Season 13 Mirror Ball Champion Karina Smirnoff has made her mark for the past eight years as one of the featured dancers on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. Her success on the show has made Karina a household name and a sought after beauty, health, fitness, and fashion icon. She has been the most Googled professional dancer on the show.
Karina started competing in ballroom dancing competitions at the age of 11. She is a five-time U.S. Professional Latin Champion, World Trophy Champion, and Asian Open Champion. She has also won multiple titles at the US Open, Asian Open, Dutch Open, and UK Open. She has taken second at Blackpool and she is the first woman to ever make the British Professional Latin Final with three different partners.
Her accomplishments include starring roles in Broadway hit sold-out shows Forever Tango and Burn the Floor and a performance at the 61st annual Primetime Emmy Awards. Karina has hosted segments for E! News, TV Guide, EXTRA, and has appeared in specials on Bravo, ABC, and Lifetime. She has appeared on Good Morning America, The View, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and Hannah Montana, among others. She has also appeared in the films Across Grace Alley and Shall We Dance.
Born and raised in Ukraine. Slavik has had many partners during his Latin career, starting with Joanna Leunis with whom he became World Amateur Latin Champion. His longest and most successful partnership was with Karina Smirnoff. They split in 2005 after winning the Dutch and UK Open Professional Latin Championships and coming in second at Blackpool.
Following his partnership with Karina, Slavik paired with Elena Khvorova. They won second place in the 2006 and 2007 World Championships.
From 2009-2010, Slavik partnered with Anna Melnikova, representing Russia in the international arena. The couple were the subject of a feature documentary "Ballroom Dancer", directed by Christian Holten Bonke & Andreas Koefoed.
Couple's Career Highlights
Together, Slavik and Karina were five-time U.S. Professional Latin Champions, World Trophy Champions and Asian Open Champions. Slavik and Karina also made a joint cameo in the 2004 film Shall We Dance, starring Jennifer Lopez and Richard Gere.