Performers bring joy to the stage

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Every year moveo produces a fall dance concert featuring advanced dance, but this year their concert was a little different. The show usually falls right before Thanksgiving, but as Fara Sadler, the moveo dance teacher, revealed, “When football started doing really well and going to playoffs, we were trying to avoid that.” So back in March, the dance department decided to have their concert on the twelfth and thirteenth of December this year. Since the dance concert was so close to the holiday season, it sparked the interest of a holiday themed concert, Sadler explained. During a meeting with some of her returning moveo dancers to discuss the concert’s theme, one of the girls proposed the idea of “Joy to the World.” 

They wanted to make sure that a holiday themed concert would be inclusive of everybody. Eventually they decided on Joy to the World because it provided a positive message for the concert and included everyone. With the introduction of a holiday concert, the dance department added a lot of features to this concert that others in the past did not have. To immerse the audience in the holiday spirit of the concert, they spruced up the front lobby of the auditorium with holiday decorations for the concert. Sadler commented, “We’ve never decorated our lobby before and I felt like if we were going to do holiday, we were going to go big or go home.” 

One of Perry High School’s many virtues is its dance program. Being one of the best in the valley, the dancers have to live up to the ever-increasing standards they set each year and this holiday concert was one of the school’s best. The dancers have worked exceptionally hard to make “Joy to the World” a success. With 22 dances and an extra finale number, the dance concert was enjoyable to the very end. Each performance was thrilling and unique in its choreography, dancers, and song choice. “We tried to do a little bit of variety. We’ve got some instrumental, we’ve got one that part of it is in Spanish, we’ve got Mele Kalikimaka, we’ve got one from a Christmas Story with narration, and one with Russian acrobats,” Sadler elaborated. 

From the amazing technique of the many turns, leaps, and acrobatics, to the little nuanced finger waves and toe taps, the choreography was meaningful, fun, and spirited. The first piece, “Sticky Situation” was a great start to the concert. It provided a very unique feel while doing a great job of introducing the dancers and the concert theme. The moveo and advanced dancers excelled with their graceful lines and stunning choreography. Most of the dances of the concert were student choreographed. Sadler disclosed, “We have the most student choreography we’ve had in a fall show this year and they all did a really good job.” Out of the 22 pieces in the show, only two were choreographed by teachers, the rest of them were all student created. 

As the show continued, it became evident that many styles were being explored and shown through the pieces. From the very musical theater start to lyrical, contemporary, jazz, ballroom, and eventually hip hop. The dancers provided many unique styles and motifs throughout their diverse show. 

The purpose of using many different song genres and dance styles was to express the emotions the holiday season is greeted with. Some of the pieces illustrated the excitement and child-like anticipation of the holiday season, while others highlighted the sentimental feelings of the holidays, and a couple displayed the stress this time of year brings. But the concert as a whole reminded the audience of the joy and love this time of year is about. The dancers joy shone through every movement made as they came on stage to wish the audience happy holidays and “Joy to the World.”