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Student’s choreograph their own show

“Sketches” is the name of the upcoming Winter Student Dance Concert.  The concert pieces are choreographed and danced by students who prepared all semester for the performance.  It’s used as a learning experience for students studying dance, choreography and sometimes lighting.

Marla Hansen, associate professor and theater arts dance program director, will also have pieces featured in the  show which she collaborated on with the students.

“It features the work of six different choreographers, and two pieces by myself,” Hansen said. “These are primarily dancers who are working on their dance minor or they’re theater majors with a dance emphasis. The main point of the performance is for students to have the opportunity to choreograph, to go through that whole creative process and to go through all the rehearsals, and the fixing and the changing and thinking about costume and lighting and see their work fully produced and performed onstage.”

The students were granted free-reign on their projects for the most part, aside from turning in a proposal to Hansen. Periodically they showed their work-in-progress to the class to get feedback in order to make their pieces the best they could be.

“They’re going to see a wide variety of styles, mostly contemporary dance,” Hansen said.  “The ones you’re going to see are really quite creative.  Each piece is its own individual work of art, with its own point of view, its own intention. There’s a lot of really cool music in the concert, so the audience can expect to be entertained.”

The pieces don’t have an overall theme, but express each student’s individuality.  “Sketches” connects to the students and tells the stories they want to portray.

“I got to choreograph one of the pieces that will be shown in the show,” said Leslie Davis, sophomore Spanish secondary-education major with a minor in dance.  “I think (the process) it’s different for everyone.  For me personally at the beginning of the semester, I started to think about songs first.  I did research and listened to many songs until I found one that really made me feel something, made me feel like I could put movement into that song.”

Many decisions went into choreographing the show and each student went through the process in their own way.

“Sketches” will be performed:

Dec. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 15 at 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
In the Morrison Center Danny Peterson theater.