Wednesday, March 20, 2024

SHOWSTOPPER: my fave (it’s very dance mom to have a fave dance conglomerate, but there you have it)

 I have a major soft spot for Showstopper as an organization. I love that we’re both made in 1978, that dancers can go for a convention, regional competition, and national competition under one unified brand and get the same kind of experience across the boards. I love how cheesy the whole brand is— the merch they sell, the pretty Southern women who run everything, the hot pink everywhere, the trophies bedecked with fraying ribbons— the whole ball of wax. Some friends were posting about their kid’s last Showstopper comp after this weekend (because our studio is attending a different brand of nationals this year), and I got preemptively sad about Dorothy outgrowing this silly activity. BUT SHE HAS SEVEN MORE YEARS, so now is not the time for an Evita routine.

She had a total blast at the Kalahari in the Wisconsin Dells kicking off her competitive season with six dances, earning 7medals and 5 top-10 finishes (in 5 different categories!). She got to be team captain for a dance, meaning she brought home the trophy and overall medal for that routine (her first time captaining, although the older girls let her snag a trophy or 2 last season, including one at nationals that she still displays, fraying ribbons and all). My aunt came to watch a few dances. Dorothy and her friends made bracelets in the dressing room. I killed it as a dance mom on quick changes (so fast! She looked so cute! Nobody got mad!), and her team ate her birthday cupcakes, sang to her, and showered her with gifts.

Then! Just when it couldn’t get any better, we spent the night in a (pretty great) 2 bedrooms suite and closed down the water park before opening it the next day, eating tons of garbage food, and generally have a very Wisconsin good time.

7:30 am call time (yikes)

Mini tap (above) is a Rockette dance and is basically the cutest ever. They got third overall and were adorbs, and Dorothy was disappointed they did not win only because she was practicing saying her name, studio, and teacher in full sentences because the captain gets to accept awards, and it was the highlight of her young life so far.

Next, she had a looooong break of watching dances, making bracelets, and opening gifts.

I walked to Jimmy John’s to grab sandwiches, and we got to see my aunt for a bit before she had MOAR dancing (I did not let Dorothy walk with me because it was too windy for her hair LOL LOL LOL #MOTY)

Dorothy is on the right in the pic above, being very facially aggressive.

Dance dad, popping in to watch before taking the other kids to the water park

Her darling little mini jazz dance placed second in their category. Dorothy told me they ate- which is better than slaying?

FINALLY it was my time to SHINE because dances 3 and 4 were only separated by TWO SONGS on the schedule, so she had a QUICK CHANGE.

I watched her darling musical theater dance
(Her lowest scoring number— and it did not place overall)

And then met her backstage with her next costume. She threw it on SO FAST and I took down her pony tail and did bubble braids and pinned on her hat AND SHE STILL HAD TIME TO CHANGE HER LIPSTICK form pink to red. You guys! It was NASCAR-level amazing.
Slay! Or Eat! Or whatever means BE AWESOME!

That dance placed 5th in a big category, so that was cool.

Next up was a daring mini hip hop dance that ended up taking 10th in the highest junior division— impressive for these teenies. Also Dorothy’s bday serenade (that I missed because I ran to the dressing room to prepare for her next quick change, which was not impressive since her shoes and socks stayed the same and so did her hair and lipstick).

I never take pics of her last dance so I had to borrow from others— it was a supergroup and won!



  1. Congrats! It sounds like Dorothy and her team ate (and left no crumbs)! The new hair looks very cute... that windblown sandwich trip pic is a fave.

    1. omg that's exactly what they say-- you are so trendy!!

  2. Wow! Dorothy! That is really amazing. She looks so adorable. I am not a dance mom, nor am I in the States, so I have no idea what Showstopper is or entails, but I am here for the ride! Look at those costume changes! Amazing! Also? Exhausting!

  3. What Nicole said - this is amazing...yet, also, exhausting? I think I need to go take a nap. I can barely get my kids out the door once a day for school. Dance momming would send me to an early grave!
    Also, can you just imagine Minnie in a few years? The cuteness might literally break the internet ;)

    1. it's sooooo fun-- I never did anything like this as a kid and had no idea this whole world vene existed

  4. Best pit crew ever! And I'm still puzzling over whether 'ate' is greater than or equal to 'slay', but clearly she did both. I was an awkward dance mom at best in all of Eve's dance iterations (ballet and tap, Irish, freestyle) but I did enjoy that backstage energy at recitals.

  5. I am so tired reading this, how did anyone have energy leftover for the water park?!?! Dorothy is SO cute in all her outfits. It looks and sounds like she gets such a kick out of dance, and I'm glad this was such a fun experience!

  6. Wow this sounds exciting! Congrats to Dorothy on doing so well. And congrats to you! I can't even imagine coping with this- but I guess if my daughter was into dance I would have learned? Were you a dancer growing up? Anyway sounds like an awesome day.

  7. This is so much fun! What a fun weekend for Dorothy - she definitely... ate? I am so not cool enough to understand the lingo anymore. Sigh.

  8. Thanks?for the lingo lesson. . . I never know these things. I texted a pic of my outfit to Mini and she texted back Drip. Then I had yo ask if that was a good thing.

    This all sounds awesome. She clearly loves it and the group sounds lovely . . . sharing trophies, singing to her and giving her gifts. Yeah you for the NASCAR quick change.

    Not gonna lie . . this takes me back to Irish dancing days. Competitions felt much more cut throat and the teachers were often creeps who created animosity between dancers. Mini said when we saw dancers on TV for St. Pat's . . . 'Irish dancing feels like a fever dream now.' Well said, Mini.

  9. I would have been the World's Worst Dancer and (had I had children) the World's Worst Dance Mom. I am impressed at your ability to tackle all of these...things, because honest to Pete, I have no idea what a bubble braid is. I suspect a few hours with Dorothy would be very educational for me (the non-makeup wearing, non-hair-doing, non-dancing Boring Adult, :>).