College Dance Team Central

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Red Hotz Light Up Dance Competition

By CAROLINE CHAPMAN
April 27, 2006
The Red And Black

Dancers of the UGA Red Hotz haven’t had a problem living up to their name.

The Red Hotz set the competition on fire at the National Dance Association College Nationals earlier this month in Daytona Beach, Fla., winning second place in the Open Division and defeating defending national champion Western Kentucky.



The team also brought home the NDA Innovative Choreography Award for their “State of Shock” routine, which was composed mostly of Michael Jackson songs.

The dance team was started five years ago and is entirely organized internally. Its 13 members coordinate fund-raisers, annual performances, special events, auditions and all choreography except for their routine at Nationals each year, said team captain, Vicki Hendley, a graduate student from Fayetteville.

“It’s interesting because we don’t have a coach,” she said. “We all take turns standing out. We all realize that we’re all in this together.”

Hendley said a unique aspect of the Red Hotz is their intense philanthropic involvement.

In addition to performing at volleyball and basketball games, the Red Hotz look forward to dancing at Dance Marathon, H.E.R.O. for Children and Relay For Life events each season, she said.

“In order to prepare for Nationals, we attended numerous regional studio competitions where we brought home both gold and platinum awards for our overall high scores,” said co-captain Ashley Britt, a junior from Fayetteville.

To alleviate the costs of attending Nationals, each year the Red Hotz host the UGA Red Hotz Dance Team Invitational, the largest independent dance competition in the state, to raise funds for the season.

A major draw to the team for its members is the opportunity to continue dancing competitively in college, Hendley said.

Co-Captain Valerie Barth, a junior from Swansea, Ill., attributed the team’s success at Nationals to the chemistry among the dancers.

“I feel that our team can only get better from here on and it gets me pumped for next season,” she said.

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