Dance against odds

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March 30, 2017
Dance against odds

PASSION: Sadeeq Sampson, 14, of Manenberg

For this Manenberg boy, Latin and Ballroom dancing has become a confidence booster, giving him the opportunity to waltz his way to the top.

“I love dancing because it’s the one thing that I am very good at,” says Sadeeq Sampson, 14.

The Grade 7 learner, part of the Downeville Dance Sport group, started dancing two years ago, after his sister’s dance coach spotted him.

Mom Soraya Sampson says: “We were at his sister’s practice, when her coach saw him fooling around in a corner. She told me that he needs to start dance because he has talent.”

Soraya says dancing has helped her son, who is dyslexic, focus in school and keeps him out of trouble.

Sadeeq practises for three hours every Tuesday and Thursday to perfect his moves.

But Saadiq has had to put his dancing on hold as it was too dangerous to be outside due to the ongoing gang shootings in the area.

“He has to walk through the Americans, the Clever Kids and Hard Livings territories to get to his practice,” his mom said.

Despite not practising for three months, Sadeeq and his partner Chloe Engel won the South African Dance Sport competition held at the Muizenberg Civic on Saturday.

“I didn’t actually want to dance because I didn’t practise, but my mother kept pushing me to go,” he says.

They scooped the top prize in four categories – the Cha-cha-cha, Jive, Waltz and Quick step.

“Once I was on the dance floor, I knew I could win,” Saadiq says confidently.

Now, Saadiq and his partner are aiming for the Arnold Dance competition in Johannesburg in May, but they need to raise R6 000 to get there.

If you would like to assist the youngsters, please call Soraya on 071 123 5037.

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