Chicago, August 18-20, 2017

Pure Balboa Contest


This is a partnered Pure Balboa competition open to dancers of all levels. Competitors do not need a full weekend pass to participate.

$20 per couple

Prelims Format

Contestants will dance in “all skate” format to 3-4 songs randomly chosen by the contest DJ of 1 minute 30 second length. Couples will be judged as a unit and will be chosen for finals based on call back format.

A competitor’s meeting will occur at 7:45pm on Saturday August 20 at The Plumber’s Hall (1340 W Washington Blvd). Prelims will occur immediately after the Competitor’s Meeting.

Finals Format

Contestants will dance one “all skate” warm up, one 1 minute 30 second DUAL spotlight, and one “all skate” final. The songs will be chosen by the competition DJ. Couples will be judged as a unit and will be chosen for first, second, and third prizes based on relative placement scoring.

Finalists will be announced  during the Saturday night dance. Finals will occur during the second band break (11:15-11:45pm). Finalists must check in with the Competition Coordinator (Jennifer Reed) at 11:15pm.

Judging Criteria

Contestants will be judged on their ability to

Connection: Couples are assessed on their ability to work as a team including how well they can listen and react to their partner using pure balboa connection. Although this is a social dance competition, preparation as a team is valued.

Musicality: Judges will assess couples general timing (ability to stay on rhythm) as well as their ability to apply subtle musical footwork and texture.

Technique: Contestants are assessed on their ability to cleanly execute Pure Balboa movement along with the technique and skills that are specifically required for lead and follow roles.

Creativity: Competitors are encouraged to add personality to the dance by adding their own innovative movement choices, structure, and footwork. However, the dance should still remain true to the subtle nature of pure balboa.

Read more about pure balboa here:


First, second, and third place couples receive a hand-crafted art glass trophy for each individual. There will also be a $600 cash prize split between first, second, and third place winners.