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Martino Zanibellato

See also: Categories: Instructors, Adjudicator, Dancers, Latin

Hometown: Treviso, Italy
Current location: Aarhus, Denmark
Current status:

Martino Zanibellato is a former Professional Ballroom Dancer, specializing in the International Style Latin, Standard division and 10 Dance. Martino is IDSF World 10 Dance Finalist, WDSF European and World Amateur Latin Finalist, Finalist at the Blackpool Dance Festival, UK Open Championships, Vice Champion at the International Championships, winner of the German Open Championships (GOC) Professional International Style Latin division, [World DanceSport Federation|WDSF]] European and World Professional International Style Latin Champion. Martino is currently a WDSF Licensed Adjudicator and coach of many Danish Champions.


Martino Zanibellato started dancing at the age of twelve. His first experience with dancing was not very good. Martino started and then stopped within a month. His parents were competing in Senior group and they took him to this social dance school but Martino did not enjoy it there because he could not find the traditional Italian dance really interesting. He thought it did not suit him and he could not express himself. But later the same year Martino went to another dance school which did competitive dancing and he liked it much more. It was more kids there and Martino liked the social side of it as well. At that time he was doing many things, like playing piano, doing karate but because of dancing Martino decided to stop that and concentrate on dancing only. Martino only had three partners actually in my dance career. And Michelle is the third one.

Together with his previous partner Elisa Nasato, Martino was representing Italy. During the five years of their partnerships, they have achieved many high results. In 1998 they made a Final at the IDSF World Youth Latin Championships in Nizhniy Novgorod (Russia), Semi-finalist at the Blackpool Dance Festival Under 21 Latin, Finalits British Open in Youth Latin and multiple Finalist at the IDSF International Open.

New Partnership

In 2001 Michelle Abildtrup was traveling to Italy and she went to some dance school to try out with Martino. There was never any doubt in her mind that it would not work because there was a good chemistry between them from the beginning. They could dance together straight away. Of course, they wanted confirmation from their teachers so they had some lessons with Martino's teacher and then Martino came to German Open where they tried again with Michelle's teacher. So they had a confirmation from both sides, but for Martino and Michelle it "clicked" straight away. Their were 20 years old when they started dancing together.

At that time Martino's parents were pushing him a little bit to stop dancing. Because at that time He had to decide if he want to be at the University or continue dancing career. His Mum always thought that being a lawyer is much better and reliable career than a dancer. So Martino went a little bit against what his parents felt. He had support from them anyway but It was good to show them that he made a right decision.

Their first competition was in January 2002 were Martino and Michelle made the Final at the IDSF International Open in France. Week later their became IDSF World 10 Dance Finalist. From 2005 couple decided focus only on International Style Latin.

During twelve years of their competitive career together Martino Zanibellato and Michelle Abildtrup became multiple times Danish Amateur Latin Champions, Finalist at all major competition including European and World Championships as well as all competition series WDSF Grand Slam. Blackpool Dance Festival Finalist, UK Open Championships Finalist, Vice Champion at the International Championships.

Martino Zanibellato and Michelle Abildtrup placed third at the 2012 WDSF European Amateur Latin Championships in Cambrils (Spain) and third at the 2012 WDSF World Amateur Latin Championships in Vienna (Austria).

New Beginning

In 2013 Martino and Michelle decided to turn Professional. Their first competition in new status was UK Open Championship were they become UK Open Professional Rising Star Latin Champions and main the semi-final in main Professional Latin Championships. Month later they became Vice Champions at the WDSF PD European Latin Championship. The same year they won WDSF European and World Cup Latin.

October 12, 2013 Martino Zanibellato and Michelle Abildtrup had become WDSF World Professional Latin Champions in Ostrava (Czech Republic). In 2014 their winning all events their competing in including WDSF Pro Super Grand Prix Latin in Stuttgart (GOC), WDSF European Latin Championships, and 2014 World Latin Championships in Horsens (Denmark) was their last competition.

In 2014 Martino Zanibellato and Michelle Abildtrup got married and in 2017 their son was born. Currently Martino and Michelle are instructors, lectures at the seminars and camps and also Danmarks Sportdanserforbund (DS) National and WDSF license Adjudicators.


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