By Damita Glaude
KENNESAW, Ga- Kennesaw State University’s dance department hosted an event on Friday, Feb. 12 to showcase outstanding dance research done by students.
The showcase took place at KSU’s dance studio on Chastain Pointe. Everyone from fellow dance majors to the dean of the College of the Arts attended the presentations. Three students, Simone Stevens, Simon Phillips and Sicily Ledford, were selected to present their research that they have been working on for the past year.
Professor Daniel Gwirtzman opened Radnocular, followed by Ledford’s presentation on integrating a dance curriculum in K-12 schools with an emphasis on fourth and fifth graders. After Ledford, Phillips presented his research on combining dance and psychology. Stevens followed up with her research on perception in dance and how no two people view a piece the same way. Dr. Sarah Holmes, the organizer of this Radnocular and a dance history and theory professor, ended the event with her presentation on dance and water training.
The audience was able to ask questions after each presentation and the students were available afterwards to speak more in-depth about their individual projects.
A choreography presentation by Simone Stevens on Friday, Feb.12, 2016). (Damita Glaude/JEMcapstone)
Radnocular is held annually by each department in the College of the Arts. The events are held separately from each other and include art, dance, music and theatre. For many students this is the first time that they are presenting their research to an audience outside the classroom. This is a chance for them to share the beginning stages of their work before moving on to larger conferences.
“What I think is really unique about these presentations is that it is all original research, which is fantastic,” said Dr. Holmes. “There are a lot of other strong ideas that students have in this department. I hope to create more spaces for students in our department to share their research.”
Phillips and Ledford are planning to present their research at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research at the University of North Carolina Asheville. The conference will take place from April 7-9.
“The end goal of my research is community service based because, ideally, I would want it to be in all classrooms K-12 in Georgia,” said Ledford. “If this became a real program I would want a syllabus for each grade.”
Stevens will also present her research at the Rialto Center for the Arts in early March. Of the research process she said, “It wasn’t necessarily the same idea that I have now because it’s been a while. From May of last year to August, it was kind of just a broad idea with things getting twisted and manipulated and then from August to December it was narrowed down until now where it’s real small.”
According to Dr. Holmes, one of the important goals in her many areas of research is to make dancers even better dancers. Whether it’s ballet or hip hop, the question of how research can be used to the benefit of the dancer is something she strives to answer and apply.
The end goal of Radnocular for the dance department is for dance to be seen not only as an art form, but as a broad area for academic research as well.