There was excitement and disbelief for a Rotorua dance crew when they found out they would be heading to a national dance competition.

Recently the Rotorua Dance Festival competition ran for a week at the Energy Events Centre, which involved performers from all over the North Island.

Lakes Performing Arts Company managing director Rebecca Brake says the company had a number of performers competing in the event, including senior dance crew Victress.

She says the crew competed in the senior troupe section and won the Performer of the Year Nomination, earning them entry to Nationals in Palmerston North in October.

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There are eight dancers in Victress, ranging from 14 to 18 years old.

Rebecca says the crew will perform the same routine at Nationals, but can use the time until then to make it even better.

She says what is most exciting is this competition has been running for 20 years but this is the first time a Rotorua person or group is representing the Rotorua nomination.

"The students were onstage when they announced that they were the winners of the nomination.

"They kind of stood there in disbelief for a couple minutes because they couldn't believe it was them and they had won, but after they were very excited."

Rebecca says she also feels excited for the crew.

She wants to give a shout out to the crew's choreographer Raukawa Tuhura.

"She's one of our dance teachers and she's new to LPAC this year. She hasn't been with us very long and is already sending our kids to nationals."

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