Meliora Weekend, as always, was full of dozens of events for alumni, students and their families. Diversity of Dance, one such option, was a strong and thoroughly entertaining performance that was certainly a highlight of the Weekend.
On Saturday, Oct. 13, the May Room in Wilson Commons was filled to the brim with an excited audience; only standing room remained. Junior Marissa Abbott, a member of Ballet Performance Group (BPG), introduced the show. She stated that this was the second annual Diversity of Dance performance. The show aims to bring together many of the dance groups on campus to show alumni, parents and friends just how diverse and talented the students at the University are.
The performance began with Indulgence Dance Team. Members of Indulgence danced to a medley of songs including “As Long As You Love Me” by Justin Bieber and “Pyramids” by Frank Ocean. All of the dancers were obviously dedicated to their performance and seemed to have a great time on stage. “Pyramids” switched the hip-hop choreography to a classic R&B feel. The main dancers during this song were exceptionally talented and emotionally connected to their performance.
Radiance Dance Theatre was an interesting addition to she show, as they perform a broad range of styles. Although Radiance members do not have as similar dance backgrounds and experiences as members of the other groups, their performance was still enjoyable to watch. It was obvious that Radiance loved performing, and their enthusiasm was catching.
UR Raas started off with a lively number. Raas’ choreography was kept perfectly in time and all of the dancers had wide smiles the performance, making the number very fun to watch. One of the dancers dropped her dandiyas, sticks used as part of the dance, but still performed like nothing was wrong, even keeping her hands moving like she was twirling the dandiyas. Her dedication was obvious and kept the performance going. The only thing that could have made the performance better would have been if they had put on another number.
Louvre Performance Ensemble was, as always, stunning to watch. Louvre boasts a very talented group of young women — their skill and technique blew the crowd away. They performed two dances, to “The Chain” by Ingrid Michaelson and “End of Time” by Beyoncé. Both were incredible contemporary dance performances.
UR Celtic also wowed the crowd with a performance as equally lively and talented as Louvre. They were strikingly talented and got the audience clapping along to the music. Celtic had the loudest applause after their performance and was a highlight of Diversity of Dance.
D’Motions Dance Group danced to a medley of “I’m Really Hot” by Missy Elliott, “Run the World” by Beyonce and “Starships” by Nicki Minaj. Stronger movements and a few more smiles would have added to their performance — with such enthusiasm from the preceding groups, D’Motions fell a little flat. Nonetheless, they had a fun performance.
BPG concluded the show. Boasting 117 members, BPG is the largest performance group on campus and they performed a set of three songs. The first two were strong numbers with gorgeous costumes. The dancers were emotionally connected to their performances and had the audience engaged. The final song of the show was a tap duet to Janelle Monae’s “Tightrope.” Abbott performed in this fun number and then proceeded to thank everyone for coming to the show and supporting the many dance groups on campus.
Overall, Diversity of Dance was thoroughly enjoyable, a great way to break up the busy weekend and was a wonderful addition to Meliora Weekend.
Esquier is a member of the class of 2013.