On October 25, 2022 Dance St. Louis reached out to several schools and universities in the St. Louis area, after the tragedy at the Central Visual and Performing Arts High School. Over the next weekend, graduate students from Washington University Performing Arts Department worked together to create a new improvised work and on Monday performed their piece at the Halloween Lunch Break Dance Hour. Participants performed works dedicated to Central VPA High School which according to Dance St. Louis “highlighted the true healing properties of dance and its ability to unify." According to David Marchant, “We felt it was an opportunity to connect as dancers in support of CVPA and to share dances in solidarity with our fellow performing arts brothers and sisters.”
Graduate student and St. Louis native, Kendra Key was grateful to share this opportunity with her fellow MFA’s. “For me personally, this was a really beautiful moment. The event was similar to how I grew up knowing the dance community in STL, where dancers, movers, and performers of all ages, demographics and aesthetics could come together for the sake of sharing art in one space. It is heart breaking and unfair, the tragic event that took place at Central Visual and Performing Arts High School. Their absence at the Dance STL show was felt deeply but it also gave us - busy and tunnel visioned students - a reason to slow down, and not only acknowledge the artists around us but create a space for all of us to come together and do what we do best in a really meaningful way."
First year graduate student Amarnath Ghosh noted, “I loved the experience and the opportunity to collaborate and perform with my fellow MFA cohorts. It was wonderful to be a part of this event organized by Dance St. Louis and to be given the opportunity to go out into the St. Louis dance community."
“It was exciting to see the five of our graduate students dancing together for the first time, and in a way that so beautifully featured their individual styles,” said Marchant.