Published: October 22, 2023 at 08:00 AM
Three city girls with some serious tap dancing talent were able to showcase their moves and skills on the world stage late last month, competing at the annual World Championships in Riesa, Germany.
Katherine Kavovit, Ava Warner and Alyssa Wright represented the United States, and they did so with flair as they combined efforts with the rest of their dance team to place seventh in the world with their junior lineup. The three Newtown tap dancers are part of the American Dance Collaborative, a member of the United States Dance Athletic Association; They train throughout the year through Al Mahatta Dance Academy.
They compete both inside and outside of Connecticut, and for the first time, they competed abroad by joining forces with other skilled tap dancers.
The girls and their parents spent the first two days in Prague, then took a train to Radebeul, Germany, for the better part of the eight-day trip.
On stage, the team progressed through the first round to the semi-finals where the 19 junior lineups were whittled down to 12. They got to dance again, and although they didn’t make it to the finals, it was an amazing experience against an equally massive talent. . The dance teams represented France, Great Britain, South Africa, Germany, Switzerland, Czechia, Croatia and Canada, among other international locations.
This competition was an Olympic-style event that featured a flag ceremony and medals. The American team was led by choreographer Gillian McNamara, a world champion dancer who organized the first group of American dancers to compete in the championships in 2019, and who formed the American Dance Collaborative.
Wright said going to Germany to compete in the sport she loves “was an amazing opportunity and I will cherish this experience forever.”
“It was so inspiring to see all the different dancers from different countries coming together and bonding over their shared love of tap music, and I had the best time with my team,” she added.
Of course, the trip also included some fun sightseeing and tasting new foods as well. The Wrights and Kavovits spent a day touring the beautiful Saxon Switzerland National Park, hiking the German and Czech sides, and seeing the Basti Bridge and Pravčica Pass. All the families went to Dresden, attended Oktoberfest, and enjoyed the beauty of the city.
Kavovit noted that competing for the USA, seeing some of the Germany and Prague games, and being with her friends and teammates was the experience of a lifetime.
Sports Editor Andy Hutchison can be reached at [email protected].
Newtown tap dancers, from left, Katherine Kavovit, Ava Warner and Alyssa Wright with one of their teachers, Angie Santamorena, at the World Tap Championships in Riesa, Germany, in late September. -Photos courtesy Shari Wright
Alyssa Wright, Ava Warner and Katherine Kavovit in the tournament as the girls helped their team to seventh place.
The dancers and their mothers toured Prague and parts of Germany during their trip. From left: Alyssa Wright, Shari Wright (foreground), Veronica Kavovit (background), Kathryn Kavovit, Karen Warner, and Ava Warner.
Alyssa Wright, Ava Warner and Kathryn Kavovit at the Radeberger Spezialausschank restaurant where they enjoy a meal.
Alyssa Wright, Ava Warner, and Katherine Kavovit enjoy tredlink, a Czech pastry.
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