Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 24th 2015 Contents A32
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, October 24, 2015
Artistic director of the
Alpha Theatrical Dance
Ottley, in one of the
If you are urged to "take your seat," it s likely
that you d await---with trepidation or anticipation---
either a scolding or an unparallelled performance.
The latter happened on October 17 at the Naparima
Bowl when thespians performed the second instal-
ment of the production Take Your Seat.
Produced by the Alpha Theatrical Dance Company,
the cast included a medical doctor, whose passion
for saving lives equals her love for dance, and per-
formers whose technical abilities are as evident in
dance as in their own professions.
"In addition to Renette Alexander, our dancing
medical doctor, we have young men and women
who are mechanical and computer engineers in the
persons of Jor-el Mc Lean and Shemeon Williams,
and an HSE officer, Dainelle Mc Lean; all are senior
dancers with more than ten years of dance experience,
and this is very commendable. It is mainly about
ministry, sharing with the community what we have
been blessed with," said artistic director, choreographer
and stage director Beverley-Ann Ottley.
Ottley, who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in
theatre arts and a Bachelor of Arts degree in dance,
has been choreographing for more than 30 years.
Her expertise has left its mark in other countries
too, including Venezuela, Grenada and England.
Take Your Seats was first staged in July to a sold-
out audience. It returned to Naparima Bowl in
response to many requests, said Ottley.
The two-hour dance production featured the skills
from a cast of 80, including 55 dancers in
modern/contemporary and hip hop dance styles.
The audience was first greeted by masked man-
nequins; the show kicked off with an eight-minute
piece titled Revival.
Dancers showed off their prowess in several genres,
including cha cha cha and a theatrical solo to the
vibrant sounds of African drumming by Jordan JE
Edmund, Alpha's music producer and arranger.
Lovers of the Disney hit Lion King were treated
to an excerpt of its music in the last few minutes
of this selection. Gasps and applause filled the air
as the audience looked on attentively at chairs being
flown in from overhead, as all 16 dancers took their
It was the youngsters who drew the greatest reac-
tion from patrons. Dancers as young as four years
old danced to the Diana Ross hit I'm Coming Out.
Dressed in wigs, red bell-bottomed pants and bell-
sleeved costumes, they never missed a beat and
received whistles and shouts of approval.
This was followed by a thought-provoking number
performed by dancer Shanice Morton and spoken
word artist Akiel Wallace, who rendered God of
The production's pantomime piece was performed
by Ottley, accompanied by dancer Kareem Tinto.
Guest modern dancer Moriba Francis effortlessly
delivered perfect extensions and flexibility during
his solo, and when he danced alongside senior dancers
Dainelle Mc Lean and Deniecia Petrovanie in a piece
choreographed by Francis.
Then came the surprise of the evening, when
gospel artiste Rizon performed three selections,
accompanied by Alpha dancers. Male dancers Joel
Moss, Shemeon Williams, Raun Joseph and Shane
Elbourne (who all had a hand in their own chore-
ography), electrified the crowd with expert hip hop
The dancers, who have been choreographing for
more than ten years locally and internationally, have
all been participants at the World Hip Hop cham-
pionships in Las Vegas. A popular script enacted by
Elbourne and Alexander brought laughter to the
"This not only keeps us together as a group, but
brings hundreds of people of varying ages together
to experience expression in a different medium. What
we can assure you is that the music is explosive, the
movements are exaggerated, the theatrics are dynamic,
the lighting is full of impact and the seats are yours
for the taking," said Ottley.
She thanked her dancers and their dedication
towards helping her enlighten and entertain the
public through Alpha's annual production.
A confident Ottley promised even more entertaining
and explosive performances at the company's 2016
Take Your Seat show a hit
From cha cha cha to hip hop
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