The Oberlin Review

Sighted: Surprise Sword Dancing

Sighted: Surprise Sword Dancing

May 5, 2017

Students working in the Science Center’s Perlik Commons on Wednesday afternoon were treated to a surprise performance by Rust Belt Rapper, a student dance group on campus. The group performs Rapper Sword Dance, a traditional folk dance that originated in northern England. The group’s routines feature five members that each perform with flexible, double-handled swords and spin, duck and occasionally flip through the quintet’s different formations. In addition to several unannounced performances ...

“Colors of Rhythm” Highlights POC Performances

“Colors of Rhythm” Highlights POC Performances

April 7, 2017

Student artists of color took the stage in Finney Chapel for the 21st annual Colors of Rhythm showcase last Thursday night, showcasing languages, instruments and dance traditions underrepresented in Oberlin classes and campus life. This year, the event featured spoken word performers, singers, OCTaiko, the Filipinx American Students’ Association Band, a dance group from the African Students Association, Descendants of the Dragon, Movimiento and a variety of other groups. One band performed in T...

Drag Ball Goes to Hell and Back with New Theme, RuPaul Performances

Julia Peterson, Production editor

March 31, 2017

Filed under ARTS, Dance, Features, Theater & Film

Drag Ball has been one of Oberlin’s most iconic annual events since the 1980s. A celebration of the queer community and drag performance and culture, Drag Ball will take over the basement of Wilder Hall — encompassing the ’Sco, the Rathskellar and DeCafé — on April 22. This year, Drag Ball will feature a lineup of nationally recognized musicians and drag performers, along with local talent. Latrice Royale, of RuPaul’s Drag Race season four and RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars, will be performing. Rapper and drag queen Big Momma will be performing, as will M. Lamar, who, according to College senior and Drag Ball organizing committee Head Em Westheimer, is a “radical queer Black afrofuturist neo-goth singer, pia...

Colors of Rhythm

Colors of Rhythm

March 31, 2017

Sharpley’s Retirement Leaves Dance Diaspora’s Future Uncertain

Sharpley’s Retirement Leaves Dance Diaspora’s Future Uncertain

March 3, 2017

“Black Love: The Incarceration of the Spirit,” Dance Diaspora’s last performance at Oberlin with its original founder, will be held at Warner Main Space today and tomorrow from 8–10 p.m. A semi-professional dance group founded by Africana Studies Artist-in- Residence Adenike Sharpley, Dance Diaspora has performed at elementary schools, high schools, Tufts University, Georgia State University and the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. The group performs repertoire an...

“Inflatable Trio” Navigates Complex Soundscape

“Inflatable Trio” Navigates Complex Soundscape

February 17, 2017

The Dance department held an in-progress showing of Inflatable Trio, a collaboration between dancer and director Lionel Popkin, OC ’92, and TIMARA Professor Tom Lopez, OC ’89, as well as dancers Samantha Mohr and Carolyn Hall, OC ’91, Monday night in Warner Hall’s dance studio. The ensemble will premiere the finished piece next Thursday in Los Angeles, complete with costumes, lighting and a short introductory film, elements that were notably — though not disruptively — absent from the ...

On the Record with Musicologist Maria Williams

On the Record with Musicologist Maria Williams

February 17, 2017

Professor Maria Williams was born and raised in Anchorage, AK. She received a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology from University of California, Los Angeles and currently directs the Department of Alaska Native Studies at the University of Alaska, Anchorage, where she teaches courses in Alaska Native and world music. She recently produced a documentary called A Beautiful Journey, which chronicles Athabascan Elder Daisy Demientieff’s 750-mile journey in search of roots for her tribe’s indigenous basket-makin...

Flaharty’s Spring Awakening Ethereal, Relevant

Brendan Eprile, Staff Writer

December 9, 2016

Filed under ARTS, Dance, Music, Theater & Film

The Oberlin College Theater Department presented a stunning and poignant rendition of Spring Awakening over the weekend. The musical is an exploration of the emotional turmoil of teenage sexuality, love and angst. Despite its late 19th-century setting, several of the themes it addresses — such as abortion, sexual and domestic violence, depression and suicide — remain highly relevant to today’s social and political discourse. While the societal climate surrounding many of these issues has shifted drastically over the last century, the narrative still speaks to the persistence of violence and repression today and serves as a reminder of just how far from solved these issues are. The story’s emotional impact was enhance...

Complex Questions Drive Choreography at Intimate Fall Forward

Vida Weisblum, Editor-in-Chief

November 4, 2016

Filed under ARTS, Dance

Last night commenced Fall Forward, the Dance department’s premiere production that takes place every November. In past iterations, Fall Forward has boasted lengthy setlists with large group pieces, but this year, under Professor Carter McAdams’ direction, the show will include smaller works by just seven choreographers and will run for two consecutive nights rather than the typical three. Despite its shorter runtime compared to past shows — 45 minutes without intermission — the presented material will showcase an extensive breadth of styles composed by a talented roster of artists, with performances tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m. “Last year, many of Oberlin’s student dancers and choreographers graduated, a...

Halloween Burlesque Treats Audience, Bodies with Respect

Julia Peterson, Production Editor

November 4, 2016

Filed under ARTS, Dance, Features, Theater & Film

The Oberlin Burlesque Halloween-themed performance was a treat — quite literally, since the show opened with the audience being pelted by candy. The team took the stage in front of a packed ’Sco at 10 p.m. Monday to deliver a performance that both capitalized on the evening’s spooky theme and celebrated the multiplicity of body expression. According to College junior Russell Jaffe, who danced in Monday’s show, the variety of acts on display is at the core of burlesque. “I’d say that [burlesque is] a seductive dance in a really specific art style that’s one part cabaret, two parts seduction, a dash of variance and maybe a ... touch of stripping,” Jaffe said. College sophomore Katya Bouazza-Salva, who...

Established 1874.