WOU’s Annual Spring Dance Concert
Every year I look forward to attending Western Oregon University’s Spring Dance Concert. For one thing, it brings back tons of memories of being in college and dancing on the very same stage. In addition, the choreographers bring something unique to the table every year- and each show stands out from the rest. If you have never visited the Monmouth/Independence area of the Willamette Valley, I would suggest driving through and checking it out. It’s an adorable yet tiny college town with a few cute mom and pop shops, and some great restaurants- be sure to try Rice Time or J Bella’s in Independence!
I attended this year’s concert with my friend Stefanie, who also used to participate in the show. The dance pieces included primarily modern dance, with a bit of humor and theatrics thrown in. My favorite pieces included Caution: Men at Work, You & I, and Big Bang.
Caution: Men at Work was choregraphed by Darryl Thomas, and included an all-male cast, who showed different every-day careers through dance. The curtain opened to reveal a construction worker fixing lighting onstage and a police officer eating donuts. The entire routine was very masculine, and included breakdancing and even acrobatics. It was very impressive to see a group of men dancing together- and I think they portrayed each career they represented very accurately.
You and I was choreographed by Deborah Jones, and was one of my favorite pieces as it told a heartworming story. It almost felt a little bit like a play, because all of the dancers played one character throughout the entire piece. I interpreted this piece to be about guardian angels, as it showed dancers followed by others dressed in all white. The story also showed these guardian angels helping people with such life experiences as conflicts and first loves. It was a wonderfully intricate piece!
The Big Bang piece was choreographed by Valerie Bergman and Darryl Thomas, and showed the idea of the big bang theory through dance (that was my interpretation anyway). It showed all stages of life, from fish to monkeys to humans. There was a lot of humor in this piece as well, as the dancers acted like monkeys as they interacted with one another. It was very funny and also realistic at the same time.
If you missed the Spring Dance Concert this year, be sure to check it out next year. It’s a great show every time!