Presenting to you Unleashed 2012 Pole Divas Amateur Pole Dancing Competition. Held at Room 680 Glenferie Road, the competition saw family members, friends, pole students and the general public who went to support participants or just wanted to see how pole dancing has evolved. The night was a display of creativity, artistry, strength and confidence. This is the 11th year Pole Divas has organised Unleashed and it just gets better over the years.
Even the prizes were much better this time around. They involve the following; between $600-950 in total value for each category:
Skinovate – Microdermabrasion Voucher
Touch Point Remedial Massage – half hour treatment
007 Heaven voucher
The Lock Boutique – voucher for a cut & colour
Princess Avenue hair extension products
Sideshow Annie Costume Parlour lashes pack
MiPhone Design custom phone case
LadyBird Health protein pack
PolePhysics lotion pack
X-Pole merchandise pack AND an X-Pole Sport (for Elite category only)
Best Dressed winner won a pair of Pleaser USA pole shoes sponsored by Pole Divas
This year saw about 60 students auditioning for the competition and only 27 were chosen out of the whole lot. The bars were raised. Students were attempting higher-level tricks and tricks they learnt outside of the studio; which seemed to be the defining criteria for what made them stand out from the rest.
The ambience was great and smoothly run. The queue was smooth outside Room 680. It wasn’t a hassle entering the club, it didn’t feel cold at all while waiting for the room to be filled; they only turned on the air-conditioner after the competition had started (this was to participants’ advantage – as they were already in their pole outfits). The seats were well-organised and everyone could view the stage from wherever they were. There were two breaks in between the competition and there were no hiccups throughout.
Both Angelique and Rachel were hosts for the night, taking turns to introduce the sponsors and students. The programme introduced each category with announcement of the category winner immediately afterwards, but the Elite category had to wait a little longer till after the doubles’ competition was completed before they announced the elite, doubles and best outfit winner.
This is the first time I’m attending the competition as a spectator, and it is quite different this time from a spectator’s view. I saw many things I want to emulate from the performances I saw, and also many other things I would avoid in the future.
I saw some nervous faces, some extra thread hanging off outfits, visible tags underneath see-through hot pants, accidental slipping off the pole, some vulgar moves who were crowd-pleasers for the lot, but not for some others.
However, it was always the same things that would generally impress the judges. Judges preferred pointed toes, arms and legs’ extension, display of strength, choice of music, transition of moves, theme, outfit, engagement with audience; all the usual must-do’s you would be able to point out as an audience.
Well done to the winners for the Unleashed 2012!
Beginner – Simone Wood
Intermediate – Jessica Haysom
Advanced – Bek Neilson
Elite – Jen Cheah
Doubles – Tamara Howard & Jane Berry
Best Outfit – Lauren Rui
Leng and I who went as Jen’s #1 supporter.
Emma and I.
Pole instructors from Pole Divas Prahran, Moonee Ponds, Mornington Peninsula and Richmond performed the science-fiction extravaganza!
The ladies from Mornington Peninsula.
Human caterpillar! Spectacular!
Some of these pole instructors have been invited to perform and compete at an international level; that’s how popular pole-dancing is. All of them have dance background and qualification involving personal training, gymnastics, ballet, hip-hop, calisthenics, jazzercise, body-building (yes!!!) and one of them even danced at Australia’s Got Talent last week.
I missed some students’ photos; and they turned out quite blur. This set of photos are the best of the lot.
The winner of the Beginner category; Simone Wood who danced to a burlesque number.
Jessica Haysom dancing in the rain.
Winner of Intermediate category sporting a handstand on the pole – Jessica Haysom.
Bek Neilson danced to Labrinth Earthquake.
Alison Wong with her yellow polka dot bikini performance.
Hard to believe Colleen is a mother of two! She joined this competition for fun. Truly inspiring.
Lozzie with her amazing handspring also won best-outfit!
Michelle Augustanek with a display of strength – of what she considers “man shoulders” and my response to her was, “Yeah, show me any of your regular guy friends who would be able to do that!”
Veronica Waite with her super flexibility.
This is Jennyrose.
Jen Cheah had superpowers, she was all set to fly that night with her routine starting off with double brass monkeys, and later on handsprings and fluid spin-work. In this photo, she was about to launch into a ‘death drop’.
Jen took home the Elite category title. She’s not my doubles’ partner without a reason; I only choose the best. I swear I could have lost my voice cheering so loudly for her!
Check out Jen’s routine here dancing to Janie’s Got a Gun by Aerosmith.
Rapper-style booty shaking Amy Wilson-O’Brien & Leisl West strutting their stuff, and proud of em’! It was an entertaining performance!
One of our toughest competitors last year Jessica Haysom & Alison Cusack have a distinct style to their performance; very sharp, swift and accurate moves. Truly synchronised!
Unleashed 2010 winners Emily Feweks & Danielle Smith (previously devils) were cute little dolls this time round.
Tracey Dillon & Chloe Schibeci danced to Grease Lightning.
Of course, the highlight of the night had to be… the Phantom of the Opera, played by Tamara Mawson.
…and Christine by Jane Berry.
They were in character throughout, as if we were watching a 4-minute musical performance!
Best dressed title went to Miss Lozzie who handmade the entire outfit on her own.
Some other photos from the night.
With the lovely Simone Wood.
My pole bestie Jennyrose.
Doubles’ winners – Tamara & Jane.
Ahhh, what a night. I was inspired yet again. The girls were amazing! Pole-dancing is so fun and versatile. Now I have to think of a theme for Open Pole Night coming up soon, time to get the creative juices flowing again!