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The Dance Review - Anne Gleave reports on the 2024 British Open Amateur Ballroom Championship

The final of the British Open Amateur Ballroom Championship was one of my favourite finals of the week! This was very closely fought and I am sure placing these couples was like splitting the atom! Well done to all competitors who entered this competition and please know each and every one of you are special and unique.

Glenn Richard Boyce and Caroly Janes lifted the magnificent British Open Amateur Ballroom Trophy for the second time in triumphant style. Experience, confidence and some beautiful dancing secured their dominance over the field. They continue to improve their motion qualities, musical expression and technical qualities, such as the wonderful foot articulation from Caroly. They are excellent young ambassadors for Ballroom Dancing and many congratulations!

Into second place Yuji Tang and Aini Zhao (Michael and Annie).

This was probably their best and most consistent performance so far. Annie is a flexible firecracker with great determination, intelligence and zest for dancing. Michael partners her with great skill and they are a formidable team and healthy competitors. Perhaps some thought into Tango choreography and musicality would be a good goal moving forward.

3rd place - Marco Sirocchi and Dora Kilin

This dancing has some very fine and unique qualities and I could more than understand if they had been marked to win. Their dancing is subtle, beautiful and charming. Dora is an exceptional lady who is balanced, flexible and alert. She reminds me of the finest porcelain. I find their whole process so refreshing and shall look forward to watching them evolve.

4th place - Oleksandr Bezkrovnyi and Mariia Savchuk

The quality of weight swing and timing is relatable, irresistible and magnificent at times from this young man. He is physically gifted with great proportions and reminds me of my Junior teacher Colin Twine who was 4th to Richard and Janet when they were champions. He was famous for his shift of weight and this young man is exactly the same. Mariia does a lovely job of partnering him and I'm sure once she develops her base power to match Sasha we will see great things from them.

5th place - Andrei Toader and Mia Linnick- Holden

They are an excellent competitive team and have many lovely qualities such as dancing together which is the essence of Ballroom Dancing. Refinement of the drive in the swing dances is an important next step along with physical range and development in space. They have some special touches in their choreography with warm appeal suiting their personalities.

6th place - Dmytro Lishchuk and Yelyzaveta Perepelytsia

Ecstatic and overjoyed are insufficient words to describe their faces upon their number being called for the final! They have been dancing to the level of the final for some time and I was delighted for them. This is an uncomplicated and simple approach to Ballroom Dancing with a style we can all relate to. Over time I am sure they will specialise in areas of their dancing so they become more distinctive and unique.

Into the semi-final:

7th - Linghao Kang and Anran Xing (Harriy and Anniya)

They must have been very disappointed not to have made the final but they were clearly very close to be 7th. They have some stable and admirable qualities about their dancing and I would suggest they look for greater artistry and musicality to elevate themselves back into the final.

8th - Cezary Szymanski and Julia Domaradska

This was their best performance to date and very quick improvement from a couple of weeks ago. The weight and central use was so much more powerful and subsequently they didn’t need the levels of muscular tension in the smaller muscles of the hands and arms. Well done!

9th - Pawel Kostrzewa and Martyna Lewandowska

I have been a great admirer of this couples dancing for some time. They have a great weight ratio and this lends itself to some fabulous crescendos of the use of gravity. Having paid them a compliment, the rate of improvement needs to be quicker and would be helped by pin point attention to quality, partnering and timing.

10th - CongXian Xie and Yuting Luo

A simple clear method here with lots of consistent energy and space and they dance together in a solid way. They are a little bit like watching the Grand Prix however and every time I look they have the same speed in every step in every dance. Therefore some choreographic and musical artistry would give this performance more diversity.

11th - Vadym Negrebetskyi and Kornelia Kopaczynska

A very elegant couple with great floor personalities and appeal. Working on the power of the base such as gravity, range and drive is probably the next stage of development for greater shift and swing.

12th - Iurii Prokhorenko and Mariia Sukach

This couple have some beautiful qualities of dancing but this is not quite enough to propel them into the final. Therefore quantity is probably the answer for a quantum leap.



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