Dancing to their own beat

We see them all the time, pumping up the crowd at games, pep rallies, and other school events. Both the majorettes and dance team are filled with Jones spirit. Here are some key similarities and differences between the two dance teams.

Dance coach Elisa Foshay and majorette coach Shon Henry both have prior experience in various styles of dance.

The dance team is recognized as a sports team while the majorettes are categorized as a club. This allows the dance to participate in IHSA competitions while majorettes mostly perform at school events and occasionally at intramural competitions.

Each dance group has different variations of dance, mainly hip hop. Both teams incorporate some cheer techniques into their routine as well.

“Dance team has its own very specific style,” said Foshay. “The dance team’s style of hip hop it’s very specific. It’s very much focused on precision and unison.”

The majorettes incorporation of different dance styles sets the two hip hop dance teams apart.

“Majorette people think it’s just butt shaking and all of that, and it’s really more than that. It’s more about the energy of it and the style of it,” Henry said. “We do hip hop, ballet, lyrical, [but] it’s majority hip hop, I consider us a hip hop majorette team.”

The HBCU origins of majorette dancing causes it to stand out from other forms of dance. At HBCUs, majorettes typically perform with the marching band and live music. The dancers dance in literal stands on football fields and in dancing term stands.

“Stands, which is a one eight count to two eight count dance sequence,” said Henry.

With there being two teams, space issues arise. Majority of the time the dance team practices in the dance room on the sixth floor of the south building. Previously, the majorettes’ practice space was the fifth floor hallway. Now, the majorettes will be practicing in the choir room. Despite this accommodation, there are still some issues with space.

“We rarely have the chance to be in the dance room and see ourselves [in the mirror] like the dancers do. I feel like we can share those spaces,” majorette dancer Terrianna Bell ‘21 said.

Space is not the only issue between the majorettes and dance team. Since the majorettes have started, there has been a budding competition between the two.

“I won’t say it’s like a big thing, but there definitely is some competition the student body has drawn between both dance teams…like who’s in it, what the style is and what music do they use,” said Allegra Hinojosa ‘19, a member of the dance team..

The two teams like the idea of doing a performance together, but schedule conflicts might get in the way.

“I think it would be fun to combine and switch roles for a while where our girls go to Foshay, and the dance team goes to Shon to get a different feel for how we each do things,” majorette dancer Amaiya Smith ‘20 said.