Sunderland dance stars make all the right moves

Boom 'n' Bounce street dancers at Pallion Action Group - Pandoras Treasures
Boom 'n' Bounce street dancers at Pallion Action Group - Pandoras Treasures
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MORE movers are doing back flips after claiming prizes at an international street dance competition.

Youngsters from the Bounce ‘n’ Boom street dance project, based at Pallion Action Group, didn’t think they would even make it to the Udo World Street Dance Championships in Glasgow because of funding problems.

But the group of 23 children and teenagers managed to get together the £7,000 they needed – and came back armed with trophies.

The group’s activities co-ordinator, Marie Mould, said: “It was unbelievable. I was just so happy for the kids, and they were fantastic.

“They performed in front of some of the best dancers in the world and audiences of thousands of people.

“We didn’t win any big prizes, but just to be there for the experience, they felt like winners.”

Seventeen-year-old Ghazaleh Habibifar, of South Hylton, who attends sixth form at Saint Robert of Newminster Catholic School, took home a sixth-place trophy for her dance solo in the over-16s category.

Beaudine Reay, 17, who studies performing arts at Newcastle College, made it to the final of the hip hop dance-off before being knocked out in the final round.

“It was still brilliant,” said Marie, who volunteers to run the group with youth worker Hazel Kerr.

“It’s made us realise we still have a lot of work to do to improve, but the kids did really well because the level of dancing was just incredible.

“There were so many teams competing in each category – about 40 – they did well just to get placed, but really just to soak the atmosphere up and to get that experience and advice from professionals was enough.”

Despite success at the world championships, the future is still uncertain for Bounce ‘n’ Boom, as they try to secure more funding to keep the project going.

Marie said: “We are still going to volunteer to run it, and we will try and get more funding, but whether we do or not, I don’t know.

“Either way, the kids will keep dancing though. They’re performers – it’s what they do.”

 Earlier this week, the Echo told how a trio of performers from Sunniside-based group Dance Jam brought home honours.

Dance duo Thomas Hunter, 10, from Fulwell, and Rhys Johnson, 10, from Roker, came fifth in the under-12s dance duo category, while Courtney Peel, 12, from Silksworth, came sixth in the under-14s novice category.