Matt Kellar found dance during his collegiate career at the University of Minnesota in 1989. After 3 years of social and collegiate competitive dancing, he knew that this was what he wanted to do for the rest of his life and decided to make dance a career.
He trained with numerous world-renowned coaches with Fred Astaire, Arthur Murray and other independent studios.
In 2000, Matt moved to Arizona to work for Fred Astaire Dance Studio. While with Fred Astaire, he trained rank beginner students to high level competitors, taking pride in watching his students become so accomplished.
His love of dance and success as an instructor allowed him the opportunity to open his own studio. By 2008, he owned 3 franchises.
In 2012, he and his wife Zhenya left Fred Astaire to start their own dance company. In the beginning of March 2018, Matt and Zhenya opened a beautiful new dance studio, Dream Dance.
They are looking forward to creating a studio that promotes fun, quality and a sense of community. They are excited to share their love and passion of dancing with the city of Tucson.
Zhenya Dokuchaeva was born in Moscow, Russia. She was one of the lead dancers at the Moscow Youth Ballroom Dance Theater. From age five she started competing internationally in Latin and Standard. By age twenty one
she was ranked in the top 100 amateurs in the world by the International Dance Sport Federation.
In 2008, she moved to the United States and made her home in Tucson. She started working for Fred Astaire Dance Studios as an advanced instructor. In 2011, she married Matt Kellar. A year later, she and her husband opened their own ballroom dance company, Dream Dance. Now she teaches a variety of students at all levels. She also serves as a coach and choreographer for other professional dancers
Alan was born in Texas and as a young Air Force brat, lived and traveled around the world. Early on, he was introduced to dancing by his step-father at his Fred Astaire Studio. In 1979, right after high school, he moved to Florida where he became a professional dance instructor. He trained at Fred Astaire, Arthur Murray’s and other independent studios. He also competed professionally for 10 years and garnered numerous national finalist awards.
Alan enjoys teaching new and high level competition students. When he’s not teaching, Alan enjoys golf and traveling.
Louisa has been dancing for over 30 years and has recently retired from her role as a Senior Engineering Fellow at Raytheon to pursue her dream of spreading the joy of ballroom dance through teaching. With her amateur partner, Louisa competed throughout the Northeast in International Standard and Latin, and, more recently as a pro-Am in the Southwest in both International and American styles. Louisa also has a passion for social dancing and will be bringing this passion to her series of social ballroom dance classes.
Spencer, an Arizona Native has been dancing for over 10 years. He competed with the collegiate UA ballroom during his tenor at the UA. He is also part of the Lajkonic Polish Folk dance group for over 4 years.
He enjoys teaching all levels of students.
Taylor Burghard, born in central Missouri, began ballroom dancing in high school. A year later, at the age of 16, she started as a full time student at University of Arizona. She has danced throughout her collegiate career and served on the board of the competitive school team. In this officer position she put on multiple showcase performances as a director, choreographer and, a performer all while assisting to teach weekly lessons and competing.
She is currently completing her degrees the University in Classical Civilization and Theatre with a minor in Film and Television
Joseph Smith is our newest instructor. Born in Colombia, South Carolina and raised in Birmingham
Alabama, Joseph began competing in the United Country Western Dance Council (UCWDC) at the age of 14 where he quickly became a World Championship
finalist for two consecutive years.
His teaching career first began in Birmingham, continued in the Chicago
area and eventually Fort Wayne , IN. with Fred Astaire studio.
When he is not dancing he is game for anything "outdoorsy".
Joseph is looking forward to sharing his knowledge, experience and passion with
the Tucson dance community.