Tigerettes dance their way to No. 1

Three seniors, Elissa Boudreau, Kelsey Cline and Brittany Domstrand are named to the 2008 Senior All-State Team
by: Photo courtesy of Tigard High School, DANCE CHAMPS - The Tigard High School Tigerettes danced home with a first-place trophy in the 6A Large Division Saturday at the OSAA Dance and Drill State Championships held at Memorial Coliseum.

The Tigard High School Tigerettes danced home with a first-place trophy in the 6A Large Division Saturday at the OSAA Dance and Drill State Championships held at Memorial Coliseum.

The Tigerettes danced to a two-part medley of the song, 'Imagine,' by John Lennon. The team beautifully executed a near flawless routine with strong emotion. Dance officials and coaches described the final performance on Saturday night as, 'unforgettable' and 'one of the finest performances at state ever seen.'

'Words cannot express how excited we are for the team,' said coach Laurie Colletta. 'They worked hard this year and it paid off. The most rewarding part was seeing how happy the dancers were.'

'This is a special group of dancers and this has been a special year. I couldn't be more proud of them,' said head coach Linda Sherron. 'They took our ideas and dreams and made them come together.'

'I was pacing while waiting for the results, yet I had a calm feeling, knowing that we did our very best,' said coach Dave McCall.

The competition

In preparing for the competition the coaches were challenged to create a story of hope and peace through intense choreography that required perfect timing and planning. The Tigerettes complex routine included sections where five pieces of choreography were going on at the same time.

As the team took the floor, the master of ceremonies announced, 'Imagine living in a world without war, without boundaries... without the notion of us versus them. A peaceful world is possible if we all view ourselves as a brotherhood of man.'

The contemporary routine began with an instrumental arrangement of Lennon's classic, 'Imagine.' The Tigerette's performance opened with the portrayal of pain and suffering, then transitioned to project a message of hope and peace for the future.

As the Lennon song increased in intensity the Tigerettes flawlessly completed team fouette turns and team pique fouette turns into a calypso leap.

'This team has grown in its ability to take on difficult and complex choreography,' Colletta said.

Colletta had decided at the beginning of the year to step down after seven years as coach of the Tigerettes, but winning a state championship makes the decision to step down difficult for Colletta.

Coach McCall said he told the team, 'Coach Laurie is in the audience, and she deserves the best routine of the year. She has devoted her life to the team for seven years. Do it for Laurie!'

'We did it our way - the Tigard way. It doesn't get any better than that,' McCall said.

Individual honors

In addition to the state win, three seniors, captain Elissa Boudreau, captain Kelsey Cline, and Brittany Domstrand were named to the 2008 Senior All-State Team. Seniors try out for the team in January, learning choreography and competing for a spot on the 25-member roster.

In other individual honors, Brittany Domstrand also received a Dance Drill Coaches Association (DDCA) dance scholarship, Cassie Abeyta received a DDCA academic scholarship, and Kelsey Cline placed second in the drill down competition.

'This year we were well prepared and we had time to focus on details and bonding,' said captain Kelsey Cline. 'When you are bonded with your teammates, you have a greater sense of accountability.'

The dancers say that being a part of the Tigerette team has been a rewarding experience and that winning the state competition just enhances and completes the experience.

'I have developed a great deal of confidence, and the team gives each dancer a sense of accountability,' said captain Kaitlyn Lange.

'We all work together toward the same goal to make the team stronger,' said captain Heather Lloyd. 'We have supported and encouraged each other throughout the year.'

The Tigerettes dance members say they appreciate the community for the support the team has received this year, and that part of being a championship team is having the support of the community.

An assembly will be held at Tigard High School in the near future to award the championship banner and to celebrate the accomplishments of the Tigerettes.