Excited students gathered in the Marriott Center Nov. 12 for a special devotional. Some students chattered throughout the crowd as they waited for the event to start, and others fixated on a series of inspirational videos presented by BYU’s Department of Dance.
This devotional did not come from any one person, rather, it was delivered by BYU’s various dance ensembles. BYU President Kevin Worthen introduced the performers and explained how powerful dance can be.
“For more than 50 years, BYU students have shared the spirit of joy with people worldwide through the creative expression of dance,” President Worthen said. “Performances strive to strengthen and support members of the Church in distant lands and can be seen here on campus.”
Attending concerts can be pricey, especially if one plans to pay for more than one person. Fortunately, the performance devotional gave students the opportunity to experience a live performance without having to pay for tickets.
Diego Lishman, a freshman studying psychology, has never participated in the dancing world, but he said he was happy to sit back and enjoy the show. Lishman usually attends the devotionals and thought it was interesting to have one centered on performing.
“I’ve considered taking ballroom dance a couple of times, but I haven’t found the time or I’ve talked myself out of it,” Lishman said. “I’m mostly worried that it is a big time commitment.”
The audience showed their support for the different dancers throughout the performance. The devotional began with a video entitled “The World is Our Campus.” The video showed BYU dancers interacting with people from all over the world.
The International Folk Dance Ensemble’s Indonesian dance had many students stunned at the speed and coordination of the dancers. Living Legends’ Samoa: Sasa, Lapa Lapa, Fa’ataupati had the crowd laughing and engaged. Each number proved the skill and devotion of each dancer in the show.
BYU student Savanah Hunter said she has attended every devotional and forum this semester and enjoyed watching the different performances. Though she hasn’t danced much other than country swing, she enjoys the importance of fine arts at BYU.
“I really like watching the different forms of dance,” Hunter said. “It’s amazing to see what people can do, and it makes for a good break in between classes.”
At the end of the performance, the dancers ran out onto the stage in their different costumes as a chorus of applause came from the Marriott Center’s seats.