Beamer wins seventh state dance title in Yakima; Decatur also champs

The Todd Beamer hip-hop dance team won its seventh state championship in the last nine years last weekend at the Yakima SunDome.  - Courtesy photo
The Todd Beamer hip-hop dance team won its seventh state championship in the last nine years last weekend at the Yakima SunDome.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

The Todd Beamer High School Dance Team won first place in the 4A Division State Dance/Drill Championships March 23 inside the Yakima SunDome. The Titans won the hip-hop division at the championships. It's the school’s seventh hip-hop title in its nine-year history.

“The team puts 100 percent effort into every practice and performance,” said dance coach Valicia Valiani. “They know if they don't approach each day with the common goal to succeed, someone else will. They are amazing young men and women who are an incredible example to Beamer, surrounding schools, and the community.”

Last week’s championship, however, was not the dance team’s final performance for the year. The dancers’ season will culminate at the annual Beamer Breakdown Performance, April 27 and 28, at 7 p.m. at the school. The public is invited and tickets are available through Kelli Lauritzen at or by calling (206) 769-5793.

The performances next month, Valiani said, offer the opportunity to see state champions “up close and personal.”

Each of the seven seniors on the team will perform solos, along with numerous original team routines, including their state championship dance.  Professional dancers will join the event, along with the Illahee Middle School Dance Team.

“Beamer has such a unique culture that plays a huge part of our success," said Valiani. “The dancers rely and trust that everyone will step up and pull their weight. By the time district and state comes, they become a cohesive group.”

The team includes captains Ula Jun, Heidi McKenna and Sara Mussa, along with Megan Aasen, Madeline Blauser, Justin Bowman, Roshni Changela, Sarah Clow, Kalena Corpez, Sakile Fundisha-Bey, Dezmond Garcia, Sorelle Hardin, Kelvin Horne, Deshanee House, Madison Niksich, Olivia Rao, Myles Tucker, Alanna Vann, Anna Yi and Adam Yoon.

“When I heard that Todd Beamer's dance team had won yet another state, I thought about dynasties in sports because we have dominated the state competition," said Beamer Principal Randy Kaczor. "And it is a tribute to our outstanding athletes, coaches and parents.”

The Decatur Gators also brought home a title from Yakima. The Gators dance team won the kick division of the 2012 2B/1A/2A/3A Dance/Drill Championships.

Decatur racked up 455.75 points to outdistance second-place Lake Washington (436.5) and Hanford (429.5).

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