SunDancers Host Annual Westwood Dance Classic

Sarah Wang, Heritage Photo Editor

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  • The SunDancers sway in opposite directions while Brooke Weatherbie ’20 is lifted upwards.

  • Ashley Zhang ’20, Ella Loper ’20, Susi Chavez ’19, Gabby Hoover ’20, and Sarah Wang ’20 extend forward after the lift.

  • The audience applauds the end of the SunDancers final team routine.

  • Josie Herrin ’21 stares intensely while reaching forward.

  • Susi Chavez ’19 extends her arms as she is lifted by her team members.

  • Gabby Hoover ’20 poses during the contemporary routine.

  • Sadie Armstrong ’19 stands center as she gazes towards the judges.

  • Susi Chavez ’19 stands tall in the center at the end of the routine.

  • Susi Chavez ’19 gracefully tilts her leg as Ella Loper ’20 and Sarah Wang ’20 support her.

  • Susi Chavez ’19 is lifted high into the air during the SunDancers’ lyrical routine.

  • Brooke Weatherbie ’20 and Hallie Klein ’19 assist Ella Loper ’20 lift her leg into a tilt.

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SunDancers hosted the annual regional dance competition, Westwood Dance Classic (WDC) on Saturday, Feb. 10. Coming from over fifteen different schools and companies, students competed against each other in groups, solos, and duets. The event began at 7 a.m. and ended at 11 p.m., when the awards were announced.

“My favorite moment of WDC was performing with my team and just enjoying the moment as a whole,” Divya Nair ‘19 said. “The hardest thing was standing in front of the judges during hip hop and staring at the audience and realizing that this moment will be my last time performing with the team at WDC.”

Warrior Pride competed with two dances, earning first place in team hip hop and second place in team contemporary. Warrior Pride also won a Gold award for receiving 90 points or above from every judge on one routine. Additionally, because the SunDancers hosted the contest, they did not compete and instead exhibited three team pieces, three officer pieces, and two company pieces. However, individual SunDancers did compete their own solos and duets. Sundancers Brooke Weatherbie ‘20 and Hallie Klein ‘19 placed first in their duet.

“I am going to miss being a part of Warrior Pride and competing,” Nair said. “These three years have been amazing and being on this team has helped me through my hardest times during high school and I will miss having such a close family.”

Throughout the event, dancers enjoyed various concessions, and had the opportunity to purchase shirts and Valentine’s Day themed treats and goodies. This was all thanks to the numerous parents who volunteered to ensure the competition went smoothly. Students from organizations such as the National Honor Society (NHS) and the baby SunDancers also offered their help.

“Even though volunteering at WDC was kind of tiring,” Catherine Zhang ‘22 said, “overall, it was a really fun experience.”

Dancers begin training for competition season from the start of the school year, making sure each pirouette and battement is sharp and clean. However, on top of all the practice and precision, the dancers remained positive and encouraging throughout the entire day and bonded with their teammates while also creating lasting memories.

“My favorite part of WDC was being able to see all of the other dances, especially Lily and Olivia’s duet,” April Gao ‘20 said. “They’re my little sisters, and I helped them clean the dance. It was so emotional and the end result was so beautiful I started crying.”