Kent State University School of Theatre and Dance will continue its 2012-13 production season with the BFA Senior Dance Concert and Student Dance Festival, "Cre-8-tivity."
"Cre-8-tivity" will offer audience members the opportunity to see new choreography and premiere performances by eight junior and senior dance performance majors at Kent State University.
For junior dance performance major Emily Perrott, it will be the first time choreographing at a collegiate level.
Perrott started dancing around the age of three.
"My parents enrolled me in baby ballet and tap classes," Perrott said. "I was hooked immediately."
Perrott said she has been waiting for this concert since freshman year. She knows this will be a milestone experience before she graduates.
"As a dance performance major, I am required to choreograph my junior and senior year," Perrott said. "But in addition to choreographing this year, I was also selected as the student director. Being the student director provided an even better opportunity for involvement."
Perrott is the sole choreographer for her work. She was responsible for choosing her subject matter and music, casting dancers and holding her own rehearsals.
"We started rehearsals in January," Perrott said. "It's just been a lot of work in a small amount of time. In addition to that, we are in charge of our own costumes. I was lucky to come across my costume designer, Jayme McLeavny. She saved me."
Perrott will premiere her piece, "Color Me," which encourages the dancers and the audience to identify the things or people in their lives who keep them going through all of life's continuous battles.
"The inspiration came from the concept of someone giving another person their color or their guiding light," Perrott said. "I feel as if I've always had someone guiding me and pushing me to go on, whether it was a friend or family. I have also had to be the person lifting others up, which gave me a view of both perspectives."
Each dancer receives their sense of strength and life through the piece's soloist, who is there to lift them, encourage them and give them their color.
"Every dancer gets their push from the soloist," Perrott said. "I wanted her to be almost fairy-like. Her movement is light and flowing. She is dressed completely in white and the rest are in nude. During the piece, the ladies in nude enter the stage with a piece of color lace attached to their costumes, hence 'Color Me.' The color white gives the world it's color, after all."
Perrott has been working with principle dancer Paige D'Arpini, Mikala Santucci, Gigi Pollifrone, Katelyn Braunegg and Sarah LaGuardia.
"My dancers have made me so proud and have captured my ideas beautifully through their interpretation of the movements," Perrott said.
Perrott hopes that after seeing the dance, the audience will consider who that person is in their life that gives them their color.
"We all have someone pushing us and we often times have someone who needs an extra push," Perrott said.
Joan Meggitt, faculty artistic director, has helped Perrott and other students bring their work together in a formal presentation.
"In faculty productions, everything is taken care of and they don't have to really worry about it," Meggitt said. "For this, the students get to do their own work and they have to make it happen. It's a lot of responsibility, but I don't think there is anything equal to being able to have your voice heard and heard in the way that you want it to be heard."
Meggitt has been working with the student dancers since October.
"Initially, they do a lot of questioning and asking," Meggitt said. "As they go through the process, they realize they can make their own choices and by the end they take charge of the whole thing."
At the concert, thirty-six dancers will perform in nine different pieces of modern and contemporary choreography.
"This is a big event for these young choreographers and dancers," Meggitt said. "During the year, they're in the studio with two to eight dancers, so it feels like they are doing it on their own. When they get into the showing, they will see all the dancers and realize they are a part of something impressive."
Meggitt expects there will be a lot of friends and family in attendance at the concert.
"A lot of them are in a position where their family might not get to see them all the time in such a performance and some of them may not have seen them dance before," Meggitt said. "Families are getting to see something they have never seen before. It's very exciting."
Performances will take place at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday in the Louis O. Erdmann and William H. Zucchero Theatre located in the Music and Speech Center.
Tickets are $16 for adults, $14 for KSU faculty, $12 for seniors, and $8 for students.
For more information, call 330-672-2787 or visit online at www.dance.kent.edu.