SLEVPD Semi-Finalists in UDA Nationals in Orlando, FL

The East Varsity Pom and Dance Team made school history last week at their UDA Nationals in Orlando, Florida. The team advanced  for the very first time to the semi-finals in not one, but two categories, jazz and pom, out of 80 teams.

Nationals is something that a team has to qualify for in either the summer by bringing a routine to their camp and getting first place, getting all blue ribbons on the routines they learn and perform at camp, or qualifying at a regional competition. East qualified in all three of the possible ways this year! 

The team started their preparation for nationals all the way back in the summer when a choreographer came to choreograph their competition routines. In addition to performing at football games in the fall, the team also worked on cleaning their competition routines. After football season was over, the focus went to the competition routines and perfecting them for their first competition of the season, Chicagoland. For this competition the team traveled to Chicago, Illinois to show off all of their hard work. After their first competition the team only went up from there. They used their corrections from the judges at the competition in order to improve their dances for their next two regional competitions. 

The last two regional competitions both happened to fall on the same weekend, which made for a long weekend of performances. On the Saturday of that weekend, the team performed at Royal Oak High School, where some of the best dance teams from Michigan attended. This made for a tough competition, but despite that, the team did very well. The next day, Sunday, the team attended yet another competition; this one being at Belleville. Regardless of the fact that the team competed the day before, the team did the best that they had in a long time! The team won first place for their jazz dance, which has also never happened in the history of the team. Along with the first place award, the team got second place for their pom routine and received a special judges award for intensity. 

Ever since these last two competitions, the team has been working hard to prepare themselves for their hardest competition, UDA Nationals. At Nationals the team has to make it through prelims, semi-finals, and finals in order to place nationally. In the first round of the competition (prelims) the team goes up against 80 other teams. Based on the scores of each team, 40 out of the 80 teams are chosen to continue to compete in semi-finals. Then in the semi-finals 20 out of the 40 teams are chosen to compete in finals. In finals, teams will be ranked nationally out of 10 spots. 

As preparation for nationals, the team hosted a nationals send off in the East gym. This is where friends and family of the team have the chance to watch the nationals routines before the team heads to Florida. Th team got to show off their hard work to their biggest supporters.

After the competition, the team also enjoyed visiting the theme parks and a special concert just for UDA competitors.