— About —
“the one thing that can solve most of our problems is dancing”
HBDT was founded in 1990 by Chris Brengel, Jennifer Gonzalez, Beth Mitchell, and Quan Vu as an undergraduate organization at Harvard College to promote Ballroom and Latin Dancing in the Harvard community and to represent Harvard and collegiate Ballroom to the larger Ballroom community. HBDT aims to further these goals by supporting a competitive International style dance team and encouraging the development of other styles of partnered dance. As a social club, HBDT aims to promote the love of dancing to the Harvard community by regularly providing practices, lessons, social dances, and other special events. Harvard Ballroom Dance Team annually travels to Montreal and New York to compete. The Harvard Ballroom hosts two major collegiate ballroom competitions every year: Harvard Beginners and Harvard Invitational.
Advanced & Intermediate Standard
Anatoli & Irina Gorolevici
Originally from Moldova, Anatoli started dancing at the age of seven. Anatoli’s first ballroom dance competition was when he was only eight years old. He competed in International Latin, International Standard, and Ten Dance Championships. As a child, Anatoli won the Moldavian National Championship in the juvenile and Junior Divisions several times. At the age of 16, Anatoli moved to Italy where he continued to improve his dancing in Napoli, Milano, and Rimini. In 2002 and 2003, Anatoli won the Italian National Championships in Formation Standard. In 2006, Anatoli moved to Boston, MA and currently is competing in Professional International Standard with his partner Irina Gorolevici. Their current coaches are some of the best coaches in the world. Anatoli and Irina are finalists in all the major competitions in the US today. As an instructor, Anatoli enjoys inspiring his student to continually push themselves to be the best dancers they can be.
Advanced and Intermediate Latin
Olga began her training at the age of five as a Rhythmic Gymnast in St. Petersburg, Russia. She graduated from Tufts University with Magna Cum Laude in Biology. Shortly after graduation, she moved to NYC to train intensively in Latin American Dancing. Her awards include:
2001 United Kingdom Open to the World Professional RS Finalist
2003 & 2004 Canadian Professional Vice Champion
2004 World Professional South American Show Dance Finalist
2005 World Pro-Am (instructor) Latin American Champion
2007 US National and North American RS Professional Champion
2007 US Open to the World RS Professional Champion
2008 North American Professional Vice-Champion
2009 National Professional Mambo Champion
—MEet the Exec—
Hi! My name is Alida. I am from New York City, class of 2021, studying Environmental Science and Public Policy focused in Political Economics. I am in Cabot House; shout-out to any Cabot Fish alumni! I currently dance Latin, Rhythm, and Smooth and have been dancing for two years. I have a deep love for dark chocolate and a good samba roll.
Hi! My name is Olga. I have been dancing ballroom for nine years, and I am the current captain of the ballroom team. I grew up in sunny south Florida, and I am a rising sophomore in Winthrop who is planning to concentrate in economics. While I compete mainly in Smooth and Standard, I also take classes in Latin.
Anca is a rising junior hailing from Romania (the East Coast of Europe, as she affectionately calls it) and started dancing with Harvard Ballroom in her sophomore year out of a desire to do a sport and dance in the most time efficient way possible. A Physics and Math concentrator, Anca can sometimes be observed practicing cha cha steps during a long night of p-setting or while she's waiting on experiments at her physics lab. Aside from ballroom dancing, she enjoys card games, nerdy jokes and bad karaoke.
Hi! My name is Rose. I’m a rising senior concentrating in physics. I dance all four styles and also enjoy long walks on the beach and scramble hikes. I am also in the Mountaineering and Outing club, and I look forward to seeing you all in the fall!
Chief Operations Officer
Hey everyone! I'm a junior in Kirkland house studying Applied Math, and am excited to be serving as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the team this year. I joined ballroom my sophomore year and currently dance Latin and Standard. I usually use the fact that I dance ballroom as my fun fact so now I'm a little at a loss as to what else about me is actually interesting…
Mark Theodore Meneses
Mark is from New York. He’s a member of the College Class of 2021. He studies bioengineering and is a proud member of Pforzheimer House. Currently, Mark dances Smooth, Rhythm, Latin, Standard. Fun fact: he used to raise spiders in matchboxes.
Chief Financial Officer
William is a Standard dancer of the Class of 2020, who is pursuing AB/SM in Computer Science. A member of Adams House, William hails from Boston. He is currently a member of CrimsonEMS, and interned at Facebook last summer.
Assistant Chief Financial Officer
Hi, everyone. My name is Jenny Zheng and I'm from Livingston New Jersey. At Harvard, I'm a 3rd year graduate student studying Molecular biology. I recently joined the Harvard Ballroom Dance Team and became the Assistant Financial Chief Officer. I dance all the styles and can’t get enough! Before ballroom, I fenced, and so I hope to soon be a graceful swordswoman.
Veronika Melnik & Ray Salazar
Veronika hails from Dedham, MA, and Ray is from Quincy, MA. Veronika is a member of the College Class of ‘21, and is a member of Kirkland House studying Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology. Ray is a non-undergraduate who joined the team in 2014. Veronika and Ray dance Latin and Standard together. Fun facts: Veronika was born in Ukraine and Ray in the Philippines. They love Ramen and waffles.
Assistant Rookie Captain & Media Manager
I’m a rising sophomore at Harvard studying English and Theater, Dance, and Media. My house is Pforzheimer House, and I am from right outside of Nashville, TN. I dance all four styles of ballroom, and when I’m not doing Paso Doble everywhere I go, you can find me singing with the Radcliffe Choral Society, acting in student productions across campus, giving historical tours of the university, or serving as a Peer-Advising-Fellow to the incoming first-years!