Originally from Russia, Ilya Ifraimov began dancing at the age of 15, focusing on Latin dancing from the start. Both Ilya and his partner Nadia Goulina were both born in Russia and migrated to the United States in 1999. They met at Fred Astaire’s Upper Montclair studio (NJ) where they had both been recruited by Kay Connors. A year after meeting, they began their journey as dance instructors and Professional partners. A few years later, they became one of the top couples nationally and worldwide in the Professional Latin Division.
Some of their achievements include becoming the North American Professional Latin Champions, World Master Professional Latin Champions, 6-time Fred Astaire National Professional Latin Champions, and Ohio Star Ball Showdance Champions.
The strength in Ilya and Nadia’s partnership was in the authenticity of their dancing where the relationship between the man and woman was clearly defined. In their dancing, Ilya and Nadia emphasized traditional male and female roles, where the man is strong and confident and the woman is feminine and sexy. Music helped provide that feeling and their dancing added passion to the music. Indeed, they focused on what partnership dancing was all about: the love triangle between a man, woman, and the music.
Their role models included top Latin couples such as Bryan Watson and Carmen, as well as Slavik Kryklyvyy and Karina. Like Ilya and Nadia, these couples are famous for their musicality, flexibility, and ability to produce a strong image of a man and woman.
What free time they did have (when they were not thinking about the designs of their next outfits) was spent going out to movies and relaxing with friends.
“Our goal is to make people happy and share our knowledge.”
Ilya and Nadia are owners, as well as instructors, of multiple Fred Astaire Dance Studios, one in Montville and one in Princeton, New Jersey (USA). They are also members of the DanceSport Committee of the Fred Astaire Organization.
Ilya coaches and choreographs in all levels and styles. A world class adjudicator and choreographer, he’s been a member of the NDC (National Dance Council) since 2005 and has collaborated in the creation of the International Latin Syllabus.
Ilya has also appeared on America’s Ballroom Challenge and The Real Housewives of New Jersey.
With nearly every title in the International Latin division, Ilya Ifraimov is one of the most recognizable faces in Ballroom Dancing. He can also be seen dancing Pro-Am with his students at Fred Astaire National Events.