Highland Dance Company Goes Through History With “Chronicled”


Peach Schilling

Dancers from Highland Dance Company perform during Chronicled

Grace Ojewia, News Editor

A spectacle of light, music, and dance all came together on Wednesday evening to present a chronological representation of history. Highland Dance Company’s Chronicled was a show that took different time periods all throughout history and told them in a new light. Their choreographers gave them a dance about Greek and Roman statues and the idea for a performance journeying through time was born. Some of the dancers even created the choreography for some of the pieces.

“We were trying to convey the events that happened in these dances,” dancer and senior Carlie DiBella said. “When we choreographed our dances we all had an event in history [in mind], so that was our inspiration.”

Set in the gym, the dancers started with the piece “Statues” that told the story of Ancient Greece at 800 BCE. Music by Regina Spector created a dazzling array of white as they told a story of a time period that has come to be a building block of modern society. “Hequ” was about the ruler of Ancient Egypt in the year of 70 BCE.

The pieces went on from there going through ancient history from Ancient Rome with “Silhouettes – which was also performed with the Junior Dance Company – to Europe’s medieval times with “Coronation” set in the 1500 CE. The dark piece “Coven” brought the audience to colonial America during the Salem Witch Trials in 1693 CE. There was a big jump in time as the next dance “Be Alright” brought the audience to the twentieth century and presented a somber and melancholy tale of the First World War from 1914-1918 with the song Safe & Sound by Taylor Swift.

The bright and flashy piece “Play That Sax” was filled with gold and black costumes and the feel of the flappers in the Roaring 20s. The next pieces took the audience through The Great Depression with “Black Tuesday” in the year 1929 to the end of the Second World War in 1945 with “Legends” all the way to the Mets wining the World Series in 1969 with the fun and vibrant “Miracle Mets.” Of course, the king of pop himself could not be left out in a historical timeline and the piece “Queens of Pop” gave a very Michael Jackson-like tribute to the late singer set in the year of 1980 around the height of his career.

“Jump” took viewers into more modern times with the 1980s and the cultural changes and movements that were happening. Finally, the performance ended in the present day of 2018 with the pieces “Hip Hop” that presented a, well hip-hop performance to a popular rap/hip-hop song by rapper Lil Pump.

“In many of the dances, you can see movements that would suggest the events and portray the emotion, or they have symbolism,” dancer and senior Madeleine Kayser said. “In Maya, Hannah, and my dance we watched a lot of Michael Jackson videos and tried to mimic his style.”

Kayser performed “Queens of Pop” with fellow dancers Maya Awada and Hannah Swenson as they tried to portray Jackson’s stage persona through the piece. By the end of the night, Chronicled not only brought the audience back to 2018 after a travel through time but left them with a new perspective on some of history’s most memorable moments.