“We believe that a dance competition should be a place where strangers become friends, where friends become part of the Showstopper family, and where dancers are able to come and do what they love”
For 40 years, we’ve watched incredible dancers work the spotlight, become part of our family, and dance their way to success. We’ve watched as ballerinas leaped across our sparkling stages, as hip hop numbers were brought to life in front of our LED screens, and as the sound of tap shoes filled our venues.
Looking ahead, we will continue celebrating every transformation of popular dance and seamlessly evolve along the way. We will forever be dedicated to what is unmistakably Showstopper: an unconditional love for movement in music, and an unbridled joy in elevating the performance of dance. Almost four decades into our dream, we still get goosebumps when a jazz group nails a combination, an urge to cheer when a hip hop dancer invents a new move, and a lump in our throat when a young ballerina braves her first solo. We’ve been blessed for 40 years to be able to watch so many dancers grow up and continue doing what they love.
The glitz and glam of Showstopper began 40 years ago, at a time when dance competitions didn’t even exist! In 1978, before YouTube and Dirty Dancing, Debbie Roberts knew that something was missing from the dance world. She realized that dancers needed an exciting stage where they could do what they love, while also receiving feedback that pushed them to be their best. That is how Showstopper, the world’s first dance competition, was born. We’re pretty sure that’s how glitter was born, too, but that might be just our opinion (we’re looking at you, scientists!).
A BRIEF HISTORY OF SHOWSTOPPER
She realizes that dancers need a place to do what they love while receiving feedback for how they can be their best. Debbie knocks on every studio’s door in Charlotte, North Carolina, sharing her idea for a challenging, yet celebratory competition for local dancers. This is how the competition you know as “Showstopper” begins.