Concert breaks barriers with ?odd? dances

By By Sofia Strempek

By Sofia Strempek

The department of modern dance is providing the perfect opportunity to stray from the ordinary with its graduate concert “The Odds.” Through dance, choreographers Nancy Carter, Erin Empey, Juliana Hane, I-Fen Lin, and Shannon Vance beckon the audience to travel with them into fantastical new worlds and deep into the psyche to discover what lies in their artistic ventures.

Lin reveals an absurd world where broken is beautiful and maniacal is sane in “Rouse.” Breaking the barrier between stage and audience, Lin discards normality and embraces the unknown, blurring the lines between fantasy and reality.

The fourth wall, the barrier dividing the stage and audience, reappears in Empey’s “Another Night,” which employs language and dance to theatrically explore the subconscious. Voice and movement collaboratively work to reflect the instability of the mind.

Basic lighting and costuming in Vance’s piece “Spin Cycle” contrast with the vibrant movement on stage. Dancers are initially self-contained, only to wildly transform into fiercely physical beings.

Carter creates a vortex of confusion in her piece “The Other Side of Nothing.” This confusion is the product of a purposefully dizzying performance, which abstracts ideas of place and time, and deconstructs pedestrian gestures to portray the elusive nature of certainty.

Dizziness might be a problem for the dancers in Hane’s “Hold On, Let Go,” in which seven dancers intricately weave themselves into a suspended net. Sheer strength and gravity8212;and the vulnerability of these combined forces8212;emphasize the precariousness of mortality.

Choreographers have left the comfort zone of creation. The performance8212;a culmination of work that will make up a part of the graduate students’ theses8212;flourishes through its self-admitted, untraditional works. The avant-garde pieces in “The Odds” challenge the audience to let go of tightly held judgments and experience art in its wildest form. The production rebels from normality; oddness prevails.

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Eddie Schneckloth

Third-year graduate student and choreographer I-Fen Lin yells out cadence to dancers as they prepare for the master?s thesis concert, ?The Odds.? The concert will feature five different dance pieces from five third-year graduate choreographers.