Dance Students Continue Storytelling Journey

The Masters Dance Company spring concert narrative of “Journeys, Stories, and Fables” unfolded through a blend of poetic modern, contemporary and hip-hop moves.

Shell Benjamin, Masters Dance Company (MDC) director, said the seventeen students “performed with their hearts and souls” during their performances for the school community last week.

The choreography was entirely student-led. Benjamin described how rewarding it was “to see how each of them has taken ownership of their craft.”

Keira Burgos ’24 enjoyed the collaboration that went into choreographing her piece “Limelight.” “I also had the freedom to play around with lighting and costumes to create something fun and exciting,” she said.

Burgos was also drawn to the choreography of classmate Juan Torres '25 ("Tracing Love"). "It felt so good to be able to emotionally invest in and help narrate a beautiful storyline and message, while also pushing myself physically as a dancer," she said.

Newcomer Anna Caponnetto Insa ’26 was grateful to be a part of it. “I felt really welcomed by everyone and had a lot of fun learning and performing the dances,” she said. “All of the dances were choreographed by students, and they did an amazing job teaching the steps and coordinating everything. All of the pieces were special and had a unique story or message.”

“I loved performing in my dance, not because I choreographed it but because it was so high energy and empowering,” Shaza Murigande ’24 said. “I'm so happy I left MDC with a fun, feminine and empowering dance, and so proud of the company and the family I have built over the years.”

“It was definitely bittersweet performing in my final concert,” Burgos said. “While I have learned so much technique and about myself as a performer, it was hard to say goodbye to my MDC family. I have bonded so closely with these dancers over the years (and months for the younger students).”

At the close of each concert, audiences were treated to a “Conversations with the Choreographers” Q&A session and a creative collection of short animated films in collaboration with Luke Wilde’s upper school animation class. “The students used a technique called ‘rotoscope’ to animate their pieces,” Wilde explained. “They took videos of the dancers in the dance minor class and then drew over the video using Adobe Animate.”

MDC students, aka Dancing Advocates, raised funds for New York Theatre Ballet’s LIFT, a program that provides dance scholarships to homeless, home-insecure and at-risk children.

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