Judges

 

The winners of the Australia Rueda de Casino Championship will be decided by a panel of expert judges, all of whom are highly accomplished and respected. All of the judges are neutral and not affiliated with any of the schools involved in the competition.  

Eric Turro Martinez

In the phenomena of the Buena Vista Social club in the 1990's, there is Eric Turro Martinez the man who brought the Cuban traditional dance to the world stage through the Buena Vista Social club and the Bar at Buena Vista Touring the world since 2004, Eric until today remind as the Main dancer, choreographer and the public face of the famous Bar at Buena International Cuban show. Dancing with dance partner Chantal Turro Martinez for the last 10 years, they have traveled the world promoting the Cuban traditional dance.

 

Chantal Turro Martinez

Chantal Turro is a Sonera like no other. The first Australian dancer to perform with one of the largest Cuban productions, The Bar at Buena Vista. Chantal Turro has been teaching ladies styling and street salsa in Australia for the past 10 years and teaching overseas with Eric since 2007. Dancing and performing from a young age, Chantal's knowledge stems from many dance styles including street Latin, flamenco, tango, jazz, tap, hip-hop, West African & middle eastern. Whilst trained in many styles, Chantal credits her style more recently to the traditional Cuban dance style of Eric. Recent performances from this couple include performances with some of Cuba's finest musicians including LOS VAN VAN on their 2010 Australian tour in August, Vocal Sampling Orchestra Buena Vista, Juan de Marcos & Afro Cuban All-stars. Currently, Chantal is the main dance teacher at Buena Vista Turro Martinez dance school alongside co-director Eric Turro Martinez.  

 

 

    RAYDA SALAS

Originally from Cuba and now an international performer Rayda has a long list of impressive credentials and achievements qualifying her as an all-time Cuban dancer extraordinaire. Her professional career began in Cuba in 1993 when she joined the Gaviota SA dancing school and specialized in contemporary, classical and Afro Cuban Folk-Lore. From there she became a dancer and choreographer for many different cabarets and events in Cuba and in Italy and now she has joined forces with the renowned Dawes Figueroa to form Cuba-Rumba.com teaching and performing Cuban folkloric and contemporary dance all over Europe.

 

   images/bios/image005.jpgMauricio Hernadez

Mauricio is originally from Colombia where he began dancing at an early age. He moved to Australia 15 years ago and his passion for Latin dancing led him to establish one of Sydney’s first salsa schools which currently runs group classes throughout Sydney and Newcastle most nights of the week. Mauricio has experience in many different Latin dance genres including salsa, a few. He has been involved with numerous events throughout his dance career and has Argentine tango, merengue, cumbia, rumba, son and Chilean folkloric dancing to name performed internationally as well as locally. One particular highlight for Mauricio over the years has been sharing the stage with international salsa legends Oscar D’Leon and Jose Feliciano. He is also proud to have played an instrumental role in the development of the Newcastle salsa scene, including the yearly Latino Nights festival with the local council. Mauricio has also participated in a number of dance competitions and consistently places highly. In one year he placed 2nd in the Australian Salsa Championships and 3rd in the Australian Tango Championships, proving him to be a talented and versatile dancer.

 

Lam Lakiz

Lam Lakiz, a dancer with over 20 years experience in Soukous, Rumba, Ndombolo, Traditional African dances, Coupe Decalle and more. Since moving to Australia from Mozambique in 2007, Lam has traveled and performed as the choreographer and dancer for ‘Vox Congo’ (Congolese band based in Melbourne) and has also explored all Latin styles of dance. He has been traveling around Australia sharing his passion for Kizomba and African rhythms in various dance festivals and has participated in the Africadancar Asia-Pacific Competition in Perth where he came second and qualified for the finales in Portugal for the International Kizomba Competition. Lam, who was born in the Congo in Central Africa, grew up with a love for Zouk (the Caribbean-fused origin of Zouk Lambada). He started to dance Soukous, Ndombolo and traditional Congolese dances shortly after he learned to walk. In early adulthood, he moved to Mozambique (South East Africa) where he developed a passion for Kizomba (from Angola).