IN PHOTOS: SAC Performers Embrace Their Roots with Traditional Dance
Dancers stand before the audience with branches in hand prior to the final bow. Ashley Ramynke / el Don
Figures immersed in the spotlight float across the stage, depicting stories of cultures and traditions that unfold with each movement. From the blood-red seats in Phillips Hall Theatre, the audience is transported to the shrines of Japan, the fields of Scotland and the water-flooded streets of New Orleans.
At Santa Ana College’s annual Dancewatch concerts Roots/Branches … Embracing Our Past and Present, faculty choreographed five pieces that reveal how both traditional and contemporary dance utilizes movement as a form of visual storytelling.
“[Dance is] something that helps break the boundaries between artistry and day-to-day life,” Ricky Vazquez, a third-year dance major, said.
The works were inspired by each choreographer’s travels, personal experience and cultural roots.
Austin Leon embodies the physical and emotional destruction that natural disasters cause with every sharp movement in choreographer Cyrian Reed’s dance paying homage to Hurrican Katrina, “Levees – The Waters We Must Stand On.” Ashley Ramynke / el Don
Mayra Toscano bring a powerful, emotional performance to choreographer Cyrian Reed's dance paying homage to Hurrican Katrina, "Levees - The Waters We Must Stand On." Ashley Ramynke / el Don
Lights cascade across the stage and over Mary Leopo during choreographer Cyrian Reed’s dance paying homage to Hurrican Katrina, “Levees – The Waters We Must Stand On.” Ashley Ramynke / el Don
Valerie Brewster relevés off the ground with her feet pointed and strong posture during choreographer Leann McGregor Alduenda’s dance, “le hathléimneacht agus bród – With Resilience and Pride.” Ashley Ramynke / el Don
Suzanna Varela is elegantly dipped during choreographer Joshua D. Estrada-Romero’s dance, “Mi Amor – My Love.” Ashley Ramynke / el Don