Slava Polubnev, A Qualified Dance Instructor A passion as well as a profession, for Slava Polubnev dance is at the center of his life: providing purpose and offering the opportunity to inspire others in the art.
Born in Russia, Slava immigrated to the U.S. during middle school, and his family settled in Cleveland. As Slava had always planned to be a doctor, he devoted himself to his studies and eventually earned a degree in chemistry from Case Western Reserve University.
While attending college, Slava’s love for dance also blossomed; although he had been introduced to the art as a boy through the Jewish Community Center, it was only after he followed a girl he liked into a class at Case Western on a lark that he became hooked. Over the next few years, he continued to study at a number of studios where he also began to teach. Slava has always lived by the twin ideas that you should do what you love, and if you love something it is never a chore. And while his passion for dance only increased during his college years, it became increasingly clear to him that he was not in love with his pre-med studies. Realizing that he could have a career teaching dance, Slava turned down a full-ride scholarship to medical school, completely threw himself into his new profession and founded Dancing Made EZ. As an instructor, Slava seeks to make a difference in his students’ lives and begins by developing a personal connection with each student – identifying their gifts, understanding their fears and hopes and motivating them to peak performance and success on and off the dance floor. Bringing zeal as well as sensitivity to each lesson, sessions with Slava often involve a mixture of competition preparation or social dancing instruction, a sympathetic ear (and arm) to lean on and the creation of a personalized choreography based on music of the student’s choosing. Believing strongly in continuous improvement, although Slava holds DVIDA certification as an instructor, he continues to seek out and study from the best in the business, and his past teachers have included Donald Johnson, Bill Sparks, Sam Sodano, Karina Smirnoff, Tony Dovolani, David Hamilton, Yulia Zagoruchenko, Riccardo Cocchi, Rufus Dustin and Mark and Shirley Ballas. Currently, Slava studies choreography with Irina Shukhat in Chicago and rhythm with Jose Decamps and Joanna Zacharewicz in New York. Like any good teacher, Slava measures his success by his students’, and they have more than met expectations, frequently placing first, second and third at prominent competitions including the Ohio Star Ball, the Falls Premier Ball, DanceSport Challenges in Cleveland and Houston and DanceSport Championships in Wisconsin, Virginia and Manhattan. Although he has been recognized for his success in teaching the more expressive and flexible styles of International Latin and American Rhythm, Slava enjoys introducing his students of all ages to the full spectrum of dance, from waltz and foxtrot to salsa and mambo – and everything in between. When not sharing his passion for dance with students, instructors and friends, Slava enjoys traveling and snowboarding; of course, as dance is the focus of his life, even when he’s enjoying the beauty of some far-away place or mountaintop, a part of him can’t wait to return home to his students.