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Inventive Dance Competition Ė Sunday 19th March 2006


Itís quite some time since I wrote one of these Competition Reports and, even more to the point, quite some time since I was at any of the Inventive competitions. It was really good to see old friends again, competitors and spectators alike.

This venue, the Hermitage Leisure Centre at Whitwick, is now being used as the location for quite a few of these competitions. It is well located just north west of Leicester, has all the facilities we have come to expect and is bright and quite modern. One bonus was the fact that it was easy to walk around inside the hall, by way of the space available at the back of the seating. This meant we could all get to visit other tables in order to chat to friends, also that people didnít have to walk across the floor in order to leave the room.

Just before the competition started, the main compere for the day (Jean Johnson) announced some general dancing which began with the Blueberry Swing. On this point, I never will understand why any inventors present at competitions are not invited to lead off their own winning dances! Iím sure spectators would like to see this done. Many popular dances were included in the general dancing throughout the day, including the Mayfair Quickstep for any who were more comfortable with one of the evergreens.

At 10 am, right on time, the adjudicators were introduced (their names are shown at the top of the Entries/Results listing) and the Main Event was underway. Commencing with the Classical section, there were 28 entries. The short straw for Ďfirst on the floorí today was drawn by David Belshaw & Karen Kelly. The dances were all demonstrated which led to another round of 18 being recalled. Shortly afterwards we had the semi-final, with 9 dances being shown again. Of course, speculation was strong on who was likely to get through to the Final round. With pens poised, we all prepared for the numbers to be announced. Having ticked our sheets we watched 5 dances being again demonstrated for final judgement Ė giving a win for Kevin Page & Valerie Laws with their Bagdale Blues. Well done, Kevin and Valerie.

Next was the Standard (Modern) section. Another good number of entries with 26 dances being shown (only 2 were quicksteps) reducing to 19 which were recalled to be danced again. These included some excellent dances but, sad though it is, not everyone can be successful. 11 went further, to the semi-final. Never easy to predict who will make it through, those to be invited to the Final round again numbered just 5 dances. A good result was the Mahonia Foxtrot from Ian & Sue Webster, later very well taught by Ian. Congratulations to Ian and Sue.

The organisers did well by allowing a good amount of time for a lunch break; I know of two couples who actually took advantage of being in the Leisure Centre and they went for a swim during the break.

Back to the competition with just the Latin section still to be danced. We had 15 entries (with 9 rumbas!) from which 10 dances were recalled to an immediate semi-final. Straight on to the Final round, once again with a selection of 5. Some excellent dances here with big audience approval for the winning dance, from Beverley Murch-Fowkes and Edwin Vickers who gave us their Rufford Rumba.

I do usually try to get some information from inventors on the reason for their choice of dance names. This time, Iíve asked Beverley "Why the Rufford rumba"? It seems that when she goes to meet up with Edwin to practice for the comps, she passes Rufford Park (there is also Rufford Abbey) and they always liked the name so decided to link it to their rumba. Then the Bagdale Blues, which is named after Bagdale Hall and that is in Whitby, which is where Kevin and Valerie are located. The name for their Mahonia Foxtrot is in a similar category to Ian & Sueís other dances, and itís the name of a flowering shrub (we have one in our garden).

With a long drive home ahead of us we left before the teaching of the Rumba. I understand there was some delay in issuing the script because of a problem with the photocopier (or printer). Well, apart from some hiccups with playing of CDs in the earlier rounds and a few rather strange announcements of names, there really wasnít much to criticise about todayís competition. Some excellent dances were entered and that brings me nicely to the point where I give my own choice of Worthy Mentions: without including those from Ray, and of course Iím rather biased in his favour but who would blame me. In the Classical section I really liked the Tango from Rita & David Harrod - they did dance so well today and it was good to see them in a Final; from the Standard (Modern) group I would mention the Quickstep from Jim & Hazel Wake who do invent good quicksteps; lastly, the Latin: apart from Rayís Calypso (sorry!) Steven & Helen danced a very nice Rumba. Those are my own choices but it would be interesting to know, perhaps via the Forum, which dances would be your Worthy Mentions.

Well, we are now well into the new dances for this year. Weíve had the first 8 which leaves just 36 more yet to come. Iíll look forward to the next competition and that will be the Easter Festival at Southport. See you there.

Happy Dancing!

Bridget (Fenton-Storey)


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