The 23rd Annual Heard Museum World Championship Hoop Dance Contest recently took place again in Phoenix, Arizona, and hoop dancers came from all over the United States and Canada to compete for the ultimate title of becoming World Hoop Dance Champion. It’s a pretty big deal not only to receive the highest honor from your community and peers, but the first place prize also comes with a $3,500 cash award and this year that incredible honor went to Derrick Suwaima Davis (Hopi/Choctaw) who won this year for an unprecedented sixth time! Davis last captured the World Champion title back in 2010 and this year he returned to Phoenix and danced himself right into the winner’s circle all over again. Check out his award winning hoop dance performance below:
With a score of 235 points, Davis came in ten points ahead of the amazingly talented Tony Duncan who earned the World Champion title for himself back in 2011, while Kevin Dakota Duncan placed 3rd this year with 215 points. The Duncan brothers were very high profile this year in part as the result of the appearance in Nelly Furtado’s Big Hoops music video. Watch their second and third place performances below:
One of the big stories of the event this year came down to a very close race for fifth and sixth place in the adult division. In fact, the judges invoked a rare tiebreaker and requested that Nakotah Larance and Charles Denny return to the stage for a dance-off! In the end Larance, who is very popular among Hooping.org readers thanks to his amazing hoop dance in the Hoopie Award nominated Geronimo music video by The Knocks and Fred Falke last year, was outdone by Denny who captured fifth place and a $1,000 cash prize, leaving sixth place and a $750 cash prize to Larance this year.
The Senior Division winner this year went to the incomparable Brian Hammill, followed by Lowery Begay in second. Teen title this year went to Tyrese Jensen of Winslow, Arizona, while six-year-old Rito Lopez of Salt River, Arizona, hoop danced his way to the first place youth award.
This year’s gathering also honored Jones Benally who has been a hoop dancer for more than 75 years. He received the very first Hoop Dance Legacy Award for his lifetime of contributions to the art. Hooping.org congratulatess all of those who won awards this year in Phoenix, Arizona, USA.