Dancers’ work pays off at Worlds

Nine months and hundreds of dedicated hours later, freshman Macie Goldferb and sophomore Jessie Shaw gave it their all at the International dance competition known as “Worlds.”

The two students dance with the studio, Dance Mania, which is located in Melbourne. The competition was located at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort April 23-25. The girls obtained positions on multiple teams, including Open Pom and Senior Jazz, which were the two that competed at Worlds. One of the two teams, Open Pom, finished in fifth place at the end of the competion.

Shaw and her teammates dedicate large amounts of their time to dancing.

“The season starts in the summer,” Shaw said. “We begin to learn our choreography in July. Normally I practice around 10 hours a week. However, the week of worlds I practiced at least 20 hours.”

Due to a change in venue, Shaw did not know what to expect.

“Around 30 different countries compete at Worlds,” she said. “I have competed at this competition for multiple years now. However, I did not know what to expect this year, because it was held at a different venue. My teammates and I were nervous, but we were just so excited to be at Worlds.”

Dance teams must be invited to compete at Worlds.

“Before you can compete at worlds you have to compete at a national level completion. There, judges hand out a few invitations, referred to as bids. At these completions only five bids are handed out. Some of these bids are even partial bids which means a fraction of the expenses are paid for,” Shaw said. “Two of the teams I danced for this year, Senior Jazz and Open Pom, received partial bids. ”

Of the teams that make it to Worlds, only a fraction make it to the award ceremony.

“The competion is split into two days,” Shaw said. “To qualify for the second day you have to be chosen to move on after you perform the first day. Only about 50 percent make it to the next day. If you are lucky enough to move on the second day, teams perform again which then only the top teams in each category move on to judging for the award ceremony. ”

Goldferb said her preparation was worth it when the judges announced their studio’s name.

“It was a great experience. We never go into Worlds expecting to win,” she said. “When we were at the ceremony, we all sat in a circle hoping for the best. When our name was called we were so happy. It was amazing.”

By Rachel Stazzone