Dance team takes stage in the Garden

By Alex Gershanov
Published: December 2008

As the fans took their seats, the girls took the stage.

“I was excited but a little nervous. It was going by so fast that it seemed like a blur, sophomore Anna Lanoue of the Newton South Dance Team said.

“It was a lot of fun. There were a lot of people there and although I was a little nervous before, I felt well prepared when we got out on the court, sophomore Mollie Solon added.

Solon and Lanoue are just two members of South’s 23-member Dance Team that performed at the Celtics-Magic pre-game show on December 1.The girls put on their Celtics Mix ’08 routine, a hip-hop dance composed by the team’s coach, Jaime Gaudet and a local dance teacher, Athina Nikopoulos.

The team had been practicing five times a week for three months prior to the event. They were able to attain a slot during the show through their affiliation with Kathy McCrohon, the owner of a Needham dance studio. McCrohon, a well-known name in the Boston

area, offered South’s dancers this rare opportunity.

“All the girls worked very hard, Gaudet remarked, pleased with the performance.

Dancers from McCrohon’s studio who had also been rehearsing the routine accompanied the South dancers during the performance. The routine lasted approximately four minutes.

Although the dance team at Newton South is relatively new, most of the dancers have been dancing for multiple years at independent studios and were able to put on an astounding performance.

“I was definitely more excited than nervous before the performance. I was confident that we could pull it off, senior co-captain Olivia Barnes, who has been dancing nearly all her life, said. “I am satisfied with the team’s performance and think that overall we did a great job.

“Performing in such a big place made me put that much more energy into the dance, fellow senior co-captain Ayala Cohen said. “After all our hard work it felt short and was over before we knew it, but it was definitely a great experience.

The audience also enjoyed the performance and reacted most generously.

“ The audience liked it, although I wasn’t focusing on the them because I was thinking about the performance, Lanoue said.

Unlike many of the other dancers, Lanoue and Barnes had performed at Celtics games on previous occasions, and were therefore used to the spotlight.

Although the team plans to attend competitions in the future, whether or not they will attempt more events of this grandeur is still up for question.

“We probably won’t be doing any more events like this because it was such a unique opportunity, Barnes said

When asked whether or not such events are on the team’s agenda, however, Gaudet exclaimed, “Yes, definitely.

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