Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Kickline dances for passion, seeks increased awareness

Aside from its performances at basketball halftime shows, the Plattsburgh State Cardinalette Kickline Dance Club prides itself on its performances at community events like Relay for Life last week and Up Til’ Dawn.

Captain Rebecca Welborn, a dancer since she was two and captain of her high school kickline team at West Islip, keeps her passion for dance going at the club as a choreographer. The club is like a family, she said, and is a place for students to make new friends and grow their enthusiasm for the sport.

“It’s definitely made [college] so much better,” Welborn said.

For her and the other 19 dancers in the club, being able to continue or jumpstart their love for dancing at college has helped them make the sometimes tricky transition to college life a little easier.

“We always try to keep traditions alive,” the sophomore captain said without diving too far into them, but keeping their look, performance and practice structure consistent with how veteran members and the community see the club has been an important part of her role.

“I try not to change too many things because I know a lot of the girls value tradition,” Welborn said.

Their dance style is very studio based and structured; however, Welborn said, she is always open to trying new things with their routines. Seeing the audience react to her choreography and the club’s performance is one of her favorite parts of her role as a captain and member of the team.

Among the challenges the club faces are the work outside of just dancing that goes into running a club and getting their presence known on campus.
“It’s hard to make ourselves known,” Welborn said.

With about a dozen athletic clubs on campus and several academic and hobby clubs, recruiting members and garnering attention can be difficult.

As a team, the women attend campus and community events to get their name out there. They’ll often attend lacrosse or other games decked in their Kickline apparel to support their classmates and help spread awareness of their club. The club enjoys collaborating with other organizations and encourages learning about the benefits of joint efforts.

Going forward, Welborn and the club want to see themselves become more professional — both in how they act and how they’re perceived.

“Some people don’t take us as seriously as we take the team,” Welborn said. “I definitely think even incorporating harder choreography and just challenging the team would be great.”

Email Ken Bates at sports@cardinalpointsonline.com

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