Viera Kubova and Juraj Ilecko
Written by Veronica Noronha
Viera Kubova and Juraj Ilecko have been fox trotting, jiving and quick-stepping on dance floors for over 20 years. Residents of Slovakia, Kubova and Ilecko have taken their dancing shoes to competitions in Austria, Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovenia. Most recently, the pair competed in Canada, at their first world championship – the DanceSport Grand Prix Canada – hosted by the Markham Pan Am Centre in October 2019.
To accommodate 160 of the world’s best ballroom dancers from 23 countries, the sport complex transformed its 36,000 square foot gym into an elegant ballroom. During the two-day competition, dancers demonstrated their skill and athleticism while performing the Waltz, Tango, and Viennese Waltz, Slow Foxtrot, and Quickstep. Adjudicators from nine countries scored each couple on their preparedness, musicality, posture and frame, partnership and many other technical skills.
Kubova and Ilecko danced their way to the semi-finals, no easy feat given that they have only been dancing together for less than two years. Kubova, an experienced ballroom dancer, has spent the last 27 years perfecting her skills and Ilecko has also been training and competing for 20 years. After so many years in the sport, both agree that, “DanceSport is good for the mind, body and soul”, which is why they have stuck with it for so long. Looking back on his early days in DanceSport, Ilecko says it taught him discipline which helped him in many other parts of his life, including school, relationships, and at work. Kubova says, “it teaches you how to be a good partner,” be it in life or on the dance floor.
We asked Kubova and Ilecko how they felt competing in the Markham Pan Am Centre, both said that the complex is beautiful and perfect for an international dance competition like DanceSport Grand Prix Canada. They also said that the dance floor was perfect for the occasion and appreciated the energetic atmosphere. Ilecko also gave the familiar compliment, Canadians have become known for: “Everyone is so nice here!”. Kubova vivaciously concurred. Right back at you Kubova and Ilecko!
Since this was their first time in Canada, once the competition was over, Kubova and Ilecko took in the sites around Markham and across Ontario, like the famed Niagara Falls. We look forward to welcoming Kubova and Ilecko to future ballroom competitions at the Markham Pan Am Centre.