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The Dance Review - Kyle Taylor reports on the WDCAL European Juvenile Ballroom Championship 2024

It is always a pleasure to watch the Juvenile competition, to witness the beauty of the classic and fundamental dance figures. This competition provided this in abundance, with so much clarity and accuracy on show.

Taking the gold were Luca and Pebble, who performed consistently throughout all dances. Their best dance was quickstep, where they maintained their energy levels to the end. Congratulations on your European title.

Into 2nd place was the pairing of Jintao & Yijing, They had arguably the best topline and movement on the floor, and challenged very strongly. The girl was outstanding in her category, and if Jintao could address his overall head positioning, they are sure to be a very dominant and dangerous couple.

The bronze medal position was taken by Oleksandr & Nikol, who also won the Under 10s category on the same night. A remarkable achievement in itself; however, they were also the most accurate couple in this under 12s final too. Their timing was crystal clear, and all foot positions and step directions were measured perfectly. Over time they will need to develop more substance in their leg mechanics, but are undoubtedly set for greater honours in the future.

Into 4th place was Nikita & Anna, who were a wonderful couple tonight. They had a positive balance between strength, and flexibility; and produced some incredible dancing. They just diminished slightly as the final progressed, which didn’t quite allow them to reach a higher placing on this occasion.

The 5th place was given to Leon & Hanna, who are certainly dancing ahead of their years. It was clear that Leon has already started working with head weight usage and ribcage activity, while Hanna is also expressing herself with her own dynamic head extensions. This gave a very attractive look on the night, but did cause distortions to occur as each dance progressed. But, very well done on developing these skills, which will be of great benefit in your future years.

Completing the final was Oleksandr & Aleksandra, who were competing in Blackpool for the very first time. What a way to debut by making this major final!

They looked very strong in the early rounds, and fully deserved their final placing. They slightly lost their structure during the final, but will no doubt use this experience to develop themselves further.

Congratulations to all couples for your performances, and for showcasing some exquisite fundamentals, without the need to utilise unrestricted figures.

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