The West Virginia University Division of Theatre and Dance presents “Everything is Ready: An Evening of Dance,” the 2010 WVU Dance Ensemble concert featuring a diverse program highlighting the troupes’ dancing and choreographing talents.
The Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre inside the Creative Arts Center will host three performances of the program: March 5 at 7:30 p.m. and March 6 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
A variety of dances will be featured including hip-hop, classical, modern and contemporary, all choreographed by faculty and students.
Heather Ahern, WVU director of dance, has two pieces in the program.
Ahern’s first piece, “The Elements,” is inspired by an Indonesian Gamelan performance and features five dancers representing various elements and energies, including wind, water, earth, fire and the moon.
Each dancer will wear garments inspired by original Indonesian dance ensembles with a huge headdress and a bright and colorful costume unique to the individual and the element that dancer represents.
Mary McClung, WVU costume design professor, conceptualized the idea, bringing together the Division of Theatre and Dance and the Division of Music.
“The Elements” features original music composed by Rafael Smith and John Goode, both WVU music students, and will be performed by the WVU Gamelan Ensemble under the direction of music professor Michael Vercelli of the WVU World Music Center.
Ahern’s second piece explores how people deal with loss and the process of moving on, and is comprised of two movements from Gabriel Fauré’s “Requiem.” This dance features Barbara Yurick, a member of the theatre and dance faculty, and several students.
Renee Nicholson, faculty member, also has a dance piece in the program.
Nicholson adapted excerpts of the classical ballet “Les Sylphides” from original choreography by Michel Fokine. The movements presented include a nocturne and a valse, or waltz. The ballet features six ensemble members and soloist Megan Otte partnered with John Perry.
Faculty member Carole Wiedebush took her inspiration from the Food Network program, “Barefoot Contessa,” adapting it into a theatrical, contemporary dance.
Wiedebush’s piece features various ensemble members using the art of dance to portray the art cooking. Alexandra Napolitano plays the part of Barefoot Contessa and the dance corps members represent the meal she’s planning.
“Majesty,” a piece choreographed by Barbara Yurick, founding member of the West Virginia Dance Company, takes the audience into the world of Beijing’s Forbidden City.
Inspired by Pearl S. Buck’s novel, “Imperial Woman,” the dance tells the story of the Emperor and how his rule was undermined by the court intrigue of the Eunuchs, how his power was drained by the seduction of opium and concubines, and how he died.
The part of the Emperor will be performed by guest artist Donald Laney of the West Virginia Dance Company. Students Rebecca Yue Mao and Kyle Hayes will also be featured. Ieuen Potts will undertake the role of child emperor.
Several students also have their choreographed work on the bill.
Corey Nielsen’s dance, “Shman Helsing,” adds light humor to the concert with ballerina Vikings. The piece features Kyle Hayes and Melissa Moraes as struggling ballerina Vikings, yearning to fit in with more experienced dancers.
Kyle Hayes has created a unique and dark piece, depicting hell. With a cast of female dancers, his haunting and aggressive piece is a fusion of hip hop, modern and ballet with an edge.
Karissa Kyle has extended her piece from the dance program’s informal dance concert last fall, where she choreographed a dance featuring a group of eccentric characters living in a shantytown. The piece is now longer, and each dancer has a solo.
Bethany Fisher’s dance is an abstract contemporary piece that features six female dancers illustrating winter. As a lighting design major, Fisher has also be designed the lights to be similar to the aurora borealis.
Caitlyn Robertson and Stephanie DeBolt have collaborated with a group of talented tappers to create a tap dance fused with hip hop. The piece features an a cappela section and offers lighting and choreographic surprises.
Technical Director of the program is Stephen Neuenschwander, theatre and dance faculty.
Other designers include faculty member Bob Klingelhoefer, sets; faculty member Alan McEwen, assisted by students Claire Phelps, Bethany Fisher and Gina Brown, lighting and sound; and faculty member Mary McClung and costume lab manager Sharon Goeres, assisted by students Brian Beliel and Kaitlin Looney, costumes.
Stage manager is theatre student Katie Kennedy.
WVU Dance Ensemble members include Megan Amory, Jenny Baird, Rachel Borowski, David Breeding, Elizabeth Convey, Brooke Darlington, Olivia Davis, Stephanie DeBolt, Holly Downs, Bethany Fisher, Valerie Guido, Rachel Haring, Shaydrina Hassell, Kyle Hayes, Emily Henderson, Megan Hott, Lindsay Kenders, Karissa Kyle, Ruth Ann Lamp, Elizabeth Lewellen, Tiffany Mancuso, Rebecca Yue Mao, Hannah McCardle, Heidi Milne, Mel Moraes, Alexandra Napolitano, Corey Nielsen, Megan Otte, John Perry, Caitlin Robertson, Lindsay Satryan, Katt Schuler, Laura Sheehan, Taylor Shepherd; Deondra Snow, Miranda Straub, Jamie Williams and Alice Yurick.
Tickets may be purchased by calling (304) 293-SHOW or visiting the WVU Box Office at the Mountainlair or Creative Arts Center.
Tickets are also available through Ticketmaster outlets or visiting www.ticketmaster.com.
Reserved seating is $15 for adults, $12 for senior citizens, WVU faculty and staff, and $10 for WVU students with ID.
For more information, visit theatre.wvu.edu.
CONTACT: Heather Ahern, Director of Dance
Rachel Haring, Student Representative
College of Creative Arts on the Web http://www.ccarts.wvu.edu/
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