Haley Huett, A&E Editor
The Spring Dance Concert, produced by the Department of Theatre and Dance at The College of Wooster, is returning to campus. Opening April 13, the show will run for three days at Freedlander Theatre.
Directed by Professor Emily Baird and Liv Mourning ’23, the theatre and dance intern, the concert is a showcase of student and faculty work in the department. In addition to these pieces, the show will also feature Hot Dance, a nonprofit dance company based in Chicago, with a guest performance during the show.
The Spring Dance Concert is an annual event held by the Theatre and Dance Department. Every year, student choreographers create concepts for their pieces, develop the choreography and direct their own dances. Last year, dances wrestled with topics such as substance abuse, party culture and mental health. This year, dances will cover a number of topics, including one piece on the movements of honeybees as part of one choreographer’s Independent Study.
Nine student choreographers will be participating in this year’s Spring Dance Concert: Katie Spence ’23, Bee Bi ’23, Sarah Snider ’23, Katherine Shelmidine ’23, Morgan Carson ’23, Gracie Shreve ’23, Abby Aitken ’24, Aliza Sosin ’25 and Josie Fleischel ’26. Additionally, the concert will feature dances choreographed by Mourning and Professor Baird.
For Spence, the concert will serve as part of her Independent Study. A double major in Dance and Biology, her choreographed dances are a unique combination of these two disciplines. These performances are common for the Spring Dance Concert and are tailored to the interests and majors of the students. Last year, one I.S. performance incorporated a physical therapy study into their performance on dance and injury. This year, Spence will incorporate the language and movements of honeybees, translating them into human movements on the stage.
Spence says that her creative process for this piece differs from years past. Pre-determined by her I.S. topic, which explores dance as communication, Spence created dances that imitated the honeybee dance language. In this way, the physical communication of honeybees is transposed onto the bodies of humans, further exploring the way that humans communicate through dance. Spence described the creative process of connecting the two forms, saying “I noticed honeybee dances create a lot of circular shapes. So, I incorporated this into my piece by having the dancers walk and dance around themselves.”
Each dance in the concert will tackle a different concept or theme. To witness the creative processes and directions of other Wooster students, audiences should plan to attend the concert for what will be another excellent production.
The Spring Dance Concert will be held between April 13 and 15 at 7:30pm in Wooster’s Freedlander Theatre. The box office will open April 10 and students may reserve tickets by calling the theater at (330) 263-2241 or by visiting wooster.edu/tickets. Tickets are free for College of Wooster students and should be reserved in advance. Don’t miss the chance to see one of Wooster’s student performance traditions!