Dance Crew Shows Off Hip-Hop and Jazz Skills

Eagle Dance Crew Wins Big at Groove Dance Competition!

Over the MLK holiday weekend, Embry-Riddle’s Eagle Dance Crew spent the whole weekend traveling and competing. They boarded the charter bus on Friday, Feb. 14 and were on their way to Las Vegas, Nevada for the regional competition hosted by the dance organization Groove.

In the months leading up to the competition, the team had registered and begun practicing “four to seven hours a week depending on the week”, and “learning up to three different routines at a time,” according to Team Captain Seyi Olusa. The eleven members of the team all competed in at least one event: “five of [the] members performed in the Hip Hop routine and all of [the] dancers performed in the Jazz routine,” says Marketing/Advertising Director and teammate Laura Lee.

Once at the competition, teams had “a specific performance time within their age and style category, and there were at least 10 teams, each having more than two performances on Sunday,” said Olusa. The competition has categories such as age groups, divisions of the number of participants, type of dance routines, and how often they practice a week. Age groups can be from 7 and under to 20 and over with age groupings every 2 years between. The divisions of the number of participants from 1 (Solo) to 15 and above (Production); Eagle Dance Crew was Large Group. Different routines can consist of using physical items like batons or movement like how they performed a Jazz routine. The amount of time a team practices during a week will make them Novice (3 or less), Intermediate (4-5), and Competitive (6 or more).

The competitors had to showcase many skills to compete in the two styles of dance. Jazz routines are “a fast-paced style of dance utilizing the technique and dance moves from ballet,” said Olusa, which “is more technique heavy involving jumps, leaps, and pointed toes,” according to Lee. Hip-Hop routines  “originated with the music genre, [and are] a style of dance that includes various forms of break dancing,” commented Olusa. Lee sees Hip-hop as “more style-focused and aggressive than Jazz. These movements involve isolations, full-body involvement, and are more beat-driven.”

They won first place in both Jazz and Hip-Hop in their category. Each member was given two pins for each performance, and the team received a large metal plaque for each performance They also received Elite Sapphire ranking which meant that the team ranked fourth in an experienced-based category that referenced how often they practiced.

Students interested in being a part of this award-winning team are recommended to contact Jamie Long [longj33@erau.edu] about trying out for the coming Fall semester.

Be sure to keep an eye out for Eagle Dance Crew at home basketball games and various community events when they are not preparing for another competition. Their next competition will be over spring break in Long Beach, Calif., so wish them luck!

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