ELEGANCE, WORLD CLASS, A NIGHT TO REMEMBER….. by Viktoria Morgan (New Zealand)
WOW the 1st Outside Change Cup was phenomenal. Each competition has a personality of its own and is created by the vision of the organisers. The organizers certainly had big dreams in place and wanted to make it special and different. Jason, Erin and Brent, thank you for bringing glamour back into our world of ballroom dancing. I had just returned from the British Open the week before, after 9 legendary days with our New Zealand/Australian dancers and was on a dancing high.
I was expecting a classy, elegant event and was not disappointed at all. In fact, it exceeded my exceptions. Arriving at the venue and walking in on the red carpet was fabulous. Being welcomed at the door by the organisers at opening was a lovely touch. Champagne on arrival was exciting. You don’t normally get that at a competition!
I was amazed at the elegance and beauty of the “Plaza Ballroom,” inside and out. The judges and VIP tables had wine cover dolls. Each dress designed to the dancer. Anna Longmore’s doll was a yellow Freedom to Dance ballroom dress, Julie Jones had a hot pink fridge Latin number, and of course mine was black lace as I only EVER really wear black. This was so unique and special. We all walked around looking at each other’s dolls having a great laugh along the way. I can’t believe how much time and effort would have gone into these dolls. They were exquisite! The finishing touches really made this event memorable.
The dances were lucky enough to have an experienced panel of judges.
Charlotte Jorgensen (USA)
Luka Fanni (Italy)
John Tan (Singapore)
Doug Pouwhare (New Zealand)
New South Wales – Adele Hyland, Alan Shingler and Brad Dawes
Queensland – Richard Perry
South Australia – Madeleine Zoanetti
Tasmania – Andrew Palmer
Victoria – Anita McGrath, Anna Longmore, Brent Olifent, Don McRobert, Julie Jones, Kerry Clarke, Kym Smith, Lecia Putland, Meagen Alderton and Monica Fincham.
Chairman of Adjudicators was Larry Clarke who kept all of the adjudicators in line during the day and evening sessions.
Laurie and Dianne Peterson were fabulous MC’s and kept the show running very well with not one delay at all, this goes to show you that the programming of events was well put together by the organiser’s.
Dancers travelled from inter-state and overseas. Thank you to the dancers from Singapore, Indonesia and New Zealand that travelled many hours to attend. I am sure they will be back to retain their titles. It was disappointing to hear that a large group from the Philippines could not attend due to visa restrictions but I have heard that they are all hoping to attend in 2017.
Lucas Cheng and Rebecca Lui were the stand out couple of the championship for me. They maybe young but they impressed me big time. Excellent dancing for their age and level, Rebecca was clean and tidy – extended everything, very talented and groomed well. Lucas framed Rebecca well and gave her a great lead. Overall a very talented couple and I look forward to seeing them again.
Jason, Erin and Brent have done an amazing job at creating an inspiring atmosphere for the dancers. They should be very proud of what they have created. Warm hospitality, a convenient venue in the heart of the city. This competition offers all the amenities one would desire for an enjoyable weekend. This is the glamour competition of the year and if you want a ticket for 2017 I would book ASAP!
I feel privileged to be able to report on this event that was run in such an excellent manner. The event was absolutely divine. YAY! Finally, something different, make sure it’s in your dance calendar for 2017 it’s in mine!
THE LECTURES OC CUP 2016.
Laurie Peterson reports
Well what an event this was. The attention to detail by the organisers Jason Beaman & Erin Aspinall, combined with the most wonderful Plaza Ballroom under the Regent Theatre in Collins Street Melbourne set the scene for what will be possibly the most talked about Dancesport event for some time.
The whole occasion started with the international invited adjudicators for the inaugural Outside Change Cup delivering 2 lectures / workshops on Saturday 11th of June. Marshere Ferntree Gully Studio was the home for these lectures . The studio has a great size floor which was needed to accommodate the 120 plus very keen lovers of dance, all waiting to get invaluable information from the lecturers.
The afternoon started with the Latin American. LUKA FANNI was our guest, 5 times Italian Latin Champion and 5 times World Show Dance finalist. Luka is obviously Italian but now resides and coaches in Bali.
After a short introduction he got everyone up and moving with Cha Cha Cha. His intention was to make the action clear and concise. Using time steps and locks he had everyone developing very crisp foot changes and timing of the hip action. He had very mixed group of ages and standards and handled this well also trying to emphasize the accented beats and beat values. His delivery and also humour were well received.
It was great to see professionals, both retired and currently competing as well as amateurs all up and taking part in the workshop. Luca said he was made feel so very welcome and mentioned on more than one occasion that this was the friendliest event he had ever been to.
Following a very brief refreshment break we headed straight into the Ballroom Lecture.
We were privileged to have opportunity to share the knowledge of one of the most amazing lady exponents of our craft. A chance for her to give us some insight into what made her a great competitor, and now a highly respected coach. CHARLOTTE JORGENSEN is a former British and World Champion and is possibly best remembered for her time competing with Andrew Sinkinson. There was a time where they were considered the best Slow Foxtrot dancers the world had seen for a very long time.
Charlotte, like Luka had everyone on their feet and spent some time trying to get everyone to find balance. Balance within the address to each other and also being very aware, and sensitive to your partner and his or her needs. A big part of the lecture was spent trying to get natural posture and shape, not forced and awkward body positions. Her main target was to try and install in all the dancers but particularly the up and coming ones to understand basic figures. For the men to be able to lead a change and for the lady to understand what the signal means. And be able to move your way around the dance floor not just stick to routine. Towards the end of the time some very lucky male dancers and female dancers were fortunate enough to have a swing through a few bars with her. An experience some of them will treasure.
Unfortunately all good things must come to an end. Charlotte and Luca were presented with some Aussie gifts as a small token of thanks and we all headed home to get ready for what was to be a great day and evening the next day at the Outside Change Cup.
If you were not fortunate enough to be at the first you really should think about booking early for the 2nd OUTSIDE CHANGE CUP 2017 . OR YOU MIGHT MISS OUT !!!!!!