Romance, whimsy, and childlike innocence were the magical elements in the URI Dance Company’s first holiday variety show performed this winter.
“Santa Claus is Coming to Town” featured the 200-member Dance Company performing against a backdrop of giant snowflakes on a stage bathed in green and red spotlights.
The 300 or so audience members found themselves smiling, humming, and tapping their toes throughout the show, which raised about $1,000 for the group’s spring show. The 10-year-old dance company is entirely student-run and funded.
“Club members learned complicated choreographies in just five weeks,” said Nancy Hawskley, URI’s recycling coordinator and volunteer advisor to the club. “The teachers/choreographers, who are all URI students, put together a highly entertaining, creative show.”
Club President Alyssa Fulchini, who has been dancing for 17 years, was one of the teachers and the show’s emcee. “Everyone loved the idea of a winter show because many club members were disappointed that we performed only once a year,” she said. “It was really a team effort, and I am so proud of everyone. It was especially stressful for the teachers and officers because we are all perfectionists. The end result was evidence of our hard work.”
In addition to its own members, the club invited performers from the URI Irish Step Dance Club and the URI Ballroom Dance Club. The student band, Incident Report, provided live music and Lindsey Page, one of the company’s members, performed a vocal solo.