The NIKA Ballroom and Latin Dance Academy was founded in 1976 in Penza, Russia by professional dancer
and choreographer Elena Zakharova. Starting as a youth dance program it has since developed into a
prestigious and international dance school.
2004 was a big year for NIKA as studios in the United States adopted their program, launching their dancers into
national and world competitions leading them to impressive results of US National finalists and champions, as well as
World Open finalists!
Since then, several of the original NIKA students have become successful professional ballroom and latin coaches and
adjudicators in the United States, Russia and other countries, as well as performers and choreographers for popular TV
shows such as “Dancing with the Stars” in the US and Russia, “America’s Got Talent”, “Oprah” and more.
The NIKA alumni include…
Natalia Kuzieva (Kherson, Ukraine)- International adjudicator, coach and competition organizer
Alexander Muratov and Kseniya Putko (Russia)- Norway and Dutch Open champions. Kseniya is also a professional dancer on “Dancing with the Stars” Russia
Alexander Muratov and Elena Markelova (Russia)- Russian Open champions
Pavel Balykin and Maria Gershenovich (Russia and USA)- multiple US National champions and finalists. Pavel is also World Pro/Am Ballroom Champion
Stepan and Olga Pogorelsky (Samara, Russia)- Russian National Professional Ballroom finalists, coaches, adjudicators and competition organizers
Nathan Murstein and Polina Dickenson (Seattle, Washington- USA)- multiple US National champions and two time Blackpool Junior festival semi-finalists
Gabriel White and Lyubov Morgan (Seattle, Washington, USA) - 2015 US National repretentatives to the World Pre-teen Championships
Scott Nicholson and Evgeniya Gorobets (Seattle, Washington, USA) - 2014 US National representatives to the World under 21 10-dance Championships
Yegor Novikov and Ekaterina Zakharoff (Russia and USA)- US National finalists, US/UK/British Open RS Professional finalists. Ekaterina is also a choreographer and coach, her routines have been showcased on TV’s “Dancing with the Stars” and “America’s Got Talent”
Sergey Nekrasov (Russia and USA)- World Pro/Am Show dance champion w ith student Nina Nikolova
We teach in two beautiful locations: Hayloft Dance Hall in Lynnwood at 15320 35th Ave West and in Kirkland at 6601 132 Ave NE.
Elena and Ekaterina Zakharoff
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