Stitchworks // Preview

The spring dance show, “Stitchworks,” opens with women in blue unitards circling and leaping across the stage, each dancer falling in and out of pattern in a rhythm reminiscent of the working parts of a clock. “Parts of a whole” is a theme that many of the group numbers in the concert follow. Cassidy Foust ’15 choreographed a rousing number mimicking the sea. Dancers in tattered green tunics crawl towards the edge of the stage in an imitation of the tide coming in.

Nearly every group piece represents a greater whole, with individual dancers as occasionally discordant parts.This theme fits in nicely with the name of the concert: each dancer is a stitch in a piece of larger work, or perhaps every dance number is a stitch in the greater piece that is the whole concert.

Though the group pieces all vary a great deal in their styles, there is an appreciation in all the choreography for lines—of individual bodies and of dancers together. Every number has many memorable, picturesque formations, greatly enhanced by the fluid, evocative lighting. As blues and greens flood the stage, the dancers appear to blend into one another, their stark hair and faces the only light in a wash of color and movement.

The costumes, though simple, are varied in color and texture, and stand out well under the lighting direction, so that the dancers aren’t lost in the stage, but can still appear as one unit.

The solo pieces really stand out. Hector Bautista’s ’15 solo piece in particular evokes a beautiful melancholy and wistfulness through the soft music and graceful choreography. Every movement, especially his beautiful attitudes, articulates a yearning both painful and nostalgic.

Similarly memorable, though in a very different way, Ian Luebbers ’17 and Peace Madimutsa ’17 have a rousing duel of Irish dance and hip-hop, telling a vivid story as they chase each other across the stage. Several seniors have their final pieces this semester, and their dedication and incredible strength and creativity is apparent in every solo. For some, this concert is a culmination of many years of hard work, and that anticipation brings a special energy and excitement to the solos.

Dance is a complicated medium, and one occasionally overlooked here at Macalester. But the hard work and talent of the choreographers and dancers at the “Stitchworks” concert is apparent in every line and formation of the movement under the lights.