FIVE-girl team from SM Sri KDU took the stage by storm with their energetic Beyonce-inspired and synchronised choreography.
They were the last in their category to perform, but they emerged champion in the Modern Dancing category of the Berjaya TeenStar Challenge 2016 (BTSC2016).
Clad in gold jerseys and cut-out leggings, the 16-year-old girls only took about a month to perfect the moves despite having to juggle between exams and rehearsals.
“We just finished our IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) trials and class test, so the pressure really hit us.
“We actually did not expect to win because there were other strong teams as well,” revealed bubbly Puteri Liyana, on behalf of the team.
Her team, which consists of Nicole Ng, Chong Jia Qi, Julia Afrina Batrisyia and Hor Ee Lynn, clinched the coveted title together with RM2,500 cash and kind.
Coming in second and third placing were teams from St John’s Institution and SMK Convent Bukit Nanas, respectively.
The inaugural BTSC2016, which was launched by Berjaya Youth (B. Youth) in March, also saw stunning performances and fierce competition in the Solo Singing, Duet/Group Singing and Band categories.
For four months, roadshows were held at more than 50 secondary schools in the Klang Valley and Selangor, and as a result, an overwhelming response of more than 2,500 students turned up for auditions.
Those who qualified for the preliminary round were further divided into four brand teams to represent B. Youth, Kenny Rogers Roasters, BLoyalty and Berjaya University College of Hospitality, the co-sponsors of the event.
The top three performers in each category were then selected to represent the four brand teams in the grand finale that culminated at Damansara Performing Arts Centre.
It was certainly an intense afternoon as participants wowed the judges with their strong vocals and talents, and flawless dance routines.
In the duet/group singing category, the teams from SMK Bandar Utama Damansara 3 nabbed first and third placing while SM Sri KDU came in second.
As for the solo singing finals, Vanessa Reynauld of SMK (P) Methodist Klang, Yasmin Aldwin Abdul Aziz from SMK Seri Hartamas, and Keshnee Surendran from Global Indian International School each won first, second and third respectively.
On the other hand, in first place for the band category was SMK Damansara Jaya, followed by SMK Seksyen 3 Bandar Kinrara that came in second, and SMK Taman Tun Dr Ismail in third.
Over RM20,000 worth of prizes in cash and kind as well as trophies were given to the winning participants, while RM3,000 grant was awarded to each winning school of the champions to provide them the opportunity to embark on a community project of their choice.
Five special awards were also given to participants, recognising the Best Vocalist, Best Dancer, Best Team, Best Creativity and Best Showmanship.
Aniq Irfanshamil, 16, could not believe his ears and had tears of joy when he was given the Best Dancer award.
“This is the moment I have been waiting for since I was four years old.
“I have always been very passionate about dancing, and this is a dream come true,” said the self-taught dancer.
He and his partner, Muhammad Faritz Danial Roshqimi, 17, were the first runner-up in the Modern Dancing category.
Berjaya Corporation Berhad Corporate Communications and Investor Relations Division senior general manager Judy Tan said that it was a good engagement between Berjaya, on a group level, and the schools.
“We are also amazed by the pool of talented teenagers in this first Berjaya TeenStar Challange 2016.
“This competition enables secondary school students to gain a holistic learning experience through performing arts apart from their formal academic pursuits.
“Besides creating a platform for them to express their passion, the exposure and experience will also provide them the learning curve in aspects of leadership, teamwork and interaction with people.
“Just like our other B.Youth projects, we have been able to fulfil our objective in providing enriching learning opportunities which allow our youth to gain new insights and broaden their perspectives to become well-rounded individuals,” she said.
B.Youth, established by Berjaya Corporation Berhad, is a youth empowerment initiative to enable Malaysian youths to make a difference in our community based on four pillars – inspiration, creativity, eco and animal.