ADA — The Ada High School Couganns will perform in this year’s Sugar Bowl pre-game and halftime show at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.
The Couganns received an invitation to perform at the game, and director Cara Waters said she believes it was due in part to winning 10 consecutive contests at the OSDTDA State Dance Team Competition in their category, which is 5A Kick.
“There’s not any one else in the state in 5A that kicks like they do,” Waters said.
But that was before the invitation.
On Dec. 12, the Couganns won their 11th consecutive state title. The Couganns, made up of ninth- through 12th-graders, typically perform at Ada High football games, but the crowd at the Superdome will be quite a bit bigger.
The Couganns aren’t worried, though, and Waters said the girls are confident in their ability.
“I think they’re ready,” Waters said. “One senior, Camryn Horn, tried out and made the All-State Pom squad, which is a pretty big deal in the pom/dance world.”
The Couganns and their families raised the money to pay for the trip.
“They raised — from May until we finished fundraising right when school started — they were able to raise $20,000,” Waters said. “The girls and their moms and everyone worked over the summer to raise that kind of money.”
This type of an endeavor is not inexpensive, and the girls, along with their supportive parents, planned fundraisers throughout the summer to raise the money to pay for each Cougann to attend this once-in-a-lifetime experience, Waters said.
The Couganns will arrive a few days before the event and participate in several master classes taught by head choreographer Chris Judd, who has danced and choreographed for major stars like Janet Jackson, Usher, and Jennifer Lopez. Judd was also a judge on “America’s Got Talent,” Waters said.
“We’ll learn the choreography, know all the choreography and then, when they get down to New Orleans to the hotel where most of the groups are staying, then they’ll have probably 12 hours of instruction before they actually perform,” Waters said. “So collectively, they will have mastered dance classes.”
The Allstate Sugar Bowl will be at 8:30 p.m. Jan. 1, and will air on ESPN. Oklahoma State University will play Ole Miss.
Waters said the Couganns are grateful for all the local support they have received as they prepare to represent the Ada Cougars at the 2015 Allstate Sugar Bowl.