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BYU to host 2006 U.S. National Amateur DanceSport Championships

Brigham Young University will host the 2006 United States National Amateur DanceSport Championships Thursday through Saturday, March 9-11, in the Marriott Center.

The competition is divided into six sessions beginning Thursday morning, after the DanceSport Amateur Congress Wednesday, March 8, from 7 to 10 p.m. in 270 Richards Building. The Congress includes five presentations providing a vision of ballroom dance competition.

To purchase tickets, call the Marriott Center Ticket Office at (801) 422-2981 or visit www.BYUtickets.com.

General public tickets are $12 Thursday and Friday and $16 Saturday; a three-day package is $37. General student tickets are $9 Thursday and Friday, $12 Saturday and $25 for the three-day package. Tickets for BYU students are $8 Thursday and Friday, $10 Saturday and $23 for the three-day package. All students must present a student ID with ticket for admission.

The BYU DanceSport National Championships has become one of the largest ballroom dance competitions in the United States. The friendly competition for students and non-students from across the country offers a variety of dance levels for all ages, ranging from beginning to advanced.

Youth, amateurs and professionals will compete in two-step, polka, mambo, foxtrot, swing, quickstep, rumba, tango, waltz and cha-cha, among other dances.

“This is the largest amateur championship in the West,” said Elaine Grenko of the BYU Ballroom Dance faculty. “We love to host DanceSport Championships because it gets our students involved, pushes them to a higher level of competition and provides a vision beyond local dance competitions.”

Professionals will compete in Provo’s “Battle of the Champions,” including the top four professional standard couples in the United States—Jonathan Wilkins and Katusha Demidova, Victor Fung and Anna Mikhed, Erminio Stefano and Liene Apale, Igor Litvinov and Julia Ivleva.

Each couple will showcase a dance Friday night. They will then compete Saturday night in five dances—waltz, tango, Viennese waltz, fox trot and quick step.

The top six amateur couples in Standard and Latin will be awarded “World Class Amateur” status, which enables them to teach as amateurs for one year.

National DanceSport will host more than 1,500 participants including all students enrolled in ballroom classes at BYU, pre-teen competitors and seniors from across the country. They will compete in Standard, International Latin, American smooth, American rhythm and Lindy.

A highlight of DanceSport is the formation competition in which teams of about eight couples in the pre-teen, junior and youth age groups compete in Latin or Standard dances.

“Looking at formation dance from above is like looking in a kaleidoscope of dance and movement,” Grenko said. “The young performers come with spectacular costumes, music medleys and energy.”

For more information, visit byu.dancesport.com/nationals or contact the Ballroom Dance Office at (801) 422-4623.

Writer: Angela Fischer

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