By Paige Eaglestone
A bevy of figures comprised of students, seniors and professionals gathered in the lobby of Boise State’s Special Events Center.
They leisurely trickled into the theater for the presentation of Idaho Dance Theatre’s Winter Show. The production spanned from Thursday, Jan. 24 through Sunday, Jan. 27 and featured four sections including “Now We are Here: Diaries of a Treasured Land,” “Lifeline,” “Architecture: Splintered and Cracked” and “The Story of Humanity.”
These four sections stem from a series of collaboration involving Idaho Dance Theatre directors, dancers and Boise State faculty members.
Music department professors, Laura Rushing-Raynes, Barton Moreau, Brian Hodges and Rodney Zuroeveste performed as a quartet alongside eight dancers during the opening section “Now We Are Here: Diaries of a Treasured Land.”
Rushing-Raynes, associate voice professor, described the production as, “A world premiere of a very unique piece involving poetry, dance, live music and visual art.”
“Now We are Here” presented a spectrum of stunning sensory elements; a progression from intense dark to bright colors in backdrop to landscape paintings as the setting.
Dancers costumed in nude and earthy tones muted into the background, flowing simultaneously, following the rhythm and syncopation of the music.
Eric Fitzpatrick, junior international business major, reflected on the beginning piece.
“I’d remember the first one,” Fitzpatrick said. “Hearing her (Rushing-Raynes) say the word ‘Idaho.’”
The first song was titled, “Farewell to Idaho.” Rushing-Raynes sang, “My talk of leaving Idaho was a little bit too soon” while a painting of rolling foothills brightened up the backdrop.
With open untainted landscapes and easeful motions, the collaboration depicted nature in its purest form, illustrating the influence of what surrounds you has a profound effect on the body.
“Lifeline,” the second section in Idaho Dance Theater’s Winter Performance, left nature and Idaho behind and progressed toward a modern era, one with synthesizers and black hues.
This short, dramatic piece moved at an electrifying, heightened pace.
The dancers in their quick, deliberate motions utilized a prop, a solid white rope stretching diagonally across the stage from one corner to another.
The dancers’ dependence on the rope and the electronica music continuously intensifying provided for a rousing show, very similar to its successor, “Architecture: Splintered and Cracked.” This third section of the Winter Show began with low, deep tones. The overhead music played in a minor key, while a haze was dispensed into the dark set.
The slow careful movements of the dancers blended with a brief whispering chant instilled an eerie feeling reminiscent of a thriller. However, their blue-toned outfits shifting into the aerobic motions of planks, lunges, and squats were notable and unanticipated.
The final section was the premiere of “The Story of Humanity.” This offbeat, unsystematic piece generated a good deal of laughter from the audience. The dancers, playfully in character, donned separate outfits, ranging from sequins and spandex shorts to high waters and suspenders.
One male dancer purposely tripped over boxes onstage and would occasionally wave red tail feathers near his hindquarters, acting as good comic relief for the winter show.
Connor Sheldon, junior health sciences major, said, “The last one was the best.” She added she was able to laugh and would remember the sequin top.
Idaho Dance Theatre’s Winter Show featured inventiveness along with awe-inspiring visuals, acoustics and will be back in spring for another performance.