Owner | Instructor
Born Mykhaylo Konstantynov in Russia, Misha became introduced to ballroom dance very early in life when his family moved to the Ukraine and opened a dance studio there. Drawn by both the artistry and athleticism of dance, Misha himself became involved in dance at the age of 10. From the beginning, Misha worked with focus, determination and diligence on his craft. This combination earned him his first Ukrainian championship at the age of 12.
Dancing competitively with his sister, Svetlana, they continued their successes. They were first place Ukrainian champions six times, and they were championship finalists in Lithuania, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Belarus. He was granted the title of the Ukrainian Master of Sports of International Class for sports dances in 1998. He was additionally honored for his talent by being awarded the title of Trainer of the Higher Category of Sports Dances and Judge in the First Judicial Category by the Board of Physical Training and Sports in the Ukraine in 2005.
Coming to the U.S.
Recognizing the interest and growth of ballroom dance in the United States, Misha decided to find a way to participate in this exciting opportunity. After coming to the United States in the spring of 2006, he worked in an established studio in Memphis, Tennessee for three years. During that time, he continued his success with his students and for himself placing numerous times as Top Teacher over the course of 3 years. More importantly to Misha, his students regularly placed as finalists and champions in regional and national competitions spanning the United States.
In 2009 he knew it was time to launch out on his own and opened his studio in Holly Springs, Mississippi. In June of 2012, Misha opened Ultimate Dance Ballroom Studio back in his “US hometown” of Memphis, TN. Featuring the highest level of floating floors available in the United States and a commercial sound system, the new studio offers a level of ballroom experience not found in other dance schools in Memphis and the MidSouth.
Attending national competitions including Hotlanta, the Heritage, Emerald, Millennium, Hollywood, and Southeastern States, Misha has received multiple Top Teacher and Top Studio awards. His students have succeeded as well by winning numerous scholarship and championship events.
Teaching from the Heart
Misha credits what he has accomplished thus far to the encouragement of his family and their ethic of hard work. He has taken these attributes to heart and as the basis for his own method of teaching others.
He takes a personal interest in each student, learning why they want to dance, and what they want to take from that experience. He works hard to provide the best teaching, coaching, choreography and support for each student as an individual.He remains current with his craft with regular sessions with the world’s best coaches and working on his own dance skills.
Benjamin Stovall is well known in the Memphis and surrounding dance communities. In fact, if you have been active for long in ballroom dance in Memphis, chances are you’ve shared a dance with Ben.
Benjamin Stovall started his dance career in Dallas, Texas over ten years ago, where he discovered his passion for performing the ballroom style on stage in studio showcases. After moving to Memphis in 2004, his penchant for entertainment has continued to evolve, while he also continues to develop as a dancer and instructor in the American style of ballroom dancing.
Ben has been a student of ballroom dance, learning a rigorous 13+ dance syllabus with a national dance chain, Receiving numerous certifications in his field, as well as multiple awards and accolades for his increasing skill level, his teaching, and his competition. Ben continues to be, not only an instructor of dance, but a student as well, of the constantly growing complexity that is the world of ballroom dance.
Benjamin Stovall has a very special gift and affinity for those students just discovering dance. He knows that most students enter the studio believing they can’t dance, have no coordination, no rhythm, and no dance talent. With great patience and encouragement, he leads them into a world of music, rhythm and movement, that shows each of them, that yes…they too can dance.
Iurii Kora, “Yura” discovered dance at the age of only seven when his parents brought him to a local studio. Born and raised in Nikopol, Ukraine, dancing for young boys and girls was viewed as an active sport, just as baseball or basketball in the US. Yura found that he had a natural skill for the sport and has continued to this day. Training in both Latin and Standard, Yura competed in both styles from age seven. Over the course of the next sixteen years, Yura excelled, winning competitions in his native Ukraine, Poland, and Slovakia.
Recognizing that ballroom dance in the United States as been experiencing a growth in popularity over the last decade, Yura made the decision to continue his career here as an instructor. Settling in Memphis, TN at Ultimate Ballroom, Yura set to work with his inborn drive and determination. Learning the additional styles of American Rhythm and Smooth dance, within four months of his arrival he had learned over seventy choreographies over all four styles of dance, to take four students to a national competition. Not only did Yura place as one of the top teachers, his students placed and won in many of their divisions in all four styles of dance.
Yura enjoys the teaching and choreography aspects of dance perhaps the most and looks forward to many years with Ultimate Ballroom sharing and growing the enjoyment and skill of his students. Ultimate Ballroom is excited to welcome Yura to our ballroom family.
Jorja Jolly began discovering her passion for dance over twenty years ago as a “toddler tumbler”. As a young dancer, Jorja had her mother by her side to help guide her along the way. Over the years, she trained in ballet, jazz, tap, and hip hop, attended many conventions and workshops, performed in numerous recitals and shows, and competed in the UDA nationals for 3 consecutive years as a co-captain for her school’s dance team.
In 2006, Jorja set about the wide variety of dance styles that ballroom dancing offered. For seven years she was trained by many different nationally accredited coaches and studied over thirteen different dances in the American style. Between 2008 and 2013, she won medals at regional competitions in Gold, Silver, and Bronze, and was awarded the Top Overall Female Teacher in 2012.
Although Jorja appreciates the beauty and technical aspect of each of the dances, Salsa and West Coast Swing have become two of the most enjoyable for her as she has learned the spontaneity and artistry of social dancing. “The creation of movement to music between two people, sometimes strangers, is a feeling like nothing else. Learning to physically and emotionally connect with and follow another person makes for endless new experiences.”
Jorja is very excited and enthusiastic about being part of the Ultimate Dance Ballroom Studio. She has great experience in teaching all levels, both ladies and men, and all styles.