Title of Abstract

Who Are We?

Submitting Student(s)

Jala Smith

Session Title

Performance Session

Faculty Sponsor (for work done with a non-Winthrop mentor)

Kelly Ozust, Ph.D.

College

College of Visual and Performing Arts

Department

Theatre & Dance

Abstract

As a student choreographer and dancer, I use movement to tell a story. For this story, I ask the questions: Who am I? Who are you? Who are we? How does one identify themselves? I take the audience on a journey of discovering who we are, the struggles of one’s self-identity, and questioning one’s sense of self and place in the world. This is something that everyone has faced in their lifetime and being in college, this is the time where many individuals struggle with their identities, including myself. I wanted to make this piece because it draws attention to a topic that often gets overlooked or is not addressed but happens to everyone at least one point in life. For this piece, I want to connect to my audience and the best way for me to do that is having my dancers connected to the piece. I had open discussions with my dancers about who they are, and what are some things they are struggling with. I also had them look in the mirror and tell me what they saw: What do you see when you look in the mirror? Are you happy with what you see staring back at you? The movement displayed is more pedestrian like with different gestures and the use of repetition. From these conversations, I use what they say as well as their body language to create abstract movement and manipulate the human body to convey a message.

Start Date

15-4-2022 12:00 PM

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Apr 15th, 12:00 PM

Who Are We?

As a student choreographer and dancer, I use movement to tell a story. For this story, I ask the questions: Who am I? Who are you? Who are we? How does one identify themselves? I take the audience on a journey of discovering who we are, the struggles of one’s self-identity, and questioning one’s sense of self and place in the world. This is something that everyone has faced in their lifetime and being in college, this is the time where many individuals struggle with their identities, including myself. I wanted to make this piece because it draws attention to a topic that often gets overlooked or is not addressed but happens to everyone at least one point in life. For this piece, I want to connect to my audience and the best way for me to do that is having my dancers connected to the piece. I had open discussions with my dancers about who they are, and what are some things they are struggling with. I also had them look in the mirror and tell me what they saw: What do you see when you look in the mirror? Are you happy with what you see staring back at you? The movement displayed is more pedestrian like with different gestures and the use of repetition. From these conversations, I use what they say as well as their body language to create abstract movement and manipulate the human body to convey a message.