Student dancers — 160 of them, dancers instructed by 15 student choreographers — will hit the stage to perform inventive explorations and inhibitions through dance in Cal Poly’s student-directed spring dance concert, “Unleashed.”
The production, sponsored by the Cal Poly theatre and dance department and under the direction of journalism senior Krizia Torres, who is also dancing in four numbers, functions to encompass a variety of powerful and diverse dance styles from performers with a wide range of experience and skill level.
“The theme name of this spring dance concert is a fun, edgy way to motivate the dancers to remember that when they take the stage they shouldn’t hold back on anything. Instead of thinking about their math test tomorrow, they should just concentrate on the matter at hand and that’s dance,” Torres said.
In addition to dance minors and members of Orchesis, Cal Poly’s student dance company, members, the dance and choreography rehearsals in March were available to all Cal Poly students interested in participating.
Torres said that the production, because it includes dancers from any major and dance skill level at Cal Poly, accumulates more members than other dance concerts that happen throughout the year. She said that this year’s spring dance concert significantly surpassed the active involvement of previous years, which typically have been composed of about 90 dancers.
“You don’t have to be a professional dancer or a dance minor to be in it; you can participate just because you have the love of dance or you just want to try dance,” Torres said.
Fifteen choreographers, including dance minors fulfilling their final project, will display their work in the production. “Everyone will bring something special to the show,” Torres said.
Genres featured in the 24 dances include African, modern, tap, salsa-inspired tap and break dance, jazz, contemporary lyrical and kickline.
Faculty adviser Maria Junco, who has supported the concert as a student-run production since 1998, said that it is great to give students the opportunity to perform on stage and for choreographers to have their work presented.
“It’s really important to have the student voice in the center. I think artistic variety will certainly add to audience enjoyment,” Junco said.
“A big part of being a performer is the experience of having dialogue with the audience,” she said.
A video documentary Torres filmed will be shown in the lobby on the night of the event to give the audience insight to what happens behind the scenes in preparation for the production.
“I wanted to add a human aspect to the show for people to better understand what the process is like from perspectives that aren’t seen when they come to watch,” she said.
“People that go to school here are really talented and want to show it on stage. It’s a good opportunity to show Cal Poly what the underground dance community is doing and how we’re thriving through creative progress,” she said.
“Unleashed” will be performed at 8 p.m. on May 28 and 29 at Spanos Theatre. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the PAC box office.