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Group of Gravesend dancers off to world street finals

PUBLISHED: 07:00 16 July 2019

Let to right is Emmanuel, Hope, Duro, Courtney, Ellen, and Tobi who all danced their hearts out in the qualifier

Let to right is Emmanuel, Hope, Duro, Courtney, Ellen, and Tobi who all danced their hearts out in the qualifier

Archant

A group of Gravesend teenagers are to compete at World Street Dance Championship after qualifying at an international event.

They will now be competing in this year's UDO World Street Dance Championships.

The five, aged between 16 and 18 years all competed in the under 18s category at the recent regional competition.

Emmanuel Adebawale, 16, came first in the Under 18s Beginners Category.

And Hope Farquhar, 17; Duro Sajowa, 16; and Tobi Fasuyi also 16, all placed in the top five in their respective categories.

Another winner, not pictured is Chanel Timmerman, 16, who came fourth in the under 18s beginners category.

All five will be competing in August in Blackpool after going up against hundreds of other hopefuls at the event held in Gillingham last weekend.

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Just missing out were 16-year-olds Courtney Gwashavanhu and Ellen Bennett.

Stacey Manley is the youth worker who accompanied the group to the competition. She said: "The young people didn't know what music they'd have to dance to until they were on stage. They had to free-style and each person had to dance three times. Despite their nerves they did brilliantly, none of the group had ever competed before and were supporting each other throughout the event."

The team has been learning their street dance moves from choreographer and dancer Dan Burns at weekly classes held each Thursday for Gifted Young Generation at The Grand Healthy Living Centre in Gravesend town centre. The classes are free to attend and welcome more to come along.

Jackie Coupar, youth work manager, added: "The dedication of these young people has really paid off.

"To have the confidence to perform at a regional competition alone is brilliant, and now to see five of the group go on to the World Championships is remarkable.

"We can't wait to go to Blackpool, the competition will be high, but it will be inspiring for these young people to see so many dancers perform from across the globe."

The United Dance Organisation's World Street Dance Championships attracts thousands of dancers from across the globe, providing an opportunity to perform, win trophies and prizes.

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