Spirit Steppers Tryouts


Spirit Steppers Dance Team 2022-23

Abby Stringer, Staff Writer

The Spirit Steppers dance team is an important part of the St. Joe community, and they are already beginning preparations for next year’s season. The pre-tryout dance clinic will be held February 21-23, followed by tryouts on February 24 in the gymnasium, and rising 9th through 12th graders are preparing themselves to perform to their best ability. Rising 9th grader Katie Venable said, “I’m so excited to try out for dance team. I have been looking forward to it since elementary school, and I think it’s a great way to get involved in the school community.”

The Spirit Steppers’ head coach, Manuela Picarella, is preparing for tryouts as well. There is a lot of work that goes into tryouts ahead of time, including arranging and hiring judges, hosting interest meetings, and sending out audition requirements. Her daughter, BNN’s own Gia Picarella, has been on on the team all four years of high school, and she is graduating this year. However, she is planning on attending tryouts and practices to encourage the younger members of the team.

A lot more goes into the audition process than one might think. All girls trying out attended an optional informational meeting as well as a mandatory parent interest meeting. All those who made the decision to try out are gathering teacher recommendation forms, which are required to audition. The team will be led throughout the clinic by junior and senior dancers to prepare themselves for the big day. The final say is up to the judges, who will be hired from off-campus to prevent biased decisions, and the team will be determined by a natural cutoff.

Once the team is chosen and tryouts are concluded, the girls will begin practice for the upcoming season. Most days, they can be found on campus, hard at work strengthening, stretching and learning choreography. As anyone on the team can tell, there is a lot of work that goes into the pep-rally and halftime show performances, but it is worth it to the dancers, and appreciated by their audience.