The Butler University dance program is traditionally known for major ballet performances involving most of the company. But every year studnets have a chance to present what they have learned while displaying some of their own creativity.
This chance comes through the Student Choreography Showcase.
This showcase will have 13 dance numbers that students have prepared without the help of professors.
Senior Stuart Coleman, one of the showcase’s coordinators and choreographers, said that, unlike previous years, the showcase’s content varies from very modern pieces to a musical theatre piece.
“Every year there’s a different vibe in the show,” Coleman said. “But this year, the vibe is really balanced. I feel safe to say there will be one piece everyone in the audience can connect with because of the good amount of variety that is in the show.”
Coleman will be participating in the showcase for his fourth consecutive year and said the showcase gives him an outlet to be creative through choreographing his own dance number.
“Choreography has just always been a big passion of mine,” Coleman said.” It’s always been one of my favorite aspects of dance, so that’s what really made me want to stay involved this year.”
Other dancers said that they also feel the showcase has inspired them to explore new areas of dance. Sophomore Brooke Senger was able to choreograph her first dance for this year’s showcase.
“This past summer, I just heard a song as I was in a contemporary (dance) class in Chicago, and it really got to me,” Senger said. “I was inspired to create a piece between two people, and it’s my first time ever really choreographing. So it has been a three-month process for a three-minute piece, but it has been a new experience I’m really excited to share.”
Sophomore Celine Spinka is also a first time choreographer for the showcase. She said this showcase has given her a different experience with dancing.
“Obviously it’s really good for creativity,” Spinka said. “But also, when you are working with other dancers, you get a difference perspective of the creative process of dance.”
While the showcase is intended to let students be creative, it also has opened students’ eyes to what their fellow dancers are capable of.
“When I worked with choreographers in the showcase in the past, it allowed me to gain a respect for my peers that I didn’t fully understand because we always look at each other as dancers and as coworkers,” Coleman said. “But then when one of us comes up front and becomes the leader, we gain this sense of respect for them because they’re taking charge of their art.”
The Student Choreography Showcase will be held Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. in Lilly Hall 310. Admission is free, and audience members are encouraged to arrive early due to limited space.
“This is a really great opportunity for the Butler students to go out and show their support for the dance department,” Coleman said. “Also, students will get to see a different and quirky side to the dancers instead of just seeing us perform the Nutcracker or Cinderella.”