Ana De Villegas was only a member of the Redskins Cheerleader squad for one year (2009), but made the commute from The Big Apple to be at today’s “Welcome Home Luncheon.”
Despite her short tenure with the team, she knows that her time with the Redskins Cheerleaders helped to propel her onto a bigger stage.
“I went for auditions and got a job dancing in New York. I danced at the Minskoff Theater.”
Pretending to be worldly and well-cultured, I nodded my head obediently.
“That’s where ‘The Lion King’ plays, just in case,” she said with a laugh. ”It’s a beautiful theater, it was a great time.”
But just because Ana ran off to the big city doesn’t mean that she gave up her cheerleading and dancing roots. She is now a dancer for the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League. Once I assured her that there was no obvious rivalry between the Redskins and Devils, she explained the difference in the gigs.
“It’s a little bit less cheerleading-based,” she said. ”First you have to learn how to ice skate…no I’m playing, I’m playing. They have a platform out on the ice and we come out there and dance between periods. During the games we’re up in the stands and there’s some platforms up there.”
She credits her time with the Redskins as having given her the motivation to stick with sports dancing/cheering.
“I do love it,” she said. ”I’m a big sports fan–definitely football first, and I missed it a lot. I still follow the Redskins up in New York. I had a dance gig yesterday down here yesterday and I made sure to coordinate so that I could be here.”
Tags: new jersey devils, redskins cheerleaders, washington redskins, welcome home luncheon
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