By Tiyani Rikhotso
This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 8 of VARSITY News.
UCT hosted the Intervarsity ballroom competition on the 17th of August. Not only was it wonderful to experience an amazing and passionate display of dance skills on home soil, but UCT’s very own Ballroom society ended the day with many wins.
Each year, Stellenbosch, UCT, Tuks and NMU gather together during this national dance competition; participating in a full day of Latin and Ballroom dancing from levels beginner to advanced and pre-bronze. The university with the most points takes home the big win at the end of the day and there are also awards for spirit, formation and the team dance section.
With 215 dancers participating in the competition, the day started off with the open dance sections. This section welcomes dancers regardless of their level as they jive through a wide range of styles be it getting down to a sokkie or gliding through a waltz. Keeping up with the light-hearted and fun-focused feel of the category, each year there is a surprise dance and as the host university UCT gave the challenge of a blindfolded cha-cha. The day then moved on the the more competitive syllabus category where couples of the same level compete in the various dance section and level brackets and earn their university points with each placement.
In addition, there were the team dances where each university presents a group of dancers who perform the syllabus dances. Universities can also perform a formation piece which is highly choreographed and requires months of preparation and practice.
Though a long day, UCT’s dancers carried their smiles and energy through all the categories. They displayed a high level of skill and lived up to technical and visual standards that saw them awarded winners of the team dance and formation trophies. In addition UCT got 12 gold, 3 silver and 5 bronze awards overall (with 4, 0, 1 from the open sections and 8, 3, 4 from the syllabus). These awards as well as Stellenbosch’s overall and spirit trophies were acknowledged and celebrated during the prize giving ceremony. After almost 9 hours of dancing, ending off the competition on time was the perfect cherry on top!
NMU will host the competition next year and with their recent display of excellence, we look forward to seeing what UCT’s dancers will have to offer.
If you are interested in finding out more on the world of Latin and Ballroom on campus head over to www.uctballroom.co.za.