Izzie Corley, Contributing Writer
College of Wooster students who want a smorgasbord of all that the field of modern dance has to offer should look no further than this year’s Fall Dance Concert. This show will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 17, 18 and 19 at Freedlander Theater. The concert will be directed by Professor of Theatre and Dance Emily Baird, and will feature ten different performances choreographed and performed by a diverse group of students.
In order to get a sneak peek at what this variety concert has in store for us, I spoke to two of its choreographers, Abby Aitken ’24 (she/her) and Co Clark ’25 (they/he). As Clark explains, each performance reflects the culmination of a unique creative process, and involves a number of different themes and narratives. “There’s something for everyone,” Clark stated, “I really believe that.” Based on the wide range of themes that will be covered, attendees can expect a mixture of thought-provoking and delightful experiences.
Both Clark and Aitken remarked that their life experiences were a source of inspiration for the dances they created. Clark says that they set out to make a dance that “draws on [their own] disabled experience,” that will make “the audience feel seen,” with the goal of showing them “that dance is for everyone.” Interested students can look forward to a beautiful spatial and emotional representation of the ideas Clark is trying to convey.
Alongside personal experience, Aitken explained that one of her other major sources of inspiration was collaborating with her co-choreographer Aliza Sosin ’25. She described a loose, flowing creative process, where she and Sosin worked to make an experience that was “very positive, fun, and carefree,” both for the audience and for the performers. In contrast to the particular response Clark set out to elicit in their performance, Aitken expressed how she “think[s it] is beautiful” how, ultimately, each individual will interpret her piece differently. She instead placed the emphasis on the overarching emotional flow of her work. These two different approaches are both intriguing to me. I am excited to see how each of the 10 dances will reflect the unique characteristics of the people who conceived of and performed them. Art shows like this are amazing vectors for communicating the inner realities of different people. They allow artists to pull something from inside of themselves and display it to the audience in a way that is not just digestible, but downright delightful.
Both Wooster students and members of the broader community are welcome to attend. The show is free to all students at the College, but in order to ensure a seat, attendees should reserve tickets in advance, starting on Nov. 14. This may be done through the box office in Freedlander Theater, or at wooster.edu/tickets. Come out and support all of the hard work from our college community!