At the 41st Ohio Star Ball, Nazar Norov and Irina Kudryashova announced their retirement from competitive dancing. They are 3 time United States and 3 time World reigning and undefeated Open American Rhythm Champions.
Below is the retirement letter that was read at the Battelle Brand Ballroom during the Ohio Star Ball.
It is never easy to say goodbye to something, that was a part of our lives for so many years, and what we love so much.
Our journey together, started 17 years ago in a little town in Siberia, Russia and little did we know, what a journey that would be.
After over 26 years of competing, tonight, we are saying goodbye to the amazing world of professional dancing. But before we do, we would like to thank so many people, that helped us in so many ways to achieve, what we ourselves have never dreamed of.
Our gratitude goes to our parents and families, who gave everything and sacrificed so much, so we could dance
Our first teachers during first 15 years of our dancing and our mentors for life – Vladimir Murashov and Lyudmila Murashov for not only giving us the love of dance, but teaching us the loyalty, importance of being part of the Team and work ethics.
James Clemens and Tammy Clemens for giving us an opportunity to work in the United States
Lori Foehr for welcoming us to the Dancelife family and giving us a chance to become studio owners
All Our students, present and past for adjusting their schedules to accommodate our crazy ones
Our fans and fellow competitors for always pushing us to be better than yesterday
Brent Thomas Mills and Ballroom Playlist for always amazing and inspiring music
Alex Rowan and Dancesport Photography and Mary Tweeddale for memories, that will be forever with us
Peter and Cassandra Valeria Schneider and Dance America for the best shoes and practice wear we could ask for
Boyko for Irina’s impeccable look
Benito Garcia of Coreganize 360 for keeping our bodies and minds ready for the challenge
Tatiana Ouellette of Anabell’s Dancewear and Bella Kogan of Dress for Dance for Nazar’s costumes
And Dawn Smart of Dore Designs, who welcomed us to the Team ten years ago and was by our side all these years
The coaches, who helped to shape us into the dancers and teachers we are today:
Sam Sodano, Loraine Barry, Tonja Garamella, Judi Hatton, Paul Holmes, Paul Killick, Ieva Pauksena, Вячеслав Трубачев, Igor Ugay and Tatiana Ugay
And of course, our Dream Team – the core group, that every dancer should find – the Team that will guide you, inspire you, bring you down to earth, when you feel too high and lift you up after painful defeats. Each one of you hold a special place in our hearts and we can not thank you more for being in our lives.
Michael Chapman for creating our show program
“Yoda” Eugene Katsevman for sharing your sense of musicality and understanding of the movement
“Babaganoush” Ilya Ifraimov for creating unforgettable characters for our winning Ohio showdances
“Gumada” Marianne Nicole-DePalma for making sure our clock is working and the eye is closed?
“Dance Mom” Shirley Ballas for letting us be ourselves and going along with our crazy ideas, while never compromising the quality of movement
And “Daddy” Rufus Dustin for believing in us from very beginning and being there for us for the last 10 years through thick and thin.
The switch to American Rhythm 6 years ago was the best decision we have ever made and we thank everyone, who supported us in this journey.
We sincerely hope that those who will come after us will cherish and respect American Rhythm the way we do.
Ladies and gentlemen. Every journey has its beginning and the end. Our journey as professional competitors ends tonight, on this floor, under these lights. We could not think of a better way to go. Thank you
Your 3 -time United States and 3 time World reigning and undefeated Open American Rhythm Champions
Nazar Norov and Irina Kudryashova