Weber State Dance Connects with Community Through Virtual Performance

OGDEN, Utah – Throughout its more than 50 year history, Weber State University’s Orchesis Dance Theatre has long highlighted original faculty and student choreography through live performance.

As a result of pandemic-related safety precautions, WSU Dance faculty members Erik Stern and Joseph Blake have designed an event for this season, titled “Dancing in the Stream,” which will be live-streamed on Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m., featuring unique performances and the work of different students. The event is free and open to the public. Tickets to the virtual event may be reserved at weber.edu/artscalendar.

“Difficult situations sometimes have within them a potential good,” Stern said, noting the varied ways students have engaged with dance in adapting performances for the screen.

To bring the recital to life, the dance area collaborated with WSU’s communication department and in-house video production team for film production. In a cross-disciplinary approach, students studying television and digital media production handled most of the filming.

One of the featured pieces for Saturday’s performance was created by Moving Company, which is the Orchesis Dance Theatre area’s outreach program under the direction of Stern. They created a visually arresting work along the theme of sustainability titled “Sojourners.” The dance features five WSU dance students and one guest graduate of the program.

“Sustainability is a curious word,” says Stern. “What is important to sustain? What types of sustainability catches people’s attention, and why?”

Sojourners is a visual parable designed to allow viewers to discover what they themselves feel about the subject of sustainability.

The piece incorporates large sculptures by WSU emeritus visual art professor Jim Jacobs. These wood-based works create a stunning environment for the dancers. Moving Company partners include WSU Sustainability and local teachers and students.

“The collaborations with other disciplines and artists from this journey can never be replaced,” said Paul Wright, WSU dance student. “I find my experience with Moving Company has been an introspective glimpse at who I am, while also showcasing what I can do.”

For photos, visit lindquistcollege.smugmug.com/DPA/Dancing-in-the-Stream-Promotional-Images.

Visit weber.edu/wsutoday for more news about Weber State University.

Contact:

Cassie Smith, Lindquist College of Arts & Humanities marketing and public relations manager
801-450-7189 • cassiesmith1@weber.edu

Author:

Cassie Smith, Lindquist College of Arts & Humanities marketing and public relations manager
801-450-7189 • cassiesmith1@weber.edu