WHEN Riley Bott was six, he wanted to learn hip-hop.
But as soon as he arrived at Palmer's Dance Studio in Launceston, he quickly changed his mind.
"I wanted to dance with a girl," the now 12-year-old said.
So Riley, of Launceston, found his ballroom dancing calling and it was clear yesterday that he will not be giving up anytime soon.
Riley and dance partner Chloe Edwards, 10, of Launceston, were one of 120 couples to dazzle judges and an almost sell-out audience at the 2013 Anderson- Morgan Tasmanian Open Dancesport Championship yesterday.
The championship was held at Launceston's Silverdome and was contested by dancers from around the world, who were vying for a prize pool of $20,000.
Chloe has been dancing for two-and-a- half years and said she loved everything about it.
"I like the quick moves and the different dances and I love the costumes," she said.
"When I get older we get to wear really good ones with sparkles."
For Melbourne dancer Megan-Louise Elliott it was the costumes that initially drew her to ballroom, at the age of five.
"But as you mature it actually becomes really hard," Elliott said.
"So it's the challenge of being able to stop on time and keep your balance that I love about it."
Elliott and dance partner Hiran Kariyawasam were at the championships for their third year.
"We love it here in Tasmania," she said.
DanceSport Tasmania executive director Andrew Palmer said more than 1500 people were in the audience last night and it was "pumping with energy".
"The audience has been blown away by the talent, not only of the Australian and international talent but also the local talent," he said.
Championship results were not available last night.
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