Dance Destination: Akron

By Emily Bing

Emily Bing

Thursday night at E.J. Thomas Hall, the student dancers of The University of Akron Dance Company took the stage as the annual spring concert began.

The concert consisted of four different pieces. They each showcased several types of dance and the extensive artistic abilities of the choreographers as well as the student dancers.

The first piece, entitled “Overdue Breath,” choreographed by Kara Stewart, was a contemporary pointe piece. It was a haunting piece that seemed to be about a girl who is constantly tortured by the demons inside of her.

The choreography, costumes and dramatic music went well together and created a chilling, yet beautiful scene.

“I feel like with Kara Stewart’s piece she kind of shows the not-so-beautiful side of ballet,” said Shannon Evans, a junior dance major at UA. “Of course, the movement is beautiful itself but it’s not your usual classical, happy-like ballerinas. They don’t wear the usual tutus that you would think from a pointe piece. So it’s kind of showing another side of ballet which is there for contemporary ballet.” Evans was in the second and third pieces of the spring concert.

The second piece, entitled “Sir Real and His Dreams of the Magnificent Asparagus,” choreographed by Robin Prichard, was definitely the most interesting piece of the night. It kept the audience guessing and laughing throughout the entire performance.

The piece was inspired by surrealist art such as “The Son of Man” by René Magritte, which features a man in a suit and hat with a green apple obscuring his face.

The dancers wore suits and some wore black bowler hats. The piece was like being in a dream. Random things happened that would only occur in dreams, such as arms being as long as legs or trying to swim on a hardwood floor.

In one scene, the dancers danced with apples in their mouths to symbolize “The Son of Man,” and in another a rubber chicken dangled above someone’s head. The ever-changing music also complimented each scene perfectly.

The third piece, entitled “Geometry in Motion,” was choreographed by guest Tom Evert. It was very different but colorful and interesting. The costumes and dance moves were definitely geometric in nature and were fun to watch.

“Tom Evert’s piece is about geometry and how an arm can make a line or a triangle or a square; everything that we do is geometric shapes. It morphs and is like a big kaleidoscope as a dance,” said Carey Ann Lopuchovsky, a junior dance major at The University of Akron.

“The geometry dance was very visually stimulating because of the bright costumes and very active dance,” said Alivia Barnes, a junior psychology major at UA.

The last piece of the night was entitled “Variations” and was choreographed by Cydney Spohn, who is also the director of The University of Akron Dance Company.

The costumes in the piece were beautiful. Each one was a different variation of blue, black and fishnet fabric, which matched the title of the piece. The piece was a mesh of all different types of dance and was very well done.

“Cydney’s piece [is] the combination of pointe and hip hop dancers…So it’s kind of very different and it combines two different styles, but they definitely fit together…It’s almost like you see the ballet movement in it, but it’s more edgy,” said Evans.

Overall the whole performance was great. It was wonderful to see all the different types of dance and how the choreographers melded them together.

“The dances were very interesting to watch. And the music was very dynamic as well, which suited the dances perfectly,” said Barnes. “All of the dances were very representative of the subjects they were trying to portray. Overall the whole night was very enjoyable.”

The University of Akron Dance Company has fall and spring concerts each year. Check out to find out more.