The Shiva Dancers were the centre of attention at the Open Campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) where they recently staged “A Gift to You,” their first production for the year.
It was a rather delightful package of dance involving creativity, youth, maturity, fantasy, culture and lots of talent.
Presentations ranged from folk, to modern, to hip-hop to Caribbean, seasoned with other cultural influences.
With their innocent faces and adorable ensemble Shiva’s Tiny Tots delighted the audience with numbers such as Tiny Rockers, Run the World (in collaboration with the Juniors), and Playtime.
The Dancing Divas were just as stellar in such numbers as Old School Reggae and Party, Rock and Roll. The Juniors caught the audience’s attention in Hit the Road Jack, Sleep Over Games and Hip Hop.
There were touching solos by Aliek Knowles, who performed “To Love One’s Self” to Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful,” Vega Armstrong, who did a modern dance number to Ariana Grande’s “Put Your Hearts Up”; Ariel Boulos-Callias presented Fergie’s “Big Girls Don’t Cry” in dance; and Karen Brooks rendered a prayer in dance.
Erricia Weste and Serenity Hunt presented a delightful piece entitled A Gift of True Friendship, while Tequon Hunte & Trent Luke performed A Futuristic Hip Hop duet. Other standouts included the Boom Shacalack number, involving Danijah Simon, Vega Armstrong and Berlyncia Fabian.
Providing comic relief in a rather entertaining skit which linked Old School Reggae to the New School were Gillian Williams and Errol Phillip. Their presentation incorporated dialogue and dance.
There were many other interesting numbers which took the audience on a journey of experiences.
Shiva School of Dance Director Tavia Hunte said the production is the company’s way of bringing its talent to others in the community.
“We want to use the gift of dance to bless and uplift our space as we expand our creative energy into the universe,” her comments in the programme read.
Hunte said she was overwhelmed with the outcome of the show.
” I’m quite happy with the perfomance of the students and I think it was a great start to a new year,” she said. “The energy of the students is just so great. I’m happy that my work is reaching people … because one woman commented to me that she realised that every dance had a message to it. And that’s what I want. I want my work to say something. It must have a significance.”
The next production is planned for June.