The Orchesis Dance Company will hold its annual dance recital with four shows Nov. 8-11 in Allegheny College’s Shafer Auditorium. The Nov. 8 performance at 7 p.m. is the designated Community Premier Show for members of the Meadville community and Allegheny faculty and staff. The shows on Nov. 9-11 start at 8 p.m. All shows are free and open to the public.
The production is entirely student-run, from choreography to stage setup, and has been one of the most attended events on campus. Students begin with choreography proposals in the spring of the previous year, and then in the fall hold open auditions for each piece. Every student who auditions is guaranteed one dance, to make the organization as inclusive as possible. Once each student has been cast, the choreographers have eight weeks of rehearsals to construct their pieces and get them performance-ready.
This is the first year the company is also raising money for a philanthropy. Donations will be given to Creating Landscapes, where it will fund a scholarship for children to enroll in the Summer Landscapes program, a three-week, arts-infused learning experience with dance, music, creative writing, math, science, languages, and visual arts. Orchesis members “dormstormed” across campus for spare-change donations, and raised $364 to support the scholarship.
Samantha Bretz, this year’s president of Orchesis, “fell in love with the opportunity to be in a completely student-run dance organization, where creativity could flow, and confidence could be built.”