BlazerDancers Abroad

Ni Hao — BlazerDancers in China: Day 1
Portland Trailblazers

Our once in a lifetime journey started at 8:00 am at PDX. BlazerDancers Caitlin, Cristi, Taren, Eri, Mari and Mary Ellen and I began our trip to NBA Madness 2009 in Taipei, Taiwan and Hong Kong!

So much excitement in the air as none of us have ever been to China. This is the first International trip for all of the ladies as BlazerDancers. Our journey took us through San Francisco, directly to Tokyo and finally about 20 hours later to Taipei, Taiwan! Of course through customs and the challenge of finding our way to correct baggage claim area. Luckily we have Eri who understands some of the language and was able to guide us through the airport. Or first challenge – Caitlin’s luggage with all of her uniforms, shoes, accessories is missing! Our first event is in the morning and Caitlin has nothing to wear! Luckily each dancer packed one uniform and shoes in their carryon just in case of emergency! Thank goodness for that last minute idea. Always be prepared!

We were greeted at the exit by our fabulous escorts Doris and Zeno who will be with us for our stay here in Taiepei. The nicest two people we could be lucky to work with. The second we exit the airport we’re overwhelmed by the heat and humidity! It must have been 90 degrees but it felt like 110. Our Rockstar Energy Drink Sweats were perfectly comfortable for the long journey here but it was time for a quick little adjustment to survive the temperature. As we traveled for an hour by bus to the fabulous Shangri-La hotel in Taipei, we were see the city by night. It never sleeps. It’s like New York City. What stood out most…..the Vespas1 They’re everywhere. We were later told there are 22 million people here…..and……22 million Vespas! One of our hosts says he has three of his own. Just imagine New ork City cab drivers on Vespas, weaving in and out of traffic and serious speed. Everyone rides them, adults, kids and familes, yes we saw three people on one Vespa! We’re hoping to rent some for a tour of the city while we’re here.

Once checked in at the Shangri-Lal we had a late dinner at one of the many bar/restaraunts here at the hotel on the 38 floor. We were able to see the beautiful city of Taipei by night and for the first time, the tallest buidling in the world, Taipei 101. Amazing! Can’t wait to see it up close.

Time to nestle in and try to get some sleep. NBA MAdness 2009 begins tomorrow!

Wan an – good night!
Caitlin, Taren, Cristi, Eri, Mari, Mary Ellen

Everblades announce auditions for dance team on Aug. 30


Ft. Meyers Florida Weekly
August 14, 2009

The Florida Everblades announced that auditions for the newly formed Everblades Gator Girls will be held on Sunday, Aug. 30.

Candidates should be female cheerleaders and dancers over the age of 21 who are interested in supporting Everblades hockey all season long. Although skating is not required, skaters are being looked at to add to the dynamic of the team.

Auditions will take place in the Olde Florida Room inside Germain Arena. Registration is at 1 p.m., with a $20 fee. Auditions begin at 2 p.m.

What to wear during competition: Sports bra or dance-crop top with dance shorts; Flesh colored tights or panty hose; Dance shoes or sneakers. No dance pants, warms-ups, long shorts, thongs, or bikinis; Wear your hair in a style that compliments your features. (No ponytails or hair pulled half up)

All contestants will need to bring a 45-to-60-second individual dance music of their choice. All contestants will learn a group dance and sideline dance to be performed in a small group.

For further information, send an e-mail to Kristi at

Congratulations 2009-10 Los Angeles Clippers Spirit Dancers!

On Tuesday night, 28 young women threw their hearts into it as they auditioned for the 2009-10 Clippers Spirit. They did a jazz routine choreographed by Cheryl, Asst. Director/choroegrapher. Director C. They did an insanely fast hip-hop routine. They did solos. Then they did them all over again. They gave it all they had. DeAndre Jordan seemed to have a tough time with it. (Luckily his new pal Blake Griffin, this year’s #1 NBA draft pick, who just joined the Clippers, was on hand to offer an opinion or two.) Here are the judges. Gee, I wonder which two are DeAndre and Blake?


The judges took their time considering the candidates, while the dancers sweated it out. This morning, Clippers Spirit Director Audrea Harris announced the 16 ladies who would join the team this year. All ten veterans who auditioned, made it back on the team this year. They are joined by six rookies who will hit the court at Staples Center for the first time this fall.

Congratulations Ladies!

The returning veterans:
Teresa, Lauren, Recee, Shannon, Nicole, Jessie, Brittany, Nikki, Melissa, and Jacqueline

And now for the newbies:
(You may recognize her from the Chivas USA ChivaGirls)

(You may recognize her from the San Diego Charger Girls)

(You may recognize her from the San Francisco 49ers Gold Rush)

(I recognize her from somewhere, but I can’t think where…)

(You may recognize her from the San Diego Charger Girls)

(You may recognize her from the Anaheim Arsenal A-List Girls)

Auditioning for the Pistons Dance Team: One Dancer’s Story


Dancing Towards a Dream: Part One
By Matt Waymire
< "">Connect Mid Michigan
July 25, 2009

AUBURN HILLS — There are those who can dance, and there are those who were seemingly born to dance. And it’s easy to see which category Flint Northern alum Santana White falls under.

“I’ve been dancing since I was two around the house,” said the 24 year-old White. “Christmas-time I would gather my family together, everybody would watch me dance. So, it comes naturally. The last two years of high school, I decided to try out for Majorettes. We called ourselves the best band in the land, basically. We won a lot of competitions.”

“It was a great joy, it was really, along with other parents,” added Diana White, Santana’s mother. “And I even was a band booster, so I traveled along with the band, and was heavily involved in their activities. And it makes you as a parent, proud. ‘Cause you want to be supportive of your children.”

And just like her daughter’s days in high school, there was Diana in the stands for Tuesday’s auditions…and it didn’t take long for mother and daughter to see the daunting competition that lay ahead. Altogether, there were nearly 150 young women auditioning for a mere 15 openings. And thus began a long, grueling day.

“In order to be able to dance at the level that they’re dancing at, for this professional team, they have to be physically fit,” said Rebecca Girard, Dance Team Director for Automotion. “You have to be able to endure through the tough choreography, and it’s so much harder than people think it is. So, athleticism and physical fitness are really key components.”

But there was another key trait to be displayed, as well: the ability to learn quickly, VERY quickly. The girls were taught an intricate dance routine which they would have to perform individually in front of judges.

After a number of run-throughs, it was Santana’s turn to step to the plate and perform the routine, which would determine whether contestant number 484 would survive the day’s first round of cuts.

“It was challenging but, you have to learn it so quick when you’re just…you’re trying to look like you’re smiling and enjoying it, and still remembering the steps,” said Santana. “It was challenging, but fun. I’m just praying and hoping for the best, I’m not sure. A lot of talented young ladies here, we’ll see.”

After a brief time to relax, Santana and the other ladies learned their immediate fate through a simple piece of paper, which contained the numbers (484) Santana was hoping to see.

Coming up in our next installment, we’ll see how Santana fares in the second round of auditions, and also learn more about what it takes to become a member of the Automotion dance team.

Dancing Towards a Dream: Part Two
By Matt Waymire
< "">Connect Mid Michigan
July 26, 2009

AUBURN HILLS — In part one of our feature, we met Flint native Santana White, who made it through the first round of cuts in her quest to become a member of the Detroit Pistons’ Dance Team “Automotion.”

So it may surprise you to find out that Santana hasn’t danced in front of a crowd in nearly three years. So how in the world did she shake off all that rust?

“I just pulled out my Michael Jackson greatest hits, Beyonce and all that, and just started dancing around the house,” said a smiling Santana. “It’s natural to me, but of course I’m still nervous. But dancing…you can either dance or you can’t, usually. That’s how it goes.”

But make no mistake, Santana’s been plenty the past three years, working as a promotional model for companies like Mattel and Sirius/XM Satellite Radio. And as it turns out, her work in this avenue directly corrolates to the numerous other traits that an Automotion dancer must possess.

“Number one, they have to be great ambassadors, and really in touch with the public relations and the community service aspect of the job,” said Dance Team Director Rebecca Girard. “So dancing is almost secondary really, if you think about it. But they need to have great personal business skills.”

That aspect of the audition took place on day two, but first thing’s first. Santana needs to survive two more cuts of dancing tryouts on day one…and the routines only became more demanding, and more complex.

Though she struggled at times in front of the judges, Santana still put forth a solid effort, and she anxiously awaited her individual critique.

“484 (Santana’s number), I need some confidence from you, as well, but a smile on your face,” said Tricia Crawford, an Automotion choreographer. “Also, watch some of your arm placements. Sometimes they’re being thrown there instead of placed there, so really watch your arm placement. Then separate your styles a little bit more. Jazz kinda looked the same as hip-hop, and vice-versa. So try and separate the two different styles.”

After waiting over an hour, the numbers of the girls who advanced were finally announced. But unfortunately, the number 484 was not among those called.

With that, Santana’s Automotion journey came to an end. She was obviously disappointed, but the positives still far outweighed the negatives.

“It was a good experience, even though it didn’t, you know…the results I didn’t get that I wanted, but it was a good experience,” said Santana. “I haven’t danced in a long time, so…it was fun. I got to meet interesting girls, and it was an interesting experience.”

So even though her goal of joining Automotion is put on hold for now, Santana believes she will be dancing somewhere in the very near future…and gearing up for the 2010 Automotion tryouts all the while.

Rooting for Celtics dancers


By Mark Shanahan & Merdith Goldstein
July 24, 2009

NESN’s Heidi Watney, Shayna Seymour of “Chronicle,’’ Miss Connecticut Monica Pietrzak, Miss Massachusetts Alison Cronin, and JAM’N 94.5 morning DJs Ramiro and Melissa were just a few of the notables on the guest list last night for the Celtics Dancers final auditions at the House of Blues. The competition – which had 44 women competing for 17 spots – was emceed by Kiss 108’s Billy Costa and was to include, not surprisingly, a swimsuit competition. [Click here for photos from finals]

Congratulations Pacemates!


Congrats to the 16 dancers selected to the 2009-10 Indiana Pacers Pacemates dance team. This year’s group includes 10 returning veterans and 6 newbies.