Dance Fusion Has Successful Competition Weekend

Local dance company Dance Fusion had another successful weekend at the Nextstar Competition in Lancaster after having competed just a week before in Johnstown.

“We did really well,” said junior, Natalie Berrena-Barr, “and it feels good that our hard work is paying off and getting noticed.”

The Nextstar competition took place on March 1st through March 3rd at the Marriott Hotel in Lancaster. The actual performances took place in the ballroom on a built stage and featured 14 group dances from Dance Fusion,

The three-day competition had over 400 entries.  It began Friday evening and continued through Sunday afternoon. Dance Fusion took all of it’s competition dances to compete, in addition to seven solos, a duet and a trio.

This was one of our most successful competitions ever. I am so proud of everyone and it’s crazy to think that at our first competition as a team, we broke our record for most platinums”

— Freshman Paige Shultz

On Friday  teen soloists MacKenzie Lewis, Rilee Moore, and Marley Grazier competed and won two golds and a high gold. Seventh-grader MacKenzie Lewis was awarded the judges choice Diva Award for her jazz solo, and eighth-grader Marley Grazier took tenth place overall in her category for her contemporary solo. In addition, Sage Rumberger competed with her modern solo and won a platinum and first place overall in her category which had over 41 soloists.

“The best part is the thrill of coming off stage from your first dance of the competition,” said eighth-grader, Marley Grazier.

Junior soloist Alivia Anderson also competed Friday night and received high gold and seventh overall. She is the youngest soloist on the team this year.

Dance Fusion’s group dances began early on Saturday with their senior team. Small group hip-hop earned high gold.  Small group lyrical won a high gold and first place and sixth place overall in its category.  Small modern won platinum, first place, and third overall in its category. Large group modern won platinum, first place, and second overall.

Platinum is the highest award given in the intermediate category, and there were nine dances awarded platinum from Dance Fusion.

“This was one of our most successful competitions ever,” said freshman, Paige Shultz, “I am so proud of everyone and it’s crazy to think that at our first competition as a team, we broke our record for most platinums.”

Successes followed into Saturday, as senior jazz won a high gold, first place, and was fifth overall.  Contemporary received platinum, first place, and second overall. Lyripop was the last group dance of the day and finished with  high gold,  first place, fourth overall, and received a golden ticket. Golden tickets are invitations to compete at Nationals. Lyripop also got a choreography award. The only duet to compete from Dance Fusion consisted of Natalie Berrena-Barr and Sage Rumberger which won platinum and first place.

Sunday morning was dedicated to the junior group dances. Small group modern received platinum, first place, and first place in its category.  It also won a choreography award, a golden ticket, and was a regional champion dance. Small group hip-hop, large group lyrical, and jacro all won high gold and first place. In addition to that, large group lyrical won fifth place overall.

The last dances to compete were production and the mini jazz line. These dances are typically longer than a normal routine and feature a variety of songs and dances, all in one dance. The jazz line received high gold and first place.  Production won platinum, first place, first place overall, and another choreography award.

Sunday evening senior soloists Thaydra Grazier, Reagan Wood, Paige Shultz and Natalie Berrena-Barr competed and received two platinum, high gold, and gold in addition to first and tenth place overall. Junior Natalie Berrena-Barr won the Excellence in Execution Award, which was a judges choice award. Paige Shultz also got an invitation to the Power intensive which is an all day dance workshop.