More than 350 people turned up at the Kuala Lumpur Dancers' Association (KLDA) Gala Ball 2009 which was held at its premises at Wisma OCM in Kuala Lumpur on August 8. Among those who were present that evening were Datuk Sieh Kok Chi the Honorary Secretary of the Olympic Council of Malaysia, Datuk Cheong Siew Kai the patron of the KLDA, Barry Winters renowned ballroom dancer from England, and several well known dance teachers from among the many dance schools in Malaysia. While having their dinner at the Fame Hall, the guests were entertained to Chinese traditional music by the Dunhuang Ensemble. After dinner, the guests proceeded to the Superstar Hall for general dancing to ballroom, Latin American, salsa, merengue and bachata music.
In his welcome speech, C C Lai, the president of the KLDA thanked the guests for their patronage and continuous support. He said that the money collected from this event will be channeled to the KLDA Scholarship Project which was set up to assist young talented dancers who are members of the KLDA by way of subsidizing their dance lesson fees. With this intiative it is hoped that more youth would be encouraged to join the KLDA. After the speech, it was time for the show to begin. The show started with a Malay traditional dance by C K Lee and his wife Elayne. Dancing an inang to the tune of Inang Cina, the couple incorporated elements of ballroom and Latin American styles in their routine, in a dance meant to symbolize unity in diversity.
The next event was a wonderful Viennese waltz performance by Samuel Sum & Chew Su Fen. Samuel and Su Fen were one of five couples in the Viennese Ball 2008 Kuala Lumpur chosen to attend the Vienna Opera Ball in Austria in February 2009. Rising stars Johnston Lim & Nicole Tan then glided onto the dance floor to fascinate the audience with their foxtrot. It was then time for a ballroom formation dance. The five couples calling themselves "Happy Feet" performed a simple yet lovely medley of the waltz and tango with choreography by Eric Tan See Meng. The following two Latin American dances, a rumba by Alfred Choo & Carmen Choo and the jive by Vernon Choo & Cheah Yen Thing had by then raised the temperature in the dance hall by a few degrees!
Japanese expatriates, Mr and Mrs Osamu Sakai then mesmerized the audience with their beautiful waltz and tango performance. Lim Sae Min next took to the floor to sing Edleweiss while his partner Nathalee Owyang did a ballet routine and handed out roses to the ladies. Sae Min and Nathalee (image above) then executed a potpourri of dances such as the waltz, quickstep, Viennese waltz and polka to songs from The Sound of Music. Alfred, Carmen, Vernon and Yen Thing returned to sizzle the dance floor with a paso doble. Samuel & Su Fen also came back to delight the audience with a quickstep. This was followed by two line dance performances: one by the Dance Habitat Dancers led by the emcee Bronya Bishorek, and a solo by Sae Min.
David Chieng brought the house down with his slick impersonation of Michael Jackson. Dancing to Michael's hit Dangerous, David thrilled the crowd with the moves MJ was famous for: the slides, fast multiple swivels and of course the moonwalk. The finale to the show was an explosive Latin formation dance performance by five young couples known as the "KLDA Idols". The high energy routine which was choreographed by Dean Craig Kim of South Korea was an interesting mix of the cha cha cha, rumba, jive, samba and jazz. What an awesome show it was! One guest who enjoyed it so much suggested that the Kuala Lumpur Dancers' Association rebrand the show as "KLDA - The Musical" and stage it at the Istana Budaya (National Theatre)!
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