A little taste of modern dance

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The BYU dancEnsemble company is ready to show the audience the different aspects of modern dance as it hits the stage this weekend.

The title of this year’s performance is “Vital Signs.” The dancers will express through dance what helps them to keep living and the different experiences life can bring. Student choreographers and faculty choreographers have been working hard to create pieces with a variety of emotions, and each piece is mainly contemporary or modern with little snippets of original styles from students and faculty.

Preparations and rehearsals for the performance have been in effect since the second week of school, and student proposals for choreographic work were submitted at the beginning of September. Large group pieces would require rehearsal for three to four hours per week and individual pieces for two to three hours per week.

The BYU DancEnsemble company.

Anna Schiess, a member of dancEnsemble and a senior majoring in dance education, loves how the show highlights student choreography. It is a great way to see the creativity of these dancers and the masterpieces they have produced.

“It’s neat to see what fellow students are creating with their talents as choreographers, and it is awesome to see how the dancers embody the movement so well,” Schiess said. “If you go to the show, you can look forward to a lot of diverse and original movement, as well as a wide range of emotions being portrayed. Some pieces are more serious and dramatic, while others are playful and full of joy.”

The dancEnsemble members hope to offer an entertaining and interesting show. Jessica Edmunds, a member of dancEnsemble and a junior majoring in exercise and wellness, is excited to be in a piece based on the “Pink Panther” movie. She loves the comedic aspect of the dance and the acting she gets to portray.

“People should come to the show to see the diversity of modern dance,” Edmunds said. “People have a mindset of what they think modern is; this concert will change that view.”

Chloe Haslam, a member of dancEnsemble and a senior majoring in dance, enjoys working with the dance faculty at BYU and getting the overall performing experience. She encourages people who are new to the modern dance world to come check it out.

“Modern dance within itself has hundreds of different styles,” Haslam said. “From the show, you can expect to see several distinct dance pieces ranging from balletic, to humorous and to techno. If you are looking for a taste or nibble of modern dance, you can start here.”

The dancEnsemble performance will take place this Friday and Saturday, Nov. 16–17, at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee show on Saturday at 2 p.m., in the Dance Studio Theatre of the Richards building. Tickets can be purchased through the Fine Arts Ticket Office.

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