  • Photos and Videos of selected competitions can be seen on the main page.
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