Tuesday, August 3, 2010


The 42nd International Grand Ball Championships were held this past weekend, July 29 – 31, at the San Francisco Airport Marriott Hotel, San Francisco.
This event was originally run by Rhona Pick and Roy Hinton in 1968. Several years ago the event was taken over by Stephan Krauel and Denise Jourdaine. It is now one of the premier events on the West Coast.
Attending and competing from Hawai’i were Glenn Okazaki and Ann Ho. In the Amateur Senior I Standard 5-dance Championship 8 couples competed in the Semi Final. Glenn and Anne made the Final and finished in 4th place. Although they received a mixture of 3rd, 4th and 5th place marks from the panel of 9 judges their Coach Ms. Heather Smith managed to find two 1st places and three 2nd places for them. In the Amateur Senior II Standard 5-dance Championship 3 couples competed and Anne and Glenn finished in 1st Place! There were a possible 45 1st place marks in this event (5 dances X 9 judges) and Anne and Glenn received a total of 42 1st places making them a sure winner. Congratulations to Anne and Glenn who are truly representing Hawai’i in grand style.
In the Pro/Am division Maria Handl once again traveled to the Mainland this time with her Hawai’i teacher Lucas Jaime. She danced in 97 different events in the American Smooth and Rhythm and International Standard and Latin. Maria eventually brought home the International Grand Ball Top Student Award. Congratulations to Maria and her teacher Lucas Jaime.
This event boasts the largest Top Teacher Award in the USA. 1st place Top Teacher received a prize of $10,000.00. I wonder who won that. I will keep you posted!

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