photos: Frank R. Schröder.
The Berlin Ballroom Scene has been cooking something up over the past months that finally came to light this past weekend. With the event “10s Across the Board: A Ballroom Showdown for the Trophy” the local scene took a new format to the stage of Theater des Westens that has never been done before in Berlin. It proposes an alternative to classic Balls with their competitions and battles on the runway, elevating Ballroom from the underground to the limelight of the big theater stages of the city.
Two Ballroom Legends are behind this spectacle: Mother Leo from the House of Saint Laurent and Mother Ambrosia from the House of Gorgeous Gucci. They teamed up with Tingel Tangel – the new program at Theater des Westens – to create something truly unique and fantastic.
But what was so different from this event compared to regular Balls you might wonder? While the concept of competing for a trophy remains, the structure is completely different. Instead of individual Ballroom members fighting the battles, members from different houses had to unite in teams. There were 4 teams representing different colors: Pink, red, blue and purple and each team had members with different skills that would complement each other to win a maximum of different battle categories. In the end, the team with the highest amounts of points would win the main trophy of the night.
For the selection of the categories, the focus was on the most important ones: Runway, Face, Arms & Hands, Body & Sexy Siren, Fashion Killer, Old Way, New Way, Vogue Femme. If you are wondering what all of these mean, you can read up on the meaning of Ballroom categories in our comprehensive guide that we created in collaboration with the Berlin Ballroom Scene.
A Rare Ballroom Highlight
As a special treat, a really rare category in Ballroom was featured with Lip Synch. I have been to many Balls in the past 7 years and unfortunately, this category is often overlooked due to the fact that it’s typically done by drag performers of which there are not that many in Ballroom. But for this night, three of the four teams sent one of their members to the stage and it was incredible, one being more amazing than the other.
While categories like Runway, Fashion Killer, Face and Body are all about style, grace, and beauty in all of its shapes and forms, the performance categories are the ones that really set the stage on fire and have the audience screaming and jumping out of their seats. For these categories, the teams snatched the most talented dancers from the scene – not just from Berlin – to have a chance at winning the trophy. These were really the top-notch performers that you currently get to see at the Balls in Berlin and really every one of them deserved their 10s across the board. To pick only one seems like a robbery to all the others. But it’s a competition after all.
In the end, the pink team won and snatched that trophy. It was such a gorgeous look to have all the performers on stage together. I hope that to them it was a special and rewarding feeling to be up there and look into a full audience hall of a big theater with all the people clapping and cheering.
The night was such a triumph, but the Ballroom magic wasn’t over yet for this weekend. On the following day the entire Ballroom Scene was invited to a Renaissance-themed classic Ball at Theater des Westens…
Enjoy the full photo set from “10s Across the Board” in our gallery below.