Dance Collective skit portrays various characters that generalize life

Dancers rehearse for the event “I Spy, I Sympathize.” (Photo by Nicole Bullard)

Nicole Bullard

As part of the Dance Collective 2012 Concert, the collaboration “I Spy, I Sympathize” directed by Mimi Liu, 23, television production. She thought of the idea during the summer of 2011 after watching people on the streets or at the mall.

She found that people treated each other in significant ways that only society could create.

“I Spy, I Sympathize” is directed and choreographed by Mimi Liu, 23, television production and cinematographer Franz Salvatierra, 21, business.

Dance Instructor Dorothy Anderson Garant will also be working on ISIS.

“I want to present a correlation of relationships with the self and towards the others, whether we sympathize with one another or just remain the complete unconcerned onlookers.” said Liu about her project.

Liu and Salvatierra will not be performing in the Dance Collective. They are still practicing their performance in dance rehearsals.

“I’ve had to stand in though,” Salvatierra said about helping out in the dance rehearsals.

ISIS will be performed by 21 dancers and is supported by a crew of around eight people.

The project explores modernized societal issues, and challenges the individual viewers to take in their surroundings and observe the emotions, beauty, scars, and uniqueness. These are all aspects which Liu said she emphasizes in her project.

“My choreographic concept also helped me to reexamine the meaning of community, social justice, human decency, competition, materialism, spatial awareness, natural instincts, alienation, social anxiety, common courtesy, compassion, responsibility, ignorance, and the complexes of contemporary society,” Liu said.

In the undertaking of ISIS, the dancers will move freely about the stage as if in a crowd walking down a street. Every single dancer will have a unique personality that reflects the different sides of society.

There is “The Reader,” who is very isolated and always has her eyes on the pages of a book. She doesn’t communicate at all with the others. “The Reader” is performed by Nicky Bower, 21, dance.

One of the dancers will be playing “The Waiting Man,” who waits patiently often at the side of the stage while holding a bouquet of flowers with the petals askew and tumbling to the floor. He seems to be waiting for his date that never showed up.

“The Celebrity” and “The Bodyguard” are characters that mesh well together, with the famous starlet strutting across the stage and the bodyguard looming close to her side eyeing anyone who comes to close.

There is also “The Plant Lady,” a demure woman who is holding a plant meant as a gift for a friend in the hospital. She protects it in her arms and seems wary of the people around her.

The characters that also combine well are “The Boyfriend” and “The Girlfriend,” although throughout the rehearsal their relationship is a rocky one. In a split second they could go from walking arm in arm to glaring at each other.

Another unique character of society is “The Shopaholic,” who is carrying large shopping bags and seems to be always keen to hunt down another big sale.

In the more ambitious side of society there is “The Stuck-Up Lawyer.” She is truly the most isolated of all characters. She is always seen with her trusty Blackberry and tends to stray away from the group. Her voice is heard above the others as she converses with someone over her phone. it is obvious she hold contempt for the crowd surrounding her.

ISIS is a play on the ideals of society and the behaviours of the common population. If one is interested in modernized dance or the psychology of society, ISIS is a great performance to see.

The Dance Collective 2012 Concert will be on April 26, 27, 28 at 8 p.m. on each day. The pre-sale is $12 and the at-door is $15. For children the admission is free.