Lakers Dance could be the hottest ticket in town

Members of the Lakers Dance Team are eager to highlight their moves this Saturday at their one and only annual showcase. The event features the entire team performing ensemble and solo numbers. All choreography is original, created and performed by Dance Team members, and anticipation amongst dance fans is running high.

Tickets are limited and selling fast.

Attendees will not only see the newest work from the Lakers Dance Team, but to round out the show, members of North Bay’s BTS Dance Corp will also perform throughout the evening, between Dance Team numbers.

“We have about 20 routines,” planned for the night, noted Syndey De Oliviera, one of the team’s captains. “And BTS have about 20 routines as well.”

Along with De Oliviera, Alyssa Pileggi and Grace Patterson form the team’s executive committee. Each has trained for most of their lives, and joining the Laker’s Dance Team once they came to Nipissing University was a natural evolution in a life of dance.

De Olivieri is from Hamilton, Patterson from Port Perry, and Pileggi hails from Barrie. All have been very involved in those local dance scenes, and still help with their hometown studios when they get the chance.

This showcase serves as a type of unofficial launch to the team’s competitive season. “We only have two competitions,” Pileggi clarified, “because each event is a full weekend of competitions, starting Friday and ending Sunday.”

Indeed, their first event is just around the corner, the BeU Varsity Challenge in Mississauga, from March 15 to 17. Soon after, the crew head to Hamilton from March 21 to 24 for the View Varsity event. The competitions attract dance teams from throughout Ontario.

“Every school that has a dance team attends these competitions,” De Oliviera said, “we prefer to attend larger competitions because we only attend one or two per year,” which is mostly due to the logistics of travelling time and expenses.

However, it’s always nice to take the dancing on the road and connect with dancers at the events. “We get along really well,” with the other teams, Patterson emphasized. “We’re more of a community in the dance world where we just want to support each other.”

“Obviously in a competition you want to win,” she added, “but you’re happy for whoever does. It’s a wonderful community.”

This year, the team is looking good, and all are eager for the showcase and the upcoming competitions. “We’re coming together really well,” De Oliveira said. “We’ve got a lot of really strong rookies this year,” Pileggi added, “and I’m really excited to see them perform on stage.”

She’s not the only one, as the tickets are flying off the shelves. To secure your seat, follow this link to reserve your spot. Once reserved, head over to the Nipissing Theatre (Room F213) at Nipissing University, this Saturday, March 2, for 7 p.m. and make sure to bring your admission fee of $5. Cash only.

The showcase also serves as a fundraiser for the team because travelling expenses can add up. Throughout the year, the team holds a few fundraising events. You can keep up with their events by following the team’s Instagram page at Or reach out to the executives via email at if you care to support the cause.

David Briggs is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of BayToday, a publication of Village Media. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.

David Briggs, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter,