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Put your money where your walk is

High school students gear up for Hurley performance competition by practicing with a taped off runway in a park.

August 04, 2010|By Britney Barnes, britney.barnes@latimes.com
  • Huntington Beach High School students rehearse for Hurley's Walk the Walk competition on Monday in Huntington Beach. The fashion show competition puts six high schools from across the nation against one another for a chance to win $25,000.
Huntington Beach High School students rehearse for Hurley's… (Scott Smeltzer,…)

Huntington Beach High School will go head-to-head with five other high schools Friday in Hurley's Walk the Walk competition, and they are playing to win with near-daily practices with the competition just a day away.

Nick Phipps, one of the 25 Huntington Beach High students in the show, has taken his preparations up a notch, watching what he eats and hitting the gym harder. But then, the 17-year-old is opening the performance in a Speedo.

A black-and-orange cheetah-print Speedo.

"I'm kind of nervous," Nick said. "But it's got to happen."

Walk the Walk is a national competition for high school students that ends in a five-minute "Project Runway"-esque competition during the U.S. Open of Surfing with a $25,000 grand prize.

This is the third year Huntington Beach High has competed, and the competition is the hardest so far with added qualifying rounds, said 18-year-old Drea Dinh, a recent graduate. The schools had to qualify through three rounds of online voting based on video challenges, with the school with the most votes in each region moving forward.

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Now, it is all down to a final fashion show where the students will show off more than 30 outfits they created from deconstructed Hurley apparel, strut their stuff and, most importantly, put on a show.

The performance aspect was the school's biggest problem last year, Dinh said. They treated the competition as a straight fashion show, but they should have entertained the crowd more with music and dancing, she said.

"It's still a fashion show," said Kristin Comer, 17, one of the co-choreographers. "It's just you're kind of putting on a show as you show off the clothes."

Learning from their mistakes, the students choreographed the show with booty shakes, lifts, flips, guys ripping off their T-shirts and a quick homage to Beyonce's "Single Ladies" music video set to an upbeat mash of music.

The show will tell the story of what teenagers want out of life before they get too old, a kind of young persons' bucket list, through their clothes and performance. The show is broken up into six sections: "I Want to Fall in Love," "I Want to Be Famous," "Just Dance," "I Want to Make the Team," "I Want to Be a Legend" — inspired by hometown hero Brett Simpson, who won the U.S. Open last year — and "Winning the Walk the Walk Competition."

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