Add together ten talented acts, two passionate student-run clubs and a room full of engaged audience members and what do you get? A Sense Of.
Last Friday night, the Robinson Players and the Dance Club combined their talents to present a variety show based on the theme of “home.” Students sang, recited poetry, danced, and shared short stories in this one-night-only event. Gannett Theater was buzzing with words of inspiration and admiration after the show. The night presented such a variety of talent and skill that begs for the Robinson Players and Dance Club to collaborate again.
This show is the beginning of hopes to get these two clubs more involved in community engagement around Bates. Junior Mary Anne Bodnar spearheaded the project with the help of senior Talia Mason of the Dance Club along with seniors Max Pendergast and Nick Auer from the Robinson Players.
The idea of having a show revolving around the theme of home came from an interest in “organizations involved in programming for homeless members of the community,” according to Bodnar.
Pendergast added, “Before we could truly engage with our surroundings we thought we needed to understand what home and place meant to us.”
The students’ interpretations of home varied across the acts. Senior Abby Zwetchkenbaum wrote a short existential play performed by senior Hanna Allerton and junior Sam Myers about two pieces of candy in a vending machine discussing what happens when they get chosen and have to leave their home.
Junior Detmer Kremer shared two beautifully written short stories “that complicate the sense of place, home, and safety with a queer narrative.” First-year Jorge Piccole’s dance piece reflected the idea of being “left out of place.” Other pieces included an improvisational dance by Mason, Bodnar, and sophomore Laura Pietropaoli, three acoustic songs performed by sophomore Declan Chu, poetry written by Mason, a skit by Pendergast and Auer, and two songs performed by seniors Hanna Allerton, Katie Silberstein, and Abby Zwetchkenbaum. All performers were wonderfully dynamic and passionate in their perspectives on the theme of home.
In the future, the Robinson Players and Dance Club hope to work together again. “They are such thoughtful and innovative creators,” said Pendergast, the Robinson Players President, of both performing arts groups’ members.
Bodnar took the reins on this project, but she owes it all to team work and collaboration. “Everyone really wanted this to happen, and for it to pan out in the most stress-free way imaginable. I think we succeeded.”