Cleveland State is expanding its arts programs, harkening back to the earliest years when we were a small, segmented, liberal arts oriented school of non-traditional students. Today, we’re more of a large STEM school, and though CSU may not be defined by its various arts programs now, it was wonderful to experience the talents of students and alumni at the Spring 2016 Dance Concert this past weekend. With a dance major in the works, it is also exciting to anticipate the future of the CSU Dance Company, the department of Theatre and Dance, and the future of arts education at CSU as a whole.
When attending any dance performance there are two pieces I look for: the synchronization of ensemble and of canon ensemble is uniform motion, canon being cascading choreography. You could see that many of the performers were students, performing similar movements, but not always perfectly in sync. However, the moments of clear togetherness were breathtaking.
The choreography was fluid and symbolic, not designed to dazzle the audience with stunts but rather capture us with its intricacy. Rather than making a spotlight for all the alumni and seniors – though they were given moments to shine – Lynn Deering and the choreographers created moving sculptures, and even told stories through dance. With captivating choreography and ephemeral peaks of precision, each piece could make the audience laugh, take a breath, fall silent, and applaud.
The Vindicator has interviewed dancers for the CSU Dance Company in the past, and each artist references the positive influence Lynn Deering has had on the dance program at the school. Lynn is described as a natural teacher, focusing on growing students’ understanding of dance and the body. Her coaching style can be seen on stage as well. Her students have fluid, natural movement. Though not always moving in a perfect ensemble, company members have clearly mastered how to use their bodies without injury, demonstrating liquid motion that is beautiful to behold.
While Ms Deering continues to nurture dance minors, she is also working with Cleveland State’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLASS) to develop a dancing major for the school. As prospective students can anticipate a new dance education, arts programs throughout CLASS are bursting at the seams. There are more music majors than ever, more journalists, more visual artists; more actors. As the arts continue to expand, more programs like the Spring Dance concert will be accessible to students. With mentors like Lynn Deering at the helm, CSU is showing promise not only as an “engaged” learning experience, but also a renewed grounds for artistic education. I look forward to being in attendance throughout my undergraduate and know I will return as a proud alumnus.
If you haven’t seen the various concerts, plays, musicals, and other performances CSU is producing, you simply must be there. Catch the last show of the 2015-2016 season! Click here for ticket info!
Coming Soon: CSU Theatre and Dance announces 2016-2017 Season!