For the audience, the show starts when the dancers show up on the stage and the music starts, and ends when the dancers leave and the music stops. For us, she show starts a little earlier than that.
The first moments are similar to meditation. I sit in front of the mirror just taking the deep breaths. With every breath, I smell in the fresh costumes that are only a few days old, yet already filled with memories. Undertones of makeup remover and deodorant also fill my nose. Knowing that my head will hurt from the burden of hair pins and hair spray, I close my eyes and brush through slowly, feeling the bristles message my scalp.
Before putting on the makeup or putting on the costume, I look and run my hands through the ghungaroos and listen to the sounds that it makes. It doesn't take a lot of pressure for them to make noise. For the audience, the crew, and theater house, the music is the thing that come out of the loud speakers--the thing the audience thinks we dance to. I can't speak for other artists, but I dance to the rhythm--the beat--my ghungaroos make for me. It's almost literally the idea of walking to the beat of my own drum. Almost.
If I weren't close to my cast-mates before, I became so in the dressing rooms. Doing each others make up, borrowing each other's things, exchanging worries of what might go wrong on stage: all these little things bond us to each other. And it's with this connection, that we connect with each other on stage.
The dance itself speeds by. Like a lucid dream, I go through the movements that I've been practicing day and night for four, maybe six, months with as much charisma and energy that I have. And I come off that stage huffing and puffing hoping the soul I've put in reached the audience.
The audience goes home with the intention of continuing on with their lives after they've invested an evening towards culture. We got to Chipotle. We imbibe the food that we've resisted so we can fit in our costumes. Over comfort food, we laugh over the mistakes we've made on stage. The same mistakes we were God afraid of making. And the night ends.
This year's Spring Concert, held by UNC Charlotte's dance department, has been applauded for its display of artistic diversity and discipline. Choreographers Delia Neal, Niche Faulkner, Kaustavi Sarkar, E.E. Balcos, Janet Schroeder--all who are are professors at UNCC--prove the versatility within the dance program while the dancers bring awareness of how art can be didactic as it is entertaining.