From captain to coach

Majestics’ Jennifer Larsen shares on her dance and teaching career


Parker Nolan

Jennifer Larsen, former Majestic dancer and now coach, has seen the dance program grow throughout the school’s past 11 years.

Ever since becoming a member of the first Majestics team back in 2007, Majestics coach Jennifer Larsen has involved herself in all aspects of the program, from performing as a captain in her senior year, to “setting” pieces for the team each year after, and now as one of the team’s coaches.

After graduating from the high school in 2010, Larsen’s first job position after college was back in the Majestics program where she was only four years prior.  

“I think it kind of came and found me. I got really interested in choreography and I started coming back and setting pieces every year,” Larsen said. “I would set a couple dances for the Majestics, then I started subbing, and it just kind of stuck.”

Larsen’s dance career started when she “was 3 or 4 years old,” which later led her into the pre-drill dance class as a high school freshman.

“I was a studio dancer all my life and then in high school I was told that I had to join something extracurricular,” Larsen said. “It just made sense to join [a] dance extracurricular because I was already a dancer.”

During her years as a Majestic, Larsen fondly recalled performing at “a big nationals competition,” as well as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Part of being in the first graduating class of Majestics let the team “figure out what a drill team was,” said Larsen.

“We kind of started some of the traditions,” Larsen said. “We kind of got to figure it out and experience it was we went instead of going into it expecting something.”

Being a part of the Majestics team in the past gives Larsen “a perspective of knowing what the girls are going through.”

“In practice when it’s really hard, I can say ‘I’ve been there, I know it’s hard. We have to push through,’” Larsen said. “Also, it’s fun seeing how much the program has grown and how the bar is being raised every year for technique and for ability.”

Larsen can recall the Majestics team only having 14 people during her freshman year, and can now see the differences in the program over the years after her graduation through her continued involvement.

Carter Bryant
Larsen directs studio dance class.

“The program has gotten bigger. I think the productions, like their spring show, has grown and more people are coming to it,” Larsen said. “The lights and costumes are so much better, and it’s really fun to watch where it’s started and how every single facet of the program is really growing.”

After Larsen having worked as her maternity sub last year, Majestics coach Jenny Willis was “pleasantly surprised when [she] got back.”  

“I think having somebody who knows the ropes and understands the program and knows the traditions only is a good thing,” Willis said. “She can relate to the girls on the team in a different way than other directors can because we’ve not been in their shoes.”

The Majestics will be performing a lot of throwback pieces in honor of the first Majestics line, in which Larsen was a member, according to senior Majestics major Jojo Bennett.

“She knows that not everybody has all the experience. We’re all at different experience levels unlike when she was at college, they all danced their entire lives,” Bennett said. “She just has an understanding and a way of teaching all levels, but at the same times she’s getting us all where we need to be.”

Larsen enjoys coaching the team, although it’s still “kind of a tough place to be.”

“You miss the people you were with when you were there. It’s more of a looking back and being fond of those memories because it is different,” Larsen said. “I have to separate myself from it and be a teacher and be a coach. It’s fun watching them having those moments together and I get to witness it.”