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Nazareth's Dance Concert "Woven" represents different ideas, people coming together

Published March 12, 2019

From dance with video projection to the premiere of a new work by an acclaimed New York Dance and Performance (Bessie) Award winning choreographer, Nazareth’s annual Spring Dance Concert will showcase extraordinary dance by established and emerging artists. The Nazareth College Theatre and Dance Departments will present Woven at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 29 and Saturday, March 30 in Callahan Theater, located on the campus of Nazareth College at 4245 East Avenue, Rochester, 14618.

Woven represents the threads of different themes and ideas coming together in one concert,” said associate professor of dance and artistic director Heather Roffe Wiktorski. “The works include contemporary fusion, modern, and musical theatre. Some address relevant social topics and others are abstract. It’s a diverse ride!”

As in years past, the Spring Dance Concert will feature original works by student choreographers alongside works by established artists. Bessie Award-winning choreographer David Dorfman set a new work on Nazareth and U of R students that incorporates spoken word, a hallmark component in many of the contemporary choreographer’s other works.

“He wanted to highlight the two separate groups coming together in this unique collaboration,” said Roffe, who welcomed Dorfman to Nazareth last month for a week-long residency in collaboration with the program of dance and movement at the University of Rochester. “The spoken word component is about being strangers and yet how they can work through their differences to achieve something.”

Woven also features a premiere piece by Rochester-based guest artist Caitlin Mahon, as well as new faculty work by Michelle L. Pritchard and Heather Roffe Wiktorski. Roffe’s piece, “When We Come Together,” includes video projection created from current events and social justice issues that the student performers are concerned and passionate about.

“People are trying to figure out why their world is falling apart and how they can fix things - this dance is a call to realize we need to connect and work together to find solutions,” said Roffe, who worked with freelance videographer Rob Gertler in creating the video projections.

Last fall, students auditioned dancers, and then created original works for consideration. Eight student choreographers were chosen to premiere their works: Sarah Spina (dance ’19), Caz Lopata-Linn (dance ’20), Tazdyn Francisco (dance ’21), Linnae Corgan (dance ’20), Ariel Wiegand (dance ’20), Cassidy Halpin (dance ’20), Yeqing Li (dance ’19), and Zach Jones (musical theatre ’21). Nearly 50 students will participate in the concert as choreographers, dancers, collaborators or crew.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for our students to have valuable experiences that will prepare them for their future careers,” said Roffe.

General admission tickets to Woven, are $10 for general admission, $8 for seniors, and $5 at the door for students with I.D. - free with Naz ID. For tickets call - or visit - the Box Office: 585-389-2170 or order online:

The Nazareth College Arts Center Box Office is located on campus at 4245 East Avenue, Rochester. Regular box office hours are Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and 11 a.m. until curtain time on performance days.

Woven features choreography by David Dorfman, Caitlin Mahon, Michelle L. Pritchard, Heather Roffe Wiktorski, Sarah Spina, Caz Lopata-Linn , Tazdyn Francisco, Linnae Corgan, Ariel Wiegand, Cassidy Halpin, Yeqing Li, and Zach Jones. Lighting design by guest artist Seth Reiser. Costume design by Yuanting Zhao and Fiona Kier. Dancers are Alyssa Belcastro, Alyssa Van Auker, Abby Hazlett, Dereck Atwater, Serafina Sortino, Shaughnessy Gower, Alanna Viscosi, Amanda Reyngoudt, Abby Voss, Becka Hutchins, Lauren Armstrong, Michaela Shaffer, Krystal Tapia, Taylor Lepp, Ainsley Bertone, Olivia Moffa, Zachary Jones, Caz Lopata-Linn, Kaitie Buckert, Andrea Alati, Vivian Lucas, Sarah Spina, Anna Kostakis, Caroline Dennis, Nicole Todd, Jamie Layhew, Erika Ly, Rachel Daly, Amya Brice, Caroline Sherwood, Ashley Rider, Alexis Davis, Dwight Young, Tazdyn Francisco, Linnae Corgan, Nikki Szudlo, Sarah Garber, Jocelyn Anctil, Kim Cassetta, Megan Ruffalo, Natalie Salewski, Kezia Latin, Ariel Wiegand, Jessica McCane, and Michayla Kovaleski. Actors are Catherine Flint, Demetrio Alomar and Sophia Foti. Singers are Chiara Giampietro, Alyssa Sands, Vinnie Capluzzi, Hayley Knips, Olivia Moffa, Michaela Schaffer, Sophia Foti, Garrison Hunt, Abigail Hazlett, and Isabella Bertoni. Crew is Erynn Hill, Leah Chesko, Fiona Kier, Max Borrelli, Maria Rodriguez, and Sam Hunt.

For More Information

Michelle Shippers, 585-389-2093,

Nazareth College’s academic strengths cross an unusually broad spectrum of 60 majors, including education, health and human services, management, the fine arts, music, theater, math and science, foreign languages, and the liberal arts. The coeducational, religiously independent, classic campus in a charming suburb of Rochester, N.Y., challenges and supports 2,300 undergrads and 700 graduate students. Nazareth is recognized nationally for its Fulbright global student scholars and commitment to civic engagement. Rigorous programs, an uncommon arts and sciences core, experiential learning, career skills, and a global focus prepare graduates for not just one job, but for their life’s work.