Dance Team Bettering Themselves and Their Environment

Katey Goins, Design Editor

Winning isn’t everything. 

The dance team prioritizes respect and a healthy environment more than anything else. 

Along with the other sports, COVID-19 has left the dance team with a foreign change to their season. Despite that the team has been working on enjoying their time together and making dance fun again. Senior captains on the team are also preparing those who will take their places, next year, in leadership roles. 

The dance team this year has nine members and when regulations allow it, plan to take on the Kentucky High School Athletic Association and Louisville International Tournament state competitions. Due to COVID-19, the team got a late start to their season with delayed tryouts. They then were allowed to have practices as long as it followed the state safety guidelines. The recent changes to the guidelines have put a halt to the teams practices and leave the team wondering when their competitions will take place or if they will at all. “It’s not the best situation but we’re making the best out of it,” senior captain Carson Coomer said. 

Having only nine members places the team in the small division, teams with four to 14 members, for their competitions, which has both benefits and disadvantages. “With the small team that we have it’s really easy for the judges to pinpoint the mistakes cause they only have like nine people to look at as opposed to like 20,” said Coomer. To which senior Savannah Childress added on, “I think it’s more impressive to have a good smaller team, than a good big team, because if you have a big team you’re just disguising all the bad people in the back and you can’t really see them and no one really cares.”

In 2018, the team took home the state title from the Kentucky Dance Coaches Organization state competition. Although, they did not return home with the title again, in their 2019 and 2020 seasons. The 2018 team having no seniors allowed the team to continue on with the same leadership in their 2019 season. However, once they graduated, the 2020 season left the team with a major leadership change which felt to have caused foreign problems among the team. “The stress wasn’t as high as it was last year because sometimes we felt like we had to keep the title,” senior captain Madelyn Clan said. 

After winning a big title the team felt that there was a significant change in the teams energy. “After we won state that’s when we were like ‘oh we could actually do good again’ and that’s when things started to go downhill cause it put a lot of stress on whoever was leading and we just didn’t have good representatives,” Coomer said.

This year’s leaders after having watched their previous captains feel more prepared than ever to do their job in the way they feel is right. “We all communicate really well. We all have an understanding and respect for each other. It’s like people actually enjoy coming to practice, and when you enjoy coming to practice, you’re gonna enjoy performing together and therefore look better. We’re mainly focused on not drama, and not getting into any of that. No personal lives; just mainly dance and a good environment,” said Coomer.

Given that this year’s team includes five seniors out of nine members, those in leadership roles are doing everything they can to prepare those who will take their place next year, so they can confidently leave the team in good hands. “I think the underclassmen, they really care about the team and that’s important. Obviously the team is important to like the seniors and juniors because it’s like you wanna win you’re almost done and you only have a few more chances but I genuinely think the underclassmen do care about this team. They’re honestly more prepared than us a lot of the time,” Childress said.

The team feels as though they get less recognition than other sports in school and they fight to impress their peers. “We’re underestimated sometimes. I feel like if you don’t understand dance then they don’t really enjoy watching us but I really hope this year we can really make a good impression on ourselves finally. We have a lot of good individual dancers on this team with a lot of experience. It’s just that sometimes the choreography and leadership doesn’t really represent it well,” said Coomer.