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Thriller on dance floor

Natanga Smith

Thriller on dance floor

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The judges’ decision is final. And while some in the audience at Kensington Oval disagreed with them, the judges deemed the performances of St George Primary School and Blue Tooth Breakers to be the best of the lot in the annual Community Dance Fest held on New Year’s Day.
Fifteen dance groups – 11 senior and four junior groups – all brought routines containing strong messages.
With the help of props and visual presentations, the dancers highlighted issues such as using faith to overcome problems, good versus evil and the control of the media, among others.
Some of the presentations were so humourous that they left members of the audience in stitches, including Minister of Social Care Steve Blackett and Chief Community Development Officer Sandra Greenidge.
The growing popularity of the dance competition caused the shift to the Oval this year because Dance Fest has outgrown the Wildey Gymnasium. Thousands of young and old fans packed the Oval and while many had their favourites, Blue Tooth Breakers had the most impact on the judges and got the biggest crowd response.
The five-year-old group emerged champions in 2010 and tied for third last year. Tuesday night’s performance of The Power Of Dance, with its mixed fusion of music, popping and locking, flips and flicks and some wukking up, powered up at the end when one of the dancers transformed himself into Goku from the animated series Dragonball Z.
This brought fans on their feet with loud applause and screams.
The four lads earned  606 points, first place, the trophy and cash prize of $5 000.
First-timers Elements had the cleanest, tightest routine of breakdance, popping and locking, and hip hop. In Control, the piece choreographed by member Stephen Maughn, provided humour in showing how man can be controlled by the media. They placed second with 562 points.
Third-placed ADL Adrenalin rallied ’round the West Indies cricket team with their dance moves. They scored 540 points with their enjoyable routine.
In the Junior category  second-timers St George Primary dethroned last year’s champs Praise Academy Of Dance – Promise to grab the trophy and cash prize of $2 000.
The 19-member team mixed jazz steps with modern dance moves and it was refreshing to see the four boys in their Boy Scouts uniforms holding their own alongside with the girls. The energetic piece entitled Move With Me, which was choreographed by Oral Welshman, earned 964.5 points and was professionally executed.
Praise Academy Of Dance battled it out for the next two top spots. The group Destiny, first-timers in the competition, earned 960 points with a hula hoop routine and flicks and cartwheels to place second. Promise, with a routine glorifying God, placed third with 910 points.
The other junior  performers were Lawrence T. Gay Primary School.
Demolition Squad, Reactive Squad, I-Tek, Elevaxion and Influential Dancerzs all had good pieces. Praise Academy Of Dance – New Era, dressed in prison stripes, made the audience howl with laughter because the lead dancer had a huge rip in his pants. The piece by New Motion Dancers was a bit too much to take.
Xtra Hype, last year’s winners in the Adult category, did not compete.
The competition was  hosted by the Community Development Department in the Ministry of Social Care, Constituency Empowerment and Community Development.