SEQUINS, tights and makeup will be in big demand come Monday October 1 when Singleton’s Dance Eisteddfod returns with double the number of last year’s contestants.
The event has now moved from being a three day event to a six day event after huge success in its inaugural year last year.
Singleton Eisteddfod president Kayla Marshall said she started the event for the performing arts in town because at the time there was no competition for all the talented dancers currently studying in Singleton.
“As a dancer you crave competition or the stage and Singleton didn’t have that so people had to travel out of town to compete, I thought if Muswellbrook and Scone have one we should have one,” Mrs Marshall said.
Organised by a team of volunteers, they choose to run it differently from other Eisteddfods by giving all their profits to charity.
This year the money will go to the Sids and Kids organisation and next year it will be a different recipient.
“A year’s worth of planning went into the upcoming Eisteddfod sponsored by Vale Coal and our volunteers are taking a week off work to support the event and charity so it’s a huge effort,” Mrs Marshall said.
“But it wouldn’t happen without the help of local businesses and sponsors,” Mrs Marshall said.
“Compared to sport, gaining sponsorship for dance is quite difficult so we’re really pleased with the companies helping us.”
What’s surprised Mrs Marshall the most is the variety of companies that are endorsing the event.
“There’s no jersey to put a logo on but it’s still a massive help and good community endorsement,” Mrs Marshall said.
“These dancers are athletes though, they make their bodies move in amazing ways with grace and it requires intense concentration to pull it off.”
“You can get injured but they comeback because they have a passion for dance.”
The age groups start at under 6 and continue to adults with more than 200 categories all up, some dancers will compete in 12 events.
“It’s not just the solo acts there’s countless group ensembles,” she said.
“In one day 3000 performers will take to the stage.”
”This year will also see the eisteddfod opening up categories for children with special needs.”
The biggest age group is the intermediate group 9-13 year olds.
The added numbers make it really difficult to place. When there’s up to 17 people competing for the top three positions in just one event the competition is tight.
Mrs Marshall said in the future they would like to open the Eisteddfod up to the other performing arts like drama and music but they need the help of experts in those fields to be judges.
Adjudicating the Singleton Dance Eisteddfod is Rosalynne Boothroyd who has worked throughout Britain, New Zealand and Australia.
Mrs Boothroyd has adjudicated for the past 25 years and was the president and foundation member of the Australian Dance Adjudicators Association.
The Singleton Dance Eisteddfod is open to the public so everyone can see the talent on display.
The competition runs from October 1 to 6.