Advanced Dance II company interprets time in annual concert

By Jessica Barzilay

The Advanced Dance II company explored different interpretations of time in its annual concert, “A Matter of Time,” on March 2-4. The dancers drew inspiration from interviews with community members of all ages, as well as from their individual experiences with growing up.  

“Time as a theme can be rather abstract, but the human being’s relationship to time is very personal,” company director Cynthia Winter said.

Set to an array of sounds and songs, the dances ranged from literal choreography of a clock’s mechanics to more interpretive expressions of aging and healing.

“This show is so unique because its theme is something so intangible,” dancer Mikaila Mitchell ’13 said. “Time is not a story, or a series of events. It involves just about everything you can think of in life, which is why I think this year’s show will reach out to a really broad audience.”

Nick Healy ’13 narrated the show with select sound bytes from the interviews conducted with students, faculty and family members, some of whom also made cameos in the show.

Dean Sharon Cuseo and her two daughters, science teacher David Hinden, French teacher Simona Ghirlanda, Ann-Marie Whitman, executive assistant to the school’s president and parents of dancers Bella Hicks ’12 and Asha Jordan 12 shared the stage with the company at different points throughout the show. Hicks sang a ballad on the edge of the stage as her parents swayed in a slow dance in the background, and Jordan invited her mother up for a duet about the effect of time and aging on family relationships.

Dancers began brainstorming and planning for the concert at the start of the school year, and reaching the culmination of their work was incredibly rewarding, Mitchell said.

“It was so exciting to see the final product of our hard work and how each dance relates to one another,” she said. “ADII is an extremely special community. In my opinion I think this group of dancers is the closest dance group I’ve ever been a part of at Harvard-Westlake. We all care so much for each other, and this experience has made us bond even more.”