Dance Team Takes on State


Waterloo West High Wahawk Dance Team Facebook

Dance team members pose together after the competition

Ali Parkhurst, Reporter

Friday Dec. 3, the Wahawk dance team performed their state dance routines at the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. 

Dance Soloists Allison Kaliban Sierra Meeks, Gabe Frazier, and Gracie Gates pose together in their solo outfits. (Waterloo West High Wahawk Dance Team Facebook)

All four of West’s soloists earned Division 1 ratings. This means the dance received 75 points or higher. The soloists included Sophomore Allison Kaliban, Senior Sierra Meeks, Senior Gabe Frazier, and Sophomore Gracie Gates.

Sophomore Gracie Gates was a solo performer at state this year. Gates has attended the state dance competition for two years now, being a soloist for both years. She described her dance as “contemporary which has a slower and sadder vibe.” Gates performed to the song “Let it All Go” which was about a breakup. As state dance comes to an end this year, Gates says she is most proud of “Overcoming my fears of performing in front of a big audience and also just pushing myself to do more and learn new tricks. Really understanding how to feel the music and use my body.” 

For next year, Gates is hoping to improve her score overall and include more tricks and advanced skills in her dance. Gates described this year’s state as a bonding opportunity for her team, “We spent two days together and overall it was just a good experience. We did our routines the best we’ve ever done and got to be in an atmosphere with people cheering us on.”

The dance team’s Pom performance also received a Division 1 rating as well as their Hip Hop performance. The Hip Hip dance also placed 7th in the state overall for class 5A.

Frazier was also a soloist at state this year. As a senior, this was Frazier’s second year at state as he was not a part of the team his freshman year and COVID played a part in not attending state during his sophomore year. Frazier has performed a solo both years that he has attended state.

Senior Gabe Fraizer makes his entrance while the dance team performs their state dance at the East v West basketball game. (Karma Goodson)

Frazier said this year was different because he has previously been one of the only male dancers at state. Frazier saw more diversity this year as there were more male dancers at different schools.


Frazier claims that being a senior affected his emotions significantly at state, “this was only the second time I’ve been able to experience it [state] and it will be my last time so I really tired to put everything on the floor.” Frazier said that though they didn’t place, he and his team are aware that they had one of their personal best performances at state. 

Frazier was most proud of himself and how his technique has improved this year as well as since he was a sophomore. As for his team, he said that was proud of how they have become so close this year, Frazier described his team as “one big happy family”. 

The Wahawks were awarded the Judge’s Choice BE BOLD Award. Only three out of five hundred performances were awarded the award. West received the BE BOLD award because of their authentic hip hop movement and quality as well as the outstanding team energy according to the Dance Team’s Facebook page.