WASHBURN COUNTY -- Four girls from Proficient Dance Studio recently performed in the pre-game and halftime shows at the Outback Bowl in Tampa Bay, Florida on January 1, 2019. The game was between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Iowa Hawkeyes with Iowa coming out on top, 27 - 22.
Dancers performed before a crowd of 40,518 fans at Raymond James Stadium, home of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. There were 402 performers ranging from 2nd – 12th grade.
The Latin themed pre-game show featured all of the performers using Pink, Green and Purple fans celebrating the 32nd anniversary of the Outback Bowl. Dancers took up the entire field spanning from the 10-yard line to 10-yard line as they performed their 2-minute routine. The performers remained on the field during the National Anthem and fly over.
During the half-time show, dancers filled the center of the field from the 35 to the 35-yard lines with over 2,500 high school band students surrounding them and uniting as one mass band to provide the live music for the show. This years’ tribute to American Songwriters featured such numbers as, “Sweet Caroline”, "For the Longest Time" and “Living in America”. The younger dancers, performed with half of the older dancers to “Uptown Girl”. The performance ended with a patriotic finale to "Armed Forces Salute". Cindy Clough, Executive Director of Just For Kix, was the choreographer with help from Ali Geraets and Annie Lindberg.
Back Row: Kailee Corlett, Allison Alexander; Front Row: Kyndra Clark, Clara Ruport
Comments from Cindy Clough
“We had an incredible group of dancers representing 11 states this year. We felt they came in more prepared than usual and worked very hard. All dancers learned the choreography from video links that were sent to them in late November and once they got to Florida the show was put together. They had 12 hours to work on formations and polish the routines. Also, with the performers, we had 427 non-performers and 40 coaches/studio owners on the tour as well. Everyone had a great time, and were so easy to work with. It is something they will remember forever as there is nothing quite like this large-scale performance.
The most exciting thing for me personally is when the dancers watch the performance at the final awards ceremony. We project the performance video on the wall so the kids could see the fruits of their labor. The dancers had no idea what the “Big Picture” looked like until they saw it on screen. You would think they were watching fireworks the way they oooh'd and aah'd at their own performance. I feel this year’s show was the best one we have put on to date. We used a variety of props including poms, hooplas and capes. The visual effect was higher than usual.”
In addition to the performance and practices, dancers, family members and coaches enjoyed the warm Florida weather by spending an afternoon at Clearwater Beach, toured one of the four Walt Disney World Theme Parks or Universal Studios in Orlando, toured Busch Gardens, attended a dinner cruise on the Yacht Starship and celebrated New Year's Eve with a talent show and dance party at the hotel. Just For Kix was responsible for the entire tour from chaperoning the performers at the hotel, the meals, the bussing, and the excursions.
Proficient extends a huge thank you to Just For Kix as well as the coaches, parents, and wonderful students for allowing this to happen.
Proficient Dance Studio offers many styles of dance from Jazz to Ballet to Competition, and their new season starts April 1st. PDS is located at 819 Ash Street in Spooner. If interested in classes, owner/instructor Cassandra Thompson can be contacted at 218-428-4295 or firstname.lastname@example.org. There will also be a registration day held at the studio on March 30th.