Peter started dancing at Rutgers University during the disco days of the 70’s. He figured out most guys never learn to dance and it would give him a leg up (no pun intended) in meeting cute women if he knew how to do the hustle. He began his professional dance career in 1983 with the Arthur Murray Studio in Wilmington and continued teaching part-time until 2010. He bought Take the Lead in 2015 from Luann D'Agostino who was a student of his before working together at Arthur Murrays.
Debbie started taking lessons with Peter in 1989 after watching the movie, 'Dirty Dancing.' They got engaged after five weeks of dating and have been married since 1990.
In 1993, Peter and Debbie started working with an international marketing company teaching others how build lucrative home based businesses. Just as in the dance industry, this has allowed them to empower and encourage others to pursue personal goals and aspirations. They know that many lessons learned on the dance floor have practical applications personally and professionally.
When the opportunity to take over ownership of Take the Lead, Peter and Debbie knew it was already a great learning environment for every level of dance. It also followed the critical belief they share which is that you can achieve anything you want out of life by helping others get what they want.
Rene & Brona
Rene and Brona have been dancing together for years. They began their careers in the Czech Republic at the tender ages of 8 and 10 respectively. In 1992, they partnered and competed as amateurs in both the International Latin and Standard styles winning titles in Latin, formation team match, and polka divisions. Turning professional in 1997, they soon became seven time Czech National Champions representing the Czech Republic at World and European Championships. In 2002, they immigrated to the United States and began teaching in Philadelphia. Now in Delaware, they teach both International and American styles. Rene and Brona now proudly represent the US in all World Competitions.
Emanuele & Francesca
From Italy, Emanuele and Francesca were trained as International Latin and Standard dancers and look back on an accomplished career, having performed at such illustrious competitions as the Blackpool in England. Now dancing for the US, they continue to compete Nationally and Internationally most recently adding to their success with a US Open 3rd place finish in 10 Dance, US Open 2nd place finish in Classic Showdance, and a stunning 3rd place finish in 2013 WDC World Championship Classic Showdance. Emanuele and Francesca offer coaching in for both social and competitive dancers in both American and International styles.
Currently one of the most sought after salsa / bachata instructor in the industry today. A professional dancer since his teens, Joe has pushed the boundaries of the dance world with his exciting and innovative style of Latin Dance. Joe combined his extensive knowledge of dance and creativity to develop a distinctive style of dance known as “Philly Style ” — an explosive salsa and Bachata style that combines smooth moves with sharp, complicated turn patterns. This unique style has earned Joe the reputation as one of the Worlds Best Leads.
Nick has spent most of his life playing competetive sports. Most recently running Track & Field for Salisbury University where he won multiple titles in the High Jump and helped his school conquer their division three years in a row. He began dancing competitively and teaching in 2009. Even though he competes primarily in International Latin, he is proficient in all styles of Ballroom dancing. Nick has his Bachelors in History and Secondary Education. By fusing his knowledge of education and dancing, Nick brings a unique, fun and well rounded approach to the dance floor.
Kelly began dancing with the UD Ballroom Dance Team in her junior year of college. She regularly
competes and performs with the team, but teaching is her passion. She started teaching with the UD
Team as soon as someone was willing to trust her with a class, and began teaching with Take the Lead
after graduating. She has competed in all four dancesport styles, but specializes in American Smooth and
Rhythm. When she’s not at the studio, she can be found teaching music at the John G. Leach School in
New Castle or salsa dancing at one of the area’s Latin nights.
Taka was born in Japan and grew up in Delaware playing team sports like soccer and basketball. He also enjoyed being a part of his school’s concert band. During his time at the University of Delaware studying Mechanical Engineering, he was exposed to Ballroom and Latin dancing. Taka started his competitive ballroom dancing as a member of the University of Delaware Ballroom Dance Team and soon began teaching many of the team’s public classes. He served as a coach for the UD Ballroom Dance Team for a number of years while also sharing his talent as an Instructor at TTL. He can often be seen performing with his wife, Katie Kubota or TTL students at various events. With his background in music, athletics, and engineering, he hopes to get everyone dancing comfortably and enjoy their time on the dance floor.