Celebs prepare for spring showcase

Amanda Weston

     Throughout the year the Celebrities have dazzled audiences at football games, dance shows, competitions and even at the Cotton Bowl. But the team isn’t finished yet; their biggest performance of the year is just around the corner. At the end of every school year the Celebrities dance team performs their annual Spring Show, which showcases dances not only performed by the Celebrities but also the dance classes, guard, the JV dance team and the Rising Stars. Every year the show has a theme which guides music selections and dance choreography. This year’s theme is Fame, which Celebrities director Samantha Cockerham says was partially inspired by the recent movie remake of the same name and relates to the Celebrities.

      “The Celebrities have a fun, techno opener that’ll be a big hit and a big team jazz, [and] there will be hip hop, novelty, lyrical, modern and the captain’s [Alisa Guardiola, senior] solo which is exciting.” Cockerham said.

     Students begin preparing for the show at the end of football season, picking music that relates to the theme, preparing and teaching choreography, choosing costumes and planning the social skit, which will feature a new storyline this year that runs throughout the entire show. Spring show is longer than the dance department’s fall showcase and does not feature Leander and Vista Ridge High School like iDance. The show features professional lights, scenery, effects and backdrops. In addition, the Celebrities are heavily featured in the show, accounting for about  90 percent of the show Cockerham says, whereas in fall showcase they only had one dance.

     “I think Stardust [Spring Show] this year is going to be incredible,” Madeline Strickland, junior Celebrity, said. “I’m so excited to be a part of a team that will be performing many diverse dances on stage.”

     Preparation involves the entire dance department and takes months. Cockerham says that the most difficult aspect of the preparing for the show is practice week on the Performing Arts Center stage, which involves reviewing the dances on stage, making sure they are complete and ready for performance and other last minute details. While for some dancers this is their first time performing on stage, others have been performing for years.

     “I’m really excited,” Milan Matuté, junior and Dance IV student, said.“It’s always super fun. The best part is getting ready for the show backstage and hanging out with the other girls and wishing them good luck.”

     Spring Show also features the Rising Stars, next year’s first year Celebrities. The show signifies the end of their preparation to become dance team members and is their first public performance.

     “It’s been hard work preparing for [the show] but it will definitely pay off in the end,” Jenna Erben, sophomore Rising Star, said. “It’s like ‘look how far we’ve come from fall show to now.’ I’m excited to perform up on the stage and shine with all of the other Rising Stars.”

     For members already on the team, the show means the end of their rookie year. Strickland is finishing her first year on Celebrities and looks forward to her future on the dance team.

     “It’s been quite a year. I’ve improved in dance, but more than anything I’ve learned the importance of being responsible and pursuing what you want with confidence.” Strickland said.

     Spring Show is significantly larger than fall showcase which takes place in November. Spring Show incorporates more types of dance and also gives the dancers another opportunity to perform for their fellow students.

     “I prefer Spring Show for sure.” Strickland said. “Spring Show is as huge a deal in the dance team world as red lipstick and kicking. It’s all about glitz and glamour and showing the dance team’s talent.”

     Most dancers prefer Spring Show, including the dance classes. The performance shows how far the Celebrities have come, but also the dance students. They have been working hard throughout the year to prepare for their final school-wide performance as well.

     “There are more dances and it’s like a goodbye party for the senior Celebrities,” Matuté said.  “It’s hard work and stressful at times, but our class works together well.What we learn in class really helps our performance to be better. We give each other feedback and learn new styles from Mrs. Cockerham and Mrs. Danielson; and we incorporate dance moves for the future. We have a bunch of really talented girls.”

     Matuté says that dance steps learned from Cockerham and Danielson throughout the year are incorporated into Spring Show choreography. Creating the dances is a collaborate effort, and the dancers give each other feedback.

     The show will be performed on Friday, April 16 and Saturday, April 17 at 7:30 pm in the CPHS PAC.  Tickets can be purchased from any Celebrity or the dance directors. Both the performers and directors encourage all students to come and enjoy the show.