Best Pageant Music for Dance, Ballet, Gymnastics, Baton, Acrobatics in the Talent Competition
Dance has become the new and undisputed pageant talent of all in recent years. But there is a big “if”. If the athletic talent — tap-dance, jazz dance, acrobatics, rhythmic gymnastics — is performed to fabulous music that gets the audience and judges sitting up to take notice.
In 2013, future Miss America Mallory Hagan literally slid onstage in tight black leather pants and exposed abs and tapped the guts out of the rock song “Get Up Off That Thang” by rock legend James Brown. By the time she had finished, contestants everywhere realized that if Miss America could aggressively tap-dance to James Brown rock, then all were are off. Overnight, dance was the cool pageant talent again.
As of 2018, of the last six Miss Americas, half of them have been dancers! Half, ladies! And in 2016 – which may well go down as the year of the dancer in pageantry – three of the Top 5 were dancers, including the winner, Savvy Shields, who performed energetic jazz dance to They Just Keep Moving the Line from the TV show “Smash”. Shield’s first and third runners-up were dancers who performed to “Something in the Water” (SC) and Jennifer Lopez’s “Let’s Get Loud” (WA).
In 2017, North Dakota’s Cara Mund, followed suit, choreographing her own jazz dance to Michael Jackson’s The Way You Make Me Feel wearing a skimpy tux dress and top hat – and overturning a chair midway through as the camera’s zoomed in on the judges’ startled but smiling faces. The moment the song began to play, the energy picked up in the room and cameras zoomed in on judges’ faces to show them almost tapping along to the beat. Great music that people love is the key to making a pageant dance talent, well…sing.
Contestants who succeeded with dance talents set their performance to lively or moving musical selections.
- Miss America 2006, Jennifer Berry, won the talent competition and national crown dancing a ballet en pointe to the song “Within“
- Betty Thompson, Miss Oklahoma, won the preliminary talent competition and placed as first runner-up to Miss America 2012, after performing a gorgeous Irish dance to “Warriors” from “Lord of the Dance”. (to right)
- Miss America 1995, Heather Whitestone, performed a ballet en pointe to Via Delarosa (to music she could not hear due to her profound hearing impairment)
- Several national finalists performed dance and acrobatics to “Singing in the Rain,” and the theme from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” and “Chariots of Fire“.
- Miss America 1979 won with a gymnastics routine to the “Theme from Rocky” and “Feels So Good.”
- Miss New York 1979 won the national talent award and made top ten baton-twirling to “If They Could See Me Now.”
- Miss America 1970 performed a ballet to Theme from Romeo and Juliet“
- America’s Junior Misses 1983 and 1977 danced en pointe to “Doll on a Toy Shell” and “Bless the Beasts and Children“.
To capture the audience and judges’ attention, dance and athletic talents require pageant music that is familiar, entertaining, and has a strong beat.
If you’re trained in any form of dance – from ballet to clogging – dance to an exciting, entertaining music that wakes up the audience and judges!
Vibrant, electrifying symphonic pieces and dramatic film overtures are especially effective.
Winning Pageant Music for Dance, Ballet, Gymnastics, Baton
- Deep in the Heart of Texas
- Banjo Fantasy
- Theme from “Ironside”
- Puttin’ on the Ritz
- Overture from Annie
- Overture from Oklahoma
- Theme from Summer of ’42
- Overture from West Side Story
- Hawaiian War Chant
- Sleeping Beauty Waltz
- Grand Pas de Duex
- Are You from Dixie?
- Battle Hymn of the Republic
- Overture from Funny Girl
- That’s Entertainment
- Le Grande Holiday
- Under the Bridges of Paris
- Theme from Rocky
- If They Could See Me Now
- Theme from Romeo and Juliet
- Doll on a Toy Shell
- Bless the Beasts and Children
- Theme from Close Encounters of the Third Kind
- Theme from Chariots of Fire
- Feels So Good
- Theme from “Hawaii Five-O“
- Via Delarosa
- Music from any James Bond movie
However, once you’ve selected great music, you need to make sure that your talent performance has the other features that make it a winner. The secret to winning the talent competition with dance, baton, acrobatics, and other athletic talents is to infuse the performance with exciting choreography, clever costuming, and entertaining music that creates a catchy mood.
Dance, in particular, involves an extremely wide range of different dance styles which can effect the type of music selected.[clear-line]
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