The New Mexico State University DanceSport Company added to its cache of national honors earlier this month after winning two first-place national championship titles at the 2016 USA Dance National DanceSport Championships.
NMSU’s DanceSport Company is a part of the NMSU Dance Program in the Department of Kinesiology and Dance, which is housed in the College of Education. The national competition took place April 1-3 in Baltimore.
NMSU’s official team of 21 ballroom, Latin and swing partner dancers competed in 22 total events during the three-day competition, the company’s third and final national competition for the 2015-16 academic year. NMSU company members also won two second-place runner-up titles, three third-place awards, and four event finalists.
“With so many new team members this year, I am very pleased with our results,” said Hannah Cole, NMSU DanceSport director and assistant dance professor. “It was a good competition. Our senior members were dancing at increasingly higher levels and still producing great results and everyone danced to the best of their ability. They were great representatives of NMSU both on and off the dance floor.”
Taking home top honors at nationals were Ernesto Olivas and Crystal Miranda in the Bronze Rhythm category, and Brandon Romero and Jade Augustain in the Novice Amateur Rhythm category.
National runners-up were: George Torres and Ruby Marquez (Bronze Rhythm), and Irvin Zavala Verdugo and Valeria Zerecero (Silver Rhythm).
Placing third at nationals were Manny Carmona and Cindy Moreno (Bronze Rhythm); Brandon Romero and Valeria Zerecero (Bronze Latin); and Brandon Romero and Jade Augustain (Pre-Championship Amateur Rhythm).
Placing fourth through seventh at nationals were Brandon Romero and Jade Augustain (fifth place in Championship Amateur 9-Dance); Walker Fleming and Destiny Bretado (seventh place in Bronze Rhythm); and Brandon Romero and Jade Augustain (seventh place in Novice and Pre-Championship Amateur Smooth).
“I am so proud of the growth in talent of both our newest cohort of student-athletes and our graduating, aspiring DanceSport professionals,” Cole said. “We have set the bar high, and look forward to many more years of competitive success.”
Members of NMSU DanceSport are now preparing for their final public performance of the school year, the annual spring production of “Rhythm Nights,” an emotional journey through Ballroom, Latin and Swing titled “Emoji.” Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Fridayand Saturday, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, at the Grapevine Plaza, 3600 Picacho Avenue.
This year’s event includes live music before and after the performance. Guests will enjoy music by the Derrick Harris Band on Friday, DJ Vic on Saturday and the Steppin’ Up band on Sunday. Tickets are available through the NMSU Dance Program by calling 575-646-4067.
Author: Adriana M. Chavez – NMSU