A sneak peak of the Bucknell Dance Company's upcoming performance

By Laura Crowley

Arts & Life Editor

The Bucknell Dance Company (BDC) will present its annual spring dance concert today and tomorrow at 8 p.m. in the Weis Center for the Performing Arts.

The concert will consist of seven pieces performed by students of the BDC. Three of the seven performances were choreographed by students, including Sarah Thalhamer ’11, Katelyn Tsukada ’12 and Melissa Leonard ’12. Each piece runs for five to 10 minutes, and pieces span from “classical ballet through contemporary modern dance,” visiting professor of theater and dance Kristy Kuhn ’00 said.

Thalhamer said her piece is contemporary with basis in ballet technique, but “definitely not classical.” The experience of choreographing her own show was initially challenging since the group is so large, but it “ended up working out really well because I was lucky enough to get a cast of really talented dancers,” she said.

Kuhn said many pieces are choreographed to popular music. Thalhamer’s piece will likely be a crowd-pleaser with its soundtrack of Ben Folds’ “Cologne,” OneRepublic’s “Marchin On,” and part of OneRepublic’s “Waking Up.”

Not all pieces are set to today’s popular soundtracks, however. One piece is set to the music of two classical pianos played by professor of music Lois Svard and Amanda Child ’11.

“[The piece is an] exciting collaboration between the dance program and the music department,” Kuhn said. Seven students will “embody the expressive melodies and intricacies of the classical music,” she said, through steps choreographed by Er-Dong Hu, associate professor of dance and director of dance.

Most dancers in the show are dance minors, Kuhn said. The showcase will represent the culmination of work from rehearsals that began in January, but the inspiration for each of the choreographers’ pieces began well before then.

Tsukada’s piece was inspired by her time spent abroad in Denmark. Others, like Kuhn, have more abstract inspirations.

“[My piece is] derived from the concept of ‘walls’ or the invisible boundaries we build around and within us that ultimately prevent connection,” she said.

Today is also International Dance Day.

“This is a great moment where the dance company gets to be a part of something much bigger,”  Hu said. “The dancers around campus have organized events to celebrate this and promote dance and the arts in the Bucknell community.”

In one such event, students will dance on the uphill Elaine Langone Center lawn at 11:50 a.m. The dance will finish with a group Zumba session in which spectators are encouraged to participate. Students will continue to celebrate International Dance Day on Monday at 1 p.m. when Dance Composition students will present seven site-specific dances around campus and at the bookstore.

Tickets to the BDC showcase will be sold today and tomorrow, and are $8 for the general public and $6 for students and senior citizens. They are available in advance through the box office or in person an hour before each performance.

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