I was in Hong Kong in December and was excited to be in the audience at the 19th annual Best of Best Hong Kong Open DanceSport Championships, Latin session. Presented by Come Dancing Studio Academy, the competition was December 10, 2017, at the Kowloon Bay International Trade and Exhibition Centre.
Seventy-one teams competed in five styles of Latin Dance and 14 levels in this 19th annual championship. Teams from China, England, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, and Singapore competed against hometown Hong Kong athletes in the event.
All eyes were on the heavyweight “Pro-Am 5 Dance Latin”, with Mr. Ocean Lee (Professional) and Ms. Karie Lai (Amateur) from Hong Kong taking the championship. Teams from Hong Kong and the Philippines earned second- and third-place honors respectively.
Amateur athlete Karie Lai is a Hong Kong-based commodities trader. Her partner and professional dancer, Ocean Lee, owns the Ocean Lee Professional Dance Studio in Hong Kong. Ms. Lai first picked up Latin dance in 2009. Mr. Lee turned professional dancer in 2012.
In the Amateur competition, teenagers athletes Oscar Ng and Kitty Kong took the “Hong Kong Amateur 5 Dance Latin” championship.
Adding to the excitement was the participation many young dance athletes, with the youngest aged four. Their enthusiasm was contagious. The way they presented themselves – composed, confident and enthusiastic – is rarely seen in such young children. Most important of all, they exhibited joy and pleasure in dancing and watching others compete.
The Latin dance championship was enjoyable, and an excellent start for the festival season in December.
(Click on picture for full size)