Kent State Student Choreographers Highlight New Dance Works in “IMPULSE”

Showcases student talent and versatility; choreography will enthrall and inspire

Kent, OH – Kent State University’s School of Theatre and Dance will continue its 2014-2015 production season with the B.F.A. Senior Dance Concert/Student Dance Festival: IMPULSE. The concert will run March 13-15 in the Erdmann-Zucchero (EZ) Black Box Theatre located at 1325 Theatre Drive in the Center for the Performing Arts. The concert is divided into two programs with Program A on March 13 at 8 p.m. and March 14 at 2 p.m. and Program B on March 14 at 8 p.m. and March 15 at 2 p.m.

The B.F.A. Senior Dance Concert/Student Dance Festival: IMPULSE offers audiences a wide selection of dance forms ranging from modern to jazz. In addition, each piece examines and expresses a variety of topics, emotions, ideas and social issues.  In this culminating concert, the student choreographers premiere original and engaging works. They each bring something new to the stage while simultaneously incorporating and reflecting on their education and experiences at Kent State University.

For tickets call 330-672-ARTS (2787), purchase online at or in person at the Performing Arts Box Office located in the Roe Green Center lobby of the Center for the Performing Arts at 1325 Theatre Drive, Mon. – Fri., Noon to 5 pm.  Tickets are $18 for adults, $16 for Kent State University alumni, faculty and staff, $14 for seniors (60+) and non-Kent State students age 18 and under are $10.  Tickets for full-time, Kent campus undergraduates are free of charge.  Groups of 10 or more can purchase tickets for $12 per person.  The box office accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover, checks, and cash.

IMPULSE presents fourteen pieces of original choreography created by juniors and seniors who are pursuing either a major or a minor within Kent State’s Dance Division. In addition, the five graduating senior B.F.A. Dance Performance majors will perform the premiere of “M3(5) = Thrust,” choreographed by guest artist and Dance Division part-time faculty Erin Smith.

The piece entitled “Run; Hide,” choreographed by Roberta Bailey, is inspired by the internal struggles of an individual when faced with the choice of moving on or remaining stagnant. The music composed by Philip Wesely reflects the growing intensity of each movement as the dance progresses. At the culmination, each dancer must decide whether to stay stagnant as a group or leave the toxic environment to journey into the unknown future.

Choreographer Jessica Gasdick created her new work, “Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep,” as a reflection about the loss of a loved one and the idea that the spirit never really leaves. The dance explores the sensations created by having a guardian angel watch over and guide one’s way. Choreographed to the music “Amazing Grace” performed by Celtic Thunder, it is paired with the poem “Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep” authored by Mary Elizabeth Frye.

“The Side (un)Spoken,” choreographed by Nina Price, is based on the concept of the internal and external side of emotion, tied with the mind’s ability to deny and hide the inner, unseen realities. With music by Ólafur Arnalds, this piece incorporates a dynamic movement blend of contemporary and modern styles that illustrate the constant struggle of forcing the unknown side away. Using contrasting movement qualities between the two dancers, “The Side (un)Spoken” exploits the hardship of acknowledging, fighting, and overcoming those inner battles. Price’s piece was chosen by the Dance Division faculty to represent Kent State in an adjudication concert at the American College Dance Association East-Central Conference at Ohio University this spring.

Dana Wasielewski’s new work “Perceive. Receive. Play.” provides the audience an opportunity to observe the journey of the performers, which is based on the positive emotions that dancing can evoke. It offers the outside world a look inside the mind of a dancer through the use of authentic and pure movement.

“Forever Present,” choreographed by Jennifer Ames, reaches deep into the psychological stress of the tragic loss of a loved one. As a tribute to her late uncle, the duet represents the one who has passed and the other who is dealing with the grief and emotional trauma of the loss.

Miranda Harig’s contemporary modern piece explores the concept of time. In contradiction, time can feel like it is whizzing by, while at another moment, dragging on endlessly.  With music by The Album Leaf, this dance employs unique ways to explore the different relationships between movement and music.  

Choreographer Abbey Recker tackles the difficult topic of suicide in her duet entitled “My White Butterfly.”  She examines this tragedy by going beyond the individual’s struggle and looking at the devastating impact it has on others.

Brialle Menefee’s dark fantasy creates an atmosphere of mystery and drama.  The fast paced, syncopated movement is driven by contemporary jazz technique with additional modern elements.

For more information on the B.F.A. Senior Dance Concert/Student Dance Festival, please visit





POSTED: Tuesday, February 24, 2015 09:59 AM
Updated: Tuesday, March 21, 2023 01:06 PM
Joni Koneval