Jewell Spotlight: Elise Villarreal

“I don’t want to do one thing. I want to do many things. Part of that is dance. I’ve danced since I was nine years old. In high school, I was on the dance team, but I never got to choreograph anything for the team. So when I got to college and made the team, I found out that as a sophomore you have that ability [to choreograph]. As soon as I found that out as a freshman, I was like ‘all right, let’s get started.’ So the dance that I wanted to do was to this song. It always starts with a song. It was “I Can Only Imagine.” I heard that song – I’m a big musicality gal – and I looked for accents and things like that. So I was listening to it, and then I created it piece by piece. I remember sitting in Responsible Self and drawing out motions and counts to this dance that I wanted to create. So after a year of meditating on this, I finally got to teach the team. We performed it one time, and it was the very last football game of last year’s season. It was our coldest game and we were dressed in all black and had our white poms. Because of the cold and because it was our last football game, there was almost nobody in the audience. It was kind of sad, but it didn’t take away from to justification and the verification that I felt from performing because it was what everything was leading up to. It wasn’t just for my eyes and not just the team’s eyes. It was broadcasted for other people. That was the most important part. It had made it from my head onto a stage. Even though that stage was the grass in Greene Stadium in front of maybe a hundred people. But it was still very significant for me. I want to keep doing it indefinitely. I want to keep doing dance for as long as I can. I want to keep creating things for as long as I can.”


Hannah Koehler

Hannah Koehler is the page editor for Arts & Culture on The Hilltop Monitor. She is a senior majoring in English and psychological science.

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