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The Rebelettes Showcase Talent at Pro Action Dance in Las Vegas

(From left to right): Hope Mayo, Mary-Elizabeth Killion, Emma Gaddy, Savannah Hulme, Lexie Harper, Emily Owens, Sarah Hamilton Ridgway and Sommer Grace Weldon throwing the “fins up” at the final day of Pro Action Dance. Photo courtesy of The Rebelettes.

By Talbert Toole
Lifestyles Editor
The Rebelettes have been working hard this summer prepping not only for football season, but for the main stage at the Universal Dance Association competition slated for January 2019.
Eight Rebelettes flew to Las Vegas July 21-23 for an intensive dance camp with Pro Action Dance. The camp is designated for pro and collegiate dance teams around the country to showcase their skills. From the San Diego Chargers cheerleaders to the Ole Miss Rebelettes, dancers learned step-by-step choreography from some of the top choreographers in the country — such as Sabrina Bryan — a member of the multi-platinum recording act, The Cheetah Girls.
Mary-Elizabeth Killian, a rising senior at Ole Miss and fourth year dancer for the Rebelettes, said she was most excited to bring new material back to Vaught-Hemingway for Ole Miss fans.
“I’m very excited to take [the material] and make it our own and present it to our fans,” she said. “And help make [the fans’] game day that much stronger and that much better.”
The Rebelettes danced different styles—from pom to jazz—with some of the best in the business, Killian said.
“It challenged me to go big and try to match their style,” she said.
Lexie Harper, a Meridian, Mississippi native, said, being from such a small town, the Vegas experience was a one-of-a-kind opportunity.
“Just getting to be in Vegas was so fun. The atmosphere in Vegas was so different,” she said.
The biggest experience the Rebelettes took away was learning how to have a big and powerful stage presence, said Rachel Levetzow, Rebelette coach and coordinator.
“When you get on the stadium at Vaught or The Pavilion [the Rebelettes] need to be so big and powerful,” Levetzow said. “This is a great opportunity for them to see some of the best of the best do that.”
(From left to right): Mary-Elizabeth Killion, Emily Ownes, Sabrina Bryan, Savannah Hulme and Lexie Harper gather around pro dance instructor and former Cheetah Girl member Sabrina Bryan. Photo courtesy of The Rebelettes.

The dance team has 6 a.m. workouts twice a week and practice every day, according to Rebelette Emma Gaddy.
“I think sometimes some of our fans forget we work hard,” she said. “We’re athletes as well.”
UDA nationals is where dance teams across the country gather to compete for the No. 1 title in the dance world. Nationals is the Rebelettes competition where the dancers put their practice on the floor to display their skill levels, Gaddy said.
“It’s nice to be able to bring [Pro Action Dance] skills to the national’s floor,” she said. “Our fans are like, ‘Holy cow. It’s not just about being pretty and waving your pom poms.’”
The Rebelettes premiere this 2018 season against Southern Illinois on Sept. 8 where fans can watch the team showcase its new skills and talents on the field before taking it to the main stage at nationals.

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