Dance Team Wraps up First Successful Season

Sophie Levine, Editor

HMHS finally has a dance team! When my friend asked me if I would be interested in helping her form a school dance team, I was immediately intrigued. As a competitive dancer, I have been hoping for an opportunity like this since I was a freshman. I love performing with the girls and choreographers at my dance studio, but it is always exciting to try something new, especially during senior year. This is our last chance to do the things we always wanted to do. A chance to perform at football and basketball games? An opportunity to meet new people? It sounded perfect. So, I said, why not? At the end of last year, we advertised and gained interest from students around the school. Finally, after acquiring permission from the athletic department and securing our wonderful advisor/choreographer, Mrs. DeRossi, the team was approved! We were ready to get started. In order to learn the dance we would be performing at games, we held choreography clinics during the summer. Already, the energy was high, and I couldn’t wait to get into the swing of things.

Once the year began, we started rehearsals right away. Each week, we worked to clean up our technique and set our formations in stone. During the football season, we braved the cold October and November Friday evenings and, decked in our signature sparkly red shirts, performed a high-energy jazz routine during halftime. We danced to an upbeat Beyonce medley, with songs including Halo, Crazy in Love, and Break my Soul. We were also lucky enough to have the opportunity to be a showcase of the Dance Department’s Winter Concert. After weeks of performing on turf in 30-degree weather, being able to dance on a real stage in jazz shoes was a nice change. 

After the season ended, we geared up to start working on a new routine for the girls’ and boys’ basketball games. This time, we danced to an iconic Jennifer Lopez mash-up, including Dance Again (feat. Pitbull) and Let’s Get Loud. While this new routine was similar in style to our Beyonce dance (our choreography was totally different), it was just as fun! It took a great deal of hard work, patience, and flexibility, but it was such a blast. I think that’s something people forget about performing. All the audience sees is a finished product, but it takes many hours behind the scenes working to perfect technique. It’s an art, and that’s one of the reasons I’m so passionate about it. Another one of my favorite parts of being on the team was the people I got to know. The team is composed of all four grades, so, as a senior, it was nice being able to make genuine connections with more girls outside of my class.

Now, you’ve heard from me, but what did everyone else think?

Maddie Kehner, a sophomore and member of the dance team, expressed that “One of the main things that truly made the dance team was our choreographer and teacher Mrs. DeRossi. She led a group of girls that all care and support each other. Without her, this would not have been nearly as successful or well-run. Other than being one of the kindest and most generous teachers you will ever come across, she is such a talented choreographer and dancer. This season was so much fun and I feel so lucky to have been part of the first real dance team at the high school!”

I also talked with junior Brynne Finer, the founder and one of the team’s captains, about her thoughts on the team’s first season.

“My favorite part of this season was how much we bonded as a team. Going into the year, many faces were new to me, but throughout the season everyone became so close, and we really became a wonderful team. I also enjoyed performing! We got to show off our skills to our peers. Not all schools have that opportunity.”

I feel so lucky to have been a part of this great team and cannot wait to see what next year brings! Although I won’t be here, I’m looking forward to staying updated on what cool, new routines they will perform in the future.