4255 Ruffin Rd, Suite 200 - San Diego, CA  92123 - Ph. (858) 571-7401



I've taken dance lessons at Champion for several months, both group and private. Of course the private lessons were better as it was all about me - LOL. My teacher was .... great. So patient, friendly, accomodating and I learned alot from him. I had fun every time I was at the studio. I didn't feel out of place on the dancefloor with other people even when it was our cha cha music playing. There was always plenty of room for everyone in the main ballroom.


I thought I received good value for the money. The teaching is high quality and this place is much more like a professional studio than some other places I've been to. I would highly recommend Champion Ballroom to anyone.

Lisa P.

Calgary, AB - Canada

via yelp.com

Mary Murphy was born in Ohio, and Graduated from the University of Ohio with her degree in Physical Education and a minor in modern dance. Moving to Washington DC introduced her to the great world of ballroom dance when she took a summer job at a local studio. From an invitaiton from her employer at the studio, she attending the United States Ballroom Chapionships in New York City. This was Mary's turning point, and from then on she pursued a new dream in ballroom dancing competition.


During her incredible dance career, the journey brought her to San Diego where she opened Champion Ballroom Academy in April of 1990. With her aspiration to recieve the best training to continue her dancing career, Mary also recognized the need to provide a place, and create a school where the best dance education could be attained. It was also important to her that the culture was one in where all teachers and students alike could feel a sense of comfort and community during their own dance journey as they worked to improve their dancing skills and knowledge.


Eventually Mary retired from her own competitive dancing in 1996, and decided to concentrate all her efforts on the studio. However, Mary's accomplishments during her competitive dance career include:  U.S. National Professional 9-Dance Champion, 1996 United States Ballroom Dance Championships, Austrian National 10-dance and Ballroom Champion, Representatives at the World Championships, and Lifetime Achievement Award, 2007 Heritage Dance Classic.


Since her competive dance retirement, Mary has taken part in many opportunities in the dance and film world. She was a dance double for Julia Roberts in the movie "Something to Talk About" and appeared in "Dance With Me" starring Vanessa L. Williams. Mary also headlined the Broadway ballroom dance show "Burn the Floor"  from December 22, 2009, to January 10, 2010, then returned to the touring cast in September and October 2010. Mary is most notably known and recognized as a permanent judge and choreographer on the hit Fox television seriese "So You Think You Can Dance" where she has endearingly become known as "The Queen of Scream."


Mary also organizes a successful dance competition, the Hollywood Dancesport Championships, and is involved with the Holiday Dance Classic in Las Vegas. She frequently serves as a judge in some of ballroom's most reputable competitions, including the U.S. National Ballroom Championships.


Mary loves ballroom dance and what it does to change people's lives for the better, which is why she created her Chance to Dance program benefitting under priveledged children.


In 2006, Mary partnered with a local San Diego-area school district to offer dancing as a regular part of their curriculum. The goal of the "Chance to Dance" program is to provide children with dance classes, which results in exercise and an exposure to culture and arts; many of these children come from families that can not afford dance lessons. Mary has volunteered her time and dance studio space to train the grammar school teachers in this district, who in turn, teach the children dances such as merengue, foxtrot, and swing in their classrooms. This program is in the process of obtaining non-profit 501(c)(3) status, in order to accept donations and scholarships. For now, the program is serving a segment of San Diego, but the goal aims to help children nation-wide.


"I love being here... the studio is my life, it's so much a part of me - the building of this and making the studio grow. I can't imagine doing anything else."

Wrong password.