Dancer surrounded by clouds.

ASU dance students to present original choreography

By

Lacy Chaffee

Each year, Arizona State University dance BFA seniors choreograph, design and present a program of original work that highlights the learning they have done during their time in the School of Music, Dance and Theatre. There are specific requirements, but students are also given a great deal of latitude to explore their visions as artists.

This year, there are so many students that the show has been divided into two programs, presenting a variety of dance forms and subjects. Transitions I will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 4 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5. The second program, Transitions II, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 6. All performances will be held in the Margaret Gisolo Dance Theatre.

Each program will showcase six pieces of original choreography featuring other student dancers. Faith Markovetz is a graduating senior in dance who will present her piece, “Leaving Less Orderly Than We Arrived,” in Transitions II. She said that the experience as a choreographer has been much different than her experience as a dancer in previous years’ shows.

“It feels like such a long process when you're a dancer, because you're just coming into rehearsal every week for about five months,” she said. “But being in the choreographer’s seat, it goes by so fast. We're like, ‘Oh my gosh! It’s already January!’”

Faculty mentor and Clinical Assistant Professor Carley Conder said she is proud of the way this particular group has demonstrated resilience. 

“They have overcome challenges by sticking together and providing leadership for the rest of the program as we navigated our way through COVID-19 restrictions and cancellations,” Conder said. “They have persevered and found ways to be creative despite obstacles.”

As part of the process, the students also design the marketing and branding for the show, including deciding on a name, holding a photo shoot and creating marketing materials. The name they chose for the two-program show is “Cumulus Twenty-Two,” based on the idea of cloud walkers, or people who live outside of the normal world, defying the odds and norms. 

“We liked how cumulus is a cloud but it’s also the sum of something,” Markovetz said. “As the class of 2022, we are coming to the summation of our learning here at ASU.”

Conder said the show is a great representation of the students’ work as dance majors. 

“This concert represents a six-month creative process that is very rigorous and undergoes much scrutiny through a systemized method of improving their creative work,” she said. “But more than that, it represents all four years of their explorations, discoveries, hard work and progress as artists.” 

Audiences can learn more about the show on the student-managed Instagram account @cumulustwentytwo. Tickets to the shows must be purchased online in advance through the Herberger Institute box office

Transitions I

7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 4 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5

"Recovery and Recompense" by Azana Perre

"Metamorphosis" by Xochilt Huitzil

"Interwoven" by Max Butler

"What We Know Now/Lo Que Sabemos Ahora" by Abigail Gonzalez

"The End of the Grey" by Fan Zhang

"Forbidden Fruit" by Mia Calicchio 

Transitions II

 7:30 p.m Saturday, Feb. 5 and  2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 6

"Arranging Perception" by Audi Miller

"Change" by Emily Crawford

"Leaving Less Orderly Than We Arrived" by Faith Markovetz

"Disturbing the Tendency Towards an Equilibrium" by Lauren Jimenez

"Possessions with a Capital People" by Takela King

"Mind Universe" by Geli Santarsiero