Posted on Monday, May 2nd, 2011 at 3:59 pm under Events

by
Becky, Class of 2013

Friday, April 29th marked the official groundbreaking of SUNY Potsdam’s new performing arts building!  The building has been in the planning stages for roughly 13 years and will be the first new construction on the Potsdam campus in over 30 years.  Needless to say, it was an exciting day…especially for the Department of Theater and Dance since that will be our new home!  The new facility is poised to put SUNY Potsdam in first in terms of SUNY art schools.  I personally have never been so proud to be a dance major at Potsdam.

The new building will feature four dance studios, two black box theaters, and one enormous proscenium theater for main stage productions, as well as numerous acting studios (I’m not sure of the exact number), a new office complex, and new meeting rooms for Dance Ensemble, Theatre Guild, and Alpha Psi Omega (our co-ed theater and dance fraternity).  It’s all going to include the newest technology and give our students new opportunities to really get their most out of their education within theater and dance.  The building is currently set to open fall of 2013, my senior year!

At the opening ceremony, my Dance Improvisation class performed a half-hour flash mob performance as the preamble.  The theme was new beginnings and coming together to create something new in order to move forward.  It was our first “performance” as an improv class, so that was a little nerve-wracking…especially since it took place outdoors without the traditional bounds of the stage.  It was a good learning experience, considering so many of the great improvisation teachers and originators believed so strongly in working outdoors in nature.  It was a really interesting experience, and I’m glad I got to take part in it.

Right after my improvisation class finished, it was time for CariDanco to perform as the official opener to the groundbreaking ceremony.  We did a Haitian style piece entitled “Celebration” that we’ve worked with in rehearsal and small demonstrations.  The crowd seemed to really enjoy the piece and we got a lot of energy from them to push us through, even though I was especially exhausted having just performed a half-hour improvisational piece!  After our performance, the president of the college spoke briefly about CariDanco.  It was gratifying to hear his words of appreciation and to see that CariDanco is really starting to come to life and receive recognition around campus as well as in the greater Potsdam community.  Today it’s the North Country…tomorrow it’s the world! I can’t wait to see where this all takes us.

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