Dance Team is returning to nationals


Patricia Redaelly

A dance team member resting after preforming a difficult stunt in her choreography.

Patricia Redaelly, News Reporter

After competing at Regionals on January 25, Dance is preparing for Nationals! Nationals is a big competition for any high school with a competitive dance team. Participants have described it as the dance version of CIF, plus schools from out-of-state trying out as well. Trophies are awarded to the top-performing teams, which are usually displayed throughout our school’s dance room.

Patricia Redaelly
A small portion of the many trophies presented in the dance room at Don Lugo.

Don Lugo’s dance team looks forward to this competition every year, along with the meaningful moments they all share together. Dance team’s last win at Nationals was in 2017, and this year they hope to take another win. However, the bond they create while practicing is just as important. Every year, they have heart-to-hearts between everyone the day before their first performances. Mrs. Avery explained, “We usually have the team sit in a room and we just talk about why we dance and why we do this.” The team believes that it brings them closer together and learn more about each other, both as dancers and people.

Patricia Redaelly
Dance Team girls stretching before their last practice of the day.

During practices, they all show great support for each other. Every practice is very loud and energetic as team members dance, cheer, and provide constructive criticism. During one practice in particular, one of the team members was performing a solo in front of the whole group. After the beginning of her routine, she forgot what came next, so her teammates marked the dance in place to help her remember. It was a true example of how a team should function while showing how close people can be when sharing a common passion and desire to watch their peers succeed. After this the dancer got very emotional as her coach gave her understanding and encouragement, “It’s okay if you forget, don’t doubt yourself. Just keep going.”

Patricia Redaelly
Dance Team lined up on the bar to watch each other dance and cheer each other on.

Currently, the dance team is focused on making their dances as clean as they can possibly get. In recent practices, many members have described it as feeling as though they’re being pushed until they can’t be pushed anymore. The thought of making a mistake on stage is a worry, especially because they don’t want to disappoint their coaches. If the team were to make a mistake on stage, the coaches usually would point out what they saw and hope they don’t make the same mistake next time. Team members have compared their coaches to mothers, saying, “3 coaches, 3 moms.”

Patricia Redaelly
Dance Team running their dance in the dance room during their last practice of the day.

Dance Team is something that Don Lugo students should appreciate, and use as an example of teamwork and leadership. They are constantly showing kindness to one another, supporting each other, and gaining confidence in themselves. The coaches help lift the girls up and help them see their strengths as well as what needs improvement in themselves. This team is a true example of a close family, and Don Lugo is lucky to have them as their dance team. Dance team is sure to bring home a win this year, and if they don’t, everyone knows they’ll pick themselves up and come back fighting.