COLUMBIA — Girls are in swingy red dresses spattered with silver sequins, boys in matching red dress shirts and black vests accented with the same silver sparkles. They are talking quietly in small groups, hanging out, waiting to start, but there's nothing casual about it. After all, they’ll depart for competition in less than 24 hours. “Places!” shouts the director, Mike Pierson, a man in a dark orange polo shirt. Suddenly the girls and boys jump to a tight formation. They sing a few bars, a capella, until the director says:
Minutes depend on months of work for City Lights
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