Dance students join pros for Chicago performance

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Photo of WMU students practice with DanceWorks professionals.

Students practice with DanceWorks professionals

KALAMAZOO—Seven Western Michigan University dance students will perform alongside a professional dance troupe from Chicago during a special joint performance in the windy city this month.

The students and professional dancers from DanceWorks Chicago will take the stage at noon Thursday, Jan. 12, in the Harris Theatre in downtown Chicago near Millennium Park. The group will perform as part of the theatre's "Eat to the Beat" lunchtime brown-bag series.

Patrons can purchase box lunches from the theater or bring their own lunch. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at harristheaterchicago.org or (312) 337-7777.

Student dancers

Genna Carey of Battle Creek, Mich.
Connor Cornelius-Burke of Oak Park, Ill.
Sayre Masters of Cedar, Mich.
Katherine Mattar of Flint, Mich.
Jesse Hoisington of Commerce Township, Mich.
Marley Schmidt of Bay City, Mich.
Tajh Stallworth of Lansing, Mich.

Department of Dance faculty member Whitney Moncrief is the rehearsal director for the dance. She and the WMU performers will travel to Chicago on Wednesday, Jan. 11, to rehearse with members of DanceWorks Chicago prior to the Harris performance.

Photo of .

Nelly van Bommel

"The Harris Theatre for Music and Dance is one of the premiere concert dance venues in Chicago, and we are very excited about this opportunity to share the stage with DanceWorks Chicago," says Nina Nelson, chair of WMU's Department of Dance.

"We're thrilled to be participating," she adds. "For our students to be working with professionals is extraordinarily rewarding and exciting."

This is not the first time the WMU students have had the opportunity to perform with DanceWorks Chicago. This past fall, the University invited members of the troupe to Kalamazoo to spend nearly two weeks working with students and international choreographer Nelly van Bommel on a joint performance.

The dance, "Addio Amore," was performed by the joint cast at Kalamazoo's Chenery Auditorium in October. During two five-day sessions, company members also taught master classes and participated in panel discussions at WMU.

For more information, contact Nina Nelson at nina.nelson@wmich.eduor (269) 387-5830.