Pomona College Magazine
Volume 41. No. 1.
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Claremont Colleges Ballroom dance Company


Steppin’ Out

Decked out in tuxedos with tails and ballroom gowns, six couples in The Claremont Colleges Ballroom Dance Company stepped out onto the floor at the National Collegiate DanceSport Championship for a Fred Astaire medley.

The dancers performed the quick step to “Top Hat, White Tie and Tails;” glided to “The Continental” with the tango and waltz; danced the fox trot and Viennese waltz to “Steppin’ Out with My Baby;” and swooped in for the win with a tango to “Let’s Face the Music and Dance” to wrap up the five-minute number.

For the third year in a row, the tour team took first place in the formation category at the U.S. Amateur Ballroom Dancers Association’s national championship held in the fall in Columbus, Ohio. The previous two years, under former ballroom dance director Wes Acker, the team chose a Latin medley. This time, Christopher Witt, director of
the dance troupe, said the choreographed standard ballroom medley had a classy, elegant flair. The formal wear helped, no doubt.

About 150 students from five of the Claremont Colleges participate in the ballroom dance program each semester. The ballroom dancers initially were a small club until six years ago when Acker took it over as a dance company. Witt replaced Acker in 2003. About 30 students perform on each of the two teams, the campus team and tour team. The group shares their talent with the campus community during their annual spring concert.

“Our strength is the team events,” said Witt. “We’ve got a lot of couples who dance well together as a team.”

Witt has been impressed by the students’ dedication. The tour team dances three days a week, from 7–9 a.m. They also rehearse on their own time. “They really strive for excellence,” said Witt.

Witt has yet to decide whether to do a Latin or standard medley in the fall competition. Either way, the dancers are bound to be simply spectacular, as always.
 
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by Pomona College
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