On Saturday, June 15, the Dynamic Badgerettes Dance Team have their first performance of the summer as part of the Juneteenth Parade, which begins at 10a.m. at the Fountain of Life Baptist Church on Madison’s South Side. The parade was designed to celebrate Junteenth and to do so through a sense of community. There will be dancing, drumlines, music, Girl and Boy Scouts, and plenty of cultural expression.
“A sense of ownership, a sense of joy, a sense of pride, a sense of remembering and history,” is what the people can feel as they watch the parade, said Badgerettes coach Clyde Mayberry. The parade goes to Penn Park, which is where the Badgerettes will perform at 2 pm and 3 pm at the teen tent.
The Badgerettes started in April 2018, when they held their first audition, but trace their roots all the way back to 2003. They started as All Fours Youth Dance Company which operated for about ten years. After a five year break, they reestablished as the Badgerettes, with a new name for “a new era, a new time… let’s give them a name that the city will have a little bit of glory in,” Mayberry says.
Mayberry noticed that there weren’t many activities for girls of color in the city of Madison, and that’s when he decided to bring back the youth dance company. Only eight girls turned out for the first audition for the Badgerettes, but after the second audition it totaled about 40 girls, which was an eye-opener for Mayberry that the community needed this. “Clearly… there is nothing in performing arts that black and brown kids have and we want to make sure that we become an outlet for them,” he says.
The Badgerettes are holding their first summer auditions next week, Tuesday, June 18, and Thursday, June 20, from 5-8 pm at 1421 South Park Street. The auditions are open to girls ages 5 through 18 and will consist of learning 16 counts and two stunts.This is a year-round organization the does frequent fundraisers and competitions, already with two national and three regional wins. Coach Mayberry is working towards having the team perform for community basketball and football games starting this fall.
The Badgerettes are growing so rapidly that they have outgrown their facility. With as many as 80 girls involved, they are moving to The House Urban Arts Center. With this move, more fundraisers, which are run by the parent committee, will be held to raise money not only for the new facility, but also for those dancers who come from low income families. The Badgerettes strive for, “no dancer left behind,” Mayberry says. Upcoming fundraisers are scheduled for Saturday, June 22, which will be a carwash held at 1402 South Park Street from 1-5 pm, and Sunday, June 30, which will be a catfish dinner also at 1402 South Park Street from 2-5 pm.