Blackpool dance festival comes to Shanghai

About 100 professional ballroom dancers from 25 nations will take part in an international dance festival in Baoshan District from Thursday.
Blackpool Dance Festival China / Ti Gong

About 100 professional ballroom dancers from 25 nations will take part in an international dance festival in Baoshan District from Thursday.

The British Blackpool Dance Festival, known as the "Ballroom Dance Olympics," will be held in Baoshan Sports Center through to August 22, said Michael Williams, the managing director of Blackpool Entertainment Company.

The district government will offer free tickets to amateur dancers and young ballroom dance learners to watch the competitions, involving some of the world's best dancers, during the festival, said Jiang Biyan, director at Baoshan sports bureau.

"We hope to make Baoshan a training center for the standard ballroom dance and young dancers from the district could compete in the international stage in future," Jiang told a press conference on Tuesday.

It is the second time that the festival, which originated in 1920 in the northern English town of Blackpool, has been held in Shanghai. In 2016, the international festival was held at the Shanghai Grand Stage, the first time it was held outside the United Kingdom.

Famous dancers at this year's festival include Riccardo Cocchi and Yulia Zagoruychenko, the current world champions of professional Latin dance, as well as Chinese dancers Wang Wei and Chen Jin. They and other dancers will compete for the final championship for the festival on Tuesday  night at Baoshan sports center.


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