Hope gave the ability of a generation of a dance team before their time. The yawning of the music and the aura from the crowd made the dance team visible. The pitiful short yellow and black shorts and yellow half t-shirts created a dance signature that was favorable to the audience.
The dance team’s moves common to the 70’s and 80’s were unique as they danced to the rhythm of Madonna and Prince. The black dance group was favorable to the black community because they introduced dance body movements, hand movements and feet movements never in the dance formation or combination in Vegas. Before the 70’s whites would dance using fancy hand movements, while blacks were known for seductive body movements and Hispanics and Asians used fancy foot work.
To belong to the street dancers dance team meant you had to be good. Most dancers’ stereotypy was that they had big thighs, big but, light skin, long hair, big breast and you just about had to have juice to get on the dance team. Tryouts consisted of doing turns, pirouettes, and jazz and ballet movements. The team was a group of street dancers. The team had to know the latest street dances, rebuttal cheers and be able to dance to the instruction of the dance instructor without getting tapped out. If a dancer after routine after routine were tapped out, they would not be on the team. The dancers had to pass a live audition and then come before a panel to discuss what being on the team meant to them. The team captain would give a big speech and then tell us to take our hand and pat our backs to have accomplished this. I made the team. There were three mottoes the team had: better respect, better represent and you better recognize. Everyone knew this.
The team would gather every morning at 6 AM for practice. The dance team captain expected the team leader to have music handy as well as new dance moves every time the group met. Once the captain saw this she would combine the dance moves to the beat of the music to create the team dance routine before game, parade or competition. One and two and one and two, three four, three four… the team was prepared. Kudos to the team.
It was the first time that the street dancers performed in the battle of the bands. There was always someone in the audience who questioned the ability of the team by asking them to leave. In order to be captain of the team, you had to have the team confidence and support to make the team work. The team was prepared and well organized. Our team was competitive. We were disqualified from performing in this competition because our team captain was guilty of stealing our dance routine from another group. This was a disappointment, when some of our group would give our routine to other groups to break us up. Their penalty would to drop them from our team. Everyone wanted to be team captain and so at times their was dishonesty. It got so that the captain would get a routine together before the competition. The team knew the routine, the captain leads and the team follows.
The day of the national competition, I was not allowed to perform because of my race. We won this competition. The next year, our team entered the competition; our team was discriminated against because we were a rookie team. I paid money for the team to perform. This time I was allowed in the competition. Our rivals from the battle of the bands were tied for first. Their team cheated in the first round of competition. They copied our routine. We were so upset we were ready to fight. The team leader taught us to fight with our dance routine and not our fist. We knew the routine. The team captain leads and we follow. We won the prize because we were a good team.