We recently sent former Dancing With The Stars pro Elena Grinenko a few questions!! We wanted to check in with her to get some updates on her new baby and how she’s doing. Recently, she also opened up a new dance studio in Los Angeles with her husband Rib Hillis called La Ballroom. We also asked her what she thinks of the new season of Dancing With The Stars. Here she is below to tell us about everything. Thank you Elena!!
1. Hi Elena!! First of all, congratulations on your new little one.
Thank you 🙂
How is motherhood treating you? Tell us about you and Rib’s new little bundle of joy and what you’ve been doing since we last saw you on Dancing With The Stars!! A lot has happened since then, hasn’t it?
Motherhood is great. I always wanted to experience what people are talking about when they speak of unconditional love and now I can say I totally joined the club. You can not describe it you can only feel it. Our baby boy was born August 19th, he is almost 6 month old and I love him every day more and more. It is amazing to see how fast they grow and react to everything around them, to be part of his experience in this life and help him learn all the new things that he sees and touches it absolutely thrilling.
2. So, we hear you are opening a new ballroom studio in Los Angeles. Tell us all about it and how you were inspired to open it?
Yes, Rib and I opened a studio in Sherman Oaks CA, we actually bought an existing studio with full staff that we kept and students body. It’s like jumping on the train that is already going 60 miles an hour 🙂 but it’s very exiting. We hope that changes that we making to the studio right now, will bring event more students to the studio and keep the ones that we have there very happy. The inspiration was our baby boy Magnus. When I learned that I’m pregnant, we started talking about opening the studio, because my life consist on traveling suitcases and hotels, which is not good combination for raising a child. I for sure can’t be the seat at home mom, lol. I’m so used to doing million projects and that is why studio sounded like the best solution for us. I can still work and create and at the same time be with my baby boy and my husband, be more of normal family 😉 We also bring him to the studio, Rib jokingly calls Magnus mascot of the studio. It’s actually very exiting to open business with Rib, he is not a dancer, but he brings such ease to the studio, by making it more fun and relaxed atmosphere for students to be in and he has awesome social skills, that I sometimes need to learn, to make it more fun for people to be there, I get to focused on things and to concentrated. So that combination makes us perfect studio owners.
3. Who will be the teachers at the studio? Will you have any dancers from Dancing With The Stars and So You Think You Can dance who will be helping to teach at your new Studio?
We have 7 teachers on staff, they are all very experience teachers and competitive dancers. As far as DWTS or SYTYCD dancers of cause 🙂 I think that what will make our studio special, we will always have guest coaches from the shows, it’s like a special tread to the students, to be able to learn from people they see on TV. We already had Louis Van Amstel, Gleb Savchenko and Snow Urbin at the studio coaching.
4. We’ve also heard you’ve had a couple of events at the studio. Can you tell us about them and when is the Grand Opening?
Yes, we run Social parties every first Thursday on the month and of cause our Grand Opening is on March 31st, which we trying to coordinate with DWTS, to make sure all my fellow Pro dances can attend our even after the taping is over. We gonna have full on red carpet event, Pro and students show numbers and of cause a lot of dancing.
5. Will you continue doing the videos after DWTS episodes?
We hope so 🙂 Now that we have our own location, we probably gonna get back to it this season.
6. What do you think of the new DWTS format and all the changes that are happening with DWTS (ie. new non-ballroom styles, no more live band, etc)?
In the beginning I was not sure, but I actually think it makes the show more interesting, I can’t imagine that audience can watch cha cha over and over again. It’s just brings something fresh and exiting, on the end of the days it called Dancing with the Stars not Ballroom Dancing with the Stars, they can use any style they like. As far as band goes, those guys are great and I don’t want to take away anything from them, they are amazing, but from the dancer perspective, you doing choreography to the record that DWTS producers give you and suddenly on Monday it’s the first time you get to do it with band on the rehearsal and it’s not always sounds the same. AS far as views concern, I think that they wont even notice 🙂 So I think it’s be ok with no band. But I’m sure everyone is gonna miss them, cause they wore there for so many seasons and they wore fabulous.
You can follow LA Ballroom at La Ballroom Studio at Facebook. Be sure you are following @LABallroom at twitter too for all of the latest news and updates.