2018 Spring Dance Concert Magical and Captivating

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The Spring Dance Concert, presented annually by the Department of Theater and Dance, captivated audiences on Friday, March 30 and Saturday, March 31. This year’s program consisted of seven dances, choreographed by four students, two faculty, and one guest choreographer from the Hartt School.
The show opened to a number entitled “Tenderness” after the song Try a Little Tenderness by Otis Redding, to which the performance was set. This dance was choreographed by Kamala Hargrove ’19, and performed by Hargrove alongside Emma Carroll ’18, Carly Gillen ’21, Kristina Kurker ’20, Haley Michno ’18, Maggie Powderly ’18, and Izzy Sturdevant ’20. The dancers swayed to Redding’s soulful lyrics, gracefully blending balletlike twirls with jazzy modern moves. The effect was classic, timeless, and captivating.
The next performance, choreographed by faculty member Rachna Agrawal, visually exchanged the modern red dresses of Tenderness for traditional red and gold Indian clothing. This performance, entitled Tukdas and Tihais, was choreographed by Agrawal in the style of Kathak, a classical and ancient style of dance from India. The performance centers around the repetition of triadic rhythmic structures and the repetition of lyrical phrases in the music. The performance was augmented by ghungroos, or ankle bells, worn by dancers Maria Boucher ’20, Brian Cieplicki ’19, Yeabsira Debebe ’21, Emma Godi ’19, and Edson Zandamela ’20.
After that impressive and traditional performance, the show returned to contemporary dance with a performance called Mirror Image, choreographed by Carly Gillen ’21, who also danced in Tenderness. Dancers Tessa Cyr ’21, Rachel Fox ’21, Gillen, Katie Haynes ’21, Claire Quigley ’18, and Anneliese Pedro ’20 showcased their technically accomplished and aesthetically beautiful skills of dance to the song Crystallize by Lindsey Stirling. This was the only performance of the night choreographed by a freshman.
Then, Maggie Powderly ’18 took to the stage for the second time for the sole solo performance of the night, entitled Enough. Powderly is the sole senior choreographer featured in this show. This performance, set to the song Liability by Lorde, used the song’s raw emotional lyrics as its narrative structure, which deals with vulnerability and selfhood, emotionally and socially. As Lorde sang, “You’re all gonna watch me disappear into the sun,” Powderly ran offstage into a brilliant golden light to a room of warm applause and cheers.
The next performance, Vibration, choreographed and performed by guests from the Hartt School, was raw and powerful in an entirely different way. The dance, set to the song Great Day by Senking, showcased the power and extreme control exhibited by Ty Graynor and Samiyah Parramore. This breathtaking performance, choreographed by Parramore, brimmed with tension, both symbolic and muscular, and the controlled fluidity that comes from intense ballet training, the Hartt School’s specialty.
Returning to gentler themes, the next performance was choreographed by Izzy Sturdevant ’20 and set to the mellow yet poetic To Build a Home by The Cinematic Orchestra. Sturdevant, Haley Michno ’18, and Maggie Powderly ’18 moved melodically and expressively following the song’s message of love, loss, and dedication, and knowing when to let go, as these dancers made their final performance.
The final dance of the night was entitled 32 Feet per Second (what pulls us down and who pulls us up) and choreographed by associate professor Lesley Farlow, who directed the entire concert. This number had the largest cast, with ten dancers in total: Jami Cogswell ’16, Jessica Croteau ’21, Rachel Fox ’21, Katie Haynes ’21, Sam McAward ’21, Caleigh Petrillo ’21, Claire Quigley 18, Sophia Rutt ’21, Colleen Sweeney ’18, and Junyao Yuan ’21, with the help of rehearsal assistant Kristina Miele ’19. This dance was set to three pieces of music: Tick of the Clock by the Chromatics, Life Hack by Laurence Pike, and Anti-Gravity by Lindsey Stirling. The dancers, clad simply in leggings and loose shirts, initially looked like members of a fitness class as they walked and lunged back and forth across the stage, modulating pace and rhythm with the music, cleverly using the curtains to create the illusion of a crowd much larger than the actual number of dancers. Farlow’s choreography used deceptively simple moves, relying upon clever repetition and a slow, intriguing buildup of patterns to convey an elaborate concept. The title gives us a clue as to the message of this performance, that movement and music and rhythm can be used to pose questions about interpersonal support or destruction, and various ways of walking through life.
Recognition should go to the crew, and to lighting designer Danielle Verkennes, co-lighting designer Allison Zerio, and stage manager Lehlabile Davhana ’19 for making the physical performance space a beautiful canvas for these dancers. Everyone involved in this concert also thank Vivian Lamb, costuming supervisor for Trinity’s Department of Theater and Dance.

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