After a year on land, Valkyries dive into a new season


   The music starts, lights illuminate the water, a row of choreographed legs pierce through the pool’s surface in perfect time. And so, the tradition continues. 

   Valkyries is a long-standing district tradition of synchronized swimming. Girls from all four RPS205 high schools have the chance to participate, with the show being put on at Guilford. The show consists of choreography, both in and out of the water, as well as light displays and music. Every year, the routines are centered around a theme.

    “The theme this year for Valkyries is ‘P.S. I love you,’” said Maggie Thomas, a senior on the team.

   The Valkyries show will be performed February 22-26. The routines are put together by the students themselves, in a collaborative effort. 

   “We all choreograph the show,” said Bethany Santisteban, senior . “Choreographers get chosen in a routine, but everyone in the routine gets to put in their input.”

   With COVID-19 inhibiting the show from running last year, the team consists of mostly rookie members.  

   “We have a whole new set of girls,” said Hattie Fabert, junior. “We didn’t have it last year so the freshman and the sophomores are new. We’re a lot less experienced this year.” 

  One such new addition is Alaina Neumann, a sophomore. While she has had some difficulty adjusting, the team has offered a welcoming entrance. 

   “It is difficult [being new], but it’s gotten a little easier and everyone is very nice,” said Neumann. 

   The number of new members is not the only difficulty being faced with the COVID-hiatus of Valkyries. Thomas, who has been on the team in previous years, has a comparative perspective on how COVID-19 has affected Valkyries. 

   “My sophomore year was the last year we had the show,” said Thomas. “This year, it was a lot harder finding practice times, along with our show audiences having to be smaller due to COVID.” 

   In addition to the swimming portion, the show includes another exciting element on land: the emcees. The emcees come on in between routines, and perform short comedy sketches while the swimmers get ready for the next routine. Emceeing this year are Abby Foster, Evan Click, Za’nia Harris, Jarmoro Bean, and Jude Yehling. 

   “I’ve heard that the emcees are really funny,” said Fabert. “So that’ll be something cool to see.” 

   Tickets will not be sold at the door, but through the girls on the team, to reduce the number of people in the audience. The show, while having some obstacles to overcome, still maintains its reputation for being unique.  

   “It’s really something different,” said Fabert. “There’s really not Valkyries anywhere else. There’s synchronized swimming, but Guilford’s is unique.”