On March 20, Brock Dance held their annual dance recital in the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre (PAC). The combination of artistic expression and extreme athleticism that the dancers displayed was awe inspiring and in many cases attendees left with nothing but good things to say about what they had seen.
“It definitely went really well. There were a few hiccups, but nothing huge or unusual,” said Krystal Morgan, co-president of Brock Dance.
Brock Dance is a BUSU-ratified club that has two primary goals. One is to travel and compete in various dance challenges and the other is to give any and all interested students an opportunity to dance recreationally during their time at Brock.
“The competitive level consists of fifty students,” said Maddy Deluca, fellow co-president of Brock Dance. “We hold auditions at the beginning of the year, and we have different styles that students can audition for then we choose our team from there. We travel to three competitions each year. One in November and two in March. Only the Hip Hop team goes to the one in November. Everybody is pretty experienced. We have a bus and we compete against other universities in strictly university competitions.”
This year has been an especially successful year for the Brock Dance competitive team who placed second at the Strive Dance Challenge recently. “This hasn’t really happened before in Brock Dance history so we did very well this year,” explained Deluca.
“The recreational side is the larger portion of the club, but it’s not any more important,” said Morgan. “It has a lot more members and it’s got different levels such as open, beginner, advanced and intermediate. We hold different classes throughout each week and at the beginning of the year people are able to try out different classes for the first few weeks before deciding which ones they want to keep doing. From there they work for the entire year to prepare for the show today.”
The classes held each year differ based on a variety of factors such as who is involved in Brock Dance at the time.
“The classes held each year come from our volunteer teachers,” explained Morgan. “It also depends on what space we can get since there isn’t a lot of space at Brock, so we have to use what space we can. We try to always do the basics like ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical and contemporary. We have also been fortunate lately to have people who can teach things like Irish, musical theatre, ballroom, and highland. It all depends on what we can get volunteers for and if we have dancers who are interested in doing it.”
To many members, Brock Dance is more than just a club that they join each year it’s like one big family with a common interest. Meanwhile, others see it as an opportunity to try new things and meet new people, or maybe even just a means of staying in shape. Whatever the reason for joining, all are welcome in Brock Dance.
“We have lots of different levels of students who are sharing the same passion,” said Deluca. “No matter what age they are or level they classify with, they can all share their love of dance together. Especially in the finale piece. We’re promoting fun and stress relief.”
“It’s a dedicated group of individuals who come together to put on a good show and a good night for everybody. It’s for them too. They want to put it on to show what they’ve done all year and show how they’ve improved,” added Morgan.
This year, Brock Dance, like many other arts groups at Brock, had their first opportunity to use the PAC for their annual recital. The change, although daunting at times, proved to be a huge success for the dancers.
“In the past, the recitals were held in D. Howes at Brock, which was very convenient because people who were in residence could go back to their rooms between shows and there were lots of places to get food, but since the centre for the arts moved downtown we didn’t have that option this year and we were lucky enough to use the PAC. It’s taken some getting used to but I think it worked out pretty well,” said Deluca.
If you have ever thought you might like to get involved with Brock Dance, there is no time like the present (figuratively speaking). The range of benefits dancing can offer an individual are enticing and the low cost of entry is an added incentive.
“Since we have beginner to advanced classes you don’t need to have any dance experience to come be a part of Brock Dance,” said Morgan. “That’s what is so awesome about it. We get people who are 20 and this is their first time dancing on stage. It’s a whole new experience for them. They get to make friends and try something new so if they like it or not, it was still an experience they haven’t had before. Some people wish they could try it but were never able to before because dance can cost a lot of money but Brock Dance is only a $40 membership fee for the whole year compared to the $1000 per year it can cost elsewhere. It’s a cheap, new activity for the school year where you can make new friends.”
“It’s a good way to get active as well. In university you don’t always want to go to the gym where you do everything by yourself. Here you have a teacher, someone who can help you release your energy and release your stress,” added Deluca. “‘It’s cheaper than Zumba’, as one of our members put it.”
After seeing the performances put on by Brock Dance it is hard not to be impressed. No doubt there are some who can’t wait for next year’s annual recital and are already counting down the days.
Those interested in learning more about Brock Dance can go to brockdance.com or can follow them on various forms of social media.