Today@Sam Article

SHSU Presents The 2019 Masters Of Dance Concert

Feb. 1, 2019
SHSU Media Contact: Evelyn Toh


“Masters of Dance” is an evening-length concert fully produced by the graduate students of the Sam Houston State University Department of Dance.  The M.F.A. candidates create work that showcases an eclectic range of vision, talent and hard work. ​

This semester the diverse works are choreographed by six M.F.A. students. Each individual explores thematic content that inspired creations on the talented student body of SHSU.  With a wide range of concepts and choreographic voices, “Masters of Dance,” is sure to offer something for everyone. Performances take place Feb. 7 and Feb. 8 at 8 p.m. in the James and Nancy Gaertner Performing Arts Center.

This semester’s concert will also feature the winners of the inaugural “120 Seconds (or less)” dance film competition. The winning films will premier in the concert alongside the premiers of:

-“A Cruel Shrug in a Thousand Fleeting Moments,” by Colette Miller, is a work inspired by the premise of interrogation tactics that lead to faulty confessions.  The work is based on research surrounding the specific experiences of individuals who confessed to a crime they did not commit. Using video, props and complex partnering, this work sets the scene of an interrogation room in an emotionally intense atmosphere.

-“It is Not All of Life to Live, Nor Yet All of Death to Die"- Edgar Cayce, a new work by Sam Scioneaux, draws inspiration from Scioneaux’s late grandmother, Margaret, and the concept of the preciousness of life. Through the heartbreak of losing a loved one, hope and remembrance emerge. Scioneaux explores the idea that as we analyze and comprehend the loss of a human life, we may better understand the consistency and continuity of our own being. 

-“Hiraeth,” a work by Evelyn Toh, is inspired by the sensation of longing she has often experienced as a third culture kid. Hiraeth is a Welsh concept of longing for a home that no longer exists or may have never existed. Toh’s nomadic background meant uncertainty in a physical place to identify as home, yet, she often experiences homesickness.  With this piece she physically manifests an emotion her words have difficulty describing.

-“Automaton,” by Jorrell Lawyer-Jefferson, explores the way dancers process set information (choreography), and the ability to perform movement without outward expression. The choreography is sharp, athletic, and rigid, with little room for breath. As the piece progresses, the dancers experience a tug of war between their humanity and a programmed mechanical hive mind. The work ends with a soloist fighting her programming in an attempt to find her individuality, ultimately succumbing to the hive mind.

-“Anamnesis,” a piece by Rachel Meents, who became infatuated with how human memory works and how dancers use memory to perform choreography. Through her research on how the brain stores memories, Meents has created a choreographic work based on how the brain acts when recalling memories. 

-“Malin en Deux,” by Meri-Ashton Van Winkle, seeks to understand the dividing and mutation elements of a cancer cell. Through her choreography she explores the emotional aspects of experiencing the disease. She dedicates the piece to her grandmother who is a cancer survivor.

For more information or to purchase tickets online visit or call 936.294.2339. Tickets are $15 for general admission, $12 for seniors and $5 for students with a valid ID.



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