‘An Evening of Dance’ ends run at 8 tonight

Lindsey Thurman

The moment the heavy red curtain opened, members of the audience were drawn into a world of music, color, light and most of all, dance.

“An Evening of Dance 2004” brought Western’s Dance Company to the stage to perform nine original and unique pieces in Russell Miller Theatre in the fine arts center over the weekend.

“Our dancers have shown remarkable growth,” said Stephen Stone, director of the production and the dance company. “I think a great deal of it has to do with the diversity of the work.”

The production showcased such dances as a contemporary ballet, a futuristic “work in progress,” a tap and jazz ensemble and a Broadway medley. Each performance lasted about 15 minutes, making the show a total of three hours.

Nanci Hall, office associate in theatre and dance, said the department was pleased with the average ticket sales over the weekend.

Glasgow senior Jessica Staten, who not only danced in several pieces but also provided live vocals in the jazz work “Of The Heart,” said she thought the audiences really got into the show.

“People in the audience can recognize the old jazz standards and say, ‘I’ve heard that song before,'” Staten said.

Stone agreed that audiences were highly reactive to the show and were free with their feedback, especially during the Broadway number.

“I just loved the Broadway piece because it had so much energy,” said Bowling Green resident Charita Moyers, who brought her two sisters and niece to see the show. “My niece takes dance lessons and I wanted her to have to opportunity to see it.”

Nancy McFadden from Cleveland, Tenn., said she knew the dancers, including her daughter, sophomore Maggie Patten, had put in long hours to make the production a success.

McFadden was part of a packed house Sunday for the lone matinee performance of the weekend.

“It’s been a lot of work, but it’s something I love doing,” Patten said.

Joyce Bangston, an audience member from Leitchfield, said she made an hour-long trip to Western just to see the production.

“The dancers are so athletic and they make it look so easy,” Bangston said. “It was just fabulous.”

Stone said it wasn’t the choreography that was hard to teach, but the protocol and professionalism was.

“Our dancers know there is a high level of talent expected of them,” Stone said.

“An Evening of Dance 2004” closes tonight. Tickets are still available and can be reserved by calling 745-3121.

Reach Lindsey Thurman at [email protected]