Dance auditions go virtual amidst pandemic


Photo taken by junior Jaliyah Journigan and provided by junior Mia Aguimatang

The Get to the Pointe (GTP) dance auditions were held on Google Meets for potential recruits to apply.

Diana Gonzalez, Sports Editor

The Get to the Pointe (GTP) dance team auditions that typically occur during April have faced a drastic change this year. Under normal circumstances, those who hope to become GTP members would have the chance to impress Bonita Vista High (BVH) Dance I, Dance II, Dance International Baccalaureate (IB) and GTP dance teacher Christine Timmons by performing a group dance in the BVH dance room. This year, potential members showcased their skills from their living room or whichever space available to them. Rather than in person, this year’s auditions were virtual. 

“I think one of the good things about this year is that the people that did audition were people who were really good candidates that were motivated to do [what they did] without all the extra motivation, so I appreciate all who auditioned,” Timmons said.

On April 21, all BVH students received an email containing the links to the GTP dance audition forms and choreography. Timmons created two YouTube videos for auditioning GTP members. One video contained a slow step-by-step choreography to the song “Say So” by Doja Cat. In the second video, Timmons performed the dance on beat for viewers  who auditioned by learning and performing  the dance themselves.

“It’s less intimidating for people to take a video of themselves and upload it rather than having to be surrounded by a bunch of people and audition in-person,” Dance Captain and junior Mia Aguimatang said.

Usually Timmons promotes the dance team by reaching out to those in her Beginner Dance classes, as well as through the annual dance concert performance by the GTP team. According to Timmons, this dance concert is essential to motivating students to audition for the team, but with this year’s quarantine, the team was unable to put on the show.

“I was afraid that some people would still have that fear of not wanting to audition just because they had to record themselves, and when people record themselves they find more flaws because they have more time to perfect it,” Aguimatang said.

According to Aguimatang, the team usually receives 30 to 40 auditions, and this year met that average with over 30 submissions. Currently, 33 students are on the GTP dance team and they have started to participate in team bonding meetings through video calls. 

“To be honest, I think that [the team is] all amazing because just auditioning itself is challenging having to put yourself out there and [express] a very personal style,” GTP team member and junior Caitlynn Helfer said. “It was very awesome to meet everybody because I feel like I have already made another family. We’ve been through a lot together, so I’m excited to see what next year has to bring.”

The team has an introductory system of ‘Big Sisters’ and ‘Little Sisters’ where the ‘Big Sisters,’ the returning members of GTP,  are assigned to ‘Little Sisters,’ which are the new members of GTP. The pairs were created to support each other.

“My only concern after picking the team is keeping that motivation going and trying to establish a bond between the new team members so that when we start next year we already have a strong family feeling,” Timmons said. “Of course I want them to dance, but I really want [the team] to be a support system and a place where they can go and express themselves and be able to do what they enjoy together.”

The new dance team was announced at the end of April and team meetings take place once a week. The team continues to hold its dance classes through video call. Despite challenges faced due to being on lockdown, Timmons is hopeful for the team and year to come.

“I am super excited about the team; every year is very unique, and it’s exciting to see what direction this year is gonna go,” Timmons said. “We’re going through so much right now and if we can come through in a positive way and be there for each other and enjoy the dancing, then overcoming all these obstacles will be very rewarding.”