Senior Alexis Mitchell performs with the Royals Dance Team at halftime during a home basketball game against Matoaca. Photo by Monica Thompson.

With the crowd cheering and tensions rising, the dance team is ready to perform. The team travels to Lee Davis High School this weekend to put their talents on the line against teams from all over the area.

The dance team is no stranger to competition. Excited and prepared for the competition, they have trained for overcoming different obstacles. 

“I think the biggest hurdle we have overcome has been definitely trying to make the team feel like a unit. Last year some of the dancers, including myself, ended the season on bad terms so making sure this season goes smoothly with no drama has been a little bit of a challenge but thus far in the season I think my teammates and I would agree we always have fun at practice and get along very well,” senior April Drevitch said. “When it comes down to it and being serious or performing, we always manage to get things done and deliver with no problem.” 

The team has to master each and every detail. Making sure the performance is clean and calculated. 

“I would say the biggest hurdle, would be the songs, there is a very limited amount of music that we can dance to,” junior Kailey Gifford said. 

“Something we still need to work on is being extra clean and bringing an energy to our performance that is not just physical especially since we have a younger team this year some of the girls have never competed before so as a team we all need to work on our confidence as well,” said Drevitch. 

The girls have to select out of their skills which is the best and compete. Showcasing only two styles out of the four potential categories.

“There are 4 categories from which teams are allowed to choose 2 of which to compete in. The categories include jazz, kickline, pom, and hip hop. We will be competing in kickline and pom,” Drevitch said.

These Royals find any performance exciting and rewarding and take any routine seriously. Thriving off the crowd these dancers are excited to show what they work so hard to master.

“My favorite thing about dancing and specifically dancing for the school is performing. The feeling you get when dancing in front of a packed stadium or a gym is incredible. The adrenaline you get when dancing in front of a bunch of screaming people is something you can only experience first hand,” Drevitch said. “I have also made some lifelong friends through the dance team and that is something I will always be thankful for.”

“My favorite thing about dance, is to be able to get In front of a crowd and be able to dance like nobody’s watching,” said Gifford. 

With great outcomes comes great commitment. The dedication the team holds is second to nothing. Their willingness to take on competition is second to none.

“I think we have made it this far because we are always working to better ourselves and the team as a whole,” Gifford said. “We work together and help each other out when reviewing the dances.”