SRU dance majors to present original choreography at adjudication concerts


Darrin Mosley performing dance moves

Darrin Mosley, a Slippery Rock University dance major from York, will present original choreography at the Nov. 17-18 Dance Theatre Adjudication Concerts in the West Gym Dance Studio.

Nov. 9, 2016

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Hours of preparation, perspiration and attention to detail will come to the forefront - as well as the stage - when Slippery Rock University dance majors face a choreography review by faculty mentors during four dance theatre adjudication concerts Nov. 17-18 in the West Gym Dance Studio.

In total, 42 students have created choreography for 59 dances, using themes of personal struggle such as insomnia and vice for inspiration. The concerts represent the culmination of students' rehearsal and lab work during fall semester.

The performances are open to the public.

"Adjudication concerts are 'show time' for us. We have to bring our A-game when we perform," said Alyssa George, a dance major from Brunswick, Ohio, who will take part in a group piece entitled "Capital Vices." The piece focuses on the Seven Deadly Sins and innocence against sin.

George said the process of preparing choreography has been educational.

"These dances mean a lot to us as choreographers because it is, in a sense, our 'child,'" said George. "We developed an idea, turned it into reality and will show the world what life that idea has taken, rather than just talking about it. This is educational because we build our characters that help portray the story and tell the audience what is happening without speaking. Taking part in this process is amazing in that it allows us to see how much we have grown as dancers and choreographers."

George will also debut a solo piece, "Inquietude," that deals with the theme of insomnia and what happens to the body and mind when it goes days without sleep.

A faculty panel - consisting of Ursula Payne, professor of dance; Melissa Teodoro, associate professor of dance; Teena Custer, instructor of dance; Nola Nolen, associate professor of dance; and Andy Hasenpflug, dance musician for the dance department - will assess each performance on a 100-point scale.

Nolen said dances scoring 86 to 88 points will be considered for the December's fall concerts at Swope Music Hall while those scoring 89 points and beyond will be considered for February's winter concert at Butler County Community College.

"At the beginning of the fall semester, 42 student choreographers held auditions over the course of two weekends in order to select cast members for each dance," Nolen said. "Since September, the choreographers have held two rehearsals per week for each dance. Additionally, the student choreographers have presented drafts of their works in one or more of a dozen labs facilitated by dance faculty members."

Alyssa Bradley, a dance major from Pittsburgh, is choreographing a group pieced titled "Petrichor."

"The concept deals with a personal experience I've had in my life, and it is acting as a way for me to move forward from the issue," Bradley said. "Choreographing this piece is about how to take mental concepts and turn them into movement.

"The adjudication process is a big deal because it is the first time students are showing their completed works to the faculty and to others," she said. "It is a fun concert to attend because there is such a diverse array of dance styles and movement that anyone can find a piece they enjoy."

The Nov. 17 concerts are scheduled 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. with the Nov. 18 performances set for 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Admission is $2.

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