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Local Groups & Clubs

Two champion rock n rollers

Meet Rob and Tyree Connor. They are looking forward to teaching people to dance.
 |  The Informer  | 

Rob and Tyree Connor.

They love dance. They compete, judge, train, teach and MC occasions for dance and have been doing it for decades.

It is a hobby at which they have excelled together, but it is one they greatly enjoy as well as one in which they have won and also judged at a regional and national level.

Rob’s intense and consuming life of auctioneering and real estate needed to ease, and Tyree knew her work as an eduction consultant and trainer in the agricultural industry could be done mostly online; so, a change of lifestyle for both of them was imminent.

That brought Rob and Tyree to Whitianga a little over two years ago. They love it and have found friendship, community involvement and of course, several who share their love of Rock N Roll and dance in general. Both are still working, but life has a better pace.

“We met and got married through dance,” saysTyree. “Our love for each other and dance has never waned, and both our girls have danced at competition level.”

Tyree grew up on a farm and has never lost her affinity for farming and agriculture. But in her early teens, her family moved away from the farm. “At thirteen, I was at Hamilton Girls High, and I went along with a group of friends to the River City Rock N Roll Club to learn to dance. I was hooked.

“At 15, I was teaching and by the time I was twenty, I was competing at a national level. It was the eighties and dance competitions were very big. We would go to dances every weekend. There were a lot of dance events to choose from; dancing was the social norm.

Rob came alone to the River City Rock n Roll Club as an adult to learn to dance – a brave step for any man.

“He had two left feet but was persistent and persevered,” says Tyree. “Seven years later, he was in his first final in the national competitions. There he was in seven years, and it took me thirty years to win the New Zealand Open competition,” smiles Tyree.

“We both love the aspect of adding your own style to the basic steps. That has always appealed to me with Rock n Roll. A different piece of music gives freedom to add and use your body in a different way,” says Tyree.

Cabaret: Rob and Tyree know that the Cabaret coming up in Saturday, July 13, at Mercury Bay Club, is a chance to introduce a lot of people to dance. It is locally organised with lots of variety in the music.

Rock N Roll Lessons re-commence the Sunday after the Cabaret, on Sunday, 21 July from 4pm at the Mercury Bay Club. Tyree and Rob are inviting people to come along and see what the dancing is like, as a prelude to coming to the Cabaret. “No pressure,” says Tyree – come and see.