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Dance concert draws on the emotions, faculty

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By Tamara Florence

By Tamara Florence

In the history of the dance program at Riverside Community College, which has been in existence for 12 years, there have always been dance concerts put on every fall and spring with both student and faculty choreographers.

In 1997 there was a split in which the faculty would choreograph the fall dance concert and the students would choreograph the spring concert.

This fall the dance faculty is putting on a dance concert entitled Kinetic Conversations (conversations with the body), which will be shown starting Dec.3 through Dec.5.

This concert is not just focused on one genre of dance but includes: Ballet, Jazz and Modern.

I was moved by the piece, a ballet, entitled “Pour Maman…” choreographed by Sophia Olga Carreras, an RCC dance instructor, with solo dance by Amy Schiffner, a RCC dance student and Arroyo High School dance teacher.

This piece was intriguing with the way she projected her feelings of sadness along with the song Albinoni: Adagio, Mozart’s Requium Confutatis Lacrimosa.

I was told by Jo Dierdorff, a full time dance instructor, that Carreras is really building the ballot program and that her piece was the only one that had beginner ballot dancers.

Most auditions for concerts would require some experience in dancing before even being considered. So of course I was moved to ask Carreras why she put them in the concert.

“The reason why I let them perform is because it’s an opportunity for them,” she said. “By them learning something from this experience will inspire them to go on in dance.”

After watching some of the pieces that are going to be perform at the concert, I asked Dierdorff what would be considered the high points of the concert.

“The high point of the concert is the fact that there are so many talented dancers, and wonderful choreographers,” she said.

This concert was definitely given the perfect name Kinetic Conversations. The dancers I watched told a story.

As the dancers danced something struck an emotional cord. There is no punch line or theme to this concert, but each performance tells a story within itself.

The concert will have guest choreographers and artists: John Pennington (choreographer for the children’s program “SUNNYTOWN”), Amanda Nora (choreography showcased at the 1996 World Olympics), Denesa Chan (performed Suzuki physical theatre with the Blue Hill Performance Ensemble) and Alexandra Little (choreographs alongside Mandy Moore).

“Hopefully the concert will serve as a model for the students in preparation for the spring concert,” Chenoweth-Surman said.

Kinetic Conversations is a concert to appreciate dance for something other than mindless entertainment. It is definitely a must see.

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