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The first event of Saturday’s fixture-list saw the Lancaster dance troupe, LUDanS, topple York in style. After retaining the trophy last year, York were looking to secure a solid home victory over LUDanS. Despite being backed as favourites, the York troupe could muster little more than a spark in comparison to the sheer energy and determination of the Lancaster girls.
The first dance of the morning saw Charlotte Rutherford lead from the front in the ballet, with a well disciplined and impressive display. Rutherford, who was later applauded by the judges for her overall performances, look composed and relaxed as Lancaster looked to land the first blow against York.
The high intensity and passion from Lancaster continued throughout the morning, as York seemed to struggle to cope with Lancaster’s ruthless and intense routines. York, who had some very intriguing routines including a contemporary dance to a Winston Churchill-esque monologue, were as composed as Lancaster at times but did show signs of ruggedness throughout.
The other dances in the competition were tap and jazz, which LUDanS performed admirably in. Siana French, Paula Yeadon and Emily Pollitt led their troupe well, with excellent footwork and technique. Mel Stott was also a stand-out performer, as was Jenny Tait who performed in all five dances, but the overall highly polished and well executed steps of the LUDanS troupe as a whole didn’t go unnoticed as the crowd really seemed to get behind the Red Rose.
The final dance of the morning – street – was billed as perhaps the most important round. York are well recognised for producing good street routines, and the crowd was expectant. To the crowd’s disappointment however, York finished with a whimper as they were heavily reliant on gimmicks and props in a slap-dash Star Wars routine. LUDanS’ final performance of the year, a quirky James Bond inspired routine, was a league above the York street dance which the crowd clearly recognised as frenzied cheers greeted the dancers throughout the routine.
The standard of performance from the LUDanS girls was a credit to the hard work and determination of the entire group, and was a perfect culmination of their effort and commitment throughout the year. Ex-LUDanS President and current VP: Events and Democracy, Libby Martin, was visibly moved with Lancaster’s overall performance as both groups awaited a lengthy judging process to announce the winners.
The judges deemed that York produced better contemporary and jazz dances, but that Lancaster were superior in the tap, ballet and the outstanding street routine. This meant, to the crowd and LUDanS’ delight, that the Red Rose would be taking back the coveted dance-sport trophy and a vital 4 points for Lancaster.
LUDanS President-elect, Siana French, was also full of praise for the girls: “It’s such a great win, not just for LUDanS but for Lancaster as a whole. The girls have worked tirelessly this year and I’m glad it’s paid off. Every girl who turned up today gave 100% and more, and I couldn’t be prouder!”
The overwhelming support for Lancaster was testament to the progress and work-ethic of the LUDanS girls this year. York’s support was timid and lethargic, as were their dance routines; and overall it was a convincing and deserved victory for LUDanS who were clearly delighted.