Oliver Pineda
Oliver PinedaFounder & Director

Oliver Pineda is the Founder and Director of world reknown Latin Motion Dance Academy, founded by Oliver Pineda & Natalie Zeller (formally Reis) in the year 2000. As Australia’s only 8 times World Salsa Champion, Oliver has won five of his World Salsa Titles with celebrity dance partner of 20 years & three times winner of “Dancing with the Stars” Luda Kroitor & continues to inspire by performing & winning championships till today.

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As well as his very own subscription website www.oliverpineda.dance; housing over 300 videos with new uploads every month plus his NEW International initiative; The Oliver Pineda TOP Teams, allowing dancers worldwide to learn, train & perform under his extensive choreographic guidance & experience, Oliver is also responsible for introducing Rueda in 1999 & Kizomba & Semba in 2007 to Sydney, was one of the instigators of linear style Salsa in the year 2000 & is now undoubtedly the pioneer of Mambo ‘On2’ in Australia.

Oliver was most recently featured in an article as one of the top 10 male Salsa dancers in the world & now directs Latin Motion alongside his wife Anastasia Drimousis.

Some of Oliver’s achievements include but are not limited to –

2001 IDO World Salsa Champion – Miami (with Luda Kroitor)
2005 World Salsa Open Champion – Puerto Rico (with Luda Kroitor)
2005 ESPN World Salsa Champion – Las Vegas (with Luda Kroitor
2006 ESPN World Salsa Champion – Las Vegas (with Luda Kroitor)
2007 ESPN World Salsa Champion – Miami (with Luda Kroitor)
2012 World Salsa Champion – Hong Kong (with Vali Damaskou)
2014 World Salsa Champion – Hong Kong (Solo)
2015 World Salsa Summit Champion – Miami (Solo)

As well as being a special guest performer/choreographer on Channel 7’s ‘Dancing with the Stars’ demonstrating Salsa, Oliver was also a choreographer for Channel 10’s hit TV show “So You Think You Can Dance” & featured numerous times on the Morning Show with Kerrie Anne.

Born in Australia and of Chilean descent, this young man started dancing Salsa at the young age of 10. Having danced for over 20 years, Oliver is now Australia’s most undisputed Latin Dance talent. His unique style of dance and clear precise teaching methods make him one of the most admired and sought after Salsa dancers and instructors in the world. Due to this fact, Oliver has taught workshops in every continent at thousands of events around the world and continues to travel spreading his passion & knowledge for dance.

Upon finishing high school, Oliver received a scholarship to train in London with partner Luda in preperation for the Biggest Dancesport Competition in the world, the famous Blackpool Championship where in the under 21 Youth division, against 600 + couples, Oliver & Luda placed in the top 98 of the World.

Oliver was then granted a scholarship to attend the Australian Collage of Physical Education (ACPE) to complete a Bachelors of Dance degree.

Instead, Oliver with his 7 years of training in Dancesport chose to pursue the music and dance of his Latin American roots; Salsa. A decision that would forever change his life.

Although passionate about Salsa and Mambo, Oliver’s dance experience also extends to Rueda, Merengue, Zouk Lambada, Kizomba, Semba, Samba, Cumbia, Cha Cha, Rumba, Afro Cuban, & all the Latin / Modern Dacesport Ballroom styles such as Jive, Paso Doble, Waltz, Slow Foxtrot, Tango, Venice Waltz & Quick Step.

Oliver, a well known percussionist owes his musical talents to his two cousins Jason & Gary & father Julio, all well known percussionsist in the industry. Having played at the recently closed Vivaz Nightclub since the age of 16 & La Campana Nightclub since the age of 18 in Sydney, Oliver now occassionally plays with some of Sydney’s top Salsa bands, mastering the timbales, congas and bongo amongst other percussive instruments. His early performance experience within the Brazilian culture has also enabled him to handle Brazilian style instruments such as the snare drum, zurdo, pandero and the hepinique. Oliver now gets invited on stage to play with some of the world’s best singers & bands in countries & events all over the world.

As well as his musical & dance talents, Oliver is also a black belt martial artistist in the combat art of Tae Kwon Do having taught kids from a young age & competed in many tournaments in Australia. This relationship between martial arts & dance was formed early on in his life, also equipping him with an understanding of the basics of the Brazilian martial arts, Capoeira.

Oliver was given the honour of being Australia’s first Male dancer ever to be featured on the cover of Australia’s VIVA Magazine in it’s December issue 2004 & in January 2008 issue with partner Luda. Oliver was also given the Best Male Instructor Award at the biggest Salsa Congress in the world, the 2006 West Coast Salsa Congress in Los Angeles. Further more, it was Oliver (and Natalie Reis) who lead the “Americas” segment out onto the field in the Olympic Opening Ceremony in Sydney 2000.

Oliver now heads one of the highest calibre student performance groups in Australia, the ‘The Oliver Pineda TOP Teams’ an International Initiative allowing dancers from ALL over the World to followed & admired by dancers all over the world & is proud to be the creator of his own brand of Salsa, internationally known as ‘Aussie Style Salsa’.

Oliver continues to spread his incredibly profound knowledge & unique, sought after teaching style to dancers around the world & is now in the process of expandidng Latin Motion, locally & internationally with franchises already in the works.

Mitch Bilic
Mitch BilicPrincipal dancer & Director

Mitch began his journey of dance through his teenage years learning jazz, tap, hip hop, drama and singing through Keane Kids Studios in Sydney. After
a break for a number of years from dancing he returned to dance in 2005, taking up Street Latin , after a football injury, to rehabilitate his knee,
and has never looked back since.

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He found his love for Latin dance, like many, on the social dance floor. After beginning with Cuban salsa for a year and a half then moving to LA
salsa, Mitch later teamed up with Ellicia in 2009, forming a partnership that would lead them to achieving many successes both Internationally and
Nationally including-

– 2013 World Bachata Champions
– 2015 World Salsa Solo Professional Bachata Champions
– 2015 Australian Latin Dance Championships Bachata Professional Champions
– 2014 4th Place World Bachata Masters (Spain)
– 2014 2nd Place World Championships Hong Kong
– 2013 5th place World Dancesport Games (Taiwan)
– 2x Australian Salsa Champions (2012/13)
– 2012 New Zealand Latin Dancesport Championps

Mitch has also achieved:

– 2014 Australian Salsa Shines Teams champion
– 2014 World Latin Dance Cup 2nd place Salsa Proam

His impressive resume includes working for well-known production companies such as Latin Dance Australia, Australian Opera, WB Productions, Di Heaton Dancers, Sydney Dance Company, Rapid Loss, Cheeky Entertainment, Modus Vivendi, Seven Flavors and more.

Mitch and Ellicia travel frequently both nationally and internationally as guest instructors and performers at many Latin Congresses and Events around
the world. Countries including England, Spain, Germany, Austria, Holland, Wales, New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia and throughout
Australia.

Mitch is known for his fun, energetic and charismatic personality both on the dance floor as well as in the classes he teaches and with his
mesmerising performances he continues to inspire people across the world.

Ellicia McDonald
Ellicia McDonaldPrincipal dancer & Director

Ellicia comes from a dance background that started as soon as she could walk, having trained in ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary from 4 years old,
with the main focus being ballet, completing her RAD Advanced Ballet Exam, a course that takes a minimum 11 years to complete.

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Having successfully won places to join many of Australia’s leading ballet academies, including the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts
(WAAPA), at 17 years old Ellicia chose instead to start her professional dance career with a 5 month cabaret contract in Japan. Since this time
Ellicia has not looked back, performing and modelling for stage, TV, and film throughout the world.

Her impressive resume includes working for well-known production companies such as Di Heaton Dancers, Carnival Cruise Lines, WB Productions, G’day Hollywood Productions, Dance Encore, Sydney Dance Company Entertainment; TV commercials for Nokia, Compaq, Dominoes Pizza, Haier AC, Berger Paints, Onida TV, Rapid Loss, and Boombox; Run way shows for United Colours of Beneton, Puma, Daks London, Levis, and many Australian and international designers.

Ellicia fell in love with Street Latin in 2009, and with her highly trained background she quickly added the Street Latin styles to her professional
repertoire. Ellicia teaches for Latin Dance Australia, one of the most successful Australian Latin schools.

Ellicia along with her partner Mitch have already achieved impressive credentials in such a short span of time:

– 2013 WORLD BACHATA CHAMPIONS
– 2015 Australian Bachata Champions- ALDC
– 2015 Australian Bachata Champions- World Salsa Solo
– 2014 4th PlaceWorld Bachata Masters Spain
– 2014 2nd Place World Bachata Championships Hong Kong
– 2013 5th Place World Dancesport Games Taiwan
– 2013/2012 2 x Australian Salsa Champions
– 2012 New Zealand Latin Dancesport Champions.

Mitch and Ellicia travel frequently both nationally and internationally as guest instructors and performers at many Latin Congresses and Events,
including countries as England, Spain, Germany, Austria, Holland, Wales, New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Taiwan and throughout
Australia.

Ellicia is known for her exquisite technique, her elegant styling and her impressive flexibility. Ellicia loves to be able to transfer to others all
she has learnt and be able to share with those the skills they need to become the best dancer they can be.

Luda (Kroitor) Wilson
Luda (Kroitor) WilsonPrincipal dancer & Director

Luda Kroitor is the current 5 times World Salsa Champion with dance partner Oliver Pineda. They are the winners of the 2001 IDO World Salsa Championships, 2005 Puerto Rican Salsa Open, 2005, 2006 ESPN World Salsa Championships held in Las Vegas and most recently the 2007 ESPN World Salsa Championships held in Disney World, Florida. Adding to her achievements has also been representing Australia teaching and performing in various World Salsa Tours covering many countries throughout Europe, the Americas and Asia.

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Luda has also been confirmed as special guest choreographers for the Channel 10 TV hit show ‘So You Think You Can Dance’.

Of Russian origin, Luda began her passion for ballroom, salsa and Brazilian dance at 11 and she won her first national competition, the Youth Latin Championships in 2000. Since then she has competed at many national & international ballroom competitions including one of the Worlds biggest & most prestigious ballroom competitions ‘Blackpool’ placing 8th in the World against 600 other couples. After that she toured the United States with the international show Burn the Floor and featured in NSW Tourism TVC campaign as a dancer with Csaba Szirmai. Luda also won the TV series Strictly Dancing with Csaba in 2004.

Currently, Luda performs with Australia’s Most Successful Dance Academy, Latin Motion Dance Academy in various dance show productions at suburban clubs and appears at a variety of corporate events.

Throughout Dancing with the Stars Series, Luda has partnered Home and Away actor Jason Smith in series two, singer David Campbell in series three, boxing champion legend Kostya Tszyu in series four which saw them make the finals as runners up and comedian Anh Do in the last series which also saw them make the finals as runners up.

Luda with her infectious personality, love for life & dance skills are invaluable to Latin Motion and its students and has been since joining Latin Motion in 2001.

Anastasia (Drimousis) Pineda
Anastasia (Drimousis) PinedaDirector

Anastasia Pineda is one of the directors of this warm, fun & welcoming home we call, Latin Motion Dance Academy. Having joined Latin Motion as a beginner Salsa 1 student back in 2011, she started teaching in 2013, and directing alongside her now husband Oliver Pineda.

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As well her passion for all things dance, she’s also a qualified Nutritionist having graduated from the University of NSW.

Anastasia is also in charge of running the administration of Latin Motion so don’t hesitate to contact her with any of your enquiries.

Our LM Academy Instructors

Celine Quentrec
Celine Quentrec
Celine first turned to Pilates 6 years ago to solve her ongoing lower back
pain. Amazed by how much stronger and flexible Pilates made her feel, she
decided to turn to teaching to share all the benefits of Pilates with her
future clients. She loves seeing the positive change a regular and mindful
practice brings to people’s daily life.
Latin dancing is also one of Celine’s passions. She can’t wait to start
showing you how Pilates can truly help by acquiring better body awareness,
posture, strength and above all spine mobility. As Joseph Pilates used to
say “If your spine is inflexibly stiff at 30, you are old. If it is
completely flexible at 60, you are young.”

Our Senior Instructors

Tiff Burch
Tiff Burch
Tiff has been Dancing both Salsa and Bachata for four years now. During that time she has taken home 4 National Titles including Australian Salsa Pro/Am Champion, Australian Bachata Pro/Am Champion X2, and Australia Salsa Open Ladies Duo. Champion. She represented Australia at the World Latin Dance Cup in December 2015 placing 2nd in the Final of the Bachata Pro/am division.
Tiff is looking forward to sharing her knowledge that she’s worked so hard to gain and help others discover their love for Salsa and Bachata the way she did.
Christine Rymer
Christine Rymer
Christine Rymer originally from the Central Coast started with a background in jazz, hip hop and contemporary, it was in 2008 that she started salsa lessons and from then on fell in love with Latin Dance. After hearing about and seeing videos of the highly recognised “Mr 8 times” world salsa champion Mr Oliver Pineda, she then started attending classes at Latin Motion Dance Academy in 2010.

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From then on, she has competed and performed at many events over the years and after driving back and forth from the coast for 4 years to train at LM she decided to make her move to Sydney this year. She has recently won the Australian Salsa Open Semi Pro Salsa Couples division with partner Brandon Nunez and also the Australian Salsa Open Teams Champions with the Motion Couture Protégé for 2014.

Christine teaches levels 1,2,5 & 6 and is also available for private lessons in salsa. With her bubbly personality you will be sure to hear her spreading the fun in class with smiles and laughter, please feel free to contact Christine for any questions you may have via info@latinmotion.com.au 🙂

Bertrand Loyeung
Bertrand Loyeung
Bertrand Loyeung grew up in the beautiful island of Mauritius and has been exposed to the local dance/music ‘sega’ since he was a child. Formerly a sugar engineer, Bertrand moved to Sydney 11 years ago to study Traditional Chinese medicine and is now working as a lecturer and acupuncturist.

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Bertrand started his 1st salsa class only 3 years ago at Latin Motion and he is proud to be a 100% Latin Motion product. After 6 months at LM, he joined the academy and from then on, everything went very fast – competing at the Australian Salsa Open in 2012 and 2013 and performing at different venues in Sydney.

Bertrand was given the chance to teach salsa at LM in 2012 and since then he never looked back. Teaching is his passion and he loves to see his students having a good time on the dance floor.

Gareth Martin
Gareth Martin
Bio coming..
Cynthia Yang
Cynthia Yang
Since Cynthia Yang became an instructor at Latin Motion in 2013, she has taught levels 1-6 and offers private lessons. Cynthia not only breaks down body movements and patterns but also helps you to understand the biomechanics of why and how certain positions will make you look nicer, dance smoother and of course, have more fun She is also fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese.

Cynthia competes semi-professionally, currently third in female Salsa soloist and partnered teams (Australian Salsa Open, 2014). She also performs at Darling Harbour Fiesta, Sydney Latin Festival, Salsa Palladium and other events. Outside class, you can find her social dancing at her favourite venues – Monday Bar 100 (Graeme Haney) and Mambo underground (Becky Lee).

A Salsa addict at night and medical student by day, Cynthia believes that people from all walks of life can enjoy salsa and self-expression! For inquiries for private lessons with Cynthia, please email info@latinmotion.com.au

Tallulah Bur
Tallulah Bur
Tallulah started dancing at the age of 4 in a range of styles including classical ballet, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, tap and musical theatre. She has a strong classical foundation having received distinction in all RAD ballet exams up to Advanced 2, has competed at national level, winning classical ballet Championships, and was also given a scholarship to participate in the English National Ballet’s summer school program. Tallulah began her Latin dance journey 5 years when she fell in love with salsa. She has since continued training her Latin and contemporary dance, working on film sets in both styles but her heart remains on the social dance floor!
Magda Ognicka
Magda Ognicka
Magda started dancing at the age of 5 when she was attending music school and had musicality classes in Warsaw. A year later she was introduce to ballroom and carried it on for a few years. It was quite tough as all the girls suffered from dance partner deficit. That’s when she switched to sport and show dancing. She was trained in jazz and ballet techniques, and has experience in other styles like: contemporary, cabaret, hip hop and even cheerleading.

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By the age of 17 she was introduced to salsa by her cousin, Kaja who is also a dance instructor. It quickly gained a permanent spot in her heart. She was associated with major Warsaw salsa schools.

Magda moved to London at the age of 20 and she took her passion for Salsa with her. She had the pleasure of learning Salsa from Super Mario and attending his Salsa parties.

In 2014 Magda moved to Sydney. A new beginning and a fresh start. One of her goals was to get back into dancing and choosing Latin Motion Salsa school with 7x World Champion, Mr Oliver Pineda was the obvious choice to make.

Magda really loves teaching and sharing her passion for dancing and enjoys the experience of interacting with students.

Magda pays lots of attention to ladies styling. So ladies if you want to get some inspiration and learn some tips please get in touch or come to her classes.

Brad Taylor
Brad Taylor
Brad Taylor was invited to a Salsa class at Latin Motion years ago in ’06, and attended a 4 week course only (but loved it), however it was not until 4 years later – bored, unmotivated about life and overworked with his business, that (after still receiving The Monthly Latin Motion Newsletter) that he joined a salsa class again.

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This time he was hooked and Dancing in a way saved Brad from the not happy place that he had been. He attended Bachata classes and he was hooked again…however it was ZOUK that hooked Brad even more than the other styles.

Brad remained with Latin Motion ever since and attended every Zouk class he could including at 3 other Sydney Schools at the same time and attended every workshop and every party including interstate classes and Zouk congresses, he did 6 choreographies. Brad attended 2 separate invite only high level classes as well as a Zouk teaching program and classes with international Zouk stars and fast tracked his learning and social dancing .

Oliver “8 times” then invited Brad to become a zouk teacher at LM.

” I love teaching – Dancing brightened my world and I am happy to help dancing brighten yours “

Brad can be contacted on info@latinmotion.com.au for privates.

Arnold Ganz
Arnold Ganz
Coming from a beautiful tropical island called CEBU in the Philippines, Arnold Ganz has always been “feeling” the music. Spending most of his time strumming the guitar and singing from the soul so it’s no surprise that his body surrendered to the “emoción” of Latin vibe.

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Arnold started learning, performing, competing and teaching in Aotearoa, New Zealand back 2009. From
March 2013, Arnold packed his life and crossed the ditch for a new chapter. After settling in, he finally joined Oliver Pineda’s team at Latin Motion Academy last December 2013 and went straight embracing the challenges.

Arnold is very passionate mentoring students, often times extending his time to share and inspire students on their path. Whenever by chance, please ask for a dance and he’ll be happy to take you in the journey.

“Those who dance are considered insane by those who cannot hear the music”