Close this search box.

Meet Mr Central Manchester – who runs the city’s most inclusive dance studio

If you're looking to dip your toes into the world of dance, GFFDamian Dance Studio looks an incredible place to get started.
Damian Kutryb from GFFdamian Dance Studio

GFFDamian Dance Studio, which is run by Damian Kutryb is the perfect place to express yourself with dance, in an inclusive environment where everyone can flourish and be themselves.

As the proud owner of this award-winning establishment, Damian Kutryb, who was recently crowned Mr Central Manchester has curated an environment where passion ignites, barriers dissolve, and dreams take flight.

Damian himself has just won the Mr Central Manchester title; and is inviting people from all walks of life to get involved and get on their dancing shoes.

GFFDamian Dance Studio

GFFdamian Dance Studio
The team at GFFdamian Dance Studio enjoying a pole class

We caught up with Damian, who’s now preparing for the Mr British Isles competition, which will take place in Chester, to talk about his studio and craft.

Can you tell us about your journey into the world of dance and pageantry, and what inspired you to start GFFdamian Dance Studio?

I was supposed to be a veterinary technician, but there was a stronger force pushing me forward. Firstly, I knew that Poland was not the safe place for me, a country where homophobia still ranks high, placing Poland on the list of dangerous places for LGBTQ+ communities.

Secondly, a new country, a big city, new possibilities. And so, in 2010, right after Veterinary graduation, I packed my bags, escaped homophobia, and flew to Manchester.

The beginnings were not easy.

Working in a factory on the production line for minimum wage from early morning until late hours, I was learning the language, and days were passing by.

Two years later, a colleague from work asked if I wanted to join her for pole dance classes.

Of course, I immediately agreed, as I had always been fascinated by this movement.

The first time I saw pole acrobatics in the circus as a little boy, I always wanted to try it.

And so, when I grabbed the pole for the first time in 2013, I felt the vibrations and knew it was meant to be!

I set up two poles at home, trained like crazy, and also attended regular classes and workshops.

Unfortunately, I didn’t feel comfortable as the only guy in the class, and on top of that, a foreigner; I received signals that pole dance was only for women.

But I didn’t give up.

I started saving money because I had a plan.

In 2014, during my first public performance in one of the nightclubs, when someone approached me and asked where they could learn such an art, it was an impulse, and that’s when the idea of ​​opening GFFdamian Dance Studio came up.

A safe place for everyone regardless of origin, skin colour, orientation, or size.

A place where I could proudly share my passion with others. GFF stands for Gay Friendly Fitness, and 10 years later, we are growing bigger and better.

In the meantime, in 2017, I needed more adrenaline, new ideas, and still didn’t feel fulfilled in the community.

Someone mentioned Pageants, so I signed up for the first selections.

I discovered that Pageants are a great platform promoting inclusivity, a wonderful platform through which you can raise money for charitable foundations, and that’s how my adventure with Pageants began.

The first titles and successes appeared on my record, and that became my motivator.

Damian Kutuyb

Congratulations on winning the Mr Central Manchester title! How has this achievement influenced your perspective on your role within the community?

Thank you very much, it means a lot to me.

Winning Mister Central Manchester has been epic!

It’s totally changed how I see my role in the community – like, now I feel even more pumped to make a positive impact and rep for my peeps, all the marginalised communities.

I am incredibly proud that after 13 years of living in Manchester, I will be able to represent this wonderful, vibrant city at the national Mr. British Isles competition in April.

This achievement shows that everyone can have successes, and everyone can do cool things for people and communities regardless of their background or skin colour.

I’m glad that my voice will be able to be heard by a larger audience.

Could you share some insights into your preparations for the upcoming Mr. British Isles 2024 finals in Chester?

Getting ready for Mr. British Isles 2024 is a wild ride!

Lots of catwalk practice (not easy for me at the moment because I am 9 weeks past knee surgery, still on my rehab time), and probably a few outfit changes.

But hey, it’s all part of the adventure, right? Last weekend, I attended a photoshoot in Chester with the Mr. British Isles finalists, and I’m getting pumped for the finals.

I had a great time with the other guys and met some fantastic, supportive people. It’s awesome to be surrounded by such positive energy as we gear up for the finals.

Damian Kutryb ‘Mr Central Manchester’

Damian Kutryb
Damian Kutryb

Damian Kutryb competing for ‘Mr British Isles’

What are some of the key values or principles that guide you in your work as a dance studio owner and community advocate?

As a dance studio owner and community advocate, my jam is all about spreading good vibes and inclusivity.

Respect, creativity, and lifting each other up are the beats we groove to.

How do you approach fundraising for charities such as LGBTQ+, BLM, NHS, and the Manchester Ugly Mugs Charity, and why are these causes important to you?

Our approach is to find fun and memorable ways to help raise funds or support communities and charities.

These causes are important to us because they are important to our studio members.

If it wasn’t for sex workers, our industry would never have started.

If there wasn’t a strong LGBTQ+ plus community, we wouldn’t be able to have started creating a safe space.

We want to give back and support those communities that helped us grow. This includes a lot of marginalised communities that are often overlooked in not just our industry but most industries.

What sets GFFdamian Dance Studio apart from other dance studios in Manchester, and what can participants expect from their experience there?

GFF wants to be a safe space. It doesn’t want the badge for advertising. It puts in the work to make it a place where everyone is welcome.

It’s not always perfect and will make mistakes but is consistently growing and learning.

Your experience will be memorable.GFF has a magical feeling to it from the moment you walk through the door. If you’re here for a class or a chat, brand new or old favourite, you will soon find our studio is filled with love and laughter

Can you share some memorable moments or success stories from your studio that highlight the impact of dance on individuals or the community?

At GFFdamian Dance Studio, we’ve witnessed transformative moments on a daily basis.

Many of our students start their journey with us as GFF students, timid and unsure, but through dedication and passion, they evolve into skilled dancers and confident individuals.

Some of these former students have gone on to become instructors at our studio, passing on their knowledge and inspiring the next generation of dancers.

And beyond that, we’ve seen remarkable success stories of former students who have become studio owners or achieved stardom in the pole, aerial and dance industry, proudly carrying the spirit of GFFdamian wherever they go.

These journeys highlight the profound impact our studio can have on individuals and the community, shaping lives ,creating job opportunities and lasting connections.

What advice would you give to someone who may be hesitant to try dance or participate in pageantry due to concerns about inclusivity or acceptance?

I would encourage anyone hesitant about trying dance or participating in pageantry to remember that these activities are inclusive spaces where diversity is celebrated.

Embrace the opportunity to express yourself authentically and connect with others who share your passion.

Remember that everyone starts somewhere, and the journey of self-discovery and growth is what truly matters.

What do you envision for the future of GFFdamian Dance Studio, and how do you hope to continue making a positive impact in Manchester and beyond?

Looking ahead, we envision GFFdamian Dance Studio becoming a hub for artistic innovation, cultural exchange, and community empowerment.

We aim to expand our outreach programs, collaborate with local organisations, and provide more opportunities for individuals of all ages and backgrounds to engage with pole, aerial and dance.

Our goal is to continue making a positive impact in Manchester and beyond by fostering creativity, inclusivity, and personal growth through dance.

Are there any upcoming events, workshops, or initiatives at GFFdamian Dance Studio that you’re particularly excited about?

I’m thrilled to share the exciting events and initiatives happening at GFFdamian Dance Studio!

First and foremost, I’m gearing up for the finals of the Mr. British Isles Competition in April in Chester, where I’ll proudly represent Manchester on the national stage.

It’s an honour to showcase the talent and dedication fostered at my studio.

In June, we’re hosting the Manchester Adventure Dash (GFFMAD), a thrilling competition combining pole, aerial, and dance for a chance to win the title of ‘GFFMAD Champions 2024’ and a cash prize of £2,000.

Additionally, I am excited to invite everyone to join us for our Pole, Aerial, and Dance Camps in Mallorca and Tenerife.

These week-long retreats offer intensive training and unforgettable experiences. It’s an opportunity for dancers from around the world of all levels to elevate their skills, train with industry best instructors while enjoying the beauty of these stunning locations.

Moreover, our studio actively participates in local events like the Mcr Student Social, Halloween in the City, and Manchester Pride, where we celebrate diversity, creativity, and community spirit.

These events are an integral part of our commitment to making a positive impact in Manchester and beyond. Join us for these unforgettable experiences and let’s continue spreading the joy of pole, aerial, dance and pageantry together.

You can find out more about GFFDamian Dance Studio and Damian Kutryb their website by clicking here

You can find the studio here: 109-113 Corporation Street, Manchester, United Kingdom M4 4DX

Did we miss something? Let us know: [email protected]

Want to be the first to receive all the latest news stories, what’s on and events from the heart of Manchester? Sign up here.


Manchester is a successful city, but there are many people that suffer. The I Love MCR Foundation helps raise vital funds to help improve the lives and prospects of people and communities across Greater Manchester – and we can’t do it without your help. So please donate or fundraise what you can because investing in your local community to help it thrive can be a massively rewarding experience. Thank you in advance!

Got a story worth sharing?

What’s the story? We are all ears when it comes to positive news and inspiring stories. You can send story ideas to [email protected]

Close this search box.