Jaguarettes Compete at UDA’s Florida State Dance Championships

January 18, 2018


“My favorite part of the competition was definitely the feeling I got after I performed our routine. Being able to perform with all of my friends was definitely a cool experience,” says Addison. Credit: Gracie Wipfli/Achona Online (used with permission)

On Monday, Jan. 15, the Academy Jaguarettes dance team traveled to Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida to compete in the Universal Dance Association’s Florida State Dance Team Championships. There, the team competed two routines in the varsity jazz and hip hop divisions.

The UDA stage was roughly four times the size of the Academy dance room in which the team rehearses in. Photo Credit: Audrey Diaz/ Achona Online

Members of the team include: Samantha Cano (‘18), Audrey Diaz (‘18), Samantha Garateix (‘18), Abigail Rodriguez (‘18), Gracie Wipfli (‘18), Ella Jruz (‘19), Hannah Rodriguez (‘19), Bella Addison (‘20), Mary Kelly Cardillo (‘20), Lily Megarian (‘21), and coaches Olivia Martinez (A’09) and Stefanie Zummo.

This is the team’s second competition of the season. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

The team arrived to the complex eager and ready to perform their first number, a hip hop routine choreographed to a remix of Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble.” The high-energy routine included many lifts, ripples, and sharp isolations.

Megarian and Rodriguez stretch prior to competing their first dance of the day. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)


The hip hop routine was choreographed by Lindsey Goldaper. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

“My favorite part of the competition would probably be when we were about to go on stage for hip hop, because we all were really excited and pumped up to go on stage for the first time that day. We knew hip hop was strong and was our team’s favorite, so it was great that everyone was excited. We could really feed off of each other’s energy,” says A. Rodriguez.

This year marked the team’s first time competing with a hip hop dance. Photo Credit: Grace Wipfli/Achona Online (used with permission)

After performing hip hop, the team had a quick 25 minutes to change costumes and stretch before taking the stage again for jazz. The dance, choreographed to AronChupa’s “Little Swing”, was a 20’s themed routine incorporating many variations of turns and leaps.

The team was allowed six minutes to practice the spacing of their dance prior to taking the stage. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

“I felt our jazz dance represented our skills well. I was nervous about possibly being off on the timing, but excited to show the judges and everyone else how hard we worked,” says H. Rodriguez

The jazz routine was choreographed by Stephanie Tsitsikronis. Photo Credit: Grace Wipfli/Achona Online


The team began practicing the jazz routine in July 2017. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

Just minutes after performing jazz, the Jaguarettes returned to the stage along with all other competing teams for the awards presentation. The team was awarded second place for hip hop, and seventh place for jazz.

Unlike most sports teams, Jaguarettes is a year-round sport. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

For all five seniors, this event marked their last time competing as a Jaguarette.

Rodriguez and Garateix have been on the team since their freshmen year. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

“The competition was more exciting than anything because after doing it for four years, I knew my senior year competition would be the most important and impactful. It was also kind of sad at the same time because I knew it was my last time experiencing the adrenaline and excitement with my friends on the team,” says A. Rodriguez.

The jazz dance was the second to last dance of the entire competition. Photo Credit: Stefanie Zummo (used with permission)

While the competition season is over for the team, the Jaguarettes still have many events to look forward to for the year-round sport, including senior night, Powder Puff, and a Disney dance workshop.

“I am looking forward to the Disney trip that our team goes on in February.  We went for the first time last year and it was a little stressful, but probably one of the best weekends because I had so much fun with everyone,” says Cardillo.

Leave a Comment

Achona • Copyright 2024 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in

Comments (0)

For us to post your comment, please submit your name and email with the comment. Thanks!
All Achona Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *