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Joanna's write up from Asia International

Read Joanna's report from Asia International 2015 and check how she finds a new role in the world of dance. A great insight for everyone who loves dance and honest, brilliant remarks from the Latin Dance Queen.

It is with great pleasure that I have been asked to report on the First Asia International Championships in Hong Kong on 11th of JULY 2015.

Having just recently retired from competitive dancing in Blackpool in May, it was a real challenging and exciting prospect.

To be honest, being a competitor for so long, I had never really looked that much in depth at any other competitors. So this was a real fresh and exciting experience.

First of all, as a spectator the HKAPA Amphitheatre produced a wonderful experience to fully enjoy a great view of all individual couples on the floor. The Amphitheatre was very different from any other halls and great for all spectators to watch.

As a dancer, I could imagine however it must have taken a little “getting use to” as a few factors were very different the floor having only three sides with a slightly oval shape and maybe not as long as we might normally be used to. So, taking this into consideration, I felt everyone really did a great job and the quality of dancing was at its peak.

The winners of this very exciting final were Morten Loewe and Roselina Doneva from Denmark.
A very controlled performance looking perfectly groomed as always from the first round. Maybe sometimes both could let go of the “Bound” energy and get in touch with their inner and outer senses. It would allow them to relate to each other more and to be more present in the event.


Second, Ferdinando Iannaccone and Yulia Musikhina from USA.
Giving Morten and Roselina a real challenge tonight.
Their abilities to change dynamics is breath taking at times. Would love to see that more often. Yulia is capable of throwing her body entirely without fear knowing that Ferdinando will always be there. A very unique quality that I love to see. Great Partnering Skills.


Coming Third Manuel Frighetto and Karin Rooba from Estonia.
As Len Goodman once said: “Lots of sizzling not enough Sausage”.
Really love their fresh positive and potential energy, however, often it is not directed in particular actions and shapes.

Placing Fourth, Sergey Maksyuta and Darya Sereda from Russia.
Generally a very nice fluidity and shaping of the upper body, particularly attractive in Paso Doble. However, sometimes in other dances, I feel there could be more use of weight transfer from foot to foot and clearer foot patterns.

Placing Fifth Sam Shamseili and Frederikke Norgaard from Denmark.
“Dancing is like poetry, every movement is a word”.
For me you both focus a little too much on the poetry and the overall feeling is not enough on every single word.
It would be beautiful to see one idea at a time.

Closing this really strong and exciting final, Denys Samson and Yulia Nikitenko from England.
In my opinion their final was not their best round. They looked confident all day up to then.
Yulia allowed her expression to come from within and express rather than impress.
Denys has a fun personality and a strong look on the floor. I would like to see a better connection with the rhythm.
But overall, it felt like they truly belonged in this final.

Other exciting couples outside the finals that also caught my attention were:

Joel Lopez and Kristina Bespechnova from Spain.
This tremendously exciting and young Spanish boy, with his beautiful Russian Flower Bomb.
Such an energy projected by these two dancers. Maybe sometimes this energy could be more directed into the body, and into the shapes and more flexibility of upper body.
Kristina’s beautifully strong legs and feet gives her a great stability, maybe a variation of mood changes could give a little extra flavour.

LiDi and Zhao Lei from China.
This super talented Chinese couple from the Beijing.
Such exciting Rising Stars with the abilities and skills of a top class couple.
Still finding their place on the International scene but we should see more of this couple in the near future.
LiDi’s super talented ability is in my opinion one of a kind and Zhao always beautiful and classy in everything she does. She has the most mesmerizing extensions.
A very special couple with lots of potential to be seen.

Dmytro Pankov and Olesia Pankova from Ukraine.
Two very beautifully charismatic dancers.
Olesia’s gorgeous legs and feet gives her a striking look on the floor.
I would love to see a little more use of upper body and spine through breath and muscle relaxation sometimes.
Both could allow the expression to come from the body rather than the other way around.