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The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Vitality brought dreams to life in their showcase ‘In Your Dreams’

The dance company’s showcase featured several dreamy performances, ranging from sentimental solos to energetic ensembles.
Urmika Nandwani
Vitality members conclude their showcase with smiles, captured on Nov. 10, 2023. (Hustler Multimedia/Urmika Nandwani)

Vitality Dance Company’s fall showcase “In Your Dreams” was a performance that kept me wide awake and my attention captured by the beautiful acts.

“I am so happy to say that the show went incredibly well!” Vitality President Casey Carrow, a senior, said. “Our dancers always put their whole hearts into their performances, and that definitely was evident in the resulting product of our show.”

The show took place on Nov. 10 in Langford Auditorium. Vitality, a student organization that spotlights contemporary technique and artistry, puts on a fall showcase annually. All of the Nov. 10 individual performances followed the dream theme, using songs and choreography that reminded me of late-night ponderings, beautiful midnight skies and the joys in life that are worth waking up for.

“This theme gave way to a wide variety of perspectives on the meaning of dreams as told through our student-choreographed dances,” Carrow said. “From lost hopes to relentless aspirations, chilling nightmares to blissful fantasies, every dance conveyed a meaningful, unique story.”

Before the show started, Vitality played a video asking each of their dancers questions about their thoughts on dreams. From funny responses to actual sentiments, each time a new dancer popped on the screen, they were met with cheers from the audience. 

The show consisted of numbers ranging from energetic ensembles to sentimental solos, tremendous trios to dazzling duets. Some of the most emotional numbers were the ones between members who were performing together for the last time either due to graduation, studying abroad or other circumstances. A few of these acts included voice memos before the number of the dancers telling each other how much dancing together meant to them.

“I owe a huge part of my college experience and some of the best friendships I’ve ever had to Vitality,” Carrow said. “Choreographing, teaching and dancing with this company has been the highlight of my dance career and a memory I will treasure forever.”

With all of the dances having been choreographed by the performers themselves, each number gave an intimate look into the creativity and skill of the organization. Vitality Treasurer Kelsey Cleveland, a sophomore, choreographed one of these dances. 

“I haven’t choreographed contemporary before, so it was definitely a challenge, but working with the dancers who were so willing to try my crazy ideas was just the best creative process,” Cleveland said. “I’m so thankful for the people I had in my dance. Their dedication to the dance really made it what it was.”

The Vitality show also included guest performances from other dance groups. Vibe took the stage to show off their moves, followed by Tap That later in the show. Vitality also had an act called “Dancing with the Stars,” based on the reality TV show, where some dancers brought a non-dancer friend on stage to perform a number with them. It made for a humorous audience experience to watch these amateurs try to keep up with their more experienced partners.

The show concluded with an energetic, beautifully choreographed all-company number in which Vitality showed its skill. Each of their dancers has grace and mastery, making the show a love letter to dance itself. 

“Dance gives me the freedom to escape, to explore, to connect, to feel, and simply, to be myself,” Carrow said. “Dance has shaped me in more ways than I’ll ever know and made me the person I am today.”

When the lights came up and marked the end of “In Your Dreams,” I wished I could have remained in the dream-like performance for a little while longer. Each number brought a new vibrance to the theme.

“Vitality is my favorite thing that I’ve done since arriving on campus,” first-year Ava Miller said. “I enjoyed every dance in the show and getting to be part of such a special community.”

Vitality members bow down to the crowd, captured on Nov. 10, 2023. (Hustler Multimedia/Urmika Nandwani) (Urmika Nandwani)

Experiencing Vitality’s “In Your Dreams” showcase was a dream come true. I encourage everyone to keep an eye on this organization for their spring showcase coming soon.

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About the Contributors
Chloe Whalen
Chloe Whalen, Staff Writer
Chloe Whalen (‘27) is from Herscher, Ill., and is studying communication of science and technology in the College of Arts and Science. She previously served as Deputy Life Editor. In her spare time, she enjoys running, listening to multiple genres of music and podcasts and doing jigsaw puzzles. She can be reached at [email protected].
Bella Guzman
Bella Guzman, Staff Writer and Photographer
Bella Guzman (‘26) is from Charlotte, N.C., and studies human and organizational development and sociology in Peabody College. When not writing for The Hustler, you can find her training in the gym, listening to a new podcast or planning her next travel adventure. You can reach her at [email protected].
Urmika Nandwani
Urmika Nandwani, Staff Photographer
Urmika Nandwani (‘26) is from South Jordan, Utah and studies biology and anthropology in the College of Arts and Science. When not taking pictures for The Hustler, she can be found cozied up with a good book or out and about on a run. She can be reached at [email protected].
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