by Jen Kuhnberg
"Ahhhhfdahgaskdf!" That's the sound of me climbing out of the mountain of paperwork I've been buried under for the past two weeks! Contracts, forms, and lists and lists and lists - of dancers, choreographers, dance choices, rosters, schedules. And of course with each new season it all grows larger as we add new dancers. But, that's one thing I'll never complain about!
Last Sunday we held our Level Placement Auditions and Choreographer Showcase for Season Four. This day is absolutely my favorite of the season (aside from performance day). It's great to see all of the new dancers come in, having just learned about us for the first time over the summer, and be so excited to join. It's even better to see how far our current members have come in such a short time.
We have so many dancers who first auditioned seasons ago - many came in looking terrified or intimidated. Their cheeks turned red when they were called out to the floor in their small groups. They danced with their heads down and a sheepish grin when they missed a step of choreography. Now, these same dancers, are practically running into the dance studio, securing a spot at the front of the room and whipping their hair around, owning that choreography like it was created just for them. I can't tell you how excited Kelly and I get when we draw an X through someones Level 1 rank and change it to a Level 2.
The auditions began with a fantastic Hip Hop class with Twyla Everett. My goal for the next six months is to get her to choreograph a piece for Season Five. Next came a Contemporary/Modern/Ballet class with Stephen Chan that was so challenging it had our
dancers dropping like flies. Kelly ran the Tap audition - and really, I have no idea why she doesn't choreograph Tap for our show anymore because she comes up with great stuff! The auditions closed out with a Jazz class by Jackie Rubin who taught a routine that was so great we ended up adding it to the performance roster!
Choreographers were up next, with each one presenting and performing their piece for our dancers. I can't tell you how hard it is to get up there in that situation. To me, it's even more nerve-racking than the audition process because you're up there all by yourself with 70 people staring at you - asking them to not only like what you're about to show them, but commit to ten weeks of rehearsal for it. Luckily, our dancers are the most supportive and encouraging group you could ever ask for. Each choreographer got a huge round of applause, cheers and even some cat calls. Bollywood practically brought the house down with everyone clapping to the beat of the drums.
Rehearsals start TODAY! And without a doubt this will be our best season yet. Season Four will feature 65 Dancers (25 are new or returning from Season 3 or earlier) performing work by 14 choreographers. Save the Date: Saturday, December 1. OnStage Dance Company's Season Four Performance.
Go behind the scenes with our dancers and choreographers and get an insider's look into OnStage Dance Company.