Spectrum of Emotional Tales to Be Depicted in WT’s ‘Falling into Dance’


CANYON, Texas — Six student dancers at West Texas A&M University will explore fractured relationships, harrowing addictions and the joy of discovering oneself in works they choreographed for an upcoming dance concert.

“Falling into Dance” will feature solo and group works choreographed by senior dance majors Alex Buddingh from Kerrville, Sierra Cross from Lubbock, Grace Drake from Lubbock, Hannah Hosnedl from Downers Grove, Illinois; and Abbi Roe from Roswell, New Mexico.

Savannah Richeda, a 2020 graduate from Lubbock, retuned as a guest artist to choreograph a new piece.

Performances will be staged at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 17, 18 and 19 and 2:30 p.m. Nov. 20 in the Happy State Bank Studio Theatre inside the Sybil B. Harrington Fine Arts Complex.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students and seniors, and free for WT students, faculty and staff with a Buff Gold Card. Call 806-651-2810, email [email protected] or visit showtix4u.com/event-details/67873.

“Our students always shine in our annual ‘Falling into Dance’ performances,” said Crystal Bertrand, director of dance. “They are able to put into practice everything they’ve learned as dancers, both in designing a solo dance for themselves and in setting one on a group of their peers. It’s a crucial part of their education, and the resulting concert is an artistic delight for audiences.”

Roe, who choreographed “Meeting You Still” for five of her peers, said preparing for the dance concert is a welcome challenge.

“I want to be their friend, but I have to step up as a leader,” Roe said. “I feel like they’ve been on this educational journey for a while now, and it’s comforting to have people on my side who understand where I’m coming from. That makes every rehearsal joyful. They always give what I’m asking of them.”

Roe’s group dance implores the audience to find joy in both busy days and still ones. Other works deal with the dissolution of relationships, with the process of growing up, and with depression and addiction. One piece is a retelling of the Jack the Ripper story.

In addition to the six choreographers, dance majors scheduled to perform include Alyssa Acosta, a sophomore from El Paso; Kaleigh de la Cruz, a sophomore from Chicago; Gannon Duffy, a sophomore from Lubbock; Amon Fredinand, a sophomore from Amarillo; Krisanne Freeman, a freshman from Amarillo; Marisa Garcia, a freshman from Corpus Christi; Ben Goesl, a senior from Texarkana; Kynleigh Hilton, a junior from Lubbock; Camila Jimenez, a freshman from Fort Worth; Noah Johnson, a freshman from Temple; Eden Lovett, a sophomore from Amarillo; Jayden Lucas, a freshman from Amarillo; Anna Martin, a freshman from Midland; Ally McPhillips, a junior from Conroe; Matthew Miller, a junior from Lubbock; Kaitlyn Roberson, a junior from Pampa; Isaiah Smith, a freshman from Amarillo; Lorelai Stager, a sophomore from San Antonio; Zakyya Taylor, a junior from Lubbock; Maddy Welch, a freshman from Lubbock; and Penelope Welch, a junior from Frisco.

Non-dance majors scheduled to perform are Nolan Quintanilla, a senior musical theatre major from Canyon; Aidan Tsichlis, a senior musical theatre major from Plano; and Sarah Gil, a sophomore psychology major from El Paso. All three are dance minors.

Fostering an appreciation of the arts is a key component of the University’s long-range plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign. To date, the five-year campaign — which publicly launched in September 2021 — has raised more than $110 million.