6th Queen City of the South Dancesport sa Sugbu Open Championship

Last week, the BMG Manila team (that includes me!) flew all the way to Cebu to join the prestigious 6th Queen City of the South Dancesport sa Sugbu competition. When I first heard that we are participating in this event, I was totally psyched that I'M COMING BACK TO CEBU!!! I’m madly in love with Cebu. The place is like a laid-back, peaceful, and cleaner version of Manila. I am seriously considering moving here, haha!

The competition was held at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino in Lahug last Saturday, September 14. If you saw the Philippine Starball on TV a few years back, you’ll have an idea as to how grand this event is. Dancers from all over the nation came to Visayas to showcase what they do best. It wasn’t just participated by dancers, but adjudicators—Pinoy and foreign—traveled all the way here as well. And of course, spectators from all over the Philippines—just like my mom and my sister!

my ever-supportive family!
We arrived in Cebu two days before the actual contest to give us some time to practice there. The night before the competition, we checked in at Waterfront Hotel. I spent not a penny for the accommodation, thanks to my generous coach. Isn’t life beautiful? Haha! I love being a dancer!
our Deluxe Twin Bed room at Waterfront
On competition morning, we woke up early and got breakfast to fuel ourselves up. We needed our energy—it was going to be a long day. Aside from a breakfast of pancakes, cheeseburger and fries (I'm a glutton like that), I bought a Java Chip from Starbucks to hurl myself into wakefulness.

By lunchtime, we were already prepped up and warmed up and ready to dance!

Aside from the fact that I was thrilled to explore Cebu once again, I was also excited to meet the best dancers of Cebu and wage war against them on the dance floor. In case you don’t know, Dancesport Team Cebu City houses perhaps the largest number of dancesport athletes in the Philippines—from the 6-year-old juvenile levels to the men and women in their forties in the senior categories. They’re all incredibly talented dancers, thanks to the city government’s tremendous support for this sport and art.
some Cebuano friends: Lark Jabonero and Mis Mis Ferrer
Also, Team Cebu is being trained by none other than my coach, Bong Marquez! If you think about it, we are teammates essentially, except that BMG is Manila-based.

Two Samsons: Pepe Samson (BMG Manila) and Samson Orlanes (Dancesport Team Cebu)
Anyway, the program started at 8 a.m. with the Modern Ballroom categories. Too bad we were busy prepping up that time so we weren’t able to watch. As with all competitions, floor rehearsals are conducted before the actual rounds so that dancers could get a feel of the floor. I found the floor of Waterfront Hotel's Pacific Grand Ballroom too slippery! Or maybe I just need a new pair of shoes.
dancers (or maybe it's just me) struggle on the slippery floor of the Pacific Grand Ballroom. LOL
Around 1 p.m., the Latin rounds began. My real partner Ronna couldn’t make it to Cebu, so I dragged Krizzia in this mess in the meantime, haha! With only about six days of practice, we braved the consequences and joined the 2-Dance and 3-Dance Open categories (we only finished our Jive routine the night before!!!!). In both events, we were able to reach the Semi-Finals from Round 1 and Quarter Finals. Not bad, I think. Though I awfully wanted a medal. Haha!
Krizzia the Eksenadora
By night-time, the 4-Dance and 5-Dance events began. The champions for the 4-Dance Latin category are from our team, BMG Team! Isn’t that cool?
Champions in 4-Dance Adult Latin: Benjamin Legaspi and Rochelle Canoy from BMG
My crush placed 2nd in the same category. (faints, drools, dies)
Samson Orlanes and Mae Pabuaya - Cebu
 And these two, whom I really I idolize, finished as 3rd placers in the 4-Dance Latin event as well.
Eo Rendon and Mary Desiree Seraga - Cebu
I think the awarding ceremony ended at 1 a.m. All in all, that’s a 13-hour event. Isn’t that crazy?! By the time the winners were getting announced, I was upstairs in our room taking a hot bath! Haha! I’m sorry if I’m such a useless correspondent, LOL. But I do know who got into the Top 3 of the Amateur Open Latin event:

1. Michael Angelo Marquez and Stephanie Sabalo - Manila
2. Wilbert Aunzo and Pearl Marie Caneda - Cebu
3. Roque Marquez and Rhea Marquez - BMG (I'm a proud teammate!)

After the awarding, we all came down to Port Seafood Restaurant and celebrated. Midnight buffet!
BMG and Team Cebu
Although we didn’t make it to the Finals, I was happy to have danced with really awesome dancers from around the Philippines. Imagine how passionate we dancers are: we travel to some faraway region, pay for airfare, pay for registration, pay for hotel accommodation, with no assurance of winning. And even if we win, there’s no cash prize. But still we compete. Still we participate. Because doing so creates a better, friendlier dance community. Because doing so improves us, our skills, our talents, adds so much more to our experiences.

And exclusively for me, it’s because doing so will enable me to go back to my favorite place in the Philippines: Cebu.

Congratulations, Dancesport Team Cebu City for organizing such an awesome event! Congratulations also to all the participants winners! Until next time!

Watch out for more of my recent Cebu trip in my succeeding posts!

Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino
Salinas Drive, Lahug, Cebu City
(right across the IT Park)
(02) 232-6888

Don’t miss any of these posts in the Cebu 2013 series:

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