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The members of the Jacksonville Dance Company competed in the Kids Artistic Revue National Competition in Panama City, Florida. The competition began for JDC on Wednesday, June 22nd and ended Sunday afternoon, June 26th. The dancers and their families combined the competition with great Florida family fun.
The KAR National Competition was a tough competition. Attending the competition were 33 really large dance companies from as far away as California, Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, and Arkansas, (just to mention a few), with many of them bringing large trucks (or several large trucks) carrying unbelievably large props. There were 860 acts from solos to large production numbers with one number featuring 71 performers.
The categories included tap, jazz, ballet, pointe, modern, lyrical, hiphop/funk, musical theater, open, novelty, pom pon, folk/ethnic, acro/gymnastics, and production. Numbers included solos, duets, trios, small group, large group, line and production. Divisions within the competition, based on weekly hours of instruction taken, were recreational, primary, secondary, intermediate and elite. In addition to categories, the divisions were broken down into age groups. Ages of the dancers are averaged to determine the age division in which the group performs. Awards were based on points earned for each performance and the awards for this competition that could be given were second, high second, first, top first and elite top first. After adjudicated awards were announced, awards were announced for top placements in the age divisions for all dances.
Some of the JDC performers and families arrived early and did the usual tourist things for Florida--spending time on the beaches, shopping at the many beach shops, going out to Shell Island to see the beautiful waters and the dolphins playing in the waters on the way, riding go-carts, etc. etc. etc. Wednesday, after the first JDC performance, the families gathered on the beach by one of the Parasail places for a swim and beach party. Some of the kids (and adults) got to parasail and others rode on those large beach toys pulled by the wave runners. Other than sunburns received, everyone had a great time.
Ms. Sara and Ms. Lindsey - at the beginning of the competition - would love to say they looked this refreshed at the end!!!!
Ms. Sara and Ms. Lindsey are listed as the instructors for a performance and as instructor, they were also the choreographer for the dance.
Note: Some of the photos were taken immediately after the performance by the group - note the glistening "perspiration" on the faces of the dancers. If the smiles are a little tight, it's a pretty good chance that the photos were taken before the performance!!! Never doubt that our performers danced hard and performed well. We have been so proud of all of them, from youngest to oldest and least experienced to most.
The competition actually began for JDC on Wednesday when Jo Lee Camp and Hallie Hankins performed their tap, in the primary category, to "These Boots," for which they received a First-Place Award. Ms. Sara was the instructor for this dance.
Ms. Sara snapped this picture of Jo Lee and Hallie in their cute "Boots" costume.
Performances by JDC on Thursday were three solos, two duets and two trio performances.
Katy Gorden performed a lyrical, in the intermediate category, to "Lost" for which she won a First. Katy was instructed in her performance by Ms. Lindsey.
Jessica Holeman, instructed by Ms. Lindsey, performed a solo in the intermediate open category to "Just Walk Away" and was awarded a First Place. Jessica has been with the dance program at Huff 'n Puff since she was three years old and has performed in fourteen recitals.
Kaitlin Soderlund, instructed by Ms. Sara, performed a tap solo in the intermediate category and received a Top First for her performance. She placed second in the tap category and nineteenth out of top 20 of all performances in that intermediate age bracket.
Ryann Young and Amber Bajorek performed a tap duet in the intermediate category to "Buttermilk Biscuits" and won a Top First Award. Ms. Sara was the instructor for this performance.
Tori Spears, Kaitlin Soderlund and Katy Gorden performed in open category to "Off the Rails" in the intermediate category and won a First-Place Award. Open category means that the dance doesn't fit the category of any certain dance genre (the dance had been performed as lyrical and modern in previous competitions.) Ms. Lindsey was the instructor for this dance.
Kassie Shepard and Jessica Holeman performed a comical tap dance in the intermediate category, to "Nerdy." The dance was performed in the open category and the dancers won a Top First Place for their performance. Ms. Sara was the instructor for this performance.
Rachel Wyrick, Joi Smith and Amanda Cross performed a jazz dance in the intermediate category to "Habanera" and won a First Place, high score in age division, jazz. Ms. Sara was the instructor for this performance.
Small Group Performances for JDC began on Friday with the performance of the young jazz dancers to "Born to be Wild ." The dancers, performing in the primary group, won a First Place for their performance, which was taught by Ms. Lindsey. The group also won a Judge's Special Award for "Cutest Rock Stars." Performing in this dance were Jo Lee Camp, Chandler Dean, Tori Kiser, Abigail Rhodes and Neely Taylor.
The young hiphop dancers, taught by Ms. Sara, performed in primary small group to "Lil Divas" and won a Top First Award and high in their category. Performing this dance were Jo Lee Camp, Chandler Dean, Mackenzie Featherston, Jaimee Hall, Tori Kiser, Olivia Snell and Neely Taylor.
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