Tina Marie Advances to the 2017 Arthur Murray Championships
Supposedly, luck is when preparation meets opportunity.
But calling Tina Marie's progression to the Arthur Murray All Star Championships lucky would diminish the determination, overlook the self awareness, and completely lose track of the crazy girl who was talking through training scenarios out loud... and to herself.
If you were to see any of those things, you're not seeing luck.
You're seeing an All Star finalist.
What is the AM All Star Competition?
The Arthur Murray All Stars is a skills competition for every level of professional within each location around the world. The goal is to grow, develop, and reveal the professionals that demonstrate the best customer service, communication, problem solving, critical thinking, and teamwork skills. The competition begins in each studio and winners advance to small region, or District, competitions. From there the District winners advance to the large region, or Area, competition. Finally, the Area winners advance to the World Championships in Las Vegas where each Area team tests and one team is pronounced the winner.
More importantly, the real winners are the students of the Arthur Murray Dance Studios as these tests, and accompanying training, help to deliver better communication, teamwork, problem solving, and confidence from every member of the staff.
AML: What's the furthest you've made it in All Stars before now?
TM: I made it to this round once before as teacher. Before it was a group competition!
AML: Congratulations on moving into the finals in Last Vegas. How did you react when the announcement was made?
TM: Like Miss America on crowning night!
AML: How did you feel going into the Semi-Finals?
TM: A little nervous, but mostly excited. I really wanted to perform this year.
AML: What kind of last minute things did you do to prepare?
TM: I paced in the hallways and talked to myself like a weirdo. When that wasn't working, I snuck into the bathroom and talked to the mirror. True story.
AML: How has this process made you a better professional?
TM: All Stars is always a reminder that we can be better. It's also a reminder that you can compete against each other and still root for one another. I love it.
AML: What's you All Star backstory? If you can give a little synopsis of the highs and lows of this competition over the years.
TM: I went to All Stars as a specialist and didn't do well at all. I don't know what happened to me, but by the time I made it to the 3rd round I was having trouble taking myself seriously in that level of competition. I don't think I even knew at the time what was wrong, but I know better now.
The last few years I have spent making it to the district level and then getting beat out by THE JOEY SENA. Every time I felt like I did a pretty good job so I would ask him what he said in the simulations. He would sum it up for me and then I would be like, "Dang. That's good."
My goal was to beat him!
I didn't have the opportunity to beat him this year, but I am overjoyed about the opportunity regardless!
AML: What will it mean to you if the team wins it all this year?
TM: It will mean everything! I want to do my best and contribute to a win!
AML: Who are some people that helped you get to this point?
TM: The real question is who hasn't helped me at one point or another! Shannon was the first person I ever worked under at Arthur Murray, and she is, of course, All Star royalty! She was the first person who trained me in All Stars, and she will still tell me if she thinks I did a good job or not.
Russ has given me more opportunities in growth than I could ever thank him for. He really pushed us to do well this time around. I didn't want to tell him I blew it!
I should also attribute a lot of growth to the staff of the Federal Way studio. When we do our All Star training, or any kind of simulation training really, they really expect me to do it perfectly for them.
They have the highest expectations!
Because they told me that they wanted to be able to say things the way that I did, I had to hold myself to that standard. "They think you're good at this, you need to stay good at this!" (I talk to myself a lot)
AML: Last question: what does this mean to you? What makes it special?
TM: It means that I need to work my butt off to be ready to compete in Vegas! I love a new reason to push myself farther than I've done in the past. Being a part of the Area 6 All Star team is an opportunity that I have wanted for a very long time.
I can't wait to have this new story to tell.
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