Friday, October 31, 2008

Ballerina in Viennese Ball Kuala Lumpur 2008

This may not exactly be related to dancesport, but if you recall, in my Blog on the 19th July 2008, I asked the question whether there is life after Ballet. I did put it nicely that Ballerinas are excellent material to take up Dancesport and has openly encouraged Ballet Studios to incorporate Dancesport as part of their program apart from Pilates, Yoga or aerobics.

In that Blog I wrote about a Ballerina by the name of Ellya Sam Mun-Yee. Ellya was in the top 3 winners of the 11th Classical Ballet 2008, competition in Category B organized by The Dance Society, the governing body of Ballet in Malaysia.

I would describe Ellya as a diligent Ballet Dancer, and to her it is a serious avocation. She is still doing her exams and will be completing her RAD Advance 2 by next year .

When the Viennese Debutante Ball Kuala Lumpur 2008 was announced, Jonathan a Latin Dancer approached her parents sometimes in July, whether Ellya would like to partner him to the Debutante Ball. You have to picture this, she has no inkling what this is all about and Viennese Waltz and Polonaise are understood in the context of Ballet, not Dancesport.

As this is new to Ellya, she warned Jonathan that she will do her utmost best, but it will be at his Peril. In August Ellya joined a Dance Studio teaching Standard at Plaza Damas and started from scratch Waltz, Quickstep and of course Viennese Waltz. Within that span of 3 months Ellya just about got the hang of it and the idea of dancing with a partner. Before she can say Polonaise, it was time for the Viennese Ball 2008. As they say, the rest is history.

I had the opportunity to speak to her about the whole experience. She told me it was the most exciting experience in her life. Apart from the dancing, the marching into the hall with the other participants in their resplendent gowns is so grand and memorable. All the gentlemen and ladies look so dashing and elegant. Dancing to live music to a full orchestra is so different from music coming out from a Compact Disc player.

Ellya related that the music not only surrounds you, but it really gets into your whole system and you cannot help but be attuned with the whole ambiances. Ellya would advice that should there be another debutante Ball organized by the Austrian Embassy, she would like all of you out there to experience what she has gone through. The whole process of getting ready from the make up to the Gowns and the practices are all worth the while.

Ellya & Jonathan incidentally were selected as one of the top 5 couples to dance in the Vienna Opera Ball in Austria in February 2009. Of the 5 selected couples, only the best couple selected for the evening will have their return airfare fully sponsored by the Austrian Embassy. The announcement will be made later I suppose.

The Vienna Opera Ball was started in 1869 by the Emperor Franz Kaiser Joseph and has a long and checkered history behind it. It is the most important Ball in Europe. I am sure they will not let this opportunity pass and we wish them well.

Now coming back to my point on Ballerinas, Ellya is classic example of a pure Ballerina who dares to venture into a new dance discipline. Not only did she managed to go through the evening admirably, but to be selected as one of the top 5 couples out of 50, after just 3 months of weekend classes, speaks a lot for Ballerinas and their training.

Ellya’s final aim is to be 10 dance competent in Dancesport and when the time is right she hopes to participate in some of the competitions locally and overseas. She is only 15 this year.

Congratulations Ellya!

Picture of Ellya & Jonathan by Alexander David Pon

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Discipline in the National Ranking

Have you checked the points of our National athletes after the first round of competition at Batu Pahat? If you have not, go to the MPDC web site at You would notice that there are no points awarded to Wilson and Michelle but their names are in the Malaysian ranking list. They came out second and rightly so they deserve to be acknowledged.

The reason for the blank is Wilson has written to me by way of email dated the 30th of August 2008, that he cannot commit to Team Dancesport Malaysia 2009 due to his studies and that his partner Michelle plans to go overseas in 2009. The date when the major Games will be held.

The council having deliberated this situation has decided that since he has voluntarily opted out of the selection, there are no further reason to award him any points from the Championship. Let me explain that the points are given to Malaysian dance athlete as a gauge for MDSB and MPDC to select those with the most points to be admitted for further training under the Team Dancesport Malaysia 2009. In the event you have declared your intention to decline being selected, the points served no purpose to you.

We would like to thank Wilson for being forthright and honest to MPDC and to me of his intentions that he cannot commit himself for the Games but nevertheless I personally wish him well and after he has completed his studies, maybe he would like to try other Championship selections by MPDC.

The other matter that is taken into account and really this is academic as in Wilson's case is that he has taken a neutral stand in Dancesport and he has made his intentions very clearly in his email to me. In short by taking a neutral stand what we understand is that he would like to dance in any competition that comes in his way. Again I personally respect that stand , and in my blog below, I did mention that it is a matter of choice for the dancers to choose which body they want to dance in.

Since he has made the choice by dancing in an unsanctioned competition, it is quite clear that he does not intend to be bound by the rules of MPDC/IDSF/MDSB/ADSF. As sports director I have this to say. In the National Ranking we are dealing with selecting the best athlete for Dancesport in Malaysia. In the Asian ranking we will see how our athletes fare in Asia compared to other athletes from the region. In the international ranking we have the international IDSF ranking for our athletes.

Please understand that we do not measure ourselves with other bodies that have their own standard in ranking their dancers, as I have pointed in my blog below. By that what I am harbouring is you cannot compare an apple run competition with an orange run competition. Simply because the apple run competition and the orange run competition runs on different rules and protocol. The rules are important to give order in a competition. We cannot have a free for all.

To all Grade A athletes in MDSB/MPDC you have made your choice to participate the National ranking. As a dancesport athlete you know your obligation and duties, that I do not have to spell out here. We expect a certain standard of self respect and discipline from you. In all organisation they have their rules and regulations and if you choose not to follow the rules and regulations, you do so at your own peril.

As for Wilson, he is a talented dancer and I am sure he will do fine in other competition and I wish him well.

Are we hard ? You decide, but rules are meant to be followed and I invite healthy discussion on this.

The picture is the prickly cactus, some may think it is a prickly issue, I do not think so.

Thursday, August 28, 2008


I always get mails asking me about the politics in the Dancesport world, and especially in Malaysia. People will write to me and say that we are nothing but a bunch of megalomaniacs (power crazy) people who have nothing better to do in life playing politics and messing around with the dance career of our Malaysian athletes.

Let me in my capacity as Sports Director of MPDC state my take on this great divide of Dancesport in Malaysia. It is true that Dancesport in Malaysia is very political and like many other things, it is a matter of your choice , as to which group you wish to associate yourself with. Generally there are 2 bodies in Malaysia, we are with the Malaysian Professional Dancesport Council (MPDC) and the Malaysian Dancesport Berhad (MDSB). MPDC & MDSB are like a pea in a pod, and on the international level IDSF & IPDSC works together like siblings.

The other Dance body in Malaysia is the Malaysian Dancers Association (MDA) that annually holds their Championship in Penang. On the international level they are members of World Dance Council (WDC) headed by a popular Dancer Donnie Burns MBE.

Way before I came into the picture as Sports Director of then MDSB and MPDC, there were irreconcilable differences between MDSB and MDA. Each of them have their own agenda and they pursue their path separately. Like they say the twain will never meet and this is the same internationally between IDSF & WDC. In Malaysia we live and let live, you do your things and we do ours.

Things changed when Dancesport as we understand it to be was included in the Olympic Family Games like the 23rd SEA Games and the 1st Asian Indoor Games in 2005. It just did not happen suddenly, IDSF previous president Rudi Bauman managed to get IDSF to join the International Olympic Council (IOC). That Ballroom Dancing that you use to call, now is call Dancesport (one word). It is a sport and the IOC has accepted and saw that the IDSF has proper rules and regulations to include it as a sport. That was in the year 2000.

I was asked why can't MDSB and MDA join and do a Malaysian ranking so that dancers on both bodies can take part in the National ranking? To answer this is neither tricky nor is there any sinister design behind it. Let me make it clear to all that THE MALAYSIAN RANKING IS OPEN TO ALL MALAYSIAN Citizens with absolutely no exceptions to colour creed race or religion.

In all sports be it football, badminton or wushu we have regulations governing the sport. That regulation have to be adhered to. Wushu cannot have a a non member who says that it is alright to stab the opponent or in Karate in the kumite ( combat), it is alright to kick your opponent between his or her legs.

In IDSF Dancesport, we also have regulations and they can be found in the IDSF website. For instance in Latin the ladies cannot wear skin colour under garment , and the distance between the two cups of the bra have to adhere to certain distance. In IDSF dress regulations, the men are not allowed to expose their bodies right to the navel and they cannot wear kimono like costumes. Such rules and protocols are meant to regulate a sporting event, you cannot have a free for all, where you have Latin dancers appearing with almost nothing left to the imagination. You will then be ogling at something else instead of the dancers techniques.

The point I am making is we are not restricting any Malaysian who wants to join the ranking or the IDSF open competition, all we ask of you is to comply with our Rules and Statues of IDSF. Is that too much to ask? The last 2 SEA Games in Cebu and Korat, please understand that Olympic Council of Asia and SEA Games Federation uses only IDSF adjudicators and all the IDSF rules and all the regulations and protocols from dressings to sequences of the dance. It is Dancesport and it is run like a sport.

You cannot come from another dance organisation and tell IDSF or in our case MDSB or MPDC that we want our adjudicators, we want our rules to be included and we want our format of the dances to be adopted. How can we give in to this. Let me give you an example. To all MPDC/MDSB dance athletes you know that we classify our athletes as Grade A - 5 dances, B - 4 dances, C - 3 dances, D - 2 Dances and E-1 Dance.

Internationally at the Blackpool Dance Festival, that is running in its 84th year now, classify the Dancers under Amature Raising Stars, Professional Raising Stars, the Amateurs Championships and Professional Championships and many other events. In essence, the Amateur classification above means 5 dances in Blackpool. To put it in IDSF language they are all Grade A events.

Look at the coming 15th Penang International Ballroom Dancing Championship that will be held on the 22nd of November 2008. I now invite you to look at one event that they call the Asia Amateur Closed. Can you guess how many dances a dancer have to do for that event? 4 only minus Paso Doble and in Standard minus Viennese Waltz.

You cannot compare an IDSF Grade A to the Asia Amateur Close. The proper comparison in Grade B. This is neither a criticism nor am I suggesting something negative. I am stating a fact, meaning if you are an Asian Amateur Champion, you cannot as a matter of right claim a berth in Team Dancesport Malaysia to represent Malaysia for the SEA Games or Asian Indoor Games.The reason is quite obvious.

However what I am saying is, if you have your 5 dances and you want to join the Malaysian ranking, by all means come, be our member, familiarise yourself with sporting rules, go to the floor and show your stuff.

I hope not to touch this point anymore and I subscribe to the view that this is a free country and each can pursue their own dreams so long that your dreams do not invade my dreams. Let's live and let live!

This view is mine alone as Sports Director and does not in any way reflect the views of MPDC or MDSB.

Oh! the rose is my hope that one day we can iron whatever differences and work together for the betterment of Dancesport in Malaysia.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


we have just completed the first ranking and I have heard suggestions from various people that the quality of our Malaysian dancers are not up to mark when compared to the Thailand, Singapore or the Filipino dancers. Those remarks were made in good faith and I tend to agree to a large extend because when we went to the Asian Indoor Games in Macau to compete none of our athletes managed to make it into the finals. In Dancesport I get critiques of all sort but we have to take such suggestions with an open mind.

I was told that our Grade A Athletes have very poor foot work, poor musicality and in short poor basics. This is a reflection of the of Standard Dancesport teachers in Malaysia. As an indication she told me that her daughter trained in Singapore have better foot work than the Malaysian dancers. Wow! something to learn from her.

Remarks like that are an eye opener to Malaysian standard teachers and instead of defending the issue of the Malaysian standard, I say we should open up and examine ourselves as to why we are not Champions in the SEA Games and the Asian Indoor Games. As a non dancer normally I will dismiss such criticism as just another caustic comment. This lady and dance instructor have talented daughters in the field of dance sport and classical ballet dance. These comments are not idle comments. To me talk is easy, criticising the quality of our dancers and their instructors are easy.

With that I think we should accept what was said with an open mind and as a challenge, I would like to see in the next ranking to use the American expression is to put your money where your mouth is. Get your couples out and compete in Malaysia. Surely if you hold the view that our Grade A lacks musicality and poor foot work, I am sure the couple that you can train in Singapore can take on the likes of Anthony and Anita, Wilson and Michelle and Casey & Fabiola. These couples are products of Malaysian teachers and I know that for a fact.

As Sports Director of MPDC, I am neutral about such matters and call on her to produce a Champion. I think a period of 12 months is reasonable for her couple to break into the dancing scene in Malaysia. I do not expect them to lift the OCM challenge trophy, but what I expect is to occupy the top 3 places and be part of Team Dancesport Malaysia 2010 at the Asian Games in Guangzhou.

It takes courage and guts to make such comments and I have said earlier and I am saying it again. To promote Dancesport we must have Champions at the Olympic Family Games like SEA and Asian Games. This is exciting for I expect to see a higher standard of dancing in Malaysia. Maybe with this challenge it will jolt our Standard teachers out of their complacency.

The rose is offered as a challenge to her to do it for the country or to put in casually, show me what you can do with your couples.

MPDC National Ranking

MPDC has just completed the competition in Batu Pahat. Together with the MPDC open there was also the National rankings. The competition was well organised with Mr. Shawn Tay the Chief adjudicator and other adjudicators from Thailand , Philippines, Singapore, Italy, South Africa and of course Malaysia too. Just a day before the competition Mr. Shawn Tay conducted an IPDSC adjudicators Congress, it was attended by 42 participants with Malaysian making the largest group.

It is refreshing to see new faces that is coming to join the ranking and it is our hope that this new dance athletes will have the opportunity to join Team Dancesport Malaysia (TDM) 2009 for the Hanoi 3rd Asian Indoor Games. Through past experience we know that the journey to be the best in Asia is no easy task, but the Asian Indoor Games is always the test bed to see if our athletes are up to standard. In the previous SEA Games in Korat, the Olympic Council of Malaysia, will look at our athletes performance at the Asian Indoor Games to decide whether our athletes can represent the country. Please note that OCM will not send out athletes under Category A at their costs unless we are sure medal contenders. By this, TDM will either have to raised the funds to compete or the athletes will have to pay themselves. OCM are not hard, but they do not want our athletes to go to an important Games, get a good trashing and come back looking silly and stupid. This has happened before.

Now until the next selection we in MPDC calls our Ranked athletes to expose themselves to Championships in Asia. Philippines will be having their IDSF Open in November and many more that we in MPDC would encourage you to go to.

To the potential National athletes your journey to Team Dancesport Malaysia has just begun, now is the time to prove your worth. All said we congratulate you and we trust the web master will publish your ranking on the MPDC web site on the points that you have gained.
A word of caution to all Grade A MDSB/MPDC athletes, please do not dance in any Championship, if it is not an IDSF/MPDC Championship. In the event you are not sure please ask MPDC or MDSB for clearance.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

IPDSC Adjudicators Congres 2008

Many of you have asked what are the benefits of attending the IPDSC Congress. To answer this question , it all depends on you, asking that question. Are you asking as a Dance athlete or are you asking as a Dance Coach , a Teacher or a potential Adjudicator.
MPDC advise and encourages dance athletes to attend the Congress, for at the Congress they will be touching on dance technique, and in particular what adjudicators must look out for in a dance couple on the floor. Is the execution of the technique correct and if it is wrong why is it wrong. In a Congress, I noticed that Natasha Ambroz, got Seko and his sister dance the samba twice once the correct technique and the other the incorrect technique, and the participants were asked to decide which is the right technique. Seko and the sister are the Asian Top Lain couple in the ADSF ranking in 2007.

From the above, it is obvious and it is important for coaches, trainers and adjudicators to keep on updating their techniques and the latest so call dance "fashion" or flavour. MPDC have domestically decided to start a pool of local adjudicators and they must attend Congress and workshop organised by MPDC or MDSB. MPDC has decided to broadly catagorise them in Category A and Category B adjudicators. Category B adjudicators are eligible to grade all class except GRADE A athletes. Category A adjudicator are eligible to adjudicate all categories, domestically.

Once you are a category A adjudicator, you are already on your way to apply to be admitted as an IDSF international adjudicator. Once you have all your technical and professional qualification in place, MPDC will vet through your records and the MPDC technical committee will decide whether you will be ready to be recommended to be an IDSF international adjudicator.

Those of you who have seen the latest IDSF adjudicators form, you will notice that now IDSF demands that you must have professional qualification in both Latin American and Standard , with a minimum Licentiate level.

To those of you who will be attending the Congress at Batu Pahat, you may be asked to declare whether you intend to be an MPDC adjudicator, you will be given a form to fill . The information will be captured in our book of records and will be perused by the technical committee to decide on your eligibility. I can off hand tell you that if you are still dancing and actively competing you can forget about applying to be a Category A adjudicator. At most the technical committee will allow you to be an Category B adjudicator.

Now a question was asked whether a physically challenged non dancer can technically be an adjudicator. The quick answer is no, he cannot be an adjudicator. He may be able to demonstrate that he may know the theory and that he understand the full technique of the Dance but in the Professional examination, you are required to dance out the step. However a dancer who has never competed in his life can however be able to apply to be an adjudicator and have all the prerequisite qualifications.

To me an adjudicator is akin to a judge. We all assume that judges are fair but this is not really the case because judges are human beings and as humans they have their failing and their weaknesses. From the MPDC perspective these are mere excuses, and if you cannot be fair then you have no business being a judge. To judge unfairly in my opinion is a sin that is so heinous for it perverts the law of nature. Here the rules of natural justice apply in that " No man must be a judge in his own cause."

Can anyone of you tell me whether it is correct for a teacher to judge his own couple on the floor against other couples. He may claims to be the fairest person in the world, for if he does so he would have gone against the Rules of Natural Justice.

With MPDC coming into the picture we will endeavor to do our best, we may have our short comings here and there. MPDC is new we are only registered in April 2008. However as Sports Director I want to assure you that fair play in our competitions is not an option, it cannot be compromised. You the athletes must know that when you walk on the Dance floor in an MPDC competition, we will not only want you to know that it is fair, you can see with your own eyes that it is fair. Have you not heard , "Justice must not only be done, but must be seen to be done".

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Ballet schools

Ballet is an excellent dance form and many parents recognises this. This is testified by the many Ballet schools through out Malaysia. Do you know that even in Kota Baru and Kuala Trengganu there are ballet schools and they produce excellent dancers.

The Dance Society (TDS) stage shows and conduct Ballet competitions to select the best ballet dancer in the country. The competition are divided into age groups and in 3 Categories. Category 1 is the highest where the dancers have to dance en point (on their toes pointed) . Malaysia does not have a Ballet Dance company, the lucky winners will very often be offered scholarship to Australia or Korea to continue their dance training. The fortunate ones will join an overseas Ballet company, many will end up teaching in Ballet schools. The majority will perhaps get a nice office job somewhere, put a little weight and ballets will be a nice and pleasant distance memory to chat about over high tea.

Those who has gone into other dance form will never forget their grounding basics in Ballet. So what is my point in all this! What I would like to address to all ballet schools and appeal to all Ballet teachers is that you are training a good crop of dancers grounding them with strong basics. Would you perhaps consider encouraging your dancers to foray into Dancesport?

My speaking to some hard core Ballet teachers was a little disappointing. They do not view Dancesport as a serious dance form. If at all, it is a social avocation and linked to smoky night clubs with loose girls. Those were the days where the legendary Rose Chan rule the roost in a long forgotten art form of losing her clothes piece by piece on stage. The only remnant today of that lost art is pole dancing. Cheong Sum and Kebaya was the fashion of the day.

These ladies ply their dancing skills in the dance hall through out Malaya notably in Penang, Lighthouse Nite Club, BB Park in Kuala Lumpur and also in Singapore. They dance to live bands in those days. Buy a ticket and those dance hall ladies will gyrate their bums to the tune of perhaps " Yeh Lai Siang" by singer long forgotten already. That may be true in the early sixties and that stigma has never left the Malaysian household psyche. [the excerpts was from my talk over "kopi" with Jimmy Liew Wah Yee a septuagenarian who has been in Ballroom dancing for more than half a century - Reminiscing Uncle Jimmy).

Today Cha Cha Cha, Rumba, Samba , Jive, Waltz, Fox Trot, Quickstep has now evolved into a highly discipline sport. In the year 2000, Dancesport was a demonstration sport at Barcelona Olympics. Since then International Dancesport Federation (IDSF) has strongly promoted Dancesport to be an item in the Olympic Games and they are now a member of the International Olympic Council (IOC)

Closer to home it is a sport in the Asian Indoor Games, The Asian Games and the SEA Games. Malaysia has sent their dancesport athletes to the 2005 and 2007 SEA and Asian Indoor Games. I am urging Ballet schools in the country to consider this. You have taken years to mold out good dance material. Do not only incorporate hip hop, belly dancing, yoga or pilates in your studio activities. Why not incorporate dancesport too. Your pupil may one day represent the country in the SEA or the Asian Games someday.

MPDC is always there to assist you in anyway they can. Okay, so you have been teaching ballet all your life, and Dancesport is double Dutch to you. MPDC can assist you to introduce dancesport to your studio. Think about it please, you are doing a service to the nation by incorporating dancesport as an activity in your studio.

The picture is that of Ellya Sum Mun-Yee an accomplished Ballerina who is now making an attempt to discover more about Dancesport.

Activities of MPDC

How many of you can recognised this lady? I will leave you to guess but have a good look at her, she is obviously a dancer and a good one at that. What I am going to talk about is not so much about her but her mother and her vision to promote dancesport.

There is a dance studio in Petaling Jaya and its main dance form is Ballet. The school is famous for producing top ballet dancers in the country and many of her dancers has won accolades in ballet competitions. The Principal noticed that almost all Dancesport female dancers have a firm grounding in Ballet. She looks at the lines , the footwork, postures and the poise of the girls. She once remarked to me that almost all the top Russian Latin American and Standard dancers have a ballet background. It would be advantageous in Dancesport to have done some ballet.

The Principal started a Latin American beginners for her ballet girls and boys and guess what, they learn the dance quickly and she will be sending several couples to the MPDC Competition in Batu Pahat. So passionate is this lady that she approached MPDC as to whether we can assist her in promoting dancesport to her students and parents. She hopes to conduct a Latin American workshop for the children and explain to their parents what Dancesport is all about. She has invited MPDC to speak about dancesport in the workshop and she is also trying to get one of our National athletes to explain the dances and perhaps give a short demonstration.

MPDC being a professional body is duty bound to help this studio for their enthusiasm in promoting Dancesport and it is her wish that MPDC can play a greater role in approaching the Government Department and the Sports Ministry for assistance.

The person I am talking about is Suraya and she is the Principal of Aurora Dance Studio in Subang Jaya , Selangor. The dancer above if you still cannot figure out who she is, her name is Suhaili. Suhaili is a lecturer in ASWARA and she is also the 1st runner up in the 1st season of "So you think you can Dance." I can assure you that she is competent in Dancesport too..

Friday, July 18, 2008

How relevant is Dancesport.

So how relevant is Dancesport? Someone said that in the Laos SEA Games there will be no Dancesport event. I heard that too from OCM, but I was also told by my Thai Counter part that they are prepared to help Laos stage a Dancesport competition for the Laos SEA Games. This is confirmed by ADSF President Keiji Ukai.

Laos does not have a dancesport team , but we shall keep our fingers crossed. Vietnam that will be hosting the Hanoi, 3rd Asian Indoor Games in 2009 tells a different story altogether. They have a team training in Belgium and they are determined in the face of powerful teams from Asia hope to win some medals for Vietnam. It is going to be a good showing and honestly having been to the 2nd Macau, Asian Indoor Games and the Korat SEA Games in Thailand, I am sure the athletes from Team Dancesport Malaysia 2007 will confirm that the Macau Games wins hands down.

From the web pages of the Olympic Council of Asia, I can assure you Dancesport will be relevant till 2014 and perhaps even further. With the introduction of Dancesport in the Guangzhou Asian Games in 2010, I am quite sure that Dancesport will be a permanent feature in the next Asian Games in Incheon in 2014, Korea.

After Laos SEA Games in 2009, the SEA Games will go to Bandung Indonesia in 2011 and thereafter in 2013 to Singapore. It will eventually land on our doors soon.

After the 23rd and the 25th SEA Games and the Asian Indoor Games, we have seen two distinct features in the competition format at the finals. The final couples in both Latin American and Standard will have to perform two single dance and for Paso Doble' only , the couples are allowed a change of costume to portray the essence of the Bull Fighter dance.

To all Malaysian Grade A Dancesport athletes, the National selection is on for the 2009 Games. Please be rest assured that in the National ranking, your reputation means nothing to the judges. There is no wild card entry to Team Dancesport Malaysia. Everyone who goes on the dance floor have an equal chance to be selected, you do not have to think if you can dance. You most certainly can dance if you are in Grade A.

Do not miss the National ranking, Malaysia is looking for its best athletes to join Team Dancesport Malaysia 2009. The selection is open only to all Malaysian citizen.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

MPDC Batu Pahat Competition

What has MPDC done so far apart from announcing the start of the National competition with MDSB? For starters, I want you to know that the President of MPDC Mr. George Tan is the Vice President of MDSB, and he has discussed with the President to hold the National ranking jointly to which Mr. Apache Yong has readily agreed.

As the professional body,
MPDC has also agreed to follow up with the status of those who has attended the adjudicators congresses in 2006 regarding the status of the application. I want to assure all of you who has been requested to reapply, will get a reply from MPDC, but I cannot assure you that IDSF international will grant you the license. You will soon note in MPDC web site the announcement of Category A and Category B adjudicators . Those who are Category A adjudicators will be eligible to adjudicate Grade A athletes but perhaps lack the necessary technical qualification to apply to be an international adjudicator. Those in Category B may have part of the technical qualifications, they will be invited to adjudicate all categories except Grade A.

You may ask why is
MPDC taking this stand. For starters, do you know that Malaysia have only 4 adjudicators of international standing . Secondly MPDC being a professional body is duty bound to increase the knowledge of adjudicators and athletes. The first MPDC adjudicators Congress will be held in Batu Pahat and a certificate of participation and full completion will be given to you at the end of the Congress. In the event you intend to be an adjudicator please keep the certificate as proof of attendance. If you are an athlete, the Congress will update you on the latest techniques and what adjudicators will be looking for in form and style. It is still an important certificate to keep when you decided to hang up your dancing shoes.

The National rankings will be open to Malaysian only. The OPEN event will also be a ranking event. This time the OPEN event will accept couples of mixed citizenship to participate in our competition. Let me explain , in
IDSF Rule: 13 couples of mixed citizenship can dance in IDSF competition in the world. To keep with the trend we are encouraging couples to partner a Malaysian to dance for Malaysia. Say you are a Thai Citizen and you wish to dance with a Malaysian, MPDC will accept you as a member provided always that you must make an election to dance for Malaysia. IDSF rules will apply.

Mixed citizenship couples cannot however participate in the Olympic family Games (SEA Games Asian Games, World Games, Asian Indoor Games) , but they may participate in all
IDSF Regional , IDSF CUP and all IDSF/IPDSC ranking.

To be absolutely honest, we do not know whether this will be good for the country and for
MPDC or not. Our avowed aim is to promote dancing, therefore we should not discriminate mixed citizenship couples dancing for Malaysia.

So to all of you adjudicators, dance athletes , dance coaches, instructors, if you have the time , do not miss this
IPDSC Congress in Batu Pahat. All of you are teachings and coaching professional, you need a platform to voice your grievances and dissatisfaction. MPDC is the proper body for you to join. .

MPDC may be very new. MPDC may not have a track record behind them. I ask you not to prejudge MPDC but examine the structure and set up. In my earlier blog, I told you that MPDC is registered under the Sports Commission Act. MPDC is a full member of the International Dancesport Council (IPDSC) and the only professional dancesport body in Malaysia recognised by IPDSC.

We are also supported by all Government Sporting bodies. Go to our web site and you will know that we are supported by the National Sports Council (
MSN) the Istitute Sukan Negara (ISN) and the Ministry of Youth and Sports.

So are our credential are impressive? I am not going to answer that, they are relevant and important. I rather you just keep all this at the back of your mind and judge
MPDC by their actions and their conduct. If you have not joined MPDC and rather wait and see, I do not blame you. I want to assure you that MPDC will not compromise on the quality of judging in all their competitions and in times to come we hope to increase our standard of judging by conducting more congress and workshop. That is our commitment to all of you.

NB:The picture is my young dalmatian, about the age of
MPDC. Her name is HOWPORTENG !

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I am back

I am back, and most of you may be curious as to why? The short answer is I was invited by the current President of MPDC to take up this post. I must confess that after December 31st 2007 when I resigned as MDSB Sports Director it was over for me.

Further I was encouraged that there are people who are still very enthusiastic in Dancesport, What I feel they lack is guidance and direction and I was asked to share my experience in this new set up.

I have so many things to share with you and I do not know where to start. I suppose I will start with MPDC and talk about their aims and directions.

Malaysian Professional Dancesport Council (MPDC) formation is inevitable. As the name suggest it is a Professional Dancesport body in Malaysia recognised by the International Professional Dancesport Council ( IPDSC). The trend in the world as some of you may be aware of, the International Dancersport Federation (IDSF) has changed their name to World Dancesport Federation (WDF). The reason for the change is many, but the main reason as I see it is dance must encompass other discipline like rock & roll and even wheel chair dancing and many more.

With this dichotomy the trend, is now to leave the training program of professional dance teachers, professional athletes, scrutineering program to the professionals. What then does the amateur do, well they have an important role of regulating the amateur athletes in WDF.

Internationally WDF and IPDSC works very well together, like wise locally MDSB and MPDC are joining hands to start the National ranking. It is most unfortunate that the 2nd KL International Dance Festival has to be postponed, but the show must still go on.

To all of you out there who wants to represent Malaysia for the Olympic Family Games like SEA and Asian Indoor Games. I want you to know that the technical aspect of the Games is govern by IDSF or WDF Rules only. By that I mean you need to be a member of your local professional or amateur body. You must be a current member of MPDC or MDSB. Your achievement or ranking by other dancesport body are not recognised. For the purposes of the National ranking , the aim is to select Malaysian best to represent the country. It matters not whether you are a professional or an amateur. However the distinction of amateur and professional becomes apparent when you join the WDF/IDSF or the IPDSC competition circuit. Each have their own dance circuit.

You will also note that MPDC will be regulating National adjudicators into Category A and Category B adjudicators. The details will be found in their web site. I will touch on other area soon.

The attachment is a picture of the MPDC registration certificate. I choose this picture because this is the start of all things.

If you have anything you wish to highlight to me , you can write to me at