Dani Sturgess in podium position
Dani, recently competed at the Bracknell Solo Dance competition, representing Solihull Dancing Blades (incorporating Mercian Ice Dance Club). This was Dani’s second ever dance competition which she thoroughly enjoyed along with fellow club member and friend, Emily Workman.
Dani successfully took her place on the podium in 3rd. She danced at Level 4 (Juvenile) She danced 2 pattern dances, the 22 Step and the European Waltz. She came 3rd overall – 2nd in the 22 step 5th in European Waltz.
“The competition was stressful, nerve racking and fun – all at the same time!” Said Dani.
Later this month she will compete in the Primary Level at Streatham as she also achieved Level 5 Test pass at Bracknell.
Although Dani has only been ice dancing since 2014, she has free skated for the past 6 years after completing her Skate UK passport. She has had skates on her feet since she was 18 months old – both her parents skate and her father, Colin Sturgess, is an ice dance coach.
Dani says she thoroughly enjoys ice dance particularly when she skates at Solihull Dancing Blades (incorporating Mercian Ice Dance Club) “I feel free when I ice dance.” She said. She thinks having an ice dance club where younger skaters are made to feel welcome is good for her and good for the club.
Dani trained for Bracknell with both Colin Sturgess and Lynn Burton-Lenard at the club rink, Silver Blades, Solihull. Dani said, getting up for training some mornings isn’t easy but, on those mornings she remembers how wonderful it feels on the ice both training and performing. In preparation for Bracknell Dani and her mom made her dresses for both the European Waltz and the 22 Step. Dani added hundreds of crystals to her 22 Step dress, she couldn’t stop adding – they looked so beautiful.
On the day of the competition, 1st and 2nd places went respectively to, Mischa Cooke-Smith from Oxford and Aimee Carrington-Fryer from Streatham. The top ranking 24 skaters in each category based on TTS scores, who also have the required test levels, will receive automatic entry to the British Championships. Skaters next in line on the ranking lists will be invited to fill any unallocated warm up slots.
For automatic qualification to the British Solo Championships competitors will be required to have skated in at least two qualifying Solo Series Competitions at different events.
Dani takes delight in skating in Edea Ice Fly boots and on Coronation Ace blades. Her her current levels are; level 7 Field Moves, Level 5 Elements, Level 6 Free Dance and Level 5 Pattern Dance. She says, the disciplines of ice dance is harder than other kinds of skating. You have to think about your technique; edges, body positions and body lines and you have to be able to ‘dance’ in time to the music whilst making it look effortless, smile and have fun.
The British Open is on 22nd to 26th June 2016 at Ice Sheffield.