The Solitaire

A New Journey

The dance team welcomes new dancers and appoints leaders for the upcoming season.

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Bright lights, cheering fans and eager dancers all around paint the picture of the 2018 National Dance Team Championship in Walt Disney World. This is the scene that surrounded the varsity dance team moments before they were announced as the first place winners of the Large Hip Hop division. The team shrieked with excitement as they won their first national championship title.

As last season came to an end, the seniors all said farewell to their team while a new group of dancers was introduced to the world of varsity dance.

“Switching from dance studio mode to dance team mode [was difficult],” Freshman Grace  Lafeber said. “Studio is very different from dance team. The studio is more individualized and dance team is unity as a team.”

Being that it is her first year dancing at a varsity level, Lafeber feels some pressure to do well on the team. That being said, she finds comfort and is honored that she has earned the responsibility of dancing alongside national champions.

“My teammates have been successful in the past and they inspire me to be successful like them,” Lafeber said. “There is lots of encouragement on our dance team, therefore, we all want to see each other succeed.”

Appointed as team captain this season, senior Sydney Ivie is confident in her team and their capability. She has been on the varsity team all four years of her high school career and has seen how teams can change based off of the leaders.

“I hope to lead with the integrity of my previous leaders,” Ivie said. “Over the years I’ve had great examples of good and bad leaders and learned the do’s and don’ts of being a captain. This year it will be very hard to follow our accomplishments last year, but my coaches and team believe in me so I will do the same.”

The varsity team raised the bar for this year’s season right from the start. They attended a new elite summer camp this year, which pushed all of the dancers to try more advanced skills and learn how to communicate with one another. The whole team also participated in the dance routines instead of solely the seniors, which was how the previous camps were run.

“We have definitely raised our expectations for the team,” Ivie said. “We practice and train even more this season and are starting on our competition dances even earlier. Preparing now will help us even more later in the season.”

The team has high hopes for this year, anxiously awaiting competition time to get in the groove of performing again. Nobody can tell what this season will hold, all this group can do is follow Ivie and the coaches and put their best foot forward.

“I want us to perform to our best ability every chance we get,” Ivie said. “Be successful in our competitions and always be proud of what we leave on the floor.”

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A New Journey