Liz Lapuh, Artistic Director of the Spring Concert, says this year’s Spring Dance Concert on May 6 & 7, at the McCormack Theatre, will be something special. As commencement approaches, she’s looking at a cache of unique performers taking part in UMass Boston’s annual performance for the last time – many already teaching and performing on area stages. Witnessing the likes of graduating senior Junior Cius on stage, she says, is not to be missed.
“Junior is self-styled, almost self-taught, and a rare talent,” Lapuh says. “It’s hard to put it into words if you’ve never seen him dance. It’s an astounding experience.”
“This is going to be the show of shows,” she says. “Sadly, for me, a lot are graduating so this is really a swan song for many students who have been very involved in the Dance Concert and UMass Boston, and very involved in dance in their communities.”
A lot of students, like Cius, JoJo Caidor, and Aura Ortiz, teach and host hold workshops in the Boston area, carving out careers in dance. With Co-Artistic Director Danny Swain, the Spring Dance Concerts showcases 15 exciting student dancers—all with student choreography—in an array of dance forms, including contemporary, hip hop, musical theatre, and modern dance.
The Spring Dance Concert is the culmination of a year’s preparation, study, and practice, and all pieces are choreographed by the students themselves. Lapuh notes the Spring Concert is an essential component of the program.
“The experience of being in front of an audience is something that most students have, but maybe not at this level with the technical directing, sound, staging,” she says. “They have to fit into a more professional standard.”
This past semester, Dance classes moved into the new University Hall, to a fourth floor corners studio with perhaps the most breathtaking view of Dorchester Bay on campus.
Tickets to The Spring Dance Concert are $10 for students, $15 for general admission, and can be purchased in advance HERE.
Photos: above, Junior Cius at last year's Dance Concert, below, Aura Ortiz, bottom.