USU Dance Company prepares for the Howl
Published: Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 23:10
As the Howl approaches, one group of students is anxiously looking forward to this event. The USU Dance Company will be continuing their seven-year legacy of performing at the Howl on Saturday night, and members look to stun the crowds with their creative dances.
The preparation that goes into this event starts a year in advance for Krissy Fry, the director of the dance company and a USU alumna.
“I think about the next year’s Howl performance while still preparing for the current one,” Fry said.
The Howl is taken extremely seriously by the company, Fry said.
“It’s one of our biggest performances all year, and the dancers are always proud to have the opportunity every year,” she said. “As the years have gone by, the theme of the Howl has been molded around the dance company and its choreography ideas.”
Tasia Briggs, a junior studying public relations and assistant director for the dance company, has been with the organization for three years. She said her favorite part of dancing at USU is the performing, but the practice and preparation is very demanding.
“Being in front of an audience makes everything worth it,” she said.
Tracie Paul, a junior studying exercise science, said preparation for the Howl starts immediately after team tryouts are held and the team is solidified. The team members have been learning their individual dances and roles and practicing for nearly two months. This week is their last chance for final preparation, Paul said.
“This week is the hardest week of the year for us,” Paul said. “Having practice for close to six hours a day on top of schoolwork and a part-time job is challenging, but it is all worth it when we put it together to entertain the crowd.”
Along with the preparation for the dancing, a lot of other work is put in by the team, including costume design and construction, make-up application and music choice. The dance company will dress up like werewolves and ghosts this year.
“The theme comes from the Haunted Mansion ride at Disneyland, and it will be pretty sweet,” Paul said.
A professional makeup artist is hired every year to help make sure the dancers’ costumes do not disappoint the audience. Briggs, who helped choreograph one of the dances and helped decide the makeup and costumes for this year’s dance, said she’s looking forward to seeing the final result all put together.
“I am just excited to see all of the ideas come to life and to see the crowds reaction,” Briggs said.
All dance company members are full-time students, and many balance their dance and educational commitments with part-time jobs.
“The team does not receive any funding or scholarships from the university, so to use their free time to dedicate it to dance shows how committed they are,” Fry said.
Fry founded the company seven years ago while she was a student at USU. When she came to campus, she realized that there were a lot of students who wanted to dance. She said there weren’t enough opportunities for those individuals to come together and dance. Instead of putting her talent on hold, Fry decided to formed the company to allow students to continue the activity in college.
In addition to performing this year’s dances for an audience at the Howl, the company will perform in its end-of-the-year show in the spring.