University of Sunderland at The Customs House, South Shields
9 May 2011.
During the course of May Students from the University of Sunderland’s Faculty of Arts, Design and Media are all but taking over The Customs House.
Dance, music, theatre, fine arts and photography will all be showcased to highlight the fantastic work that the University have to offer.
An Evening of Jazz, Broadway & West End Dance is on offer tonight. This takes me out of my normal comfort zone of acting theatre reviewing, but the presence on stage and the production behind it goes hand in hand.
We are treated to a selection of dance routines by all year students, some solo, some in a group format, with brilliant results.
A lot of different styles of dancing including tap, street dance (the Eminem collaboration with Rihanna on 'Love the way you lie' set scene to some fantastic role play between a stage full of dancers(performed by the level 1 BA (HONS) dance students for DAN115 Popular Dance (choreographed by Sarah Riach with student input)). So much was going on in this routine that I didn't know where to settle my eyes, great work), jazz ('All that Jazz' from the musical Chicago brought two fantastic dancers to the stage(Amber Walton and Roisin King), a really well worked toe-tapping number kept the audience clapping long after it had finished) Hip Hop (I am not familiar with the track that Amy Haworth danced to, but it was very energetic and she thoroughly deserved her acclaim from her fellow students in the crowd) through to classic dancing-almost Ballet like (these dancers were very graceful and their dancing flowed very well, they reminded me of the Goatsbeard flower with it's parachute seeds flying off in the wind.
At times the dancers were a little out of step with each other, but this was only a blip on a fantastic night of talent. The sound and light guys (not sure if in-house) did a great job in creating a sparkly atmosphere, a little like the costumes that all of the performers were wearing.
These dancers have learned a lot from their time at Sunderland, most will go onto strutting their stuff on either side of the stage in theatre-land up and down the country, it was great to see them before this happens.