By Molly Bello
Bridgewater State University offers a dance major and minor, but in addition to those, there are many dance clubs and groups. While some groups are selective and consist of predominantly students involved in the formal dance programs, Pops is open for anyone.
The motto of Pops, “Dance is for everyone,” is a perfect reflection of the students involved. Students from every major, from athletes to students who have never danced before are involved.
Senior Chelsea Correia is the only varsity athlete in the dance group. She is majoring in physical education with a concentration in motor development theory. In addition to all this, she is a clinician for Children’s Physical Developmental Clinic.
“I used to dance competitively for ten years,” Correia said. “[Pops is] a breath of fresh air, it’s doing something different outside being an athlete because volleyball takes up a lot of time. I’m the only varsity athlete and they are very accepting of this. I’m meeting different people, it’s very diverse.”
Correia said being involved with Pops shows athletes can branch out and go outside their comfort zone.
Senior biology major Alexandra Litwak is the President of Pops. She has a minor in dance, and it has always been a huge part of her life.
“I have done Pops for four years now, and every year it is different,” Litwak said. “The theme is different every year which makes it really exciting. The songs are always songs that the audience gets pumped up to, and the dancers enjoy dancing too.”
Litwak received the ATP summer grant for research involving both DNA and dance. Even though her studies reside mainly in the field of natural sciences, dance remains significant in her career.
“When I dance, everything else that is on my mind becomes nonexistent,” Litwak said. “I am a very klutzy person, and with dance I feel very graceful and elegant, two things I definitely am not in everyday life. I come out of dance practice feeling relaxed and good about myself. I love being on stage and performing, which are two things I am going to severely miss once I graduate.”
Litwak was grateful and emotional about the final Pops performance which occurred on April 9. As President of Pops she was much more involved in this year’s show.
“It is really exciting to know this show is actually happening,” Litwak said. “This Pops [show] is most likely going to be my final dance performance at BSU, and I could not be more proud of my cast, my choreographers, and my e-board.”
Taking on a leadership role in addition to school work and internships is never easy. However, it proves to be a rewarding experience for Litwak.
“I am so happy and honored that I was able to be President and make this years Pops the best it has ever been,” Litwak said.
Aaron Roberts, a senior chemistry major with a dance minor is one of the few male students involved in Pops. He is only a senior by credits, with 87 transfer credits from the Navy, as this is only his second year at Bridgewater State.
Roberts said he quit dance as a freshman in high school, but his love for it was rekindled at age 24. With Winter Dance and Dance Kaleidoscope being so selective, Roberts opted to join Pops.
“It’s a way to perform, any opportunity I can, I will,” Roberts said. “Pops is better this year, it’s smaller and a lot friendlier.”
As one of only two males in Pops last year, Roberts felt a little left out. With several new males this year, it’s a little more diverse, but still predominantly female.
“It’s a little weird, but I approach things differently,” Roberts said. “[The other seniors in Pops and I] are more focused. At the same time the seniors can be more relaxed, because after all this time, they understand what they are doing more.”
There are all sorts of opportunities to dance on campus, or if not dance, be involved in the arts in some way.
“I recommend anyone do dance,” Roberts said. “Especially men, we need male dancers. Anyone should do something creative even if they have that [little] spark, it creates balance. I can’t do chemistry without dance.”
All three students in Pops speak highly of the student-run dance group. With very diverse backgrounds and areas of study, they all find time to indulge in their passion to dance.
Molly Bello is a The Comment’s Living-Arts Editor. Follow her on twitter @mollybello or email her at email@example.com.