Magnum Opus to feature final performances by senior dancers and choreographers

Published by adviser, Author: Emma Pfeifer - Rocket Contributor, Date: April 23, 2015
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Magnum Opus marks the last time that senior dance major Larissa Spak will be performing at SRU and the beginning of her dance career following graduation.

“Magnum Opus is a performance that closes this chapter of my life,” Spak said. “Performing this Saturday for me is the last time I will perform undergraduate work. It’s just the beginning however, although it is the end of my time here at Slippery Rock.”

The Slippery Rock Dance Department will be presenting Magum Opus on Saturday April 25 at Swope Recital Hall, featuring multiple varieties of dance.

Magnum Opus is coming from a senior dance class called Senior Synthesis where seniors are assigned to do a project that combines research both inside and outside the classroom. They worked on resumes, cover letters, teacher’s statements, artistic statements and performance resumes. For their final research project the seniors had to do a research paper and a creative project.

This show is strictly for senior choreographers; however, there are undergraduate dancers that will be performing their work during the show. This is the last showcase that will present all of the work they have put in over the past four years.

Along with the senior choreographed pieces, guest choreographer Helen Simoneau will be presenting her work in this show as well. Simoneau is from Quebec, Canada. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the North Carolina School of the Arts, and then went on to study at Hollins University where she received her Masters of Fine Arts.

During the show, there will be different styles of dance being showcased, such as modern, ballet, jazz and contemporary.

The dancers have been working on this show for weeks, practicing a few days a week and for several hours during each rehearsal. The rehearsals for this show are held anywhere from one to two days a week for about two to five hours depending on the day. The senior dancers and choreographers have been constantly working on their routines and have overcome numerous obstacles, including injuries, while preparing for Saturday’s performance.

“The piece I am performing Saturday is a classical ballet variation that is inspired by Marius Petipa’s choreography from the classical ballet La Bayadere,” Spak said. “My inspiration behind my performance is to perform the genre of dance that made me fall in love with dancing. What a better way to end my senior year of college than with the way I fell in love with dance”

Spak will be performing a solo in the senior concert.

Senior dance major Abigal Hewitt said that her dance “Xplicit” is a modern piece with four freshmen and one sophomore performing in it. Her dance brings athleticism and high energy to a new level as her choreography will push her dancer’s technical abilities, endurance and artistry throughout the entire piece to make it come to life.

The shows are at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., between those two shows there will be a reception held with sandwiches, cake, chips and drinks and all are welcome. Tickets are on sale for $6 for students with their ID and $8 for general admission at the Robert M. Smith Student Center  information desk.

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