Student Union Activities hosted a performing arts variety showcase in the Kansas Union tonight at 7.
Under a winter storm warning, students and faculty began preparing for another bout of snow this afternoon. SUA originally planned for student groups on campus to demonstrate their dance and then teach the audience some basic moves. But after a few groups dropping out last minute they decided to change up the night to a more casual, “open mic night” feel.
Bea Tretbar, a sophomore from Wichita, is the SUA fine arts coordinator. She said that because of the weather, they needed another draw-in for students and that was how they came up with the open mic night plan.
Two groups showed up for the competition: KU Jeeva and KU Dancesport. KU Jeeva is a competitive south Asian fusion dance group. They incorporate different styles of dancing including Bhangra, classical, Bollywood and hip-hop. Bhangra originated in India and is a traditional dance. Classical Indian dancing has seven types and was originally performed in temples.
Monica Roychowdhury, a junior from Overland Park, is one of nine members of Jeeva.
“We’re always excited to perform for audiences like this because they usually aren’t familiar with Indian dance,” Boychowdhury said.
KU Dancesport is a competitive ballroom dancing group. They incorporate standard ballroom with Latin dances. Four of the 25 members performed tonight. They demonstrated Latin dances such as the samba, cha cha and rumba. They also performed a West Coast Swing dance.
Maggie Ma, a senior from Beijing, China, said that Dancesport likes to perform to let students know that dancing is fun and good for your health.
No one decided to get on stage last minute even though the event was changed to open mic. Both dance groups ended up tying for first place–each winning $75.
“The snow hindered it but I like how it turned out,” Tretbar said.