Fanshawe dances to the podium
Humber Hype Dance Challenge is an annual dance competition held at Humber College that invites the best dance teams from all over - Canadacollege and universities.
To put it into perspective, Humber Hype Dance Challenge is equivalent to CCAA championships.
The competition is divided into larger groups (10-plus dancers) and everything else in a separate category - solo, duet, trio, and small group (four-to-nine dancers). While the large groups are not restricted in dance style, solos, duets, trios, and small groups must do lyrical/contemporary, hip hop, or jazz. The rules are simple: the dancer(s) have one dance, and they either win or they don't.
In 2006 and 2007, Humber College came in first place, while in 2008 they fell to second place. The competition essentially serves as an ego booster to show Humber is the best dance school. Fanshawe College came in to the challenge never reaching third place, and managed to earn bronze with 20 competitors.
With the win, Fanshawe managed to defeat Western University Dance Pack, and one of the best hip-hop teams in the nation, York University. Managing the team for the third year in a row is Rubelyn Ubando. In the three years under Ubando's management, this is the first time Fanshawe has placed in this competition.
The quest to third place, as Ubando explained, was a difficult process. To win on such a prestigious stage after some problems was definitely a victory the dance team will lavish in for quite sometime.
“After the first semester, everything was moving slow. A lot of dancers left after December because school became so busy for them. So we had to hold new tryouts, and it was really hard to accomplish,” Ubando explained. “It was a big deal for the two new dancers because they had to learn all the new dances everyone else knew from the beginning of the year.”
All of the success was achieved through hard work, and perseverance. On top of practicing five hours a week on dances alone, the dancers performed at all of the sports home games at Fanshawe College. The practice done by the Fanshawe dance team goes beyond fame, and prizes.
“We do community events, too,” explained Ubendo. “Dancing is not just for show. We're here to help communities with their fundraisers or anything else. If the [communities] want to accomplish something, we'd love to help out.”
The Fanshawe dance team has helped out fashion shows, high schools, and other places that want to need a hand entertaining. The dance team is more than just a group that wants to achieve. They are also establishing themselves as a charitable group.
Unfortunately, due to some issues with dancers leaving because of their school schedule, Fanshawe couldn't contribute this year, but Ubando's sights are set for an incredible year next year.
“I truly love being a part of such a great team with a big heart,” she said. “We're so excited for what the next year will bring, hopefully we can get more girls to try out, we can do more fundraising, show up to more community events, and of course show everyone what the Mighty Falcon Dancers are here for: to dance the night away.”
The success, as Ubando notes, was not only because of the dancers themselves, but also the incredible management team and coaches - Coach Mel Atkins, assistant coach Gina Humilde, and coordinator Kevette Cozier.
“Without all these people working behind the scenes, supporting the team in times of crisis, and providing help to these girls, I don't think the team would've survived. I would really like to thank the most beautiful coaches Mel and Gina for their endless work on showing the girls how to move and motivating them to believe in themselves.”
The Fanshawe Dance Team will continue to rise and soar. The talent and abilities of the management and dancers are the only limits. As such, not even the sky will ever limit this talented bunch.