All majors collaborate for passion of dance

By Claire Buchanan

Non-dance majors have been mingling more with the dance department through school and club performances.

Associate dance professor Paula Frasz judged dance and non-dance majors at Face Off, an annual dance competition held in the spring in the Holmes Student Center. Although Frasz had worked with dance teams before the competition, the event inspired her to have the programs collaborate.

“I judged these competitions, and I’m like, ‘Why aren’t these guys over here and why aren’t our dancers over there?’” Frasz said. “We started having students taking our classes that are in these fraternities, so they were the ones that said we needed to get more feedback and more of a sharing thing.”

Frasz said about eight non-dance major and minor students from dance teams, such as Supremacy and Delta Phi Delta, are taking dance courses this semester.


Supremacy combines lessons learned in rehearsal and in the dance program. The group took first place in the Face Off dance competition in April.

Derrick Sims, Supremacy member and junior sociology major, said the group’s hard work at practice pays off.

“We all have a passion for dance,” Sims said. “That’s one of the main reasons I started with Supremacy. It’s important to me to take time out of my day to go to practice and learn the dances.”

Delta Phi Delta

Some Delta Phi Delta members have taken university dance classes to enhance their range and technical abilities of the team. The dance fraternity hosts its annual Unity Show Nov. 7, which showcases work by dance majors and non-dance majors. Delta Phi Delta member Bernadette Chatman said the Unity Show was created to prevent conflict among the clubs.

“We created the show to promote unity within the teams,” Chatman said. “It is not a competition, but a chance for teams to show their talent as well as work and perform with other teams.”

Dance Department

The Spring Dance Concert was mainly choreographed by faculty members who specialize in styles of ballet, jazz and modern dance; however, the show’s hip hop performance was choreographed by non-dance majors and Frasz.

The spring performance was the first NIU dance production to feature hip hop.

“I don’t know hip hop, so all I did was have [the hip-hop dancers] give me steps and I shaped them,” Frasz said. “A lot of people don’t want to come to dance concerts because they think it’s going to be all ballet, but audience members get a more diverse show from the different groups involved.”