Lane dancers give audience The Works; Annual event showcases student creations

Katie Buchanan, Eviana Dan, Lacey Porter, Courtney Snow and Elana Sutton perform the dance “Follow the Chance” during The Works in Ragozzino Performance Hall on May 15.Photo: August Frank


Katie Buchanan, Eviana Dan, Lacey Porter, Courtney Snow and Elana Sutton perform the dance “Follow the Chance” during The Works in Ragozzino Performance Hall on May 15.
Photo: August Frank

Lane dance students showcased their choreography, lighting and costuming skills in a three-day event at Ragozzino Performance Hall that began May 15.

The Works, an annual event, featured individually designed pieces by the students, giving them complete control over what the audience experienced. Lighting ranged from flashy bright pinks to white spotlights, and costumes varied from tan outfits to shiny dresses.

The choreography was varied as well. Movements included ballet, modern dance and jazz, to name a few.

This is no talent show, Lane lead dance instructor Bonnie Simoa said, and the dancers go through a competitive audition to earn a spot on stage.

Each dancer is required to present about a minute and a half of individually designed choreography at the audition. Most dancers began this journey by taking three choreography classes at Lane. The entire process took about a year and included dance improvisation, dance composition and group choreography.

“They get to feel what it’s like to make your own work and make decisions about costumes, lighting and the overall design of the show in detail,” Simoa said.

After each dance, the audience waited for the last beat of music to completely fade out before applauding.

Lane dance student Katie Buchanan participated in the event.

She was a choreographer, along with Courtney Snow, and both were dancers in an improvised piece entitled “Follow the Chance.”

“We didn’t know what song would play,” Buchanan said. “We gave them a list and told them to play whatever.”

Buchanan said there weren’t any pre-choreographed moves. They were literally drawing ideas out of a hat.

Three other Lane dancers participated in the piece: Eviana Dan, Lacey Porter and Elana Sutton.

Lane marketing specialist John Watson said this year’s performers are talented.

“I’ve been following the concert for publicity purposes and have watched the dancers evolve,” Watson said. “It’s a great, great show.”