Arts & Culture, Illustrations

Fusion shows take viewers on emotional ride

Weekend shows explore media overload, failed relationships through range of dance styles

By
Contributing Writer
Tuesday, March 15, 2016

There is perhaps no student group on campus more aptly named than Fusion Dance Company. Fusion’s 33rd Annual Spring Show reflected the company’s dedication to cohesively synthesizing different styles of dance and music genres with original choreography and film.

In one of the group’s characteristic performances of the night, five silhouettes took the stage as the audience cheered for the upcoming dance. When the lights flashed on, umbrellas popped open to the sound of Gene Kelly’s “Singing in the Rain.” The dancers began to move, and the umbrellas’ soft twirling matched the twisting of bright skirts mid-pirouette. Suddenly, the sound of pouring rain boomed through Alumnae Hall and the stage went dark. Just as quickly as the dance was cut off, it began again to the Weather Girls’ “It’s Raining Men.” The five dancers performed hip-hop moves and gymnastics to match the faster, more modern number. The crowd went wild.

This piece’s shift in style to match the shift in song speaks to Fusion’s musicality. Throughout the show, music ranged from “SOS” by Rihanna to “Ease on Down the Road” by Diana Ross and Michael Jackson. The company was also versatile in its ability to choreograph and perform several styles of dance including contemporary, ballet and even aspects of martial arts.

Fusion’s performance did not stop at original choreography. It incorporated an original song and video produced by Marley Kurton ’17, which were played and projected over the dancers in the piece “Overload: Part II.” The multimedia component distracted the viewers from the dancers, an intentional decision used to convey a sense of media overload.

The show successfully took its audience on an emotional roller coaster, expressing complete joy in “Bring Back: 1987” and the anguish of a failed relationship in “Colour Me In.” The costumes in the ’80s-inspired piece included neon leggings, unitards and leg warmers, transporting the audience back to 1987. In “Colour Me In,” flowing white dresses fluttered and reflected cool lighting to instill a sense of sadness as two couples danced on stage.

One key feature of Fusion’s Annual Spring Show was the senior piece. This year’s three seniors — Cara Mund ’16, Jess Fisher ’16 and Rose Thomas ’16 — wrote and performed a skit that strung together dances to Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” Rent’s “Seasons of Love,” Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” and even Robin Williams’ famous dance-directing line from the movie “The Birdcage.” The piece was clever and playful at first, but watching the three seniors hold hands and walk backstage was a glimpse at an intimate moment. The bittersweet feeling they shared at the end of their last performance was felt wholeheartedly by the audience.

The only people in Alumnae Hall who could match the excitement of the screaming fans were the Fusion Dance Company members themselves. The dancers were passionate and ecstatic throughout the show, their intense focus interrupted only to shine bright smiles at the crowd. Fusion’s 33rd Annual Spring Show appealed to a diverse audience and achieved the company’s mission of celebrating all dance styles, body shapes and choreography.