World's top dance stars head to Glasgow

THOUSANDS of the most talented movers from across the world will descend on Glasgow as the city prepares to host the World Street Dance Championships for the second year.

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High-flying duo Twist and Pulse help launch the World Street Dance Championships in Glasgow
High-flying duo Twist and Pulse help launch the World Street Dance Championships in Glasgow

The Worlds is the leading event on the global street dance calendar - and will attract around 6000 spectators and competitors to Glasgow as part of a three-year partnership between the city and the United Dance Organisation.

Individual dancers and crews from more than 30 countries, including from Europe and as far afield as China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and the US will make the trip to compete at elite level.

Competitors, who are aged between five and 30, have been preparing new routines and moves for months to qualify for what will be the biggest showcase since the competition was launched nine years ago.

This year's competition will take place from Friday to Sunday, August 22-24 at the Clyde Auditorium and the SECC.

Alongside the championships, the SECC will also host the UDO Dance Show Live, on the Sunday. It will include a packed programme of practical workshops, Q&A sessions, industry master classes and celebrity performances.

Among the guests attending Dance Show Live are X-Factor finalists Rough Copy, Britain's Got Talent ­finalists Bars and Melody and Twist and Pulse, as well as the winner of Sky 1's Got to Dance, Lukas McFarlane.

The Worlds is run by the UDO, which has grown to ­become the largest street dance organisation in the UK and Europe with more than 50,000 members, since it ­began in 2002.

Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow City Council and chairman of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said ­securing the three-year deal to host the street dance ­extravaganza was a "massive vote of confidence".

It is estimated the three ­annual events could add an extra £7million a year to the city's economy.

Mr Matheson said: "We're excited to welcome the United Dance Organisation and the World Street Dance Championships back to Glasgow for another energetic event which will showcase the best-of-the-best in world street dance."

Simon Dibley, CEO of the UDO, said they were looking forward to returning after an "amazing" time last year.

He said: "Alongside The Worlds, we're bringing Dance Show Live back to Glasgow, which will provide a unique platform for young people across the city and beyond to gain practical skills and ­experience and to engage and be inspired by some of the most talented performers in the industry today."

Britain's Got Talent finalists from 2010, Ashley Glazebrook and Glen Murphy, ­better known as Twist and Pulse, were in Glasgow for the launch of the event.

Ashley said: "We love Glasgow, the people are always so welcoming and supportive and we've had a great reception whenever we've visited."

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