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Providing Student News to Old Dominion University Since 1930

Mace & Crown

Providing Student News to Old Dominion University Since 1930

Mace & Crown

Fall 2023 University Dance Concert Showcases Unique Styles of Dance

“Can You Dig It?” features a spoken word accompaniment. Via @odudance on Instagram.

Dance students at ODU debuted some stunning works of choreography last week at the fall dance concert.


The concert opened with “Pouring Forth,” a dance piece choreographed by Victoria Fink.The piece began and ended with the dancers turned away from the audience, and featured fast, yet flowing movements that stayed close to the ground.


The second dance piece was called “Letters to the Lost.” Choreographed by Lauren Sinclair, the contemporary ballet piece takes the audience on a journey through stages of grief such as denial, anxiety, and acceptance. Dancer Melina Dalton performed a particularly dynamic solo throughout the anxiety stage. A striking element of this piece was the use of flat-footed pacing — uncommon for ballet. The dancers all held onto a piece of paper, which they folded into paper airplanes to let go at the end of the piece, symbolizing the acceptance of grief.


The concert took a multimedia approach to “everything’s fine.” Created by ODU alumnae Rebekah Rickards, “everything’s fine” was recorded virtually over Zoom in 2021 in trash-filled rooms, garages, and bedrooms. This ode to quarantine was brought to life by dancers Jasmine Fitch, Joy Gibbs, Stephanie Moyers, and Elizabeth Tabbanor.


The next piece, “Category Is…” was choreographed by Tiffanie Carson, a visiting dance professor from Shenandoah University. She created a dance piece that utilized heels and commercial styles of dance. True to the style’s name, the dancers performed the first half of the dance in heels. They also used props, such as glowing batons and multi-colored fans, to accentuate the routine.


According to Lauren Sparks, the outreach director of the ODU dance program, Carson was invited to give the dance students a chance to learn and perform dance styles that ODU does not currently teach.


“[Different dance styles are] important for our students to learn not only to make them well rounded as a dancer upon graduation, but so that students can have the ability to decide which avenue of dance inspires them,” said Sparks.


The concert closed with “Can You Dig It?”, a hip-hop performance choreographed by James Morrow. In addition to the dancing, the performance also featured spoken word accompaniment, with theatre professor Brittney S. Harris serving as a spoken word consultant. A few dancers sat in the audience and shouted out practiced cheers and claps, inviting the audience to join in.


The fall UDT was a wonderful display of contemporary dance style that showcased brilliantly talented dancers of ODU. The spring semester’s concert will be something to look forward to.

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About the Contributor
Ash F.J. Thomas
Ash F.J. Thomas, Arts and Entertainment Editor
Ash F.J. Thomas is an English major working as the Arts & Entertainment Editor. Ash likes to review the many artistic events and exhibitions at ODU and the general Norfolk area. Outside of the Mace & Crown, Ash is passionate about creative writing, theater, and gaming.

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