Student dancers prepare for Kansas Dance Festival performance


Selena Favela

The WSU dance program will present the 2017 Kansas Dance Festival Repertory concert.

As the much-anticipated Thanksgiving break weighs heavily on most students’ minds, a select group of student dancers are more focused on preparing for the following week.

At 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 1 and 2, the WSU dance program will present the 2017 Kansas Dance Festival Repertory concert at Wilner Auditorium. The festival will feature works by several guest choreographers and dancers from other Kansas universities, showcasing Midwest dance talent.

Student dancers auditioned for Kansas Dance Festival at the end of August, and those who were selected have been taking part in technical rehearsals and regular classes several days a week ever since.

Emily Blaine, a freshmen dance major, said the support she has received from fellow dancers helps to ease the stress of the upcoming performance.

“It’s stressful just because it’s coming up so fast,” Blaine said. “We have Thanksgiving, but then we go right into tech week and then it’s the show — but it’s been really fun.”

“In the whole department, it’s like we’re one big family. We love and care about one another, and it’s nice to have such a strong support system.”

For Katie Robu, a freshman dance and music theater double major with 16 years of dance experience, the festival will be her first college performance.

“This is my first time getting to work with these people and understand how they do things,” Robu said. “I’m dancing every single day now because it’s my major and not just something I do after school. It’s a lot more intense and a lot more demanding.”

“It’s been a really long process, but super rewarding and I know I’ve grown a lot as a dancer. I think the show is going to come together very nicely.”

Junior dance major Cainan Spellman said the performance is all about growing closer as dancers and putting on the best performance possible for the audience.

“As performance goes, it is for other people,” Spellman said. “But I think the most exciting thing is to do it with the people I’ve been working with. Being a team and a family up there, doing something for other people.”

“I like that we all collectively put our work into it, so we get to be the best we can be. It’s rewarding to get to have that one moment to show it and share it all.”