Nuggets Dancer Becca to Perform on the NBA All-Star Dance Team

Becca AllStar

by Alyssa Romeo
Denver Nuggets
January 14, 2016

Becca, who is in her fifth season with the Denver Nuggets Dancers, has been selected as one of the elite members of the 2016 NBA All-Star Dance Team in Toronto.

“I’m just super honored and very excited to be able to represent our team,” Becca said.

The All-Star Dance Team is determined through a peer nomination and voting process. With over 600 girls across the nation currently holding a position on an NBA dance team roster, one dancer is selected from each of the teams, leaving just 30 spots for the best-of-the-best from each city.

“Becca was the Nuggets Dancers’ top choice for the All-Star Dance Team position,” said Amy Jo Wagner, Manager of the Denver Nuggets Dance Team. “The dancers each voted for their top three candidates to recommend to the NBA for the position. Becca was nominated over and over again because she is such a great representation for our team.”

Becca will be the face of the Denver Nuggets Dance team during one of the most highly viewed professional sporting events of the year. Her advanced dance techniques and uncanny ability to master and perform choreography during a short period of time will be some of her biggest assets during all-star training, but they won’t be the only strengths this DND will bring to Toronto.

Amy Jo stresses the importance of both Becca’s skill and attitude when approaching the annual mid-season exhibition game.

“Dancers selected for the All-Star Dance Team will need to learn several routines in a short period of time. They will have limited time to receive feedback from the coach and to rehearse with their teammates. The pressure and stress will no doubt get to the ladies throughout the week. Becca is calm in stressful situations; she doesn’t take things too seriously and will probably be the teammate that keeps the mood light during the All-Star events, just like she does here at home.”

Becca will take her talent and positive attitude to Toronto alongside her interim teammates who will all be representing their NBA affiliates at various functions throughout the week leading up to the All-Star game. Activities will include charity appearances, in-game routines, autograph signings, and the opportunity to be a back-up dancer for several of the nominated recording artists.

The All-Star weekend is Feb. 12-14, with the All-Star Celebrity Game on Friday; the skills challenge, the slam dunk contest and three-point contest on Saturday; and the official NBA All-Star game on Sunday.

Pacemate Walesska Named to 2014 NBA All-Star Dance Team

Congratulations to Pacemates member Walesska, who was named to the 2014 NBA All-Star Dance Team! She’ll represent the Pacemates in New Orleans during All-Star Weekend

Brooklynette Liz Selected for NBA All-Star Dance Team

Congratulations to Liz of the Brooklynettes on being selected to NBA All-Star Dance Team. Liz earned her BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Ohio University.

[Liz’s Congratulatory Video]

[Liz at the Nets Website]

Michelle Representing Sixers Dream Team in NOLA

by Max Rappaport
Sixers.com

This weekend, the basketball world will flock to New Orleans, the site of the 2014 NBA All-Star Game.

But it won’t just be the league’s top players who are on display. For the first time since 2007, the NBA has assembled an all-pro squad of off-court performers – the All-Star Dance Team.

Thirty girls were selected – one from each dance team in the league. Representing the Sixers is second-year Dream Team member Michelle.

“I’ve never been to New Orleans before. I’m excited to go and represent Philly!” she said.

In order to make the team, Michelle had to send a portfolio of photos and dance footage to the league’s offices in New York City. Several weeks later, she received word that she’d been selected to represent the Sixers.

“I fly down on Thursday the 12th, and once I get down there, we’re rehearsing from 3pm to 10pm,” she said. “They’ve already e-mailed me two routines to work on.”

The All-Star Dance Team will perform at multiple events throughout All-Star Weekend, so keep your eyes peeled for Michelle!

[Michelle at Sixers.com]

Former FAMU Cheerleader makes NBA All-Star Dance Squad

Vaughn Wilson
The Westside Gazette
February 13, 2014

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -– NBA All-Star Weekend is one of the biggest attractions in all of professional athletics. The best basketball players from the entire NBA and their fans con-verge this year on New Orleans for the annual mid-season classic. This season, for only the second time in the history of the NBA All-Star Weekend, a spirit squad was selected from the 30 dance teams that cheer on the teams throughout the regular season.

While the Charlotte Bobcats will not have a player in the All-Star festivities, they will have Shardia Washington representing the Lady Cats on the Eastern Conference All-Star Dance Team. In just her second season as a member of the team considered the best in the NBA, Washington was submitted by the Bobcats organization as one of three finalists for her team, followed by her ultimate selection to the All-Star squad by the NBA selection process.

She is a proud FAMU alum, where she earned two degrees. She graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s in Science and in 2010 she earned a master’s degree in Occupational Therapy. While at FAMU, she was a member of the FAMU cheerleading squad, an experience the Jacksonville native holds dear to her heart.

“I never thought in a million years I would make a professional dance team, especially for the NBA. So just having the opportunity to come out here and represent FAMU and to represent myself, it just means a lot to me,” Washington said.

She spends virtually all of her time either working, rehearsing and performing with the Lady Cats or doing community service projects. She often visits schools and reads with children in the Charlotte area as part of her community service obligations. Recognizing the impact that a positive role model can have is some-thing she learned early in life, but her involvement as a part of the Lady Cats has elevated that perspective for her.

For several years, the “Lakers Girls” were considered the top dance team in the NBA, but over the last few years, that distinction has been shifted East as Charlotte’s squad was dubbed the league’s best. In a market that is not as big as Los Angeles, New York or Miami, it is quite an accomplishment to be considered the top team. With that comes a complex tryout process for the Lady Cats. It’s a process each dancer must endure annually to make the squad.

The historic part of her trek to New Orleans has not fully set in for Shardia, but to put it in perspective, there were three African-American women chosen for the first NBA All-Star dance team in 2007, there-fore she represents just the fourth ever to achieve the task. She credits her foundation at an HBCU with allowing her to accept the responsibility to do well on all levels.

“I definitely enjoy my life here in Charlotte as an adult, but I do miss being in college on ‘The Hill’ in Tallahassee. Cheer-leading in college prepared me, but not quite for the time consumption that we deal with on the professional level,” she said.

Brandi Tatum, who coached Washington while she attended FAMU, was beaming with pride when she learned of the unique accomplishment. “Shardia has a very outgoing bubbly personality. She would try anything to make our squad better. She started as a base, ended as a flyer. She has an incredible outbound spirit and was humorous and able to lift people up,” Tatum said.

Back home in Jacksonville, the excitement grew immediately as she informed her mother that she would be participating on the all-star dance team. “When I first told her I was selected, she screamed and she texted the entire family and I don’t even know if my mom knew what the NBA All-Star game was, but she was super excited,” she said.

Washington left for New Orleans on Wed., Feb. 12 and returns on Mon., Feb. 17. When she landed on Wednesday, she immediately proceeded to the Super Dome for a seven-hour rehearsal. The squad will be performing at virtually every official NBA All-Star Weekend event, so she will be limited in her time to actually soak in the environment of the bayou.

She will spend the days leading up to All-Star Sunday preparing herself physically for the dance routines, but just as importantly, mentally for what the opportunity might bring. Mega stars of the world scoop up courtside VIP seats each year, so the mental preparation to not be phased by the possible presence of Spike Lee, Lil’ Wayne, Gabrielle Union, Jack Nicholson or The Carters (Jay-z, Beyonce and Blue Ivy) sitting mere feet in front of her during her performance can not be underestimated. It adds pressure to the performance from different angles. Case in point is Kimberly Gipson. Gipson was a member of the 2007 NBA All-Star dance team, now she performs regularly as one of Beyonce’s main dancers. Knowing the opportunities that may evolve from her performance adds an aura of excitement, coupled with a case of anxiety.

“It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and I don’t think I fully understand what it’s going to be about until I step out on that court.”