That the 2012 World DanceSport Championship Latin was able to up the benchmarks across the quantifiable measures of sucess has been reported on already. Similarly upbeat news are also generated by the Austrian Open Championships (AOC) as a whole.
Heidi Goetz sums them up.
The AOC were in their 19th year; next year we celebrate the 20th anniversary. 2012 was the most successful one everI
1929 entries (until now the most entries were recorded in 2008: 1878)
1620 couples actually danced in the 2012 AOC (previous maximum: 1352 in 2008). This is an increase of 20%. If compared with the number of couples dancing in the 2011, it is an increase of 41%.
In 2012, 84% out of all entries actually showed up and danced (previous best: 78% in 2011).
We never had more than 200 couples dancing in a WDSF competition in Vienna. In 2012, we had 218. Previous best: 179 in 1999.
We are very happy about this developement - but still somewhat tired. And of course, it also represents a challenge for next year.
Traffic to the WDSF website and a championship blog was higher than ever before over the past three days ... The number of videos viewed on a single day through the WDSF YouTube channel exceeded the previous record established with last year's World Latin by a margin of 110% ... The WDSF facebook community grew at an unprecedented rate and responded like never before to the coverage coming out of Vienna, AUT ... WDSF Communications saw every parameter used to monitor the online audiences' size and behaviour peak on 17, 18 and 19 November.
25,000 unique visitors per day established a new benchmark for website traffic. Average time spent on site was a remarkable 15 minutes.
150,000 video views in 24 hours will probably not impress William Stokkebroe - the YouTube legend and 2-year old son of former Latin World Champions Peter and Kristina who was in Vienna too - but they are more than just okay for grown-ups dancing the Jive.
Following on facebook and twitter was also in clear ascension over the past few days. As the WDSF DanceSport community is growing on both, our communications team is learning to make even better use of the many features available there to communicate and interact with you.
It was a World Latin that set a new standard (forgive us for indulging in a play of words). Even if we all had - secretly - expected it to do so, when the championship shattered all existing records for an online audience, we were surprised by the margins. In due time, we will provide you with figures.
For the time being, WDSF Communications is proud of what it was able to deliver from the championship venue in Vienna, AUT, on 17 and 18 November. In terms of quantity, our team went far beyond the call of duty by bringing you over three hours of video coverage from the 2012 World Latin.
Considering that only four people (Ferran Castañer, Helmut Roland, Martin Brac and Lena Hilfiker) were involved in recording/shooting, editing and uploading over 100 videos and a similar number of photographs, and all with the appropriate texts and captions, the accomplishment in itself deserves a merit badge. If these WDSF Communications team members were indeed able to convey some of the emotions that the athletes produced on and off the floor, their efforts are all the more laudable.
Creative people on behalf of the host broadcaster ORF (the Austrian public broadcaster) also had cameras trained on on some of the very best Latin dancing ever. Here is the final of the 2012 WDSF World DanceSport Championship in full length recorded by and courtesy of the Austrian host broadcaster ORF. It is part of a two-hour programme to be aired by ORF Sport+ on Sunday 25 November at 20:00 h. This video is not available for viewing in Austria until after the repeats of the programme on ORF and ORF Sport+.
What thousands of followers of this blog got to see here on Saturday was "great sport." In every sense of the two words! The record participation in the 2012 WDSF World Championship Latin made yet another convincing statement about DanceSport's universality.
The enthusiasm of very young couples putting in their first appearance at the highest international level of competition bodes well for the continued development of DanceSport.
It was DanceSport at its very best that the six finalists showed the sell-out crowd at the Stadthalle in Vienna - and to the biggest cumulative audience ever following the 2012 World Latin through this blog, YouTube and the social media.
And that two couples kept everyone in suspense throughout four rounds, through all five dances in the final, and until the very moment that the master of ceremony pronounced country and names of the runners-up, it all reveals just how compelling this artistic sport can be.
"The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat," is how we titled an album (on our facebook page) with superb photographs taken by Helmut Roland of Andrey Zaytsev - Anna Kuzminskaya, RUS, and Aniello Langella - Khrystyna Moshenska, ITA, during the award presentation. Not everybody liked our choice of title (which we actually borrowed from a long-running sportscast on American network ABC). But all sports do have this trait. It is what makes them - and the athletes who play for high stakes, the winners and the runners-up - so great.
The finalist couple dance the Final Jive at the 2012 WDSF World DanceSport Championship Latin in Vienna, AUT.