At some point in your elementary school career, you were probably involved in a variety show that parents put on, or you were relegated to sit in the audience and clap dutifully once the acts finished. (I shamelessly represent this segment of the class.) Am I right? Well, the Bates College Short Term Variety Show, which is organized by the Dance Club, will be sure to bring different and super entertaining acts to the stage.
This year, Sofi Elbadawi ’18 and Riley Hopkins ’18 are organizing the show. Something that we as viewers often forget is that there are so many moving pieces that go on behind the scenes. Elbadawi admitted in an interview that digging deeper and wanting to understand how all the pieces move together in a performance coupled with wanting to be more involved with the Dance Club was what prompted her to co-produce this Short Term Variety Show.
Hopkins noted that he and Elbadawi “make sure all the acts are shaping up by checking in on them every week” and also “contact students for the technical team, i.e. stage manager, light designer, sound controller, and other stagehands.” Taking a management role, in addition to producing an act of their own, makes this experience different from just being a dancer in a piece. Being responsible for the final product can add a level of stress but also makes the process more gratifying.
In this show, there will be something for everyone. “There will be a large variety of dance acts from group hip-hop pieces, large group modern works, and a few solos. Almost all styles of dance will be represented. We can also expect to see some works of dance theater, or dance work that has a theatrical element to it, spoken word, or character work,” Elbadawi said There is really no excuse not to come to this performance. Anyone who wants a night to enjoy the performing arts would be remiss to skip this show.
Any Bates student will tell you that the vibe on campus is completely different during Short Term. For the most part, students are free to take less intensive classes and get involved in different groups or clubs because of the abundance of free time dropped in our laps. For this performance, Elbadawi noted that the aforementioned attitude means that, “unlike the student choreography from the Spring Show, this concert features student choreographers who are making dance work without the pressure of a teacher or grades . . . It is also a really fun performance to see, as there are so few constrictions.” That mindset perfectly embodies the Short Term mentality of creativity and branching out to try new things just for the sake of the experience itself.
Elbadawi wanted to reiterate that “this show is different because it is entirely student-run and operated. This means that the entire feel of the show is different. Additionally, because there are only five weeks to put the entire show together, everything feels more low-stakes and informal, yet still really impressive given the dedication of the various performers.”
Instead of watching Channing Tatum in his amazing performance in his end of the year show at the end of Step Up, come watch your fellow classmates in the Bates version. Why settle for watching something on TV when you could have the live version? Bring your friends and watch some incredible dancing on May 25.