The opening episode of the new series of The Apprentice first broadcast last night featured Swing Patrol – the dance school and events company which secured investment from Deborah Meaden on Series 12 of Dragons’ Den as a treat for the winning team.
As the losing Team Nebula sat in The Bridge café reviewing what went wrong, and then get a grilling from Lord Sugar, Baroness Karren Brady and Claude Littner on why they failed to earn enough from selling collectables at Wimbledon Car Boot Sale, the winners, Team Titans are sent off for an aerial dance performance and team building dance performance by Swing Patrol.
The segment in The Apprentice episode gives a snapshot of Swing Patrol’s new team building offering to the corporate market, which is devised to encourage teamwork, creativity and communication. It is part of a whole new line of services aimed at the corporate market which is being launched in October as businesses’ event managers turn their attention to planning Christmas parties and entertainment.
MD Scott Cupit is the only entrepreneur to have his business appear on both of the BBC’s flagship business reality TV series. Speaking on his experience having to contend with some of the Dragons, he empathises with those having to face rejection in front of millions of viewers.
“Getting a grilling from high profile and respected business leaders on national TV is a challenging experience. It got pretty uncomfortable for me in a few places when I was facing the Dragons’ Den entrepreneurs, but on The Apprentice, entrepreneurs don’t just get a grilling, there’s a high likelihood of getting fired. Getting sacked in front of millions of TV viewers must be very sobering, so I really feel for Michelle Niziol,” he said, referring to the episode’s outcome.
Cupit invited her to a free swing dancing lesson, “so she can experience the joy of swing dancing, and hopefully she will also learn some of the important interpersonal skills that swing dancing fosters.”
Typically, Swing Patrol’s events include swing dancers being thrown into the air, flappers doing crazy Charleston, award winning dance troupes and floor shows, competitions, vintage hair and make-up styling, fun photo booths, and – most importantly – people finding it easy to learn to dance for the first time and beaming with joy.
Dragons’ Den investor and entrepreneur Deborah Meaden is huge advocate for Swing Patrol. “Having seen not only the positive effect the Swing Patrol events have on teams and individuals but also the immense energy and fun they generate, I am not at all surprised that they were spotted and picked to offer up as a reward to the winning Apprentice team,” she commented.
Since successfully securing investment on Dragons’ Den, Swing Patrol has secured a Guinness World Record, launched of a new book, an online shop and new dance troupes for performances. Cupit was also awarded Dance Teacher Of the Year, and is now developing a new fitness workout regime, Swing Train, which will formally launch in December ahead of the New Year’s resolution rush.