Photo: Lauren Rakes. Audrey is pictured second from the left in the second row in this photo from the Spring 2016 Showcase.
DCVT, or Dance Company at Virginia Tech, held their auditions last weekend for the 2016-2017 year. Old and new members are ready to get back into the studio within the upcoming weeks.
After a full semester of classes, choreography, and performances, DCVT will put on a Fall Showcase on December 2nd & 3rd in Haymarket Theatre. To prepare for this showcase, the 23 returning dancers embrace 8 new members as DCVT begins their training. The student-run dance company allows for these members to choreograph and participate in one another’s dances, giving them the opportunity to teach their favorite styles, ranging everywhere from contemporary to hip hop to tap.
Audrey Ramos, a senior this year, is participating in her fourth year on DCVT. As artistic director, she serves on the Executive Board with four other girls. Audrey broke down the auditioning process for me and explained why dance is an art form worth acknowledging.
Q: How many years have you danced, and why do you love it?
A: I have been dancing for 16 years, and since I’m naturally quiet, I’m terrible at expressing myself through words. Through dance, I feel like I can express myself most easily through my own movements; they convey my personality better than words could form.
Q: What is your favorite type of dance?
A: Hip hop and tap. I like them because you can work with the rhythms, the musicality, and the beats.
Q: Do you prefer choreographing these dances, or participating in another dancer’s?
A: With a hip hop dance, I’d rather choreograph it because my style is specific and it’s easier to insert my own individuality. With tap, it’s more restricted to technical movements.
Q: When you were auditioning new members, what did you look for?
A: We taught them two dances; one contemporary and one jazz. They performed both of those for us in groups of 3, and they individually performed a leap and turn of their choice. The Executive Board judged them on technique, showmanship, their ability to pick up choreography, and the overall personality that they put into the dances.
Q: You took in 8 new members. What will they add to DCVT?
A: Each girl has her own personal style and their sharp technique raises our standards. It broadens our range of choreography when we know what they are capable of performing.
Q: What is your favorite thing about DCVT?
A: We are an awkward and close-knit family. Not only do we share a love of dance, but we also do things outside of dance. We do football games, dinners, and socials, not because its it’s expected of us as a club, but because we are friends and genuinely want to share our college experience together.
Q: What advice to you have for the new members?
A: Don’t feel as if you have to conform to everyone else’s style. When I first started, I was timid and shy, but through dance and my particular love of hip-hop, everyone saw a different side of me and embraced me wholeheartedly.