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updated: 1/25/2014 10:33 PM

Teams show off varied routines in dance sectionals

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  • Cary Grove's Megan Emma, 15, facing, hugs teammate Anna Baran, 17, after their performance at the IHSA 2A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School. The team took third place and is heading to the state competition.

       Cary Grove's Megan Emma, 15, facing, hugs teammate Anna Baran, 17, after their performance at the IHSA 2A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School. The team took third place and is heading to the state competition.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Frida Barrera, 16, performs with Elgin High School at the IHSA 3A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.

       Frida Barrera, 16, performs with Elgin High School at the IHSA 3A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Eliza Godfrey, 15, center, performs with Huntley High School at the IHSA 3A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.

       Eliza Godfrey, 15, center, performs with Huntley High School at the IHSA 3A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Rachael Kollins, 17, performs with Hampshire High School in the IHSA 2A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.

       Rachael Kollins, 17, performs with Hampshire High School in the IHSA 2A competitive dance sectionals Saturday at Huntley High School.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Antioch High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.

       Antioch High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.
    George LeClaire | Staff Photographer

  • Lakes High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.

       Lakes High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.
    George LeClaire | Staff Photographer

  • Glenbard West High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.

       Glenbard West High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.
    George LeClaire | Staff Photographer

  • Carmel High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.

       Carmel High School's dance team competes at the IHSA competitive dance sectional at Glenbrook South High School on Saturday in Glenview.
    George LeClaire | Staff Photographer

 
By Eileen O. Daday
Daily Herald Correspondent

Fortes, double turns and graceful ballet moves. They all were on display Saturday at the Illinois High School Association competitive dance sectionals, along with powerful hip-hop moves, gymnastics and stunting.

High school dance teams took the competition floor at five sectional sites across the state, including Glenbrook South High School in Glenview, Stagg High School in Palos Hills and Huntley High School.

Variety was the name of the game, as their routines varied as much as their costumes and music selections, but this much they knew: Dancers needed to sell their routine to judges with energy, emotion and precision.

From zombies in the Fenton High School routine, to Barbie dolls portrayed by West Chicago dancers, and James Bond agents played by the Corsairs from Carmel Catholic High School, everything was fair game.

At stake was the chance to advance to the state finals that open Friday at U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington. Only the top six teams from each division punched their ticket.

Lakes Community High School in Lake Villa earned the Class 2A sectional title at Glenbrook South, with its rousing kick routine, set to Lady Gaga's hit single, "Applause."

"We wanted to make it super fierce, like (Lady Gaga) was when she performed it," said junior Megan Wayne of Lindenhurst. "And then we added all these quirky hand movements, just to make it more interesting."

The dance team from Larkin High School in Elgin also advanced with its dark routine that took aim at high school bullying. The lyrical dance featured classical ballet moves, but it came to a dramatic finish, with two members shunned as outcasts.

"We figured bullying is such a big topic in high school," said senior Madison Cherry of Elgin, "that we wanted to express the way we feel about it."

Judges looking on, evaluated teams on everything from choreography, technique and difficulty, to transitions, spacing and showmanship.

Among Class 3A schools, Hersey dance team members simply wanted to convey their passion for dance, with their contemporary lyrical routine.

"It was important to have our turning combinations in unison," said senior Cheyenne Blakely of Mount Prospect, "and our lift. That was a climatic moment."

Glenbrook South had one of the larger squads of the day. In all, 20 dancers took the floor, dressed in flowing ballet costumes, with lace gloves and a flower ringlet in their hair.

"The emotion and percussion of the music all drive the dance," said sophomore Kayla Feldstein of Glenview, "but with our costumes and flowers in our hair, it just makes it more fun."

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