Dance Alabama! returns for the spring

Meghan Hollis

The Department of Theater and Dance is once again bringing the annual Dance Alabama! spring concert to Morgan Auditorium. Dance Alabama! will showcase originally choreographed pieces Tuesday through Friday.

Shows start at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and 5:30 p.m. on Friday.

Performances this season include a piece with a solo dancer moving to the mood of a monologue contrasting with a traditional musical piece, as well as a circus lyrical number.

Bryant Henderson, a senior majoring in dance and public relations, is the Dance Alabama! president. Henderson said this is his last Dance Alabama! show, and he will be dancing in a piece titled “Save Me,” a musical theater piece called “Love’s Labour Lost” and a Broadway number titled “Next Step.”

Henderson said Dance Alabama! goes through a stet process before pieces are even chosen for the show.

“We started with 34 dance pieces and the faculty cut it down to 21 to perform in the show,” Henderson said.

Henderson also said there are benefits of working with different student choreographers to improving skills as a dancer.

“Dance Alabama! is great in that it deals with a multitude of people with different styles and personalities, which is a good preparation for the real world of dance,” Henderson said. “The show also gives us material for dance reels to have when we start looking for a job.”

Colleen Frake, a freshman majoring in dance, said this is her first show as a choreographer. Frake said she gained a lot of experience with the help of her mentors to make her piece come to life on the stage.

“It’s great because the teachers give you attention, feedback and constructive criticism with what works and what does not,” Frake said. “They also assist with the details of the piece and choosing music.”

Frake said professors also helped with staging the performance, like selecting lighting and sound.

“They have also given us the assurance that they will be there in the future with whatever help we need in organizing the production aspect of our dance performances,” Frake said.

Instructors said the dancers participating in Dance Alabama! have made them proud and impressed.

Cornelius Carter, director of dance and the artistic director of the Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre, said he is satisfied with what the students have prepared to start performing on Tuesday.

“I am always impressed with the final product because I see the beginning and all the steps leading up to this,” Carter said. “We work so close with students everyday practically for four years so there’s a lot of parental involvement.

He said he was also impressed by the students’ courage.

“This work is for the public to view and that takes courage,” Carter said. “The process to get to this point is intense and we have to honor the paying public. These students do a great job honoring that.”

The house will be opening 30 minutes before the show starts. The ticket prices are $17 for adults/general admission, $15 for UA Faculty/Staff and seniors and $12 for students.

Tickets are available for purchase at or at the Theater and Dance Box Office at Rowand-Johnson Hall, which is open from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets can also be purchased at the door an hour before the show starts.