USOpen 2011 Update #1

We’re at the Open! We’re at the Open we’re at the Open We’re at the Open!


Wow! So exciting this year! So super EXTREMELY exciting! Routines holy shamoly!  I admit I’m easily excited but really, this time it’s not just me, the energy here this year is HOPPIN’ big time! You can just feel excitement in the air. And oh man the rumours flying about routines! Wow. This one’s fast, this one’s slow, this one is killer, this one’s got stuff no one’s ever seen done before … Crazy crazy electricity flying through the air – you could get electrocuted walking from the tower to the ballroom. AUGHGHGHGHGH!

Tonight was Golden Ticket: The Final Round!  (Sounds very World Wrestling Federation doesn’t it?) Doug’s last time running the tour.

After the pro prelim and the pro final, after the sixteen couples whittled down to the final six, I suddenly remembered I should probably have been writing down names! Oops I didn’t.  Too busy being excited about so many friends in one place at one time. (aughghghghghghgh!)

But I did get the top six couples:

6th Stephen White and Blandine Iche
5th Kris Swearingen and Jessica Greer
4th Marina Gutsch and Rome
3rd Yvonne Antonacci and David Guido (winning $1,000)
2nd Chevy and Kyle Patel (winning $2,000)
And 1st Place Winners! Rebecca Ludwick and Sheven Chevy Kekoolani! Winning jackets, a trophy, and $3,000!

After Golden Ticket we went down to the the practice room. Just off the lobby (we were there to be an audience for friends) and oh man what a scene! Small little floor CRAMMED with sweaty couples in sweaty t-shirts, no makeup, rumpled street clothes, glasses, there with coaches and friends to work work work out the final kinks, laughing, straining, all these couples running routines beside and between each other, boomboxes laptops everywhere on floors, tables, chairs, asking each other Can you watch this for a minute? Which looks better the spins or the leap?

Then we open the doors to the lobby and couples and teams everywhere there, too! Beside the front door, in the corner behind the bellboy stand, behind the front desk, everyone running routines, last-minute coaching, final changes. And everybody knows everybody! Cause they used to be married! Or about to be married!  Or dance partners but now mortal enemies! Or each others’ coach! Or mentor or protege! Or had a secret affair! Which wasn’t secret! To anyone! But their mother!

Hotel staff walking though the lobby staring, staring, mesmerized. We wonder what does it look like through their eyes? All these dancer people who know each other? Very well, it seems? They laugh, hug, run into walls for a joke, slapstick falls, catch each other, get their faces stuck in each others’ armpits? So comfortable together?  And yet … they compete against each other?

On Thanksgiving?

AUGHGHGH this is so FUN! I love this dance! I love these people from all over the world who’ve spent a whole year creating something out of nothing but blank space! I love partner dancing what a trip! love every aspect of this. AUGHGHGHGHGH!

Oh yeah and before I forget: maybe you didn’t know but you are able to watch the whole weekend (think I’ve heard $30 gets you two weeks of watching a continuous loop of the weekend over and over) at global dance tv, here:

Happy Thanksgiving!


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