This year the Australian Hellzapoppin’ Prize was held in its birthplace, Melbourne, in celebration of the 10th Melbourne Lindy Exchange. The venue was the beautiful Ormond Hall, which last played host to the contest in 2008. The judges included myself as head judge, Romona Staffeld (who recently relocated to Melbourne from the US), Russell Turner (Canberra), Cheryl Glasgow (Perth) and Kara Martin (Hobart). Anthony Wheaton did an excellent job as DJ.
Once again we had an extremely hard fought and exciting battle with a lot of highlights. The semi final was particularly tight, and there was some brilliant dancing from all couples. The band, Jason Downes and the Tempo of Doom, played for the Final round, and it was an absolute killer diller. So much so that we had to get them to play another song at a slightly slower tempo! Andy Fodor and Shob Nambiar faced off against Evan Hughes and Noni Clarke, with Evan and Noni edging out their opponents to take the title. Both Evan and Noni have won AHP before, but never together.
Next year’s AHP will be held in June as part of Devil City Swing, Hobart, Tasmania. The full honour roll appears below:
2010 Noni Clarke & Evan Hughes (VIC)
2009 Francine Jeffrey & Evan Hughes (VIC)
2008 Noni Clarke & Cam Mitchell (VIC)
2007 Cathie Gough & Kieran Yee (VIC)
2006 Annie Ryan & Shane McCarthy (WA)
2004 Noni Clarke & Josh McKiterick (VIC)
2003 Sarah Farrelly & Anthony Wheaton (VIC)
2002 Nicole Smith & John Tenaglia (VIC)