Thursday, January 26, 2012

Alumni to visit for Raw Edges

Next week we are looking forward to the annual student choreography performance, Raw Edges. It is always a school favorite and showcases not only the great dancing talent but also choreographic talent in our department. This year we are excited to welcome back three alumni to perform.

Noelle Lelakus and Jo Alspaugh who graduated in 2008 will be performing a duet. After graduation Jo danced with Albany Berkshire Ballet for one season and also danced with Ballet Theatre of Ohio for two years. She is currently teaching at Cleveland Ballet Conservatory and is in her third year of law school at Case Western Reserve.

Noelle was a member of Missouri Contemporary Ballet for two years and taught at two other studios in the area. Halfway through her second season with MCB, she had to get surgery on her ankle and took a leave of absence from dancing full time. Since then, she has returned to Erie to teach for Mercyhurst’s Summer Dance Experience and attend Mercyhurst North East to pursue her RN, from which she will graduate in May! Currently, she is on the faculty for Erie Dance Conservatory and enjoys returning to the department as needed. Raw Edges will be her first time onstage since May 2010!

Sara Lawrence-Sucato is our third returning alum that will be performing in Raw Edges. After graduation Sara joined Dancing Wheels as a company member. She is currently in her sixth season with the company and also serves as the Tour Manager for the company coordinating logistics with their presenters when they travel to perform. In addition to her work with Dancing Wheels she has taught dance and pilates to children and adults at several studios in the Cleveland area. She is grateful for her job as a professional dancer not only for the fact that she is paid to do what she loves but also for the sense of service and giving back to the community through dance.

We are pleased to invite these three wonderful alumni back to Mercyhurst and are excited to see them perform with our current students!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

In Her Shoes

Don’t miss the performance In Her Shoes this Sunday, January 22 in the Taylor Little Theatre at 2pm.

“A multimedia collage of text, imagery, music, dance, and art to reflect cultural manifestations, pressures, and effects on women in relation to media, popular culture and social constructs.”

The event will include performances by SoMar Dance Works and feature guest artists Carla Hughes, Sara Lawrence-Sucato, Lani Weissbach, Kim Fitch and members of the Cleveland’s Dancing Wheels Company.

The best part is that it’s FREE!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

De-stress and stay healthy

We're halfway through winter term here at Mercyhurst and the feeling of stress across campus is palpable. Midterms can be an especially stressful time for students when they are taking their exams and starting to get into a heavy workload. The combination of stress, a busy schedule and the cold weather can easily lead to getting sick. As dancers it's especially important that we stay healthy so that we can put our best effort into class and rehearsal. January and February is also audition season and dancers want to be in their best form, so remembering to stay healthy and de-stress is vital. Here are some tips for staying healthy and happy:

1.Get enough sleep! Most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep to function at their best.

2.Eat well balanced healthy meals. Eating a lot of simple carbs, sugar and chugging that coffee in the morning won't help your energy level. By the time 3pm rolls around you'll be ready to crash. Eating a good breakfast of fruit and whole grains and a well balanced lunch with some veggies and protein will provide you with the energy and nutrients you need to get through the day.

3. Drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated and drinking enough water throughout the day will help prevent headaches and fatigue.

4.De-stress. If everything seems too overwhelming take some time to relax. Take a yoga class, listen to music, go for a walk or take 10 minutes to stop what you're doing and close your eyes and take some deep breaths.

5. Have fun! Everything doesn't have to be about work or school or dance. Take some time for yourself and have fun, whether it's going out with some friends, reading a good book or watching a funny movie.

"To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear."

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Welcome Back!

Hoping everyone had a great holiday break! Classes have started up again for the remainder of winter term and we finally have snow!

Choreographers are busy getting for our Raw Edges performance in February, there is only about six more weeks until the show! Before break we had showings to see what the choreographers have done and all of the pieces look really interesting. There are two ballet pieces on pointe and the rest are more modern contemporary pieces. Can't wait to see how they all turn out!

Seniors are also getting ready to go on auditions starting within the next few weeks. This is always a crazy time getting ready to go out into the dance world and find a job but it's always exciting! Every year our seniors go out and make name for themselves beyond Mercyhurst, which has been our home for the past four years. Our dancers have gone on to dance with companies such as Nashville Ballet, St. Louis Ballet, Oklahoma Ballet, the musical CATS, cruise lines, Disney and even for the Cleveland Cavaliers! Mercyhurst has a great network and we wish all of our seniors good luck on their endeavors.

"The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance." --Alan Watts