When All Else Fails, Just Dance

At the end of every semester, you will witness some similar trends on campus:

  1. The weather will dramatically change. It will either begin to snow terribly or become incredibly warm. Either way, it will feel as if Ithaca is mocking you because…
  2. You will have to spend large amounts of time inside libraries or in your room because final projects, essays, and exams are creeping up on you. To make things worse…
  3. Even if you manage to get outside, almost everyone else will be too busy studying because they too have final projects, essays, and exams for which to prepare.
However, the few weeks before finals are also the time for many interesting activities. There is the notorious Slope Day and many other social events on campus for students to enjoy before hiding underneath rocks to study. Furthermore, most of Cornell’s dance troupes and performing arts organizations will perform shows on campus to showcase their best acts of the semester.
I’m not a big fan of drinking alcohol, so events like Slope Day don’t appeal to me very much. However, I am a big fan of dance and other performing arts so I’m glad that the Cornell community offers these shows at the end of the semester. In a way, I use them as alternative to hanging out at parties and social events. They allow me to relieve stress before Finals Week in a way that is care-free and fun, and I also get to support my friends who are members of these performing organizations and troupes.

If you are like me and are also interested in watching some shows before Final Week kicks in, here are some ways you can catch some of the best student performances on campus:

  1. In the fall semester, keep your eyes and ears fixed for something called the Fall Showcase. It is a show comprised of several different acts by a medley of Cornell’s dance troupes. It’s the quickest way to get a sampling of the many different groups we have here.
  2. Look for posters around campus in areas like Willard Straight Hall, the Schwartz Center, and other locations. There, you may be able to catch advertisements for A Capella groups and dance troupes. They’ll also pass quarter-cards (mini flyers) on Ho Plaza.
  3. Ask your friends if they are in groups or troupes that are performing. Most often that not, you will have a classmate who is dying to meet their ticket quota. At the very least, they might know of some performances you can watch even if they are not in a group. I’ve learned about a lot of shows in this manner.
  4. When you go to a performance, pay attention to the visiting acts. Sometimes, a group will host a show and invite other similar troupes or organizations to come and do a short act in the middle of their show. If you really like a group that makes a short appearance in one of the shows you watch, then you can look at the show’s informational pamphlet to learn the group’s name and check out their events on their websites or Facebook. If you’re very interested, listen closely to the group at the end of their act. Almost always they will announce the dates and locations of their next show on campus before leaving the stage.
  5. Watch out for advertisements by groups and organizations on the “Class of ___” Facebook pages. More established groups will typically post up a promotional video to advertise their events, so you can see for yourself whether or not the show will be worth your money.

Hopefully, this advice will help you find some interesting shows to attend whenever you are facing incoming finals. Unfortunately, right now many of the shows have already passed. However, you can still anticipate these great shows that will no doubt be┬áreoccurring┬ánext semester! I know that I have been enjoying them, whether it was the intense Pao Bhangra show featuring Bhanrga dance troupes from all over the country or Base’s hip-hop and modern dance show with glow sticks and crowd Harlem Shakes. All of them have been amazing, diverse performances and great de-stressers from daily life.

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