Photo by Rachel Jeune

Band senior Grant Conley flicks his wrist in the air as the senior Powderpuff boys line up and perform the choreography created by theatre senior Keiona Nesbitt.

Boys from all grades dressed in tutus and bikini tops nervously bounced around the sidelines as the end of the Powderpuff basketball games drew near. The time had come for them to perform their iconic Powderpuff halftime dance routines.

Powderpuff is one of Dreyfoos’ most anticipated events of Spirit Week, drawing hundreds of kids from every grade to the gymnasium to watch and cheer on their fellow classmates, as well as to compete against the other grades in a series of basketball games and Powderpuff dances.

The seniors took home first place for the Powderpuff cheerleading dances with a total score of 43 points out of 48. The freshman came in second with a total of 39 points, and the juniors and sophomores took third and fourth with a total of 35 and 34 points, respectively.

Photo by Rachel Jeune
Theatre junior Cross Ayala stands out in the junior Powderpuff as he flaunts his sassiest moves and lets his acting skills shine through the performance. The juniors showed off their red bralettes and tank tops as they danced to songs like “Everytime We Touch” by Cascada.

The three judges chose the winning class based on a 16-point rubric, which was then used to add up the scores from all of the judges and determine which dance scored highest. Judging each dance can be difficult, however, due to the amount of talent and excitement shown equally by each grade.

The biggest challenge for science teacher Kristen Perez was “having a true critique [knowing] that all [of] the students put a lot of effort into their performances.” Coming up with the scores for each grade was a tough decision, she said, because the well-executed performances are usually neck-and-neck with one another.

The need to multitask can also pose a challenge for judges during the decision-making process. Writing down critiques while also trying to keep an eye on the fast-paced performances can be very difficult and sometimes get in the way of fair judgement.

“I wasn’t as familiar with the rubric yesterday,” Powderpuff judge and media center specialist Shannon Kostecka said. “I [was] trying to fill out the paperwork while still watching and seeing everything.”

The judges tried their best to make note of all of the most memorable moments of each dance, as well as all of the slip-ups that can have an effect on the scores for each grade. Despite any of the possible mistakes, however, all of the dancers loved performing and trying to impress the judges.

Photo by Rachel Jeune
Dance sophomore Carson Van Popering leads the line of Powderpuff boys as they dance with their colorful umbrellas and make the crowds scream with their entertaining dance moves. While the fun props were only used during a portion of the dance, the bleachers full of students never seemed to quiet down.

“My favorite part was when we would turn our attention to the judges abruptly,” theatre sophomore Seth Greenberg said. “They would respond with either a gasp or just gawk.”

Every choreographer expressed the same sense of excitement watching their dancers do their best to perform the moves they had created. Whether the dancers had begun practicing months in advance or just weeks before Spirit Week, every choreographer showed their pride on the sidelines as they cheered and pumped their fists for their classmates.

Choreographer and dance freshman Kailey Worontsoff said that her favorite part about the whole event was seeing the progress the dancers had made since the first rehearsal. “They’ve improved so much [and] we’ve all become so close,” Worontsoff said. “It’s nice to see how much fun they had.”

Still, several of the choreographers from different grades agreed that getting the boys to get together and pay attention was a huge challenge. The choreographers had to know how to keep dancers focused and hold their attention throughout practices and rehearsals.

Photo by Sydney Webb
Theatre freshman Oliver Anthony follows the choreography to “Sexy Back” by Justin Timberlake and “Fergalicious” by Fergie along with his fellow classmates. The freshmen ended up taking second place in the Powderpuff competition.

“The boys get really distracted, so it was hard to keep them on track a lot of the times,” choreographer and dance freshman Caroline Kern said. “But with a lot of the girls helping, we helped them get in line.”

Although the choreography took a little more effort and organization than may be typical of a dance routine, the constant practice and help provided for the participants created a stronger bond among all of them. Every dancer pulled through and made this year’s Powderpuff competition one to remember for each class.

“[The boys] were so much fun to work with,” choreographer and theatre senior Keiona Nesbitt said. “I had the best time of my life and they’re all like my best friends [now].”