THE COMPETITION SQUAD
Our competition teams are selected each year through auditions and are split over several age categories including some ‘mixed’ age teams. At Gifford we enter our dancers into national competitions where they compete against the best from all over the U.K and beyond. Our previous competition teams have all been hugely successful and qualified through to numerous finals at Blackpool Opera House and Liverpool Echo Arena. Once in the competition team there is the possibility that dancers may also be invited to enter solo competitions and additional events. Being part of the competition squad is a big commitment so it’s only for dancers and parents that are prepared to dedicate themselves to the team, however it is also a fantastic experience and incredibly rewarding, allowing dancers to make friends and memories that last a lifetime.
Being in the squad will literally change a dancers life, giving so many opportunities, but in return (and especially as this is a team) those accepting a place must be prepared to be flexible and put in a lot of time and effort. If just one member of the squad is missing a routine will not work and may even become unsafe to perform.
OUR MIXED AGE TEAM PERFORMED IN THE 2020 GRAND FINAL OF THE LARGEST GROUP COMPETITION IN THE UK!
Gifford Dance ‘mixed age’ competition team were in the GRAND FINAL of THE LARGEST GROUP DANCE COMPETITION IN THE UK. They performed at LIVERPOOL M&S ARENA which is a huge and prestigious venue. There were 22 heats, 4 all day semi-finals at Blackpool Opera House and approximately 220 routines in the Grand Final. Our team came 3rd in genre and 6th overall for their age out of everyone in the UK!!!!!!! Our dancers are absolutely excelling and what an outstanding achievement this is for them. Videos were tricky to film in such a large venue, so please don’t let the quality of the video put you off. We hope you will take a moment to appreciate the quality of the dancing instead. Three of these talented dancers are only age 10! We are just beaming with pride. Well done!
NATIONAL CHAMPIONS NOVEMBER 2019 !
Our competition team travelled to Blackpool in November to perform in the Grand Final of Dance Challenge UK, one of the very largest group dance competitions there is. Our two squads had both come first in their heats and it was a real privilege to be in the final and for our dancers to have the opportunity of dancing on such a prestigious stage in front of thousands. For some this had been their very first competition!
What happened next was beyond our expectations! The mini team came FIRST in the Grand Final making them the NATIONAL CHAMPIONS and our mixed age team came second in THE WHOLE OF THE UK. Gifford are now well and truly competing with, and winning against, some of the very best and most established dance schools in the country and we are so proud of each and every one of our dancers.
BEST IN SHOW!!!
This weekend was an exciting one for us! This is a large national competition and the weekend included 448 routines of a very high standard.
On Saturday we took 11 soloists to perform and they certainly did us proud. Many were going solo for the very first time and every dancer gave it their all, truly deserving the following awards which they received: 6 silver medals, 3 gold medals and 2 gold plus medals and a first place in category. Gold plus qualifies these dancers for places in the nationals! Brilliant performances from all who took part.
On Sunday it was Rebecca and Lucie’s turn to dance. They received first place for their duet and Lucie also did a solo. For the solo she received first place, a platinum medal, a scholarship award and WAS JUDGED THE VERY BEST IN THE WHOLE OF THE WEEKEND SHOW, which included all the solos, duos, trios and group dances!!!! What a wonderful weekend for GDA. Well done everyone!
BORN TO PERFORM 2019
Our last competition performance in 2019 was at Born to Perform in Solihull. It was 1st place again for the Mini team and 2nd place for the Mixed age dancers (who were up against seniors). These are outstanding results! In addition, both routines received golden buzzer/wild cards as judges favourites (only 6 can be given out all day). The small group of five soloists that took part all did extremely well too with three taking first place.
Pictured here are the mini team holding their giant cheque and the soloists that came first.
2018/19 COMPETITION SEASON - TWICE TO BLACKPOOL OPERA HOUSE IN FINALS!
Dance Challenge UK
Gifford Dance Academy had the privilege to perform at Blackpool Opera House in November 2018. Every single dancer in the competition squad (twenty-eight altogether) won through to the Grand Final of ‘Dance Challenge UK’ following heats in Stoke, giving them the opportunity to dance at such a prestigious venue which seats three thousand people. The dancers did Stotfold proud and put on show stopping performances with beautiful, creative routines in different genres including many tricks, lifts and tumbles. They had the time of their lives! You can see for yourself by watching the video.
Sisters Rebecca and Lucie Gifford believe in entering the biggest and best competitions in the country and dancers from the Academy are up against some of the most established stage and dance schools in the UK. This season has been an adventure for all the dancers, not only learning so much and gaining confidence but building friendships too.
This season GDA have made it through to finals at Blackpool Opera House twice! After winning through at heats in Kent, our dancers returned to Blackpool in January 2019 for the semi-finals of 'That's Showbiz'. There they entered two routines, one in the mini kids section and the other in the mixed age category. They won first and second place for their genres respectively. What a competition season we have had! Well done to all.
Elite Dance Championships 2019
As if all the above mentioned excitement were not enough, Gifford Dance Academy won a weekend away for all the competition dancers, to the Elite Dance Championships in Mablethorpe in March 2019. The prize we won was worth over £4000 and all the GDA family had a wonderful weekend. As well as group routines, many of our dancers entered duets and did solos. GDA won loads of medals and trophies with stunning performances!!! The list of Gifford winners is so long that it will not easily fit here and we have added it to the dancers page. Even the parents/helpers entered a 'fun' routine in the adult talent, which is a must see on our You Tube channel. Here is a video of the weekend.
AWARD WINNERS IN THE LARGEST GROUP DANCE COMPETITION IN THE UK
In 2016 we entered the largest group dance competition in the UK called 'That's Showbiz'. Top stage and dance schools came from all over the UK to compete. There were 22 heats and we were more than excited when we made it through to the semi-final held at Blackpool Opera House!
We thought that we could only dream about a place in the grand final but after putting on a show stopping routine in Blackpool our group of seven (including dancers as young as ten years old) achieved their goal!!
On 11th March 2017 we had the absolute privilege of dancing in the final at LIVERPOOL ECHO ARENA in front of thousands. After an imaginative, creative, routine including lifts, throws and tumbles we WON the National Adjudicators Choice Award. The celebrations continue!!!