This year’s Fall Dance Theatre took audience members on a whirlwind of emotions, as the choreographers once again impressed viewers with touching themes and gorgeous dancing styles.
Each story managed to pull at the heartstrings and provoke thought on human issues and struggles.
Set to music by Bon Iver, Dustin O’Halloran and Mark Mellits, each piece showcased the movement of the human body in different perspectives.
Timaeus Le expresses her struggles in a tragic story of a personal loss in her choreographed piece “Flutter.”
At first, there is a sense of naive curiosity in life through movement. Both dancers are flowing effortlessly across the stage until some sort of invisible force field is discovered by the characters.
As one character tries to escape, and the other is insisting not to do so, the escapee harms herself and becomes stagnant.
The movement becomes unsettling and heartbreaking as the stagnant character goes from having just one twitching hand to becoming a motionless statue.
The other character tries to revive her as she jumps, dances and flows around her, fighting to bring her back lo life as she moves her doll-like limbs.
“Flutter” was the first narrative piece and was an outstanding indicator that the upcoming themes are very much meant to make audience members get in touch with their emotions.
“Repose” by Kelsey Jenson, Timaeus Le, and Amy Tabback was an equally moving piece that explored the meaning of life.
The depiction of life is shown through the contrast of the vivacious dance of the performers around a still and motionless body that sits at a small wooden table.
Many emotions were visited through movement, including excitement, frustration, anger, sorrow and empathy.
Kelsey Jenson showcased her choreographing talent once more with the following piece, “Infliction.”
“Infliction” was inspired by the Joseph Kony controversy in Uganda.
Kony, self acclaimed “spirit medium,” is the founder of a group called the Lord’s Resistance Army, which has claimed to wage civil war in Uganda and has abducted thousands of children to become fighters or sex slaves, according to BBC News.
This struck a powerful chord as the story represented Kony’s beatings of his sex slaves and later choosing one of them to be one of his many wives.
There is a back and forth of beatings and submission. His superiority is firmly established with the piece ending with a haunting image of the Kony character using his beaten down slaves as a throne to sit upon, symbolic for the intentions behind Kony’s rebellious movement.
Guest artist Joshua Romero livened the spirits with his piece, “3lec+r0dYn@mic,” where the evolution in human communication through technology is explored.
Movement in this piece was much more modern, symbolizing the use of today’s technology including tablets, computers and cell phones.
Dancers moved more as a unit than as individuals through static gestures.
“Oblique and Contrary Motion,” by faculty member Robin E. Johnson was more of a celebration of movement and dance.
This piece was unique in the sense that there was no story to be told or literal gestures to be interpreted.
The last piece, a personal favorite, “All In a Day’s Work,” was choreographed by faculty member Macarena Gandarillas.
The setting is established at a delightful little park with two golden statues towering over the people in a guarding manner. Many different comedic characters travel through the park.
Simply put, there is more than meets the eye, and “All In a Day’s Work” was a perfect ending for the show to send off audience members in a beaming mood.
The Fall Dance Theatre was wonderfully organized and explored themes that were touching and thought provoking.
This event would make for a lovely night out and is a perfect opportunity to see what the dance program at Cal State Fullerton is all about. These are just several of the students at this university who are beaming with talent.