MFA Student Dance Concert: Pathway Graphic

MFA Student Dance Concert: Pathway

Premiered Saturday, March 27, 2021 at 8:00 p.m. and was available on-demand thru Sunday, April 11, 2021.

Premiered Saturday, March 27, 2021 at 8:00 p.m. and available on-demand thru Sunday, April 11, 2021.

This dance concert takes us on a journey that combines three distinct paths. One moves us through the world of grief, the powerful rollercoaster of human emotions. The next takes us on the passage of both the power and grace of Muslim women.  In the final piece, we are immersed in the force of our neglect of Nature and her rebellious response.  

The concert speaks to the human spirit at its best and worst, through grief and grace.  It’s sure to be an evening of moving images, sharp contrasts, and evocative performances. This concert represents the completion of the MFA in Dance requirements for our fourth cohort students: Leah Robertson, Luewilla Smith-Barnett and Thomas Proctor.

This year because of increased production costs for video equipment and streaming, we are giving our patrons the opportunity to give a donation through our “pay what you can” ticket system. If you would like to contribute to help support this event, click the “Pay What You Can” link below.  WashU students and Patrons who do not wish to contribute at this time may obtain the link to access the production by clicking on the Registration link.


“Pay What You Can” - Suggested Donation: $10

Donate Here 

Meet the 2021 Cohort

Leah Robertson
Vows of Melancholy

In my piece Vows of Melancholy, I dive into the realm of loss, its permanency and association with feelings of grief and isolation. I find irony in the ways in which desolation and loneliness in the face of loss are so relatable.
Throughout this piece, I explore the subtle, and often silent, ways in which grief connects us as emotional beings.  Loss is forever, and grief is everlasting. It sits in your pocket as you walk through life, sometimes hardly noticeable, sometimes weighing you down, but always there and always a part of you.  



Luewilla Smith Barnett
The Sacred Value of Women 

“Al’Nisa, The Women” is the 4th Surah (chapter) in the Holy Quran that teaches that both man and woman are made of the same being, which is Allah (God). The 19th Surah in the Holy Quran is titled “Maryam,” the mother of Jesus. Highlighting scripture and the teachings of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad as taught to me by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and my Muslim Girls Training and General Civilization Class (M.G.T. and G.C.C.) in the Nation of Islam, The Sacred Value of Women is an artistic testament to the divine nature, value and power of the woman.  It emphatically enlightens us to the world’s oppression, disrespect and exploitation of women, specifically Muslim women, despite scriptural guidance.  It ushers us into a world of dance that dispels myths, promotes the upliftment of the woman, and exposes us to her true essence, dynamism, regality, strength, sisterly bond, and motherly love. 



Thomas Proctor
Ubiquitous Plastic
Ubiquitous Plastic
is a response to the unwitting damage that we inflict upon the environment through habitat destruction and the proliferation of single use plastic waste. It is a study on what inspires us as humans to begin caring about the Earth and what effects these few insufficient heroes can have. Furthermore, this performance takes a look at an important potential pitfall of initiating climate change activism in the lives of daily people. Can we inspire change and how long-lasting is that change? All props and plastic used in this piece were gathered by the dancers over a 30 day period, in which the dancers were instructed to wash and save all the hard single-use plastic.



The MFA Student Dance Concert represents the final component of the MFA in Dance program.  Each section of the concert combines the artistic expression and kinetic innovations of the MFA in Dance students. The overarching goal of the MFA in Dance program is to develop each student's personal artistic practice while encouraging a global perspective on dance studies, performance, pedagogy, and choreography.  

Please Note:  Last year's 2020 MFA Dance Concert:"Mindscapes" featuring the work of the 2020 MFA Cohort which had been rescheduled for this Spring due to COVID has been cancelled.