Another Durban dance spectacle

Dance Basics dancers Juanita Pillay; Simone Robert; Phumzile Zide; Seth Ngbobo; Menzie Khanyase; Tony Fourie; Ammer Basson; Yoliswa Mzobe and Jamie-Leigh Chisholm. Some 100 performers will be taking to the stage for the annual dance showcase at Durban’s Playhouse Opera. All pictures here are by Val Adamson.

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BY BILLY SUTER

MANY favourites will return to Durban’s Playhouse Opera theatre stage this year for the 27th annual Shall We Dance extravaganza which, produced as usual by local dance personalities Neville Letard and Caryl Cusens, runs from September 6 to 15.

More than 100 performers have been assembled for this year’s showcase of dance styles, presented by the South African Dance Teachers’ Association, highlighting students and professionals.

“After dazzling audiences last year in their South African debut, the main featured couple from Europe have been invited back for more ‘wow’ Ballroom and Latin number,” says a show spokesman.

“Danish dancer Nikolaj Lund and his Polish partner Marta Kocik have danced their way across most of the world, notching up trophies and titles from Denmark all the way to Japan for their high energy, vivid, sensual and passionate performances.”

Minette de Klerk ballerina’s Rebecca Henderson, Erin Padoa, Kayleigh Forbes, Dana Mommsen and Georgia Wheeler. They are performing in Shall We Dance this year.

Hosted once again by radio jock Damon Beard, Shall We Dance will also feature renowned South African dancer, Ryan Hammond, and his wife, Angelique. The couple, seen recently in Durban in the Barnyard Theatre production, Rhythm of the Night, are perhaps best known from their appearances in a variety of local dance-themed competition reality TV shows.

Graceful strong man, Gerhard van Rooyen, is also back with Amor Kruger. Having just returned from Cyprus, the duo will be sharing the phenomenal Cirque du Soleil, acrobatic-style of adage.

A couple that has been dancing for six years together makes their Shall We Dance debut as one of the featured couples this year. Lezariah Blignaut and Nkululeko Khumalo, both from Durban, have a string of titles to their name including Arnold Classique: finalists; three times holders of the adult championship standard in the Gold Cup Challenge; KZN Championship Ballroom Finalists; SADTA S.A. Champs where they placed second in the adult ballroom championship and DSSA SA Finalists.

Shall We Dance will, as usual, offer everything from ballroom and Latin American dance to traditional and contemporary ballet, bellydancing, Irish dance and jazz.

“A number of dance studios from around Durban have been hard at work behind the scenes, not only choreographing their performance but also creating,  often from scratch, the phenomenal array of colourful costumes which the Durban audiences get to witnesses.

Strictly Ballroom’s young troupe of Braigen Yunnie, Madison Behm, Taurin Yunniek Teegan Canhamk Tariq Sallie and Carol Bega. They are among performers in this year’s Shall We Dance spectacle in Durban.

“These hand-crafted, one-of-a-kind designs can take up an unbelievable number of hours, some with literally hundreds of sequins added onto the garments.”

Tickets for the show range in price from R100 to R160, with concessions offered on specific dates. Booking is through Webtickets or at Pick ’n Pay supermarkets or hypermarkets.


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