The Hartung Theater was bustling with a cast of crewmembers, dancers and musicians Monday evening — performers running in and out of dressing rooms, musicians off to the side practicing last-minute changes to music, soundboard members going through tricky show transitions.
These were the final hectic days before Dancers, Drummers, Dreamers takes the stage for its 32nd year entertaining the University of Idaho and Moscow community. DDD features student-made choreography and original musical compositions all preformed by UI students in a collaborative event.
DDD will take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday in the Hartung Theater, with a matinee show at 2 p.m. on Saturday.
The extensive preparation leading up to the annual performance is a large, stressful time commitment, but also really fun, said Carly Joerger, a dancer in DDD.
“There are so many aspects that you don’t even see from the audience like all of the time the music majors have spent working on this,” she said “… and all the time that we dancers have spent on all the pieces.”
Many music students at the Lionel Hampton School of Music take part in the annual show through playing but also composing almost all of the music in the show.
“Any time young composers can get people to play their music that they have written themselves, it’s always a good learning experience,” said Jo Asker, a bass player and UI composition major.
This is the second time Asker has composed for DDD.
“This year I have learned from all of those difficulties I had last year on how to make a piece that people can dance to,” he said.
Jeff Chambers, a senior music education and composition major at UI has composed for DDD for the past five years.
“It’s a very unique opportunity. I don’t know another university where you work with a real choreographer to combine your music with a dance piece. It teaches you how to be flexible and deal with so many factors,” he said.
Many choreographers started early last semester with their dances and many musicians started making compositions last summer, Chambers said.
After 32 years, DDD continues to help young artists gain experience in their chosen art form and put on an anticipated show for the Moscow community.
This year will also be a celebration of the late Greg Halloran, who was the dance professor at UI and had a large part in DDD for the past 11 years. He died last fall.
Joerger said audiences can look forward to a trip around the world and a creative show this year.
This collaboration between the music department and the dance department is sure to keep going strong into the future. In years past the Hartung has been packed with sold out crowds and this year is not expected to be any different.
Ryan Tarinelli can be reached at email@example.com