What It Takes to be an Azurrette


Left to right, top to bottom: Beau Bennett, Ashley Monson, Teia Bradfield, Libby Birrell, Julia Rollins, Shakayleigh Martinez, Ariel Velazquez, Diana Molina, Khmaila Seng, Grace Danielson, Cambree Presley, Tamsyn Leuluai, Camryn Conner, Brooke Slade, Garrett Dobson, Bree Gordon, Alyssa Richards, Reagan Johnson (coach), Kylie Cardwell (coach), Kirsten Stout (coach), Taylor Allfrey, Kennedy Johnson, Londyn Merrill, Ashlyn Hanna, Tatum Templeton, Abby Pahl, Carly Mitchell, Brynlee Ruoti, Sloane Booth, Madi Moody, Maycie Canning, Emma LaDue, Sadie Ashley, Addison McKinnon, Madi Taylor


The Copper Hills Drill team, the Azurettes, are well known for their past success at the state level, holding a whopping seven state championships as well as their most recent second-place title. While the past few years have been met with added struggles such as COVID-19, this year’s Azurettes are taking their performing game to the next level.

To more fully understand the arduous agenda of an Azurette, one must learn about the basic routines of a regular competition. Drill competitions consist of three main categories: military, dance, and show. While the first two have rubrics that the scoring is based upon, show allows for much more personalisation and storytelling within the performance.

Military, as one might assume, is based on performing drills reminiscent of those used in military training. It focuses on the dancers taking a formation and holding it throughout the entirety of the display. “Military is all about sharpness,” explains Addison McKinnon, a senior and Co-captain of the Drill team. More importantly, it’s about how the dance looks overall as an entire formation, rather than a single dancer. The Azurettes have historically dominated in all three categories, hence their state titles. Their military routines however, have especially rallied the Azurettes’ fanbase because of the intense nature of the dances, their flawless cohesion, and their repeated signature move of propping up all the dancers to form a CH.

The dance category allows for much more expression from the dancers in comparison to the military category. This is where contemporary and jazz styles can come into play. However, the girls are still required to move together which limits their personal style and emphasises teamwork. McKinnon says, “We still have to be the exact same, but it’s not quite as sharp.” In addition, the team must follow a difficulty rubric, restricting their reign over the emotion and style of their performance.

Show, considered to be everyone’s favorite, is the newest category and gives the dancers the most freedom of the three. In show, each team chooses a theme that is supported by a character, a prop, and hip hop. Throughout the dance, the team presents a story through every aspect of the presentation, right down to their costuming. Last season, the team performed with Rumpelstiltskin as the character and a spinning wheel for the prop. As for this year, the theme is Trolls, like the creepy, under-the-bridge trolls. It’s going to be scary good.

Head Coach and former Azurette,Kylie Cardwell née Erickson, said, “This group has a fire and determination unlike anything I’ve seen in a while, they’re determined to be successful.”

The Drill team is motivated and ready to win, however, in order to do so, they will need perfection and a flawless performance. According to McKinnon, perfecting the small details, such as formations and synchronization will be a key factor in setting Copper Hills above the rest, especially this year. Taylor Allfrey, Junior, says, “Our routines are really unique this year, and I don’t think people are going to expect them. It’s very creative; it’s stuff people haven’t seen before.” This originality is something the Azurettes take pride in and have demonstrated through their previous performances from past years, as well as this year’s showcase. Assistant Coach and former Azurette, Reagan Johnson née Reeves said, “This year’s showcase was one of the best there has ever been, I think that’s an indication of where these girls are at and what they’re going to accomplish this year.”


In a generation with growing concerns over mental health, having a good support system is essential. And the Grizzly Azurettes do exactly that. When unexpected injuries throw the team for a loop, these girls use their unity within to overcome any struggle. The girls commented on their strong team dynamic saying, “We pull ourselves together, and we’re good at supporting each other.”

The Copper Hills Azurettes battled through region competitions this year, making it all the way to state. The team did oustanding, eventually taking 5th overall. It’s clear that the field is full of a number of schools that are building their talent. The Azurrette have a lot of work to do for next year.

Grizzly nation is super proud of our Azurettes, for their unique routines, for their solid team dynamic, for their drive to push through whatever came their way this year (including Covid). If you see an Azurrette, show some love!