May 12, 2015

Contact: Lauren E. Creger

Cal Poly Students to Present ‘Onward & Upward’ Spring Dance Concert May 20-22

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly students will present their annual spring dance concert “Onward & Upward” at 8 p.m. May 20-22, in the Spanos Theatre on campus. 

The student-run and choreographed production showcases the artistry of students from majors across campus. “Onward & Upward” features 25 dances in a variety of genres, including ballet, tap, Bollywood, jazz, contemporary, modern and hip hop — all communicating forward movement.

Produced by Cal Poly’s Theatre & Dance Department in the College of Liberal Arts, the show is directed by psychology senior Lauren Creger and business senior Tiffany Davids.

“Celebrating Honesty” displays the need for young people to disconnect from the influence of others in order to grow and develop. Set to the music of local Cal Poly alumni band Próxima Parada’s “Gains,” the dance reflects choreographer and nutrition senior Nikki Telegan’s artistic summation of her college experience. 

Powered by the drumbeat of A Tribe Called Red’s, “Electric Pow Wow Drum,” Wade Meade’s “Walk Down Me” projects energy through daring partner work. Wade, a kinesiology senior, uses twisted physicality to explore the struggles and highs of dedication to a passion. 

“Humanity,” choreographed by anthropology and geography freshman Sarah Dirk, celebrates how compassion and community form in times of hardship and adversity. Set to The Beatles “Let it Be” from the soundtrack of the 2002 film “Across the Universe,” the movement reveals how the light of humanity can shine in times of darkness. 

The concert also features energetic dances in entertaining genres. Senior mechanical engineering student Brandon Roy Sadiarin created a hip-hop piece set to Justin Timberlake’s “True Blood” to explore the life of nocturnal creatures. The stylized and dynamic movement highlights each creature in a spooky-yet-funky light to create a unique experience for viewers and dancers. 

Holly Lowe’s tap number, set to Fergie’s “A Little Party Never Killed Nobody” from the soundtrack of the 2013 movie “The Great Gatsby,” is vivacious and rhythmic. The software engineering senior combines a modern style with 1920s flair, resulting in a tap dance party reminiscent of those at Gatsby’s West Egg mansion.

Many other innovative student works will round out this diverse performance. 
Tickets to “Upward & Onward” -- $14 for the public and $10 for students -- are available at the Cal Poly Ticket Office between noon and 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. To order by phone, call 805-SLO-4TIX (805-756-4849).

- Theatre & Dance Department:
- College of Liberal Arts:

About the Cal Poly Theatre & Dance Department
The Cal Poly Theatre & Dance Department provides students with programs of study that integrate practical production work with theater and dance principles, theory and historical development. The department also acts as a cultural focus for the campus and San Luis Obispo community. Each year the department presents three main-stage theater productions, the Orchesis Dance Company production, and a student-directed dance concert, all showcasing the department’s importance in realizing the university’s mission as a comprehensive polytechnic identity.

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