The Mount Royal University (MRU) Cubs dance team started off their fifth season performing at the MRU’s basketball home opener games.

The team of 19 dancers does not only perform at the school’s basketball and soccer games, but they also perform at the Cowboys Dance Hall.

“[The team] has grown exponentially,” said Morgan Heck, a third year nursing student at MRU and the vice president of the MRU Cubs dance team.

Being the vice president, Heck helps plan and create events such as fundraisers, designing new uniforms, contract and sponsorship meetings.

“Our executive team does have a hierarchy, but really, we work as a team,” said Heck.

Heck is also a support system for the girls on the team by helping them if they are having issues with time management or chorography.

“I’m kind of like the eyes and the ears for the team to the coaches,” said Heck.

The MRU Cubs are couched by Masha Pashchuk and Adwoa Yamoah.

The dance team was founded by Pashchuk in her third year attending MRU.

The Mount Royal Cubs dance team poses for a group photo after their two hour practice. The MRU Cubs dance team practicing their routines Tuesday and Thursday at MRU in Calgary on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017. Their first routines is for the half time performance for the MRU basketball season home opener.

“It’s like a family, it’s not just a team,” said Makenna Lutz, a first year criminal justice student at MRU, and one of the six rookies on 2017/18 team.

“I’ve been dancing my whole life and I wanted to keep going with dance so I decided to audition,” said Lutz.

“To be honest, I don’t even feel like a rookie.”

Everyone on the team has been welcoming and the rookies have never been looked down on because they are first years, said Lutz.

“I feel like I’ve been here for years,” Lutz said.

The cubs practice two times a week and outside of practice they have fundraisers and performances.

“It’s not a strenuous amount of participation, but it is definitely enough to keep you busy and to keep you wanting to be a part of the team,” said Lutz.

Lutz said that during test week everyone is stressed about time, but dance is a way to release the stress.

“You can go in and forget everything for a few hours and dance,” said Lutz.

The coaches are also super flexible around exam time, because school comes first.

Outside of dance, the team does many things together, such as helping each other study for exams by quizzing each other.

“I joined the team because of my love of dance,” said Kassidy Kowalchuk, a second year dancer on the MRU Cubs team who also works at Leap Dance Studios and is a promo model.

Kowalchuk no longer attends MRU, but she still is able to be on the team even though she has a busy schedule.

“I don’t have the flexibility as a student does because I have people that rely on me,” said Kowalchuk.

The coaches are understanding if she is a little late for practice because she is working and making her career, said Kowalchuk.

Kowalchuk is very grateful for finding the team and is glad to be a part of it.

“I would of never found any of these girls that are my best friends without this team.”

One of Kowalchuk’s favourite part of being on the team is being challenged every practice with having new coaches and learning new styles of dance.

“I love getting challenged, I love dance, and I love the community,” said Kowalchuk.

The MRU Cubs dance team’s first Cowboys Dance Hall performance will be on Dec. 8.

Makenna Lutz, a rookie to the Mount Royal Cubs dance team, practices her routine with her poms. The MRU Cubs practicing their routines Tuesday and Thursday at MRU in Calgary on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017. Their first routines is for the half time performance for the MRU basketball season home opener.


Jenny Lyver/The Press

1 Comment

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