Rock’n and roll’n to success
Tokoroa’s Nicholas Totton, Bridie Mcneil, and Hayden Middlebrook are rock and roll stars but probably not the kind you’re familiar with.
The Tokoroa Rock ‘n’ Roll Club trio are all dancers who compete nationally and socially in a style which emerged in the 1950s following the swing movement.
Complete with attire fit for the period, they recently took part in the New Zealand Amateur Rock ‘n’ Roll Association’s annual Senior Championships at Ilminster Intermediate School in Gisborne and came away with multiple placings.
The competition was open to dancers throughout the country who had passed various assessments by national judges and Middlebrook said the talent level was right up there.
The trio’s months of hard work leading up to the competition also put them in good stead to be up with the best.
Middlebrook and Totton came second in the Open Same Sex Section.
Middlebrook and Mcneil were second in the Platinum Section Dancing and Best Dressed Platinum.
Totton and Mcneil were third in the Best Dressed Open Restricted Couple.
Middlebrook, who has been dancing for 26 years, said they all left ‘‘everything on the floor’’ during their performances.
‘‘We had a lot of fun preparing for it and we felt we danced really well. We couldn’t have done anything more on the day,’’ he said.
He said they trained for nine months in the First Tokoroa Scout Group hall leading up to the competition.
‘‘We started off doing a couple of nights a week training and ended up doing five or six nights a weeks in the last week before it so it got really full on but it was a lot of fun,’’ he said.
Middlebrook encouraged others to come along to the club’s Monday night gatherings to check things out.
‘‘We meet every Monday night at 7.30pm in the hall and anyone can come along because the first night is always free,’’ he said.
‘‘The first hour is used for lessons and then after that you can dance with whoever and do what you want. We keep Mondays very social so people can just enjoy themselves.’’
They thanked all those who helped them get to nationals and the scouts for the use of their hall.
Tokoroa Rock ‘n’ Roll Club members Nicholas Totton and Bridie Mcneil take to the podium (3rd) at the 2016 New Zealand Amateur Rock ‘n’ Roll Association’s Senior Championships.