She is a gorgeous girl with a powerful attitude of mind, Iris Kluin. Since 2006, she has been practicing her passion: cheerleading. And as if that’s not enough, she is also studying at the RUG. The story of this ambitious girl has not gone unnoticed given the fact that Iris participated in the Nike promo team and that she is performing with her current formation The Legacy Dance Team at the home games of the national basketball champions from Groningen the GasTerra Flames.
Iris, you’re studying at the University of Groningen. What do you study exactly?
“I’m now studying Marketing, the masters program. Previously, I got my bachelor’s degree in Business, but I was very busy with my cheerleading activities. So, I was delayed by one and a half year. It was just impossible to combine the two. But in these years I made trips to the USA and became European Champion Jazz Dance and participated in the world championships Jazz Dance in Orlando – I definitely got something back for my efforts.”
Marketing is an intensive study, how many hours a week can you practice cheerleading?
“Normally, we train about two times a week. But the last weeks during the play-off games of the GasTerra Flames, there’s not that much time for training. The Flames are playing three games a week during these weeks.”
And is there any time left to celebrate student life in Groningen?
“I never got the chance to live a hardcore student life, but I don’t regret that. My best friend is also in our team, we built this team together actually. That means that I see her a lot and the rest of the week is practically full. There is, for instance, not much time for shopping. Of course, I would rather have more time for shopping and parties (which I by the way absolutely did), but my dancing and study are more important.”
Your team is especially known for the shows at the games of the GasTerra Flames. What are you exactly doing during these games?
“We’re doing shows betweens the quarters, during time-outs and during half time. We are not like the cheerleading acts in the USA, our style is more about dancing on different kinds of music. We do have a serial jumper in our team.”
I’m sorry, a serial jumper? Is that someone who’s addicted to jumping?
“(laughing) No, it’s more like a dancer who can do tricks like a flip or a back flip.”
Aah, that clarifies a lot. And what does a cheerleading dance team do besides shows at basketball games?
“Well, the coolest thing is that we went on a trip to Zhuzhou in China to perform. It was last week, but unfortunately I was unable to go because of my study schedule. It just isn’t possible to leave for a week when you’re working in a project group for instance. Aside from these trips we’re also doing all kinds of events. It is possible to hire us for an opening of a mall or sports fields.”
Picture that you may choose anything you want, what would you do next year?
“In that case I would definitely dance for one year in the USA. I do the management of my team already, so it would be a good experience for my professional career also. But after that I would concentrate on my business career. It is impossible to be a cheerleader forever.”
By Benjamin de Bruijn