It was a night of music and dancing in Kulas Auditorium on Friday, April 19 with JCU Dance Ensemble’s spring performance. The performers showcased their talents in 18 dances ranging in style from tap to hip-hop.
Dance Ensemble is composed of performers with a variety of dance experience. Junior Carmen Rietta, who serves as vice president, commented on the diversity of the group: “Our dancers’ backgrounds range from classical dance since being three years old, to mostly hip-hop, and somewhere in between. That is one of the nice things about our group; we all bring different experiences to the company, as well as varying years of training.”
According to Rietta, the dancers audition at the beginning of the year and begin rehearsals a few weeks later. She said that each group meets weekly for an hour to rehearse with the choreographer(s) for each dance. Friday’s performance opened with a dance to “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me.” Highlights of the evening included a hip-hop number performed to Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop” and a contemporary dance to Emmy Rossum’s “Slow Me Down.” Additionally, the Sweet Carrollines took the stage, entertaining the audience with their a cappella singing.
The show closed strongly with the whole ensemble taking the stage dancing to Ellie Goulding’s “Lights,” choreographed by Rietta as well as Dance Ensemble’s president, junior Ryllie Danylko.
The dancers kept the audience alive and cheering throughout the entire performance, creating a positive, electric atmosphere in Kulas. The ensemble put on a great display of talent, keeping the audience engaged and impressed.
That energy was noted by audience member freshman Angelina Huber.
“All the dancers seemed prepared and energetic, which made the audience that much more captivated,” she said.
Junior Jess Lipold said she was impressed by the range of different dances that were performed.“I can tell everyone worked really hard. They should all be proud of themselves,” Lipold said.
If you missed Friday’s performance, it’s not too late to see Dance Ensemble before the year is over. Verb Ballets contemporary dance company will be coming to Kulas on May 3 at 7:30 p.m. and will be performing free of charge. The performance will start with select numbers from Dance Ensemble’s spring performance and will continue with the Verb Ballets’ “The Rite of Spring: The Bride Unseen.”