Center court becomes center stage
PHILADELPHIA - Three young dancers strutted their stuff before 20,000 fans Saturday night while they performed during the pregame festivities at a Philadelphia 76ers home game.
Sisters Gabriella, 7, and Peyton Rapp, 4, daughters of Alexus and Roy Rapp, of Shamokin, and Gabrielle Kurtz, 10, the daughter of Todd and Kara Kurtz, of Paxinos, were among the 45 dancers in the troop from the Karen Gronsky School of Dance, Danville to perform before Saturday's contest between the Sixers and the Washington Wizards.
"It was something to see, the girls performing before a sold out crowd in Philadelphia," mother Alexus Rapp said.
The dancers performed a six-minute routine using a mix of classic rock and today's hip-hop hits to entertain the home crowd.
"My oldest daughter, Gabriella, was a little nervous because of the big crowd, but Peyton is a little entertainer, so she was ready to go." Rapp said.
Once all the dancers got onto the court, everyone overcame their fears and the crowd gave them a big cheer.
The school had been preparing since the start of the year for the performance, rehearsing three times a week after school along with their regular Saturday dance classes.
After their performance, the dancers were guests of the Sixers organization for the game.
"We had club box seats for a sold out game, so that was pretty cool," Rapp said.
During halftime, the group witnessed history as the Sixers retired the jersey of former player Allen Iverson.
"That was such an amazing ceremony, and we are all proud of the girls and watching this history unfold," Rapp said. "These girls are the only youth group that can say they performed at the game where they retired Allen Iverson's jersey."