Skip to main content





Jan. 19, 2011
CONTACT: Gordon Ovenshine:

‘Shifting Ground’ spotlights student choreography

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – Visually rich choreography by eight Slippery Rock University dancers and a dance faculty member will be presented when SRU Dance Theatre offers its annual winter concert “Shifting Ground” at 8 p.m. Feb. 3-5 in Miller Auditorium. Students will also perform “Of the Earth Far Below,” a work by New York City choreographer Doug Varone.
        “This is the second year in a row we have commissioned a Varone work for students to perform,” said Jennifer Keller, SRU professor of dance. “This is an important concert for our students, because they are making the transition to emerging artists. The title of the concert, ‘Shifting Ground,’ signifies that transition.” Choreography by Keller will be performed as well.
          Varone founded Doug Varone and Dancers in 1986. His dancers have performed in more than 100 cities across the U.S. and Europe, Asia, Canada and South America. Nora Ambrosio, professor of dance, obtained a National Endowment of the Arts grant to bring Varone’s work to SRU.
         “Varone’s choreography qualifies as an historic masterwork,” Keller said. “It is recognized for its luscious movement landscape and sweeping cadences through space.”
          SRU student choreographers have been developing their works since September. Their dances will represent their individual personalities and feature a range of structure, from solos to duets and ensembles, Keller said.
         Alicia Garrity, a dance major from Pittsburgh, said she obtained an SRU student-research grant to study techniques for creating a solo, which helped her prepare for the winter concert.
         “The solo is definitely a very emotional piece about learning who I am and growing up,” she said. “Being on the concert is a huge honor, and I am very excited to be on that stage.”
         Added Ambrosio, “There is something for everyone in this concert. We encourage students to think outside the box and create dances that will increase their artistic abilities.”
           Other student choreographers are dance majors Amber Allgyer of Leola; Kaitlyn Dye of Frostburg, Md.; Ashley Lowman of Clearfield; Jessica Madden of Frederick, Md.; Amanda Peterson of Edinburg, Taylor Sady of Lilly and Lexi Sirinakis of Westminster, Md.
        Tickets are $10 for general seating and $5 for students. They may be purchased at the University Union Information Desk, by calling 724.738.4926, or at the door of Miller Auditorium.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania’s premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.