Waterfront Theatre School Choreography Competition Review

By Laurie Scarborough

The Waterfront Theatre School hosted their annual Choreography Competition this past week at their Lane theatre on campus. They split the show for the weekday performances but showcased the full show for the Saturday and Sunday performances. I went to the Saturday show so was privy to the full show.

Delia Sainsbury did a quick introduction saying that they decided to showcase everyone who entered this year. While I think that it was a nice gesture to do this and it meant everyone had the opportunity to be seen and get some exposure, it meant that the full show was four hours long and that some very weak numbers were included in the show. I think some wise editing down of the show was needed in some cases.

On the whole though the show was enjoyable. The talent showcased was evident and the young stars definitely had something to say with their work. The sheer diversity of dance was also something to behold. There was something for everybody – from ballet to jazz, hip-hop, contemporary, burlesque, tap, musical theatre and even belly dancing.

Most of the choreography was strong and the conceptualisations were really interesting. From racism, to corruption, to a Mary Poppins homage, a Beyonce tribute, there really was a lot of variety in the types of subject matter that students tackled in their choreography.

I thought that at times the stage was too small for the dancers to really express their movement which was unfortunate. Also there were three or four numbers where the dancers were a bit weak to carry the choreography convincingly which was a pity. One standout performer that I need to mention is Joanne Liebenberg. She performed a solo which was outstanding and a few duets and a group number. She has a very bright future ahead of her and I’m excited to see her on the stage soon!

I think my main criticism was that the evening was too long. While most of the numbers were individually enjoyable, after four hours, my interest had waned. Overall though, it was an enjoyable evening and the talent was definitely there.

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