Ballerinas, break dancers, and cloggers performed during the Battle of the Dance in the Kirkham Auditorium June 14.
“It was interesting to watch,” said Jamie Murray, a freshman studying psychology. “It was cool to know that there are a lot of different ways to express yourself through dance.”
Murray said she thought the music, lights and dancing helped create a fun atmosphere.
“I came to sport my roommate, Katherine Bond, and her fiance, Brandon Luce,” Murray said. “I also used to dance in high school, so it was fun to get back in the scene.”
Bond, a junior studying English, and Luce, a sophomore studying business management, were part of a team that performed a swing dance.
Students performed several dance styles, including hip-hop, break dancing, ballet, clogging and tap dancing.
“My favorite dance is tap, which is what we did in the show. We also performed lyrical, jazz and hip hop dances,” said Erin Andres, a senior studying social work. “It’s really a fun way to express yourself and release your energy. It helps you be creative and passionate about things.”
Erin Andres performed with her sister, Lauren Andres, a freshman majoring in general studies.
“We decided at the beginning of the semester to be in it,” Erin Andres said. “I always wanted to be in the Battle of the Dance. Since this is my last semester, I thought, ‘Let’s do it.’”
Lauren Andres said she loves dancing any way she can.
She said dancing allows her to move and makes her feel happier and more expressive.
“I have been dancing since I was 17 years old,” said Roque Avila, a freshman studying civil engineering. “For the Battle of the Dance, I am doing a dance from France called the Tecktonik.”
Avila said he is hoping people will learn more about this dance. Avila said he wants people to learn what Tecktonik dancing is, and how to do it.
“You can call it the ‘Tecktonik’ or the ‘Electro dance,’” Avila said. “But if I say ‘Tecktonik’ or ‘Electro dance’ to people, they think it’s techno. But it is something really different.”
Avila performed the Tecktonik dance with his roommate, Ober Delgado, a junior stuyding communication.
Avila said he had asked Delgado to perform with him for part of the routine. Delgado was sposed to go out of town on the night of the performance, but ended staying in order to dance.
“It is hard to practice because we are busy with school and work,” Avila said. “I am taking 19 credits, and Ober is taking 20. So when I have time, he doesn’t have time, and so on.”
The best act from Battle of the Dance will also perform in Best of Show Friday July 5 in the Kirkham Auditorium.
by Hyrum Conrad, a faculty member from the Department of Theatre and Dance.
“I got permission from President Clark and his publisher, Deseret Book, to use sections of the book for a small performance in my Sunday school class over a year ago,” Conrad said. “The reaction was so favorable that I knew I needed to expand this into something bigger.”
Conrad said he adapted material from the book to include more speakers and decided to include music.
“The project is really the brainchild and work of Conrad,” said Kevin Brower, conductor of the Men’s Choir. “He approached me at the beginning of last semester as a way to include music, a kind of split between a concert and reader’s theater.”
Brower said that he and Conrad decided to commission a unique piece of music for the presentation as well.
Conrad said Utah-based composer Jay Richards wrote “The Armor of God” in one month.
The actors gave dramatic presentations of selected material from Clark’s book, and ten choral numbers from the Men’s Choir were interspersed throughout the performance.
The Men’s Choir began rehearsing for the performance at the beginning of the semester.
Before the presentation, the choir was seated behind an empty stage. Brower’s own arrangement of “Beautiful Savior” was the opening number.
“The choir was phenomenal,” said Brooke Mortensen, a sophomore studying music. “They would be singing unusual notes and the chords just came together. It was majestic. That’s the only word for it.”
After the opening number, the actors moved onstage and recited interpretations from the book, occasionally moving around the stage and saying lines in unison.
Stage lights rotated from one gro of actors to another as key lines were said.
“The actors really kept my attention. There was such power in their words, especially when they said them together at the same time,” Mortensen said.
The show took place in the Black Box Theatre.
The stage was set so that the audience surrounded it on two sides.
Conrad said the actors moved around within the space to separate key points and ideas in the minds of the audience members.
“The movement really kept my attention,” Mortensen said. “When I started to lose interest, the actors moved, and I could focus on what they were saying.”
Midway through the performance Friday night, there were some technical difficulties with the actors’ microphones.
Mortensen said that the Spirit was there, and that the actors compensated for the microphones’ malfunctions by projecting.
“It was amazing. Overall, the general takeaway is how important it is to put on the armor of God to protect ourselves,” Mortensen said.
According to Amazon, President Clark’s book was published in 2007.