Over the past 3 weeks, I’ve been lucky enough to have the chance to represent Team Warwick as a competitive dancer. Dance competitions have always been something that I’ve wanted to try, but I come from a non-competitive studio. This year, I made the intermediate competition team for Warwick tap, so I finally got to see what it’s like to be a competitive dancer.
From the outset, I knew it was going to take work, Last year I was on intermediate when Warwick Tap virtually attended online competition. I got injured in the last few weeks of online classes as well, so was only able to participate in the final competition we did. Sure, it was a nice experience to have, but I knew that there was more to competing than that. Even though we were one team, we never got to train together in person because of restrictions. Truth be told, it did somewhat feel like something was missing when you’re celebrating awards on zoom, on your own in your bedroom. So, when the opportunity to audition came up again this year, I took it with both hands.
We started rehearsals in term 1. For a lot of our team, this was our first time on a competition team, which was extremely exciting (and a little bit nerve wracking too). Our fabulous choreographer had designed the most amazing routine for us- themed around the Disney movie ‘The Incredibles’! It’s worth mentioning that all of the Warwick Tap routines are created and taught by students. Let me tell you, you’d never know they weren’t professionally done, with the phenomenal quality of the choreography they produce. Work started fairly quickly, doing 2 hours a week of rehearsal together from around the middle of term 1.
All our competitions were in the last 3 weekends of term 2, so we knew we that the hard work was real. We went with Classical and Modern Dance for our first two competitions of the season, Go Hard or Go Home in Nottingham, and Sheffield dance competition. Then, this weekend we braved it alone at Loughborough. Having CMD there was great, we loved watching them perform, all cheering each other on.
Competitions mean long days. Usually, we were leaving the bus stop on campus at around 6:15 in the morning, which meant leaving my house at 5:45 on a Sunday morning. Then, we wouldn’t get back until around 10 PM at night. Plus, every competition we went to had different rules about what was, and was not allowed in terms of choreography and performance time, so we did end up doing a slightly different routine everywhere we competed.
Tap may not have placed at competition this year, but we gained so much more instead. Don’t get me wrong, it would have been amazing to place, but it does still feel pretty epic to know that I’m leaving this experience with 10 sisters from my intermediate team, some of whom I didn’t even know in September. Add to that, 10 more great friends from the advanced team who also came with us and did an amazing job too. So, as far as I’m concerned, we didn’t lose at all.
Warwick Tappers, YES WE ARE!