"Moments" a dance performance sure to make Taylor history — past, present and future.
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Moments make history

The first dance ‘production’ at Taylor University

Cast of “Moments” take their final bow. (Photograph by Hannah Bolds)

Cast of “Moments” take their final bow. (Photograph by Hannah Bolds)

By Grace Hooley | Echo

A moment is defined as “a brief period of time” or “importance,” according to the Oxford Dictionary.

We wander through life seeking moments. Not flippant moments of mundane experiences, but instead we crave the broken and beautiful pieces of our lives that take our breath away.

Today at 9 p.m. and tomorrow at 1:30 p.m., the very first dance production here at Taylor University will be held in Mitchell Theatre by the music, theatre and dance department. “Moments” is a different production in the fact that the main medium of the performance is dance.

“I can’t dance to save my life, but it’s incredible getting to watch these super-talented performers tell stories through dance,” said senior Kenzi Nevins, stage manager. “This isn’t a recital, it’s a fully-produced, high-caliber production that I’m so honored to be a part of!”

The production flows from dance to dance, but the storyline of past, present and future will be seen throughout. It starts in the past with a piece from the American musical “42nd Street” that has been restaged from its original choreography. The production moves from there until the final piece called “Crosswalk,” which is choreographed to portray the interactions and campus life of Taylor’s community.

The past pieces in this production are taken from shows done at Taylor, like “Oklahoma.” The present pieces are taken from what the students are working on in their dance classes now. The future pieces are sneak peeks of shows yet to come, such as “Pirates of Penzance,” which will be performed in February and “Mary Poppins,” which will be performed in April.

With the addition of a new bachelor’s degree in the music, theatre and dance department, Kory Browder, director for the “Moments” production, feels that it’s important to offer more opportunities for students to dance. According to Browder, the new bachelor’s degree of fine arts for musical theatre has put Taylor on the radar for students looking to come and study dance. This is the second year with the major, and Browder hopes that this “Moments” production will promote it well.

“So many students have come to us in the opening of that department that just love dance or took ballet or took something when they were younger,” Browder said. “When you’re young and you have all this time to do all these after school activities and hobbies, it becomes part of your life. Then, as you become an adult, you get this mindset that those things have to go away because . . . you don’t have time for that. But really those things bring joy into your life, and if we can incorporate that into a student’s adult life, I think that serves them well. We would like to use it (“Moments”) as that stepping stone to promote the department in its diversity — music, theater and dance.”

Senior Alexis Turner, who will be performing in the show, hopes that the audience will see the hard work that everyone has put into this performance. She hopes viewers will be just as excited about where the department is heading. Browder feels encouraged that viewers will have a new respect for the department and that this is the next step that they’ve reached.

One cellist (Samantha Carlson), one pianist (Cliff Davis), one alumna (Erin Gautille), one director (Kory Browder) and 24 students have come together along with many others to make this production possible. Even though each participant in this production may have different experiences and goals, most agree that they are learning a lot and that this performance is going to make Taylor history — past, present and future.
“This show is a big step for the department and a huge milestone in the University’s history,” said junior Anna Kaye Schulte, a performer. “My hope is for people to walk away from this performance with immense pride for what their University can now offer.”

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