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The UDA College Dance National Championship

The UDA College Dance National Championship

The UDA College Dance Nationals ran from January 12th through the 14th at Walt Disney World. Dancers and others who tuned in are still talking about it. The talent in the D1A jazz category was incredible this year. Each team brought something different to the stage, but two stood out immensely. The Ohio State University Dance Team took first place with their unique routine to My Way.” The University of Minnesota was the second-place winner with “Dream On.” The LSU Tiger Girls shocked everyone with their jazz piece as they are more commonly known for hip hop, they danced to “Are You That Somebody.” The University of Tennessee came in fourth dancing to “Cornerstone.” And in fifth place, was the University of Michigan with Million Reasons.” 

Ohio State and Minnesota’s routines drew the most attention online. Both teams brought their own style and creativity to the stage. Ohio State had a creative concept and the use of their costumes was a different way to approach the jazz category. However, Minnesota was the epitome of a dance team with its clean jazz/lyrical fusion style. In my opinion, Minnesota should have taken first place with Ohio State in second. Although LSU surprised everyone with their jazz abilities and Tennessee brought a lot of emotion, Michigan should have placed third with LSU in fourth and Tennessee in fifth. Michigan brought a similar jazz/lyrical feel to the stage as Minnesota did and they executed their choreography flawlessly. 

The D1A Pom competition was intense. The pom routines were incredible this year and the turns out of some of these teams left everyone speechless. I agreed with the judges’ scoring except for the fourth and fifth-place teams. Minnesota came in first place this time which was well deserved with their creative turn sequences and tricks, like switch aerials. Ohio State took second place in this category, which could have easily been a tie between Ohio State and Minnesota. Ohio State brought new tricks to the stage and showed their versatility by turning on both sides, and they had a costume change onstage, which was creative. Penn State came in third place, which was quite a surprise. The choreography was fun and the routine was extremely clean. Texas Tech did not impress me as much as Tennessee. Texas Tech placed fourth and Tennessee placed fifth, these teams should have been swapped in their placements. Texas Tech didn’t have the best choreography and the songs could have been better, whereas Tennessee brought creative choreography and fun songs. Tennessee had some sloppy turns towards the end of their routine, which was not the case with Texas Tech. 

Once the LSU Tiger Girls took the stage everyone knew they were there to win. The Tiger Girls placed first with their Michael Jackson-themed routine in the D1A Hip Hop category. LSU embodied Michael Jackson very well and executed his very stylized movement. The choreography was cool with creative dynamics and the Tiger Girls made it look effortless. UNLV came in second place. I feel that this routine should have been in fourth place as it was not as good as their 2023 routine and I expected more out of this team. UNLV did bring some diversity to the stage with some male dancers and their movement as a group was controlled and clean. In third place was the University of Memphis. This group was incredible. The details and choreography were smooth and clean. There was a ton of personality and style in this routine which I feel should have put them in second place above UNLV. San Diego State University came in fourth place, this team deserved third place because their routine was fun while also being clean and strong. This team did not come to play and they deserved a higher placement. Fifth place went to the University of Central Florida which was deserved as they didn’t bring as much to the stage as I expected them to, however, their dancing was strong and they had some fun song choices. 

All of the dance teams at the UDA Nationals brought incredible talent to the stage and each category was filled with amazing routines. The big three of Ohio State, Minnesota, and LSU made this year’s nationals very memorable.  You can go on YouTube to watch all of these incredible routines.

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About the Contributor
Kira Meehan '24, Social Media Coordinator
Kira Meehan 24’, a Social Media Coordinator, has been writing for the Lobby Observer for the past three years. Kira enjoys writing about school and club events. She also enjoys participating in broadcasts. Kira is a dancer and participates in competitions outside of school as well as teaching dance to young kids and those with disabilities. She enjoys walking her dog and spending time with family and friends in her free time.

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