Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

Spring Dance Concert displays collaborative artistry

Claire Wineman

Senior Staff Writer

As much as we invoke the phrase “Independent Minds, Working Together” here at Wooster    both seriously and ironically — there’s never a shortage of ways for us to experience it at work around campus. We are constantly in cooperation with one another to achieve end results that would be incomplete without all the perspectives involved, not only for our classes and student groups, but also for our performances and presentations. 

The Spring Dance Concert is the epitome of such collaboration: 75 students, as well as staff members and visiting artist Talise Campbell, have worked together to put on this weekend’s production. “The concert contains the work of creative and talented students and staff who have invested hundreds of hours in this process,” says Kim Tritt, director of the show and professor of theatre and dance at the College. “It’s wonderful to have the opportunity to put that much work into it and to share with an audience.” 

The show includes pieces from over six student choreographers, including Claire Smrekar ’19 and Rachel Lau ’19. Smrekar, who has participated in the dance show during all four of her years at the College, has seen her experiences in the arts as a valuable source of balance to her busy academic life, especially while finishing her I.S. “Having such a rigorous dance schedule only allows me so much time to do my academic work, so it really helps me focus and provides me with a place to decompress,” she said. “Previously, I’ve choreographed pieces about the heart and lungs, and my dance this time is a conglomerate of those two — pathways between the heart and the lungs as well as your emotions, and how we interact with ourselves and with others.”

Lau’s dance, on the other hand, was choreographed in partial fulfillment of her I.S. — and in the true spirit of the liberal arts, seeks a connection between her two majors in dance and economics. “My I.S. asks how one can make use of an econometric tool, specifically the regression model, as a source for choreography. In other words, it tries to physicalize concepts from a mathematical branch of economics, or econometrics. There was a lot of uncertainty involved with such an experimental and unconventional piece, and I honestly had no idea what to expect. I tried to strike a healthy balance between my artistic choices and accuracy of my conceptual ideas.,” she said. 

Tritt’s retirement is imminent after directing over 65 dance shows at the College for 34 years and says this uncertainty is all part of the process. “I’m always really excited about seeing how the dances have progressed from the original idea and how they’ve been fulfilled at the conclusion of the concert. This year’s show has such an incredible sense of pure joy. It’s very thoughtful but very fun. There’s more of that than ever,” Tritt said.  

The Spring Dance Concert is one of many excellent opportunities to support our fellow students and has performances Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m. in Freedlander Theatre. Tickets, which can be purchased at the Freedlander Box Office, are $9 for general admission and $6 for senior citizens as well as faculty, staff and non-College of Wooster students.

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