KOTA KINABALU: A local dance group is hoping to make the country proud after it has qualified to enter the final of an international dance competition that will be held in Barcelona, Spain in June.
Calling itself “Tagaps Dance Theatre”, the group comprises 33 dancers ranging from 10 to 24 years old.
They will be competing in the Dance World Cup, an international dance competition for children and young adults, which will be held at Sitges in Barcelona, Spain on June 22.
The competition will see 4,000 dancers from 42 countries competing in a variety of dance genres including Ballet, Tap, Morden, Jazz, Song and Dance, National, Hip Hop, Commercial and Acro.
Tagaps Dance Theatre leader and co-founder Mohd Azizan Danial Abdullah said the dancers had been preparing for months for the competition as all the members believed they could achieve something that only their peers could dream of.
“We have been preparing for this competition since last year and have participated in several dance competitions just to prepare ourselves.
“We competed in the Dance World Cup semi-final early this year (Feb 24-25) and qualified for 21 out of the 25 dance categories, winning 12 gold, seven silver and three bronze medals, including two awards for ‘Most Innovative Choreography’ and ‘Best Modern and Contemporary Award’,” he said during an interview with The Borneo Post recently.
Mohd Azizan said the achievements had taken the group to the final, representing Sabah and competing with other dancers from 42 countries in Barcelona, Spain on June 22.
As a large number of the members will be participating in the competition, namely 33 dancers and six teachers, Tagaps Dance Theatre is struggling to come up with funds for the event.
“We are funding this competition on our own. As you can see, most of the dancers are still studying while just a handful of us are working.
“We have to fund for our own air tickets, accommodation, transportation and food.
“Some of the members managed to raise some funds by borrowing from family members, but it is not enough.
“We have been seeking funds from several departments of ministries as well as NGOs but we have not received any positive response.
“Maybe everyone is busy as the general election is just around the corner,” he quipped.
Mohd Azizan understands that the funds they are seeking are huge for such a competition but he is confident that Tagaps Dance Theatre will make the country and everybody proud.
“This is not the first time Tagaps Dance Theatre has participated in the Dance World Cup competition.
“Our first experience and exposure in the Dance World Cup was back in 2017 that was held in Germany where we brought home a gold, a silver and a bronze.
“So I strongly believe that with the hard work and dedications the dancers are putting into for this competition, I know we will bring back more medals than we did previously,” said Mohd Azizan.