Categories > Pole Experience

Why We Wanted Kira and Evgeny as Guest Instructors

This blog is part two of a series about our time with Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov in July 2019. Here is the link to catch up on part 1, “Connecting Kira and Evgeny with Aradia Fitness Calgary“.

When I was deciding on who to bring to Aradia Fitness Calgary, there were a lot of things I needed to take into consideration. 

  1. What styles were most popular?
  2. What skills did we (the instructors) collectively need or want to work on?
  3. Which pole athletes (those who hadn’t been to Canada before) could bring the most value to students.  

All guest instructors we’ve brought to Calgary in previous years showcase amazing skills and are genuinely unbelievable instructors. However, some athletes seem unattainable because of all the red tape to get them into Canada. I wondered, “Should I take the risk and try to get it done?”. I decided it was worth the extensive hours of work and expense to achieve it. The pole athletes at the top of my list were Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov.

Kira started pole dancing in 2008, with no previous gymnastics or professional dance background, but her passion for pole was instant. After two years of practicing, she started to teach and compete in Russia, Europe, and then globally. In 2015, she partnered with Evgeny Greshilov in doubles competition. In 2017, the two of them started working with the biggest Russian Dance-Circus show at Leningrad Centre as pole artists. Kira now travels most of the year as a performer, judge, and instructor. Her awards include (but are not limited to): Winner of Pole Classic 2016 (Pole Expo), Ultimate Champion at IPC 2015 in doubles (Hong Kong), and Winner of Pole Art Cyprus 2014. 

Although her awards are impressive, what drew me to Kira was her dance ability and musicality. Exotic (Russian style) was something I was currently training in, and she is one of the best in the world. The technical aspects of it are difficult to master and, knowing our students loved this genre; I thought it was a no brainer. This would be a once in a lifetime opportunity for students and instructors to receive some of the best instruction on musicality, lines, pointe work, and seamless movement, melting from one to the next. If she accepted the invitation to Calgary, I knew her workshops would be in high demand.

Evgeny is a world-famous athlete who has changed the vision of male pole dancing. He started his career as a pole athlete in 2010, becoming a Russian triple champion in less than one year. In the spring of 2011, Evgeny won the male category of the Aerial Pole International and, by the fall, achieved the title of World Champion at the World Pole Sport & Fitness Championship in Budapest, Hungary. He became the first Male World Pole Champion in history. He continued to amaze and excite the pole community by becoming a three-time World Pole Champion and a seven-time International Pole Champion (among other achievements). Evgeny is so precise in his instruction that I couldn’t resist bringing them both! He honestly can get anyone into anything. He is that talented. 

Evgeny is also the founder and co-owner of the online school Open Dance Academy. To add to his long list of talents, Evgeny is a pole videographer, and I had followed his work for several years.  

I took a leap and reached out to both Kira and Evgeny, in hopes they would respond to my request and accept the invitation to come to Calgary. Thankfully, the gamble paid off. Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov were coming to Calgary!

Also, a dream of mine was that one day we would have the fortune of having Evgeny shoot and produce a video for us. When we announced the video shoot to our instructors, they were ecstatic! They knew this was a once in a lifetime experience, and we couldn’t contain our excitement.

This was going to be an unforgettable experience! 

Demetra

Kira and Evgeny with their Calgary host Ari the puppy

Kira and Evgeny with their Calgary host Ari the puppy.

Connecting Kira and Evgeny with Aradia Fitness Calgary

Last week, we premiered our studio feature video, and it had me thinking about the experience of the video shoot as well as having our special guests, Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov, at Aradia Fitness Calgary. This is the first part of a series of stories I will share with you about our time with Kira and Evgeny. I hope you enjoy following along!

In the fall of 2018, I found myself thinking about how our studio has grown over the last four years. When I bought the Aradia Fitness Calgary franchise in 2014, we were located in the northwest, but I thought it was time to move to the southwest; to build a studio I had always dreamed of. We started with four instructors and offered a total of 12 classes per week (operating only four days a week). Today, we have grown our team to 11 highly trained instructors, and offer 34 classes per week. I remember how we used to struggle booking pole athletes for workshops, and now, pole athletes contact us directly to come to our studio. We had expanded the business so much, but it made me think, “Should I be thinking even BIGGER?”.

The answer was, “YES!”.

Why couldn’t we take it to the next level? In my heart, I knew we could. It was just a matter of deciding what that meant. I thought long and hard about artists I would love to connect with and bring to Calgary, 

I had long been a follower of both Kira and Evgeny. Kira and Evgeny’s list of accomplishments is beyond lengthy. They both work with the biggest Russian Dance-Circus Show at Leningrad Centre, have won numerous international competitions, and are revered for their work around the world. 

Mesmerized by their talent, I had taken their workshops in the past and had experienced (first hand) their incredible instruction as well. I decided to take a leap and reach out to them. I nervously awaited a response, but I tempered my expectations. Why would they accept (knowing it would be their first time in Canada), and how would I even bring them over? Regardless, I got a response (within two days)! It was a resounding, “YES!”

I couldn’t believe Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov wanted to come to my studio!

The best part? Evgeny is also a pole videographer and photographer. Together with Kira’s help with choreography, I had hoped they would produce a video for Aradia Fitness Calgary. This was going to be BIG!

Check back next week to hear more about our time with Evgeny and Kira!

Demetra

Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov with Demetra Lykidis at Aradia Fitness Calgary

 

p.s. To celebrate the release of our video, and to build our family, our New Aradia Client Special is only $34+gst until October 15th! That gives you two weeks of unlimited classes.

Student Spotlight – Alyssia

At Aradia Fitness Calgary, we celebrate our students. This month, we chose Alyssia for her quiet determination. Stepping out of her comfort zone, Alyssia arrived at our studio, and stuck with it, always smiling, always supporting her fellow students. An artist by trade, she has expanded her skills to include pole and dancing with us and our beautiful community of strong women. Thank you, Alyssia!!!

1. Where are you from? Hometown?

I was born in Newfoundland! My boyfriend and I moved to Calgary a few years ago & I love it here, it’s definitely home to me now.

2.  Favourite pastime (outside of pole, including any other dancing you do)

My pastime outside of pole is work! I run an on online creative business, so spare time is pretty non-existent. I spend my days creating personalized hand bound journals, drinking too much coffee, answering emails & shipping orders. When I am not working on my business or at a pole class I am relaxing at home, sometimes I like to cook.

3.  What do you love most about pole? 

I love everything about pole. I love the physical and mental challenge as well as the confidence it has given me. I especially love the sense of accomplishment I feel after finally figuring out a difficult move!

4.  What is your favourite pole move? What is your favourite class at Aradia? 

I have a few favorites! I love handstands, the superman & the descending angel.

My favorite class is pole 4, it’s challenging!

5.  What keeps you motivated to come to your classes consistently?

I just love the way it makes me feel. It doesn’t matter how busy & stressful my day is going, when I walk into Aradia I instantly feel better. The instructors are so welcoming & the other students are always so nice & encouraging. I am always in a great mood & feel so refreshed when I leave. Plus it’s pretty great to see improvements in my strength & skill with each class, it’s addicting.

6.  When did you first start coming to Aradia Fitness?

I signed up for my first class at Aradia in October 2017. I was immediately impressed with the beautiful studio & talented instructors. I left feeling excited & inspired. It was way outside of my comfort zone, but turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made. I love & look forward to every class.

7.  What surprised you about pole dance and fitness?

It’s hard & it hurts! I am usually bruised all over, but it’s so fun that I don’t mind one bit.

8.  Why should someone join Aradia Fitness Calgary and start pole today?

If you are on the fence about trying pole you just have to go for it!

Pole has added so much joy to my life. Before I began I was worried that I would feel out of place, but that was not the case at all. The community at Aradia is super supportive & you can really see that the instructors truly care about each of their students. I have gained so much strength & confidence, have made new friends & finally have a workout that I actually look forward to.

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