SHERIDAN — Nearly 20 Sheridan dancers have been invited to provide halftime entertainment at the Dec. 30 Holiday Bowl in San Diego, Calif., in a first-of-its-kind trip for a local dance studio.
“It is my first time, so it will be interesting to see how this works,” said Donna Grant, owner and instructor at Studio 48 dance studio. “Oh my gosh, we are so excited. One of my girls has never traveled, never been on a plane, so she is extremely excited. I think we are nervous just because of the curiosity. I can’t even prepare them for what is going to happen. I am sure the audition practice is going to be a bit nerve wracking. I’m just nervous to see how we compare to the other dancers across the whole United States.”
Grant said she was contacted by World Strides Heritage Performance several weeks ago. The company arranges dancing and entertainment for several football bowl games, and invited her and her dancers to participate in the Holiday Bowl, which will feature the Texas Tech Red Raiders and Arizona State Sun Devils.
Grant said her dancers, ages 11 to 20, will travel along with chaperones, to Denver on Dec. 26 and then on to San Diego, where they will begin rehearsals and get assigned specific dance parts for the halftime show.
“I believe that there are about 600 performers for this game that will be dancing and entertaining at halftime,” she said. “It is one of the biggest shows that they have had. I think the stadium seats like 60,000 people. It definitely will probably be really intense.”
She said the company mailed her an instructional video with the planned choreography for the show several weeks ago and she and her dancers have been rehearsing it for a month.
“They gave me a CD with the choreography and there are three different groups, a right side and left side and groups within groups, so my girls have to know every single part until they get there and actually place them in their part,” Grant explained. “It is pretty simple choreography, but learning it seven different ways has been a bit challenging for us.”
In addition to the halftime show, the dancers will also participate in a pre-game parade and will take instructional classes from well-known choreographers.
“We are involved in a convention,” Grant said. “The San Diego Chargers cheerleaders will be working with us, Dmitry with Dancing with the Stars choreographed the halftime show and will be teaching us and also Jaquel Knight; he is Beyonce’s choreographer.”
After the game, the dancers will be treated to a day at Sea World, including a dinner and dance for all the participating performers, before returning home on Dec. 31.