This weekend, the Dartmouth Dance Ensemble will host "Cross Culture," a spring performance with some special guests: the Dance Company of the National University of Costa Rica and poet and guest performer Chin Woon Ping. The four-year-old Dartmouth ensemble performed with the National University's company in San Jos earlier this spring.
The Dartmouth caught up with Kate Hitchings '03, who will be dancing in this weekend's performances.
The Dartmouth: What should the audience expect?
Kate Hitchings: It's going to be an incredible performance -- really moving. It will be a professional performance with sound crews, light crews and professionally done costumes. Amazing choreography. ... It's a culmination of a year's worth of work.
The D: What was it like to tour Costa Rica?
KH: It was an incredible opportunity 13 students, nine days. It was the first time the dance ensemble at Dartmouth toured. It was a lot of fun and amazing. It will help cement the group so that it's a force in the future.
The D: How did you get involved with the Dartmouth Dance Ensemble?
KH: I came to Dartmouth and decided to take a ballet class. The Director, Ford Evans, saw me and asked me to join the ensemble. It's been modern [dance] ever since. Ford has been choreographing for years and years and years. He's done a lot.
The D: How did the group choose to use Philip Glass' music?
KH: The choreographer chose it. The music is very passionate. It's gorgeous. It furthers the concept of the piece. It's a piece about mourning and how people mourn collectively. People experience loss collectively.
The D: Is there a dance major at Dartmouth?
KH: No major or minor. We rehearse 20 hours a week -- as much as any sports team. I would love to see dance become tied to some academic department at Dartmouth. [The group] has come an enormous way in four years, and it could go so much further. What we do is approaching what people do for dance majors , but we do it for fun -- no credit.
"Cross Culture" will be performed in the Hopkins Center's Moore Theater at 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $12 for the general public and $3 for Dartmouth students.