Hip-Hop, Jazz and Ballet

El Vaquero Staff Writer

The beats dropped, the lights came on and then The Company took over the North Gym floor in full force.

The Spring Performance was put on by The Company as well as the Artist-in-Residence class, Ballet Workshop and Jazz Workshop dancers.
“Most of the work is done with student choreographers, and everything came out of their sick little minds – actually, big minds,” said the dance department director Lynn McMurrey.

The performance was held on Sunday, Saturday, May 30, 29, 28 and 27 and admission was free and open to the public.

The four choreographers who were not students were guest artist-in- residence Celia Carrey Weiss, faculty member Phyllis Eckler, faculty member and co-chair Melissa Randel and assistant director Patt Paczynski.

“If you’ve come to these performances for 15 or 16 years, you’ve already seen [Paczynski’s] pieces,” McMurrey said. “She always asks to participate every year, and I can’t say no good thing I can’t say no.”
The first performance was choreographed by Cielo Ruiz and featured the Company in a fast-beat dance called “React.”

The performers were dressed in outfits of various colors and styles, which made their dance moves quite striking and attention-grabbing.

By contrast, Kayla Cameron’s solo performance of “Do What You Have to Do,” which she also choreographed, was more subtle and soothing.

The dance’s message was, “Sometimes in life, we have to find our inner strength to continue on, even when it hurts,” according to the event program.

Student choreographer Lindsey Patino’s “Nasty” was performed by the Company and was a successful reenactment of the Janet Jackson single. The performers wore Jackson-style black hats, ties and seductive business-like outfits.

A more theatrical performance was “Arianna,” which was choreographed by Stephanye (LA) Bluwal. The performers were Johanna Lozano, Robert Malone, Adam Martinez, Amanda Peterson and Aoki Tsukasa. The dance featured a masked character opposite a white-suited character. The two performers represented a good and evil presence surrounding a couple.

Student choreographer Emma Mesrobian performed the solo “Stranger in my House,” in which she portrayed a person questioning her partner’s loyalty to their relationship.

One of the performances, “Passages/Entanglements/Ciphers” was a distinctively styled performance choreographed by Weiss and rehearsal director Eckler.

“This piece addresses the passges between African countries and the tricky entanglements of meaning that occur in these spaces of transit,” the event program said. “These ciphers are traced through the dancers’ movements.”

A performance with an Asian flair was “The Moon of Fall,” which was choreographed by student Stephanie Zhoa. The traditional Chinese dance was performed by Louie Martinez and Zhoa.

The last performance of the program was definitely the perfect finale called “Can Can Eccentrique,” which was performed by the Company.
The dance, which was choreographed by Kelsi Snoke, introduced can-can dancers in traditional dresses.

The costume design was one of the most colorful ones in throughout the performance. It offered all the student dancers the opportunity to illustrate their talent.