It’s Official

The official launch party of the new purpose designed Duesbury Aldred Dance Centre Studio took place yesterday and over sixty dancers and well wishers attended to view the new premises and celebrate its opening. The venture has been some eighteen months in the planning and building and we look forward to taking up residence soon after the summer break.

Guest of honour was of course Boris who performed the official opening ceremony alongside Louise and Robert. He was quoted as saying “it’s been hard work over the last few months pulling in the building work and supervising the team of builder bears alongside my regular duties but it’s all been worthwhile in the end”

We look forward to getting up and running in the near future-who will be the first to quickstep over the threshold?

Final ISTD Qualifier

It was a day filled with top sporting action elsewhere but where would you find our team of dedicated dancers? At a dance competition of course. Hardly having had time to catch breath after Blackpool we were once again in action at the last Northern Area ISTD qualifier in Castleford. 

Whilst most of our dancers had already qualified there were a few with some work to do and for the others it was a good opportunity to gain some valuable “match practice”. The team was a little reduced today but nevertheless we still had a good showing. Grace S was our only representative today in the children’s section but upheld the reputation of the school by making the final of her ballroom, Latin and sequence events finishing with two second places and a 6th respectively a great result.

It was then the turn of the adults, starting with the sequence events and these always attract the largest entries, since there are no grade splits. All danced well particularly those who were partnering each other, as well as competing themselves. In the under 35 years section  Grace P, Olivia and Josh all made the final finishing first, third and fourth. As did Carla, Dawn, Dennis and Sue in the over 50 years section, filling second to fifth places in that order. The over 35 years section was a straight final, of seven dancers, with Paul, Karen, Neil and Chris taking the first four place again in that order.

Next followed the ballroom and Latin events and there were wins today for Rosalind, Grace P, Josh, Chris, Paul and Hazel in both ballroom and Latin. Also winning today were Olivia, Neil  and Carla in the ballroom and Debbie and Karen in the Latin. In the couples events there were wins for Craig & Olivia, Chris & Rosalind, Josh & Grace, Neil & Carla  and Paul & Karen. A good day all round then and plenty to be pleased about but, as always more work to be done before Blackpool.

A big thank you to Grace P, Josh and Olivia for stepping up to partner, alongside competing themselves, in the absence of our regular partnering team. Also to those who partnered each other: Josh & Grace, Dennis & Sue and Craig & Emily

It has been a busy few months as always and everyone has worked hard especially Boris who will soon be leaving for Bearmuda once again for his Summer break. He is looking forward to recharging the batteries before returning fully refreshed for the Autumn term when we get straight back into things with our sequence competition at Chesterfield on September 1st. If you wish to come along and support and join in the evening social dance then please let us know.

We then have a new event to attend on September 22nd which will be a medallist competition and will be a good opportunity for more match practice before the run up to the ISTD Blackpool event in November.

Have a good Summer break and we will see you fully refreshed in September.

To The Tower!

It was early Saturday morning when we set off from our hotel to the world famous Tower Ballroom, Blackpool for the start of the NATD Medallist of the Year event. This was the first time we had supported this event and so were uncertain what to expect. We also had a number of competitors who had not done anything like this before and were experiencing the thrill and trepidation of dancing at Blackpool for the first time in a national competition. There were also a number who were dancing as part of Team Duesbury Aldred for the first time at such an event. Well done to those first timers for not only surviving the experience but also dancing very well.

There were dancers form all over the country as well as a group from Malta and it was apparent from the start that it was not going to be easy. Not only were there around 1,000 competitors overall but some events, especially for the juveniles, had over 50 entrants. It was also apparent that there were also a good many experienced competitors across all ages and grades and the overall standard was going to be high.

Nevertheless all of our juveniles received at least one recall with most having two or more. Olivia Rose had two recalls with her waltz and Phoebe had four recalls with her Samba but missed out on the semi final. Tabatha, Connie and Sophie (all first timers) had a number of recalls and April and Ellie made a semi final. Lewie, Kaitlyn and Brooke all made the semi finals of both their ballroom and Latin events but Chloe was our first finalist in her ballroom event finishing fifth a feat she repeated the following day in her Latin event being placed fourth.

The juniors then took up the gauntlet and whilst we only had four in action we were not lacking in experience. Isobel and Paige both made the final of their ballroom event, Isobel being placed fifth and Paige having the distinction of being our first winner of the weekend in the same event. Paige also backed this up with a fifth place the following day in the Latin. Jack came second in his ballroom and third in his Latin event. Unfortunately Fearn did not get any recalls but it was her first experience of this type of event. She danced well and only recently moving to this age group was dancing with many older and more experienced competitors. In the junior couples events, Jack finished third in the Tango dancing with Paige and then on the Sunday was placed fifth in the Rumba dancing with Isobel.

The baton then passed to our adult competitors who had a hard act to follow. They had their Latin events on the Saturday evening and once again they delivered some excellent performances and results especially those who were first timers. Into the finals this evening were Charlotte B, Craig, Sian, John, Chris, Neil, Karen, Xingye, Carol, Peter, Serena, Carla, Allison, Andy and Rosalind with Paul becoming our second winner of the day.

The couples events followed and there were a number of new partnerships formed who did exceptionally well considering the short time they had had to practise. Into at least one, and in many cases, both of their finals were Chris & Serena, Paul & Karen, Neil & Carla, Alison & Kathryn, Andy & Dawn, Rosalind & Allison, Hazel & Debbie and Dennis & Sue. Wins were recorded by Craig & Charlotte B and Peter & Carol.

 It had been a long day, having spend over 17 hours in the ballroom and we still had another day to go! The adults were in action once again on the Sunday evening with their ballroom events this time and managed to surpass the performances of the previous day. All of our Latin finalists once again reached their ballroom finals with the addition of Dawn who also made her final today. However; Craig, Sian, Chris, Carol, Serena, Allison and Andy all exceeded their results from Saturday by winning their events, a great achievement and well done to you all.

Further success was to come in the couples events with final placings for Craig & Karly, Neil & Carla, Rosalind & Allison, Hazel & Debbie and Dennis & Sue. In addition, winning one of their couples events were Chris & Serena, Peter & Carol and Andy & Dawn.

Boris and the bear supporters club were very excited by all the success but also enjoyed seeing some of the newer team members performing for the first time and doing so well. They were particularly pleased to have a table to sit on where they could get a better view of all the action although Arabella was a little distressed to be left to fend for herself on Saturday night!

We finally came to the end of a very long but enjoyable weekend and we are very proud of all your achievements whether that was getting a recall, making a final or winning. Well done for all your hard work and dedication.

Of course we must thank our dedicated team of partners and teachers; Luke, Ruth and Liam who help make it all possible and the excellent support all our dancers receive from family and friends.

Well done to all involved,  you were amazing.