By Tara DeLorenzo
The Rider Dance Team will step away from the basketball court and break away from its comfort zone to show off its individuality with its spring show, “Express Yourself.”
The free performances will be taking over the Yvonne Theater on April 17 at 7 p.m. and April 19 at 1 p.m. While the team will still be featuring its signature hip-hop dance style that audiences have come to expect, the shows will also highlight a range of styles including lyrical, jazz, step and reggae.
“This show is unique because you get to see the dance team, who is primarily hip-hop-based at basketball games, perform other amazing styles of dance,” said Captain and senior web design major Tiffany Reyes. “This team is very talented, and we all put in a lot of hard work.”
Adding to the diversity of the line-up, the show will also feature a few guest appearances. These special guest stars include a number of dance team alumni members, as well as the Rider Step Team. There will also be a few members from the dance team of the Penn State Berks campus coming to perform a number that was choreographed by dance team president Danielle Iannotta, a junior sociology major, and fellow Rider dance team member Danielle Cerassani.
With everything involved with the show, the team had to come up with a name that would reflect the purpose of the performance. Ultimately they settled on “Express Yourself” because, according to Reyes, “this year we wanted to give our audience more individuality.”
To express originality, the show will be utilizing digital elements in order to enhance the impact of each number, which were all choreographed by the students involved.
“Before each performance, there will be a video of that choreographer explaining to the audience what inspired them to choose that style and story line,” said Iannotta. “I think that the audience will be pleasantly surprised by the different styles we are capable of performing since we do not usually perform these styles at other events we do on campus.”
More than anything, the dancers hope the audiences see how much effort they put into the shows.
“Dance is our passion,” Iannotta said. “We love to express ourselves in a positive manner through dancing, and we are all different but work well together as one to make a show like this come to life. We put a lot of hard work and effort into making the show, and we are really excited to show what we can do for the student body and other family and friends.”
Performers also hope to inspire the viewers, just as much as they hope to show off their talents.
“The audience should know it’s going to be a great show,” Reyes said. “Our message we want to send to our audience is: Never stop expressing yourself.”
printed in the 4/15/15 edition