The Mercyhurst Dance Department had rightful cause for celebration as they brought Super SoMar Palooza! to life on Feb. 23.
In SoMar Dance Works 20th year, the performance shone with creativity, strong and impressive technique and innovation and fun.
The show started with a spark as dancers illuminated the pitch black stage with small hand lights in the piece “Piercing Darkness.”
The dancers used the small lights as well as spotlights and full lighting to give life to the stage through their dances.
The small lights were used to create patterns and shapes as a group while soloists shone in the larger spotlights.
Lighting was not the only media utilized in the show.
What was so unique and surprising about this show was the integration of several art forms with acting, videography, costuming and choreography.
Even intermission showcased the legacy of SoMar Dance Works through a projected slideshow of pictures throughout the years.
“For the Honey and You” featured co-directors Solveig and Mark Santillano in a beautiful and melancholy story of love and loss told through dance and media.
The two dressed in black and white, dancing both together and apart as their story was projected using images of the beach and crashing waves behind them.
The performance featured guest flutist, Anna Meyer, performing “Zoom Tube” by Ian Clark as a trio danced along with her.
The modern flute piece showed great dexterity and mastery of the instrument and was well complimented by the energy of the dancers.
Fun and surprising numbers such as “Crouching Tutu, Hidden Drag Queen” and “Daydreams” showcased the more lighthearted side of SoMar, incorporating acting and storytelling.
“Daydreams” showed a classic desk-worker’s dream come true as she is whisked away to a beach of her dreams.
“Crouching Tutu” proved that ballet is a force to be reckoned with and, when combined with Bruce Lee-esque Kung Fu, can defeat even the toughest foes.
One might expect numbers such as “TRUTH” and “Tailspin Tango” to be intense and serious, but both were full of bright energy and spirit that was exciting to watch.
“Dance By Numbers” was an interesting and impressive piece that not only required physical skill from the performers, but the ability to recite pi to over 60 decimal places!
The way the dancers moved to represent different numbers and formations as both soloists and in groups was extremely creative and pleasing to watch.
Amidst the fun and creative pieces, there was no loss for amazing displays of technical mastery and strength.“Free Fall” and “Shapeshifters” were two beautiful and intimate pieces with each set of dancers showing extreme skill in technique as well as grace and agility.
The lifts and holds were incredible and seemed to be effortless to the performers.
Overall, Super SoMar Palooza! was an amazing journey through dance using many forms of art and expression.
It celebrated the passion and history of SoMar Dance Works as well as showcasing the bright future of dance that the company fosters.