Senior concert showcases hard work of dance students

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As the year comes to an end, seniors of K-State’s dance program put in numerous hours to prepare for their senior concert that will take place at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday in Forum Hall.

The dance classes at K-State are student-run, allowing more student-control over how their classes are set up and their dances choreographed.

The four seniors in theater, Meredith Dodd, Mica Bengston, Karissa Spohn and Victoria Menear were held accountable for raising enough money to fund their senior concert. With that in mind, they contacted local businesses Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and Orange Leaf, both of which were willing to help with the necessary fundraising. Money raised went toward promotional cards, paper, printing and lighting, according to Dodd.

Dodd and Spohn were responsible for setting up the fundraiser through Orange Leaf, which took place April 21.

“We found them very willing to help support our cause,” Dodd said.

Dodd will be featured in two self-choreographed performances during the concert, including her new performance titled, “Moments of Grace.”

“It’s about creating moments of grace and taking a moment to see the beauty in things,” Dodd said.

The song featured in this performance was played during her wedding in January.

Her second performance is titled, “Herculeum.” Dodd said inspiration for the piece came from her computer programming class and how all the different components in computer programs work together.

“As dancers, we have to work together,” Dodd said.

The goal of this performance is to show the “strength and power” within dancers, she said.

Dodd’s fundraising partner, Karissa Spohn, said the dancers have put in numerous hours each week to prepare for Sunday’s performance. Spohn said the dancers often put in at least 10 hours each week just practicing.

With that being said, the dancers must balance their time between dance practice, schoolwork and jobs.

“It’s not really that hard (to balance) as long as you stay on top of things,” Spohn said. “But, as soon as you get behind in one thing, it starts getting more difficult.”

The senior concert will be Menear’s second concert this academic year, and she will be performing in several different pieces on Sunday. She will be featured in a jazz number, as well as a modern, a ballet, and a contemporary style performance.

“I’m excited to see how all the pieces look completed,” Menear said. “We are able to show all of our hard work to our family, friends and faculty.”

Menear said the importance of the senior concert to her is to not only show what she is capable of as a choreographer, but also what she is capable of as a dancer and performer.

After graduation, Menear plans on putting together a film reel featuring the dances she has performed in as well as dances that she has helped choreograph. She said she then hopes to show the reel to future employees.

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