Students, faculty showcase work in ‘Chelonia’ at Beloit College

Online Staff Report

BELOIT, Wis. — After months of rehearsal, a December Dance Workshop performance, adjudication and extensive preparation, Beloit College student choreographers and dancers will showcase their work alongside faculty and guest choreographers at Chelonia.

This annual spring dance exhibition will be at 8 p.m., Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 2-4, and 2 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 5, in Neese Theatre on the Beloit College campus. It is open to the campus and the community.

This year’s concert is going to be wonderful with many choreographers going to the emotional edge,” said Chris Johnson, director of Chelonia and an associate professor of dance in the college’s department of theater, dance and media studies. “The faculty and students alike are exploring the human psyche, how we interact and the messages we convey.”

Besides directing Chelonia, Johnson will be restaging her award-winning piece, Wreath of Memories, which was inspired by the stories of children in the Holocaust and those who perished at Auschwitz.

The message of the dance speaks to the power of the community to transcend intolerance and hatred,” Johnson said.

Another highlight of Chelonia will be the concert finale, which Johnson calls “a high-energy romp.” Called “Tangents,” the dance was choreographed by Andrea Markus in collaboration with dancers. Markus was a guest artist in West African Dance at Beloit last fall, and she is a teacher of African-based modern dance at New York University.

The dances in Chelonia choreographed by students are: “Pull Apart The Collective,” by Matthew Alan Porter; “Taking Hold,” by Mia Alcorn; “Can eye use you as my mirror?” by Liz K. Freeman; “Seven Minutes in Heaven,” by Mira Treatman; “Walking Waters,” by Liana Segan; “mmmm….what the doctor ordered,” by Joey Hernandez; and “This is a preview,” by Claire Alrich.

Dances choreographed by faculty are: “Sunshine/Moonshine,” by Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance Gina T’ai in collaboration with the dancers; “Betrayer Beloved,” by Visiting Instructor of Dance Sarah Wolf; and “Holding Patterns,” by Johnson.

Tickets are $8.50 for general admission, $5 for senior citizens and $4 for students. Tickets can be purchased in advance from the box office at (608) 363-2755.

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