The University of London Union (ULU) may be dead, but never have student societies been more united – united, in dance
The days of angry placards and bins on fire are over, while the days of devoted foxtrot and fiery tango are here as UL Dancesport brings together representatives of societies from across London in Strictly Come London. Novices from a huge range of societies – from LSE Chess to UCLU Women’s Rugby to Student Central Harry Potter Society – have been paired up with a ‘professional’ dancer from UL Dancesport to compete in a Strictly Come Dancing-esque final on Thursday 4th December.
On the night, each pair will perform a pre-assigned dance (although the music and choreography are up to the dancers, which should prove interesting) in front of a live audience – most likely to be largely composed of heckling fellow society members – and a panel of judges, some of whom have competed nationally and in the big, wide world.
Dancesport was inspired by the successes of similar events in other universities, with one of the chief organisers, Nollie Kernot, organising one at her previous university. Wanting to let the wider world know a little more about the society and to bring together societies that haven’t seen each other since Sports’ Night, they decided to put on an event that has so far proved so popular that societies have had to be turned away.
Adam Dyster, another lead organiser, commented: “We’re super excited to launch our first ever Strictly Come London event – it’s been great to see partners meeting for the first time, and just how keen everyone has been to get involved!”
But, what makes this all super duper exciting, is that one of these keen dancing beans is Pi Online’s own Holly Philipps, Dancer-in-Chief. Holly will be representing Pi with what will, undoubtedly, be a tango the likes of which we shall all never, ever forget. Possibly because a special edition Magazine devoted to it will be published. Details to be confirmed.
On being asked to comment on her involvement, Holly said “I’m excited and nervous, I genuinely have no idea how to dance so really really really hope the final isn’t a complete disaster! I think it is going to be so fun learning the basics though; I can’t wait to get started!” We’re rooting for you, Holly.
Tickets aren’t yet on sale, but Pi will let you know as soon as they are so that you can root for UCL’s premier dancing media group.
The full line up is as follows:
Holly Philipps representing UCL’s Pi Media – dancing the tango with Jelle van Dijk
Ibi Rachel A representing UCLU Women’s Rugby – dancing the foxtrot with Antony Dauppe
Samantha Lane representing RVC Ice Skating – dancing the quickstep with Timothy Smith
Yuri Yang representing UCLU Cheerleading – dancing the Viennese waltz with Richar Mumbere Ayre
Milly Anderson representing Student Central Harry Potter Society – dancing the Viennese with Ben Bowles
Leah J Kenny representing UCLU Cross Country & Athletics – dancing the paso doble with Shihua Bai
Bridget Evans representing Student Central Archery – dancing the cha cha cha with Ollie Benjamin
Laura Mullin representing Student Central Gymnastics – dancing the jive with Zhengyou Lu
Jeff Gu representing UCLU Men’s Rugby – dancing the waltz with Rhiannon Warrener
Arthur Youd representing UCLU Snowsports – dancing the samba with Nathalie Kernot
Afolabi Alli representing Student Central Fencing – dancing the cha with Daria Gromyko
Virinder Reen representing UCLU Chocolate Society – dancing the rumba with Lindsay Wallace
Jimmy S. Chen representing LSE Chess Society – dancing the quickstep with Amelia Lousie Herridge Ishak
Matt Bonner representing UCLU Comedy Society – dancing the jive with Jilli Crosby
Holly will be writing a Pi Blog about her journey into the world of dance. Look out for that, because it’s going to be great.
Image Credits: Adam Dyster/UL Dancesport