Dancing Through Genres

The Culture Shock Dance Troupe will be hosting Dance Evolution at New Paltz High School from 6 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 12. Dance teams such as Stony Brook’s Déjà Vu will have the opportunity to compete for the grand prize of $1,000 and a trophy.

“Collectively, the team performs for the event, as well as runs the entire show behind the scenes with help from sound and lighting technicians that aid in having a successful, entertaining show,” said fourth-year early childhood education with a concentration in Black studies major Miyah Tomlinson, the president of the Culture Shock Dance Troupe.

According to fourth-year public relations major Dey Armbrister, the vice president of the troupe, Culture Shock is hoping to keep “the legacy of dance alive on this campus” through Dance Evolution. Due to budget cuts over the years, the dance minor at SUNY New Paltz has been removed. Dance Evolution is a way to “inspire those who have a passion for dance and the performing arts.”

Performers range from flag twirling, hip-hop, step and ballet. According to Ambrister, other New Paltz dance organizations such as The Warriors, Shades Step Team and The New Paltz Dance Team will  showcase their talent.

“There is an unlimited amount of dance styles,” said Tomlinson.

Although Culture Shock is primarily a hip-hop dance troupe, they also take on styles including contemporary, pop, lyrical, vogue and dance hall. Their music genres include everything from R&B to alternative. According to Tomlinson, “the team has experimented with Bollywood influenced choreography and Irish Step Dancing.” Their wide variety of styles allow them to appeal to a vast audience.

“Culture Shock is a living, dancing Culture Shock,” said Ambrister.

According to Tomlinson, previous shows have been based on popular movies including “The Matrix,” “Alice in Wonderland” and “Kill Bill.” This year their showcase will the Hollywood rendition of the “Little Red Riding Hood.”

“It’s a fun way to tell an already known story in our own way, through dance,” said Ambrister.

The members of Culture Shock said they are hoping for students to come out and support Dance Evolution. The show is rooted in the idea of expression through dance.

“Dance Evolution unifies the campus, which is something culture shock takes pride in. The audience is highly energetic every year and it’s an amazing experience all around,” said Ambrister.

Dance Evolution tickets are $4 for New Paltz students and $8 for general admission.