By Jennifer Liyanage
The dance team is preparing to host their 4th season of Dancing with the Staff. But this year, the event will be held virtually. Accordingly, the dance team has planned for a 30 minute YouTube premiere of Dancing with the Staff to be streamed on Friday October 23 at 7:00 p.m.
Tickets are $7.50 which can be purchased through https://ghchs.booktix.com. When tickets are purchased, the viewer will receive a link to the show. Tickets will stop selling at 6:00 p.m. that night.
Unlike previous years, staff members and their families are now encouraged to perform together because rehearsals will be at home. This year, there will be no celebrity judges, but the audience vote will choose the winner.
Each “celebrity” staff member and their family have been assigned a style of dance along with a dance team student partner who will choreograph the performance. Through communication via Zoom, Google Meets, and recorded videos, the staff member will learn a one minute dance routine from their dance team choreographers. Specific dance styles include salsa, musical theater, contemporary, 90’s hip hop, swing, and more.
Virtual rehearsals began the second week of September. These rehearsals will last a total of four weeks, working around staff and family members’ schedules. There will be four weeks of physical rehearsing to prepare for the actual dance and one extra week to get into costume and film the performance.
One benefit of having Dancing with the Staff online is that the performance is not live, so the dance team and staff can edit their dance videos to create the perfect product in order to compete for the first place honor.
Some of the “celebrities” participating in this year’s event include English teachers Shayna Arhanian, Maureen Grandchamp, and Katherine Bryan, as well as Career Technical Education teacher Doug King, Physical Education teacher and ASB advisor Kristen Whitman, Visual and Performing Arts teacher Julie Neumann, football coach Bucky Brooks, cheer coach Gina Espinosa and our very own mascot Scotty.
Last season, iGranada adviser Robert Palafox, who performed with now alumni Jennifer Beristain and senior Faith Klijian, took first place for his spirited cha cha. Last year’s judges included professional dancers Gabriel Croom, Jonathan Redavid, and Aubree Storm. Croom is known for performing on Broadway in musicals such as “The Lion King” and “West Side Story,” Redavid was a dancer in “The Greatest Showman” and a past contestant on “Dancing with the Stars (DWTS),” and Storm was featured in Will Ferrell’s “Step Brothers” and has performed with Justin Bieber.
Dancing with the Staff is an event known to embody the ABC original, “Dancing with the Stars” with details like “celebrity” performances, the judging panel, votes from viewers, and decorative costumes. This year may not have provided the best circumstances to host DWTS, but with the teamwork and effort of the dance choreographers, staff members and their families, and all the people behind the technical works of the program, we are bound to see something as creative and entertaining as the seasons before.
“This will be a new format so it will be interesting but I am hoping equally entertaining. We hope everyone will join us for this fun event,” dance teacher Dana Fukagawa said.