Alexey Ryazanov

Instructor


Alexey started his dance journey at the young age of eight, and it was such a passion that he studied at the Kyiv National University majoring in acting, dance, and choreography. Originally from the Ukraine, Alexey was a part of a National Formation Team that took 1st place while he was a part of it, then he lit up the TV on the show "So You Think You Can Dance, Ukraine.”  Alexey is always kind and patient with his students.  The all adore how thoughtful he is, and how much he cares about helping them improve their own dancing.  Alexey is a “dancer dancer.” He feels the music deep in his soul, and let’s the music move him.  He also has a great sense of humor, and while he is quiet, he is also one of the funniest guys you will ever meet!

Our Story

Stefan Badea

Instructor


Stefan, originally from Romania, moved to Canada when he was a young child with his parents, where they enrolled him in Ballroom Dance Lessons. Even at a young age Stefan loved the work ethic it took to become a good dancer, and he soon found a dance partner, and they competed on the Canadian amateur dance circuit.  They had quite a successful competitive career where they won the Under 21 Canadian Standard division, and were the Canadian Amateur Adult Standard Vice-Champions.  Stefan has a focus and determination with his own dancing, and that translates to his lessons with his students. They love how he pushes them to be the best dancers they can possibly be, and they work hard to achieve the high expectations he has for each. While he is a technician at heart, Stefan also knows how to incorporate lots of laughter on his lessons which makes striving towards those high expectations fun and enjoyable.

Inspiration
Dancing inspires our creativity. Sway professionals help you develop your creative voice, your sense of passion, your love of glamour, or grit or funk. Give yourself permission to express yourself physically and emotionally in a way you can’t in your daily life.

Connection
​In a world full of social media, dancing with a partner is a real-world, hands-on way to genuinely connect with the people around us. Real human connections bring real human joy. We’d love for you to come share a smile with us!

Whole Body Health
Ballroom dancing today is athletic. We believe the best kind of workout is a fun one, and dancing is great because you’re focused on your moves, not your muscles. Physical intensity naturally develops as you progress in your dancing skill so you’ll always get just what your body is ready for.​

Lisa Cristiani Brown

Instructor / Owner


This globetrotter was introduced to ballroom dancing while living in Hong Kong. Apparently seeing samba after dim sum inspired this well trained gymnast to try it out. Lisa worked with world class coaches and was rocking triple turns while still in middle school. Learning overseas meant that Lisa knew ballroom was cool before ballroom was cool. When Dancing with the Stars hit the screens in the US, Lisa was already dominating the amateur ranks in American Rhythm and Smooth. She was awarded "National Professional Rising Star Smooth Finalist" in 2011. Aside from that, this smarty-pants attended Smith college studying biology and sports medicine. Her brains, her kindness and her dance talents come together as she builds her vision for Sway. Today, her heart is growing three more sizes as she welcomes her third baby to the world. Great job mama!

Lisa@SwayBallroomDance.com

Hanna Weiss

Instructor

Current USA Dance Amateur Champion 


Hanna came out of the womb dancing, as both her parents competed in the Latin division, and both are still very involved coaching, and judging competitions around the country.  She currently competes in the American Smooth division, and recently took first place at the USA Dance Nationals with her dance partner Charles, and won the Pro/Am World Championship in 2018.   Before Hanna started in the Smooth Division she had previously competed in the 10 Dance Division (Standard and Latin). What Hanna enjoys most about dancing is how the music inspires her.  Each style has it’s own unique elements, and she loves playing with different roles/characteristics/personalities that each different dance brings.  When she is not dancing she enjoys other art forms such as painting, drawing, digital arts, and course dress designing.  

About Us

Matthew Brown

Instructor / Owner


Matt’s dancing started at a young age in a not so traditional way. His mom never knew where it would all lead when she signed him up for Folklorico (Mexican folk dancing) class in 5th grade. This California native has been in the business for over 15 years, and he has worn many 'shoes' including being an instructor, a competitor, a choreographer, a manager, and now the big cheese himself – OWNER!  Matt works to synthesize what he has learned from his diverse experiences to build a studio that delivers an amazing experience every time.  He comes from a big, loving family that knows how to take care of each other and put each other first.  While Matt is “Mr. Business” at the studio, deep down, he’s a giant goof ball, who loves hanging out and playing with his four kids.  

Matt@SwayBallroomDance.com

Meet Our Staff

Madalina Varlam

Instructor


Madalina is originally from Romania, and has been dancing since age six.  Her parents moved from Romania to Canada while she was still young where she began Ballroom dancing.  While competing her and her partner won several Canadian titles, including the Alberta Amateur Championships, in 10 Dance, seven times!  Madalina has a strong passion for dance, and that passion translates to her lessons in how she wasn’t her students to be successful happy dancers.  She pushes her students hard while still maker her students laugh and have fun. Her students love how she can be technical while also maintaining an encouraging positive attitude.

Matt and Lisa always dreamed of their own dance studio. After ten years working at various different ballroom studios, each with unique strengths and challenges, Matt and Lisa took the plunge to put their own fresh personal stamp on ballroom dancing.

From the beginning, their mission was about delivering the fun, infectiously happy, positive experiences they knew could be reached through dance. With uplifting personal experience as the primary focus and a solid technical dance background to support it, Matt and Lisa set about creating Sway in 2012.  Since then, they have never let their people-minded vision slip out of focus. They tap into their own fun personalities to connect with students, staff and the local community. When you support Sway, you are supporting a local family business with an earnest vision to bring the positive energy of dance in to our lives and community.

"The instructors are not only fun and friendly, but they are experienced, knowledgeable, and so talented."

-Marilyn J.

Katie Franco

Receptionist


Katie has been with Sway since the beginning and we adore her.  She is most likely the first voice you hear and the first face you see at Sway. Katie is more than just a receptionist. She keeps us all on task with our schedules, from the teachers to the managers, and makes sure we follow through on all the details that we sometimes forget about.  Katie has a gift for making new students feel welcome and comfortable when they first walk in the door.  She always enjoys catching up, and chatting with those who have been around the studio for a while. 
 

Call Us 949.297.3840

Get Started Today! 


Your first private lesson is free​

Joseph Lettig

Instructor

Current United Country Western Dance Council (UCWDC) Division I Southwest Champion


From age six, Joseph started exploring all kinds of athletic skills including baseball, gymnastics, martial arts, salsa and hip-hop.  After studying Business and Marketing at the University of Arizona he decided to pursue his true passion, dance.  After being a former “So You Think You Can Dance” contestant he was introduced to ballroom dancing, and competed in American Rhythm, West Coast Swing and is currently at the top of the Division I Country Western circuit.   Joseph is an instructor who can teach anything.  He truly cares about his student’s success, and puts full effort into helping them accomplish their dance goals.  Whether it’s getting ready for a competition, showcase, or just feeling comfortable at a Friday party, he does whatever he can to help get them to the finish line.​