Dance Dept ends year with Applause

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San Jacinto College Central Campus’s dance department is presenting Applause, this year’s annual spring show featuring the talents of 75 student participants.

Department Chair for Physical Education and Dance Sandi Morgan said the spring show has been a part of San Jac for 35 years. It showcases the dance program and the work students and faculty put in during the semester.

San Jac alumna and adjunct dance instructor Taylor Reyna said she has performed in past shows but is currently serving a third term as the show’s director. According to Reyna, the show’s finale is a number choreographed to Lady Gaga’s song “Applause.”

“I love the song, the rhythm, the tempo, and everything. I just had to name the whole show Applause,” Reyna said.

Furthermore, Reyna said the song lyrics echo the sentiment of performers and dancers.

“Applause speaks true to every performer’s passion,” she said. “You’re on stage. You literally are living to hear praise, the applause, the gratitude, and people being proud of what you’re doing. They can’t verbalize it so they have to applaud.”

In addition to performing, Reyna said the show gives students an opportunity to choreograph. Freshman student choreographer Juanita Alanis created a jazzy burlesque-type number to Beyonce’s “Who Run the World.”

“I’m very excited for the show because this would be the very first thing that I actually choreographed with my name on it and that’s what I really want to do with my life,” Alanis said. “It’s an awesome opportunity and if students want to do it, then they should definitely take advantage of it. It’s a good way to show your potential, and to learn and grow.”

The show takes all semester to put together. Reyna said students and faculty work “from the first day of class in January, until show time on the last day.”

“I’m excited for the show; always excited. I’ve never been the nervous kind. I’m excited because I used to be the performer, and now I’m the director. So it’s neat to see it from a different perspective,” Reyna said.

In addition, Reyna choreographed a hip-hop dance to “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That” by Blush. “The first time I heard it on the radio I just started shaking my body, and I knew instantly that I had to choreograph to it. So, I’m really excited to see that one,” she said.

Meanwhile, Reyna said as the performance date approaches, students are becoming more and more excited.

“You can see it in their faces, and you can tell that they’re dedicated. They come to practices outside of class time, which is really what it’s all about,” Reyna said.

In addition to showcasing their love of dance, Reyna said it’s a good way to end the school year.

“Why not put on a spring show?” Reyna asked. “I mean, if you look at the school and final exams, this is just how dance performers take our final exam, per say, in the college realm of it.”

Applause will be performed April 24, and 25 at 7:30 p.m. in the Slocomb Auditorium. Admission is a $5 donation to the dance scholarship fund.