The Spectacular 2018 Philippine World Showdance Festival

Ever since I quit dancesport, I have never attended any dancesport-related event—I refused to watch competitions and took a pass on all major shows. It’s not because I lost interest. It was, on the contrary, because I miss dancing so much—and watching all those people I knew and used to spend every night in the studio with makes me so envious. It makes me miss my “old life”.

But when I heard that my idols Charles Guillaume Schmitt and Elena Salikhova (from France) were coming to Manila for the 2018 Philippine World Showdance Festival, I knew that I shouldn’t let this one pass. Luckily, I was able to score a ticket, so I found myself one night in July in Shangri-La Fort, dressed in a suit, saying “hi” to old friends, and excited for my first show since forever.

Organized by Dance Vision Arena (headed by Mr. Benny Lao), in partnership with Ms. Myrna Tan, the 2018 Philippine World Showdance Festival was held at the Shangri-La Fort Grand Ballroom last July 26. I don’t have enough words to express just how GRAND this event is! The set up was impeccable, the venue was perfect (world champions are coming, after all), and everybody was in good vibes, eagerly awaiting the performances amidst pica pica and glasses of wine, and their turn to do some moves on the dance floor, of course!

The special performers were Domen Krapez and Natascha Karabey (World Standard Latin Champions); Riccardo Cocchi and Yulia Zagoruychenko (World Professional Latin Champions); and Charles Guillaume and Elena Salikhova (one of the top World Amateur Latin couples). But wait … on the day itself, I found out that Charles and Elena were not able to make it, and they were replaced by Klemen Prasnikar and Sasha Averkieva! I was bummed, to be honest, but then again Klemen and Sasha were just as amazing!

Aside from the special guests, a few more couples were invited to do a Pro-Am Showcase. Pro-Am means a professional dancer/competitor is dancing with an amateur (usually it’s pro-pro or amateur-amateur). The performers were Hwang Lim, Lowell Bernados, and Nino (Singapore); Laura Hwang and Abedin Harwell (Singapore); Pamela Lee and Matthew Rooke (Singapore); and Myrna Tan and Salvatore Sinardi (Philippines).

I love how, in events like this, everyone just comes together because of one thing: love for dancing. No politics, no self-interests, no senseless crap—everyone just goes out to have a good time, watch their idols, and be more inspired! And it doesn’t matter if you’re a D.I., a competitor, a student, or simply someone who enjoys watching dance shows—this kind of show is for EVERYONE!

I don’t want to talk too much, so instead, I’ll let you see what I saw for myself that spectacular night. Enjoy the videos and photos that follow, and I hope to see you there on the 2019 installment of this amazing event.

Congratulations, Mr. Benny Lao, Ms. Myrna Tan, and the whole Dance Vision team!

Videos by DanceSportPH (subscribe to her YouTube channel):

Klemen and Sasha:

Domen and Natascha:

Videos by Pepe Samson (my YouTube here):

Riccardo and Yulia:


More photos:

* Special thanks to Jeanfer Salas!

2018 Philippine World Showdance Festival

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