Demetre Souliotes´ love
for dance first manifested itself at a young age in the form of Hip-Hop and
Break Dancing. By 13 he was competing, battling, and winning competitions in
three different styles of Hip-Hop. Since
those early years dance has remained a constant and integral part of his life. It wasn´t till a couple years later that his
journey of life and dance changed forever.
Demetre found West Coast Swing, a dance that introduced him to the
unique joys of partner dancing while still touting the same freedoms in individual
creativity, self-expression, and musicality allowed for in Hip-Hop.
Dance and West Coast
Swing in particular, quickly became an all-encompassing passion. 3 Months after learning the basics of WCS he
won his first contest, within 2 years and a quick accent through the
competition circuit, he was asked to partner by one of the top champion dancers
of the day, Beata Howe.
Demetre and Beata travelled
the USA full time on the West Coast Swing Professional Circuit; competing,
performing, and teaching all over the US; finally, capping the year with a 6th
place finish at The US Open Swing Dance Championships.
Following that explosive
start as a West Coast Swing Dance Professional, Demetre has travelled the world
competing, performing, teaching, judging, and choreographing. He has won, finaled-in, and placed in
countless Champion & Invitational West Coast Swing competitions.
Demetre has had the
privilege to teach or judge at some of the most revered conventions in the West
Coast Swing community, such as Liberty Swing, Chico Dance Sensation, Summer
Hummer, Boston Tea Party, South Bay Fling, Palm Springs Summer Swing Dance
Classic, Dallas Dance, MadJam, Swingin´ New England , and Swing Thing. In addition to weekend events, Demetre had the
honour and privilege of being invited to New York to teach at the famed dance studio,
Dance Manhattan, where he spent two months teaching alongside some of the best
dancers in the world. Back home in
Southern California he has taught dance courses at the University of Southern
California (USC) & Caltech University.
Demetre spent 4 years teaching all over Asia and started the West Coast
Swing community in China. When not traveling on the circuit, Demetre teaches
and hosts classes and dances all over Southern California. In 2014, Demetre and his new partner Kristen
Humphrey took top 12 in Classic at the US Open Swing Dance Championships.
When asked, Demetre categorizes
his style of WCS to be focused on a base of micro connection, clear lead, and silent
conversation to create the frame work in which free body movement and
expression can take place, with a touch of Hip-Hop for good measure. Through the last decade his style has evolved
inspired by his Hip-Hop roots, his friends in Lindy Hop, his amazing peers in
WCS, and the pure evolution of this amazing street dance West Coast Swing.
His mentors and/or
influences are Robert Royston, Mario Robau Jr., Beata Howe, Mary Ann Nunez and
Demetre was recently
nominated for the California Swing Dance Hall of Fame.
For Private lessons, please contact Demetre at: Demetreonics@gmail.com