Smooth moves

Dance Fusion to perform in Schofield Auditorium this weekend

Story by Emily Albrent, News Editor

A range of dances find their home at UW-Eau Claire this weekend.

Dance Fusion, put on by the Concert Dance Company combines different dance styles to create eight unique pieces. Eau Claire students, of distinct dance backgrounds will take stage at 7 p.m. on Feb. 14 and Feb. 15 in Schofield auditorium.

Eau Claire junior Cassy Ostrowski said the dance company likes to look at past dancers and combine what everyone knows. Ostrowski has been dancing since she was five, and will perform in two modern-influenced pieces. This is her third year with the Concert Dance Company.

“It can be hard,” Ostrowski said. “This week, especially, is very time-consuming, sometimes we have to do weekends, but in the long scheme of things we get it to work.”

Ostrowski is a dance minor at Eau Claire, which has helped her prepare for the show along with doing group warm-ups to avoid injuries.  She is the lighting and technical liaison and this is her first year as an officer with the company.

“I am involved in getting everybody who knows how to do the technical lighting stuff for the show and I cut and edit music, plus I have a keen eye for what lighting would go well with a piece,” Ostrowski said.

She said she encourages people to attend the show because it is a showcase of what the dance company can do.

“It’s a great artistic example,” Ostrowski said. “We are just a bunch of friends who like to have fun, there are a lot of opportunities on this campus, but dance in particular I feel like isn’t extremely out there, so it’s nice to see a theatrical dance performance in that setting.”

Junior Rachel Forseth is in four pieces: contemporary, modern, hip-hop and a ballet-contemporary mix.  She said the dance company also puts on more than one show.

“We also host one in the fall but that is more informal, more upbeat songs and a little shorter pieces, and Dance Fusion has longer pieces and we have been working on these pieces since the beginning of the year,” Forseth said.

Forseth said the best part is the people she gets to work and dance with. She said it is a chance to be with a group of people who are just as passionate about dance as she is.

Senior Meredith Oates has been with the company since she was a freshman.

“That is part of the reason why I can to this university because they did have a dance minor,” Oates said.

Oates said there is a ton of work that needs to be done to put this show together.

“Being an officer, we do all the prep work, so creating the program, signing the contract, reserving Schofield auditorium, working with event services and they are great, we do everything because it is student run,” Oates said.

To personally prepare for the show, Oates said she makes sure she is completely ready to be on stage by being healthy and getting plenty of rest.

“Just making sure you know the choreography and being confident in it so you can really perform it to the best of your ability so you can have that charisma and energy on stage,” Oates said.

For anyone who wishes to get involved next year, all levels of dance experience are welcome.