Ballroom and Latin American Dancers Leave Spectators in Awe
Hundreds of dancers with physical disability from across the Western Cape participated in the 2013 Open Disabled/ Wheelchair Ballroom and Latin American Interprovincial Dance Trials in Stellenbosch on Saturday, 5 October 2013. Spectators were left in awe.
The event was hosted by the South African Sports Association for Physically Disabled (SASAPD), with the support from South African Circle of Dance Academy (SACDA), Truworths Social Involvement Trust, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) and others.
A Western Province wheelchair dance sport team was selected to enter the 2014 Nationals for the Disabled. This will be the first time that wheelchair dance sport is included in the major event.
Ms Gladys Bullock of SASAPD paid tribute to the dancers in their pursuit of achievement and advancing their goals. “You are showing through your dance moves that you’re breaking barriers and building bridges.”
DCAS promotes talent development in all sports, including children with disabilities. Ms Agnetha Jeftha of DCAS Sport Promotion said it was inspirational to witness a young girl with no arms and no legs dance with a “million-dollar smile”.
Mr Grant Hutton of Western Province Sport for the Disabled, who is also a disabled wheelchair dancer, described the sport as “special”. “It’s one of a few sports where the success of a disabled person is reliant on the success of the partnership. The passion and dedication of the able bodied partner determines the success of the disabled partner.”
Ms Desiree Visagie, who competed in the Wheelchair Adult Combi Ballroom division, was amazed by the excitement of the dancers. “This was the first time I participated. I was touched to see participants who are physically disabled, wheelchair-bound and blind full of confidence and dancing their hearts out.”
The event highlighted the achievements of SACDA as a coaching body, as well as the contributions of its partners. This made it possible for all participants to showcase their talents and develop their potential. Their dazzling performances on the dance floor showed they have the same dreams as able-bodied people.